A column by John Anderson
Wellsville Daily Reporter
|Coach Bob Dunsmore|
The first game I covered as a sports editor, just years removed from my teens, was in 1992 and I was told “No matter what happens, you are in luck. The head coach is Bob Dunsmore and he will take care of you.”
I needed it.
The opposing sideline was not a friendly place to be, but it was where I had to walk with my notepad as the chain gang is on that side and the old grass fields were only lined five yards at a time. The Bolivar fans overflowing from the full bleachers were outnumbering the away team fans on that side. They yelled at the sportswriter I was covering the game with, Gary Maloney from the Times Herald. They didn’t like where their Bulldogs were ranked and they didn’t think they were getting enough respect. I smiled. I knew this was where I wanted to be, covering games where everyone hung on every word I put into print.
The Bolivar team emerged from the school and the heat coming from their uniforms and heads created a smoke machine atmosphere as they made the long walk to the Bolivar Bulldog sideline. That’s when I first saw Coach Dunsmore. He was stoic and focused. I didn’t think his team had a chance. They were small and they had the most plain blue and white jerseys I have ever seen.
As they warmed up, I noticed their game ball was a plastic-molded Voit football with the hard rubber fake laces. The other teams had new all-weather leather balls.
When the action went inside the 10-yard-line, I made my way to the end zone, but could barely find a spot to take photos, as the fans were lined three-deep in this exclusive club of former players. The nicest thing I can say is, they were Bulldogs. No one ran a deep pass pattern in the back of the end zone with this alumni crew defending it.
Instead of going back to the chain gang and chasing it to do stats, I gravitated toward Coach Dunsmore. The opposing coaches all seemed to yell a lot and the sidelines were organized chaos. On the Bolivar side, Coach Dunsmore was so quiet, you would have thought assistants Joel Whitcher and Kelly Lounsberry were the head coaches.
I saw Whitcher and Lounsberry get excited with ideas, but run to Coach Dunsmore for approval. It seemed every move Dunsmore made worked. I thought, “this guy can coach.”
After the game.....Read more.....