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Those Were the Days: Taking on the Globetrotters

In 1953 Mac’s Boys made up of Panhandle High School coaches and led by Coach McNeely were invited to go to Amarillo and play the Harlan Globetrotters? 

Wellsir, they agreed t do it and even got paid $20! Coach Mac gave the money to the athletic Department to buy tape for taping our ankles due to us turning our ankles during practice. We were always running out of tape and had to send the trainers to the football dressing room to “slip” a few tape-rolls out of their training room. 

Well back to my story ... The game was played in Amarillo in some big coliseum on a rainy, cold, night but the place was packed out with two or three thousand people in attendance. 

Coach talked Pampa schools into furnishing a bus that allowed the wives, Peggy McNeely and Betty Culley and radio announcer Warren Hasse and wife and all of us basketball players with the trainers to go to the game. This was an additional 28 people. The bus was loaded. It was slow going but we made it there and back without incident. (A side note: all of us players always sang songs acapella while traveling on busses at night after all our games. Our favorite harmonized song was “We Are Poor Little Lambs.” Man, we were good!) 

Side-tracked again! ... The game starts, and we were matching the Trotters goal for goal. At halftime, their coach asks for a meeting at mid-court and complained about not letting them do their thing. Mac’s Boys had to back off the last five minutes so the Trotters could win, but it made Coach Mac so mad that with five seconds on the clock, he’s standing at midcourt; then he sets down, puts the ball over his head and shoots it ... nothing but net ... this allowed the Globetrotters to win but only by one point! But I think it made his point!

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