Memories From Eight Dallas Cowboys Super Bowls

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In the 1975 Draft the Cowboys had a dozen players make the team. The media called them “The Dirty Dozen.” The great Bob Lilly, Mr. Cowboy, had retired after the 1974 season and the man who would one day replace him, Randy “The Manster” White was the 2nd overall pick in that Draft. The Cowboys became the first ever Wildcard playoff team to make it to the Super Bowl. They made it courtesy of a miracle play play by Roger Staubach and Drew Pearson known as “The Hail Mary.” Nate Wright, the Minnesota Vikings Cornerback who was victimized on that play lives in Tucson, Arizona and I’ve run into him a time or two. He still maintains Drew pushed off.

The main thing I remember about Super Bowl X was it was the first time in my life as a neophyte Cowboys fan that I saw Roger Staubach fail to lead the Cowboys back to victory. Dallas scored on a touchdown pass to Percy Howard, the only catch of his entire NFL career. They then went for an onsides kick and missed it. The Pittsburgh Steelers tried to run out the clock, but Dallas got the ball back after Chuck Noll went for it on 4th and short. I can’t help but wonder what fans today would think of such a decision. Doomsday stopped the Steelers cold and gave Roger one more chance. I was sure he would put the game away.

June 11, 2013; Irving, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys receiver Dez Bryant (88) makes a catch during minicamp at Dallas Cowboys Headquarters. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Percy Howard nearly caught another TD pass, but it wasn’t to be as it bounced away. Then he was the target again on a last second play, but the ball was deflected and intercepted in the end zone as time expired. It was perhaps the closest Super Bowl of all time, and nearly a Roger Staubach miracle that would have made “The Hail Mary” play an afterthought instead of legend. Well, maybe not, but the stage was sure bigger. Can you imagine the legend of Percy Howard had he caught that last second TD? More people would know his name and story I’m sure.

In 1977 I learned what a bandwagon fan is. Early in that season Dallas was the last unbeaten team. They went 8-0 before they finally lost a game, the longest winning streak to start a season in their History. I was in an Art class in Junior High, and I was drawing a picture of an exciting rookie RB named Tony Dorsett. I’m not ashamed to say it was awful. I’m not an artist. A classmate friend of mine told me to draws his last name on the back of the jersey. I asked him if he was a Cowboys fan, and he replied, “You bet.”

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  • Renny Mason

    Wonderful piece as always Mike. You are one of the luckiest guys I know to have experienced all 8 of our Super Bowl appearances. Every single time I meet a Steelers fan, I claim the Swann/Barnes call in the 1978 Super Bowl was bogus and the flag should have not been thrown on Barnes! To which MOST reply, “What are you talking about?” Pfft, bandwagon filth! I enjoyed this Mike!

    • disqus_kLJwdEdnOL

      I experienced not only all of the Super Bowls but also the two NFL
      championship games between Dallas and Green Bay. The coaching was great in all of those games and management was also tops during the Landry days. It is sad to see what has become of the Cowboys and
      Jerry Jones is to blame for their mediocrity. After Jimmy Johnson
      left the Cowboys demise began and will never return to its glory days as
      long as Jerry Jones is the general manager. Yes, the penalty on Barnes should not have been called and it made a huge difference in the game.

  • TooHostile

    We did it Grandma! “Don’t give a shit MIkey, I’m burning in hell right now.”