Live from the Booth
Sep 11, 2014 10:19AM
● By Mike
Dragons Radio Announcer Chuck Kelly
Radio Announcer Chuck Kelly on the Traditions of Dragon Football
It's shortly before airtime on Friday in Southlake and Chuck Kelly’s team pages for his spotter board are ready to be laid out. The X’s and O’s of Carroll’s offense go first. Then the opponent’s defense. Then the opponent’s offense. Then Carroll’s defense seals it together. Always the same way, always the same order, for the last 12 years. From this board, he and color analyst Kelly Milligan will recognize plays and players, painting the airwaves Dragon green for the thousands listening in the stadium, at home or abroad. The 18-inch x 12-inch foam poster board is a recurring testament to the hard work Chuck and Kelly put in every week leading up to game day. It’s nothing short of a work of art.
He and the many Dragon faithful who will tune in are hoping that his partner Kelly won’t have to ‘retire’ the board before Week 16 – a standard procedure after a Dragon loss.
Losses, of course, are few and far between these days, but always on the minds of those green warriors who strive to Protect the Tradition every fall Friday night under the lights.
With a legacy like Carroll’s, and a fan base that feels as much a part of the game as the players themselves, traditions and superstitions come with the territory.
Lose a game? It’s time for a new spotter board. And no game starts without the Angry Iconic Dragon, a puppet/spray bottle combination that sits proudly at the front of the broadcast booth. The Dragon puppet is ‘borrowed’ weekly from Milligan’s young daughter, Mary Kate. Milligan’s 10-page game prep packet sits next to him in the booth for each game, too. “Maybe it’s superstition. There were a couple weeks he didn’t do it where we didn’t have good broadcasts. We learned quick,” says Kelly.
Some might call their traditions and superstitions consuming, but it’s all part of the game in Southlake.
“It’s a grind each week. But after I say ‘Goodnight from Southlake’ tonight, my world goes back to normal.” Until next week, of course.
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