Do You Remember? Cyclones 27, Unicoi 6

By C.Y. Peters
STAR CORRESPONDENT

   In 1982 McDonald's burgers were thirty-nine cents, Michael Jackson was writing "Thriller," and the Elizabethton Cyclones were whipping the Unicoi Blue Devils in football.
   Well, it's 19 later and beef is up, M.J. is in England and the Elizabethton Cyclones are ready to whip the Unicoi Blue Devil again. Tonight at Dave Rider Field the temperature will be down and a strong wind will blowing in.
   The strong wind will be the offensive line of the Cyclones.
   The last time these two teams meet, David Linebaugh was a senior and Elizabethton was ranked ninth in the state. Unicoi had yet to win a game.
   The Cyclones were unscored on and had registered 45 points in their first two games. Unicoi had lost to Sullivan Central 19-3 and to Sullivan North 33-15. Elizabethton was highly favored over the Blue Devils.
   Unicoi took the opening kickoff and marched 80 yards in 16 plays to score and take an early 6-0 lead. Reporter Joe Bowling stated it was a well-executed drive, and not even the "World Champion" (San Francisco) 49ers could of stopped that drive.
   It was the first time the Cyclones had been scored on in 1982.
   On Elizabethton's first possession Bill Burleson ran a 41-yard touchdown that was called back because of a penalty. The Cyclones didn't stop though, for 12 plays later big Doug Richmond bulled his way over from one yard out and Joe Smithdeal kicked the extra point to put the Cyclones in front to stay.
   In the second period quarterback Gary Smith hooked up with Paul Wiggins, then Van Fair finished off the last yard to give Elizabethton a 14-6 halftime lead.
   The third quarter showed much of the same as Smith fired a 42-yard pass to Wiggins for a touchdown while Burleson scored on a 7-yard run in the fourth. 'Betsy went on to win 27-6 and remain unbeaten in conference play.
   The Cyclone had 312 total yards in the game to Unicoi's 91.
   The following week Elizabethton and South were tied for the lead in the Big 10. Elizabethton won 28-0.
   On October 4, Elizabethton was ranked number four in the state. Elizabethton went on to go 9-0 but lost their last game to Kingsport 31-27 after holding a 27-17 lead in the fourth quarter.
   Tonight Elizabethton will lay another good whooping on the Unicoi Blue Devils.