What exact words can you use to describe the Athens legend, Bobby Poss? I’ll tell you, it’s because Bobby has such a plethora of attributes … not a single word can sum him up entirely. This Athens icon and his family served our community with fantastic food, especially barbecue, good times, and stories that can only be told by a Poss.The local celebrity played football here at the University of Georgia and has a hate for Tech like no other. What more do we need for this issue than a Tech hater to get us ready for the upcoming game Saturday?
Bobby grew up here in Athens and has lived here all of his life. No one can be more of a local than Bobby. As a young child, he started working for Poss’, his dad’s restaurant here in Athens. “I grew up around a lot of people all the time, that’s why I love people. In the food/restaurant business you’re always meeting people every day,” recalled Bobby. You can tell Bobby grew up around people because there is not a more social, entertaining man you will ever know. His smile can light up a room, and his stories will keep you in stitches.
After Bobby’s early years, he began his time at the Georgia. Bobby played football from 1967 until 1971. He was a starting center. Back in the old days, freshmen didn’t play on the varsity team. When Bobby was on the freshman team, he blew out his knee. He did not play in ‘68, but in ‘69 he returned to the field and played on the varsity team until ‘71. Bobby told me that he is the only player Coach Dooley ever “called out of retirement.”
After Bobby’s career at Georgia, he entered the food business with his father. For a long period of time, the father-son duo owned and operated Poss’, a local restaurant and the vending services for the stadium. Bobby said the business taught him so much, and he has some great memories from the times he spent working with his dad.
I mentioned Bobby being a true local, but I didn’t really go into his fanatic life. Bobby has been a die-hard Dawg since the beginning of time. He has gone through it all with the Dawgs. He has witnessed a total of seven different head coaches. He lived during the end of legendary Coach Wally Butts’ career and played under iconic Coach Vince Dooley. He saw Herschel Walker and company win the 1980 national championship and was able to observe the great Coach Mark Richt take us to two Southeastern Conference Championship victories. Now he is living in the Kirby Smart era and rejoicing in our success. I can’t tell you how special Bobby Poss is to this university, town, and state.
He is not only a Tech hating, Dawg loving, storytelling enthusiast; he is a survivor. Bobby had his first heart attack in 2005, and on December 23, 2016 he had a second massive heart attack. Dr. Mixon Robinson, the captain of the Georgia defense in 1971, has two daughters who are both doctors and found Bobby unconscious on the side of the road approximately ten minutes after his heart stopped. These two ladies saved his life. “The good Lord was sure with me. He let me come back again. I wasn’t homesick or anything, but He put me back because He got something he wants me to do. I’m just so thankful for the prayers and support.” Bobby is the polar opposite of a quitter. He is working out more than ever to keep his body in shape and healthy. The morning of our interview, he had just completed his 92nd cardiac rehab session. I believe Bobby was left here on this earth so he could witness one more national championship, and I am sure Bobby will see the trophy here in Athens.
MOST MEMORABLE GAME
He had to go with the 1971 Auburn game. As Bobby recalled, they had Heisman Trophy winner, Pat Sullivan at quarterback, and All-American wide receiver, Terry Beasley. These two were unstoppable for the Georgia defense, so Coach Erk Russell changed the defense from zone coverage to man to man coverage at halftime. Although the Dawgs lost the game, Bobby said the game was so exciting because of the energy surrounding the Top 10 matchup. Bobby had some honorable mentions like the ‘69 Sun Bowl, a loss but an experience.
PLAYER YOU WOULD’VE LIKED TO PLAY WITH
Knute Rockne. Along with the Notre Dame great, Bobby said he would’ve liked to play with and get to know some guys on today’s team, particularly Nick Chubb.
PREDICTIONS FOR THE DAWGS
Bobby believes there is a lot of hype among fans about us having nothing to lose because we’re already in the “SEC dance,” but he knows that Coach Smart is keeping his players focused so the team doesn’t have that same mindset. Bobby said, “We just got to step it up each game and play together and make it happen. It’s going to be tough.” Poss’ final remark heading into this weekend, “I’d love to see us G.A.T.A. a little more against Tech.”
Here is the audio of my full interview with Aaron Murray:
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