College athletics is more than just what happens from the start of a game to the end. I guess the same can be said for all sports professional to little league, but my love has always been college athletics. WVU college athletics to be exact. From the age of 0.01 I’ve been attending football and basketball games – rooting for Mountaineers, first in a stroller and later in a faded pair of blue jeans to watch the game. It’s not just the game, but those who are involved with the game that add the true depth and breadth to the experience.
When first asked about my memories or thoughts on WVU things that come to mind are the highlights or low-lights. Standing in pit stadium when Famous Amos takes his first handoff 69 yards up the middle for the score. Same game, watching the pit fans exit around half-time and WVU having the only students in their student section. Major Harris’ broken play; 18 points lost in two minutes to UMass; Run To and From Pitt; beer, pepperoni rolls and well, beer. Jack Fleming and Woody O’Hara – the voices of WVU football and Basketball. Doc Stevens – Let’s Bring on the Mountaineers. And, large hairy men leading the YMCA.
It’s easy to miss some of the scenery or background colors like overlooking the red, orange, brown and green collage of the West Virginia hills during an autumn game – why? I guess the mind can only truly recall some many things so it sorts by frequency or highlights or something else referenced by my JDM class at NYU that I’ve already forgotten. But, when asked to draw the picture only using the highlights of a fantastic run, the deep pass or an occasional beverage the picture is barren, unclear and incomplete.
This brings me to Henry "Yup Yup" Drosky. Considered one of the greatest WVU fans of all time. He attended nearly every game, with his radio tuned to WAJR for the before, during and after game commentary. Why ‘Yup Yup’? Because that’s what he’d say as he listened to the radio. From Jack to Tony he’d listen and watch. Apparently, Henry went to some of the away games and bowl games courteously of friends and fellow fans.
Henry passed away two weeks ago. WVU athletics has lost one of its great fans. Yup Yup will be missed by me and other WVU fans around the country because his attendance was a much a part of WVU football as the flying WV on the helmets.
Henry – thanks for the memories. Hopefully you’ve got good seats up-top sitting beside Jack, Doc Stevens and other WVU all-time-greats enjoying the game and listening to your radio.