Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Ex-Burgher Loves Long Knocker

Okay, so "Pittsburgh's Black and Gold" is about... Pittsburgh's Black & Gold, the teams. But it's also about you, the fans. I love hearing from my readers and seeing where you come from (see Feedjit map to the right).

Recently I got an email from one of our loyal readers, a transplanted Pittsburgher, Dan Bashur. Dan now lives in Pickerington, Ohio (poor kid) a suburb of Columbus. Actually, I'm only kidding, it's not a bad place. I once crashed in a Holiday Inn Express there just off interstate 70, and I also enjoyed the Denny's the next morning, but I digress.
In his email Dan complained about "Black and Gold" not covering enough golf (?). Yes that was my reaction too. But how can you blame "Black and Gold" for not covering team golf when they only play one team match every couple years in the Ryder Cup and they never wear black and gold?
The 2008 Ryder Cup team...Not much black & gold here.

Well Dan went on to explain that I've been missing the boat by not covering this Amazon named Mike Dobbyn. So I proceeded to investigate. It turns out that last year, Dobbyn, a monster at 6'8", 300 pounds won the long driving championship last year by cranking a drive a staggering 551 yards!

I usually snapped my head with a whiplash when I swung, hence cervical fusion!
Dobbyn is due to defend his title in a competition to be aired on Christmas Day, so check your local listings. In the meantime, if you can't watch Dobbyn on Christmas, you can watch this YouTube video of him mashing a ball in true gorilla form:

In researching this story I must admit that I hearkened back to one my "Worst Avid Golfer" tournaments that took place at Linden Hall Golf Course, located about an hour south of Pittsburgh in Dawson, PA.
The historic mansion located high atop majestic Linden Hall Golf Course.

It was at our Fifth Annual event in 1989 that we had National Long Drive Champion, Art Sellinger, as a special guest (he is now president of the National Long Drive Association). Anyway, Art put on a fantastic show that day doing stuff like hitting a putter 300 yards, hitting a ball from a tee that I had in my mouth, or my personal favorite, hitting a golf ball through a piece of plywood!

Sellinger bombed drives all day in the 400 yard range in the Worst Avid Golfers Tournament, but it didn't matter. We'd screw up two or three chips and four putt for a snowman.

Autographed Sellinger memorabilia.

This is the reverse side that splintered as the ball crushed through with massive blunt force.

What was amazing about this stunt was that if you were to put a golf ball next to the hole, it wouldn't fit through. The ball changed shape going through the wood, that's how hard it was hit.

Being two avid memorabilia collectors, my sons eagerly retrieved the piece of wood and had Art autograph it for them. Above are photos of this incredible piece of 3/8 inch plywood.

So I had the Art Sellinger Pittsburgh visit with the Worst Avid Golfers, but I still needed more. Then I found this picture and figured "mission accomplished", we have our black and gold tie-in! So I don't want to hear any more complaints about golf not being featured in "Pittsburgh's Black and Gold".

I knew we'd get the black & gold into this story somewhere! Mike Dobbyn looks good surrounded by the colors we love best!!!