1967 State Champion Bulldogs to be honored
By Jim Wallace

A Thomson High School state championship team will be honored later this month.
On Friday, Oct. 20, a 50th anniversary celebration of the THS 1967 Class A State Football Championship will take place at Luther Welsh Field at The Brickyard.
The event, which celebrates the team’s first state championship, will take place in conjunction with the Thomson vs. Cross Creek game. The Bulldogs also won state championships in: 1968, Class A; 1984, Class AAA; 1985, Class AAA; and 2002, Class AAAA.
The Thomson High School Athletic Booster Club, THS head coach Rob Ridings and former coach Paul Leroy are spearheading the effort to make it a truly memorable event
Leroy, head coach of the 1967 Dogs that went 12-0, said the team was full of fight and character.
“I learned real quickly how easy it was to coach character,” said Leroy, who was then 33 years old.
“Defense was our strong suit, as 10 of those 12 wins were shutouts.”
The team scored 317 points and gave up only 26 points. That defensive mark was a state record at the time, said Leroy, who coached THS from 1962-1967.
The Bulldogs defeated Cook County 39-0 in the South Georgia Championship at Cook County, and defeated No. 1-ranked Westminster 20-0 on the road.
Leroy said the incentive in 1967 was that Statesboro had defeated Thomson 7-6 the previous year, and the team had suffered the summer and preseason with the pain of the loss.
“We had a great incentive, because we played them at home the championship year and won 34-20,” said Leroy, who said 37 of the 40 players are still living along with all the cheerleaders and many others with ties to the team.
FOR ADDITIONAL DETAILS, see the full story in the Oct. 12 issue of The McDuffie Progress. To have the Progress delivered to your home or business each week, simply call 706-595-1601 to subscribe. Or, follow the link on our home page to subscribe.





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