FOOTBALL: Gorham Helped Make Meyers’ 1974 Team One Of The Best

August 24, 2018

Each week, staff writer Steve Bennett will highlight coaches, players, games and more as Coughlin, GAR and Meyers play their final seasons as separate programs.

Whether they believed they were ready or not really didn’t concern Mickey Gorham. All that mattered was that the legendary Meyers football coach thought they were.

Mickey Dudish was a sophomore that season, and on the field he went along with several other sophomores. The results weren’t favorable that 1972 season, as the Mohawks finished the year 3-7.

They licked their wounds and bounced back and went 9-2 in 1973. That set the stage for one of the program’s best seasons when Dudish became a senior.

“When we were sophomores, most of us started and we got knocked around pretty good,” Dudish said. “Coach Gorham believed in us and continued to play us. Back then, there were just so many good players. Jimmy Cefalo was a junior. Dallas had a tremendous team, and they whooped up on us. It taught us a lesson and we learned from it.”

It also set the stage for the team’s senior year.

In 1974, not only did the Mohawks have a prolific offense, the defense was one of — if not the — best in the Wyoming Valley Conference.

Meyers allowed 29 points all year, but it is a game at Valley West that sticks out the most to Dudish.

“It was our seventh or eighth game of the year,” Dudish recalled. “Valley West was beating us at the half. In the second half, we kind of got ourselves together and won pretty big. That was real important to us. There must have been 15,000 people at the game. Afterwards, there was a such a traffic jam going over the Market Street Bridge. A lot of guys got off the bus and walked back to the school.”

Dudish led the state in scoring in his senior year, with 34 touchdowns and 194 points. He also played in the Big 33 Game. Dudish went on to play college football at the University of Maryland, where he was a three-year letterman and played in the Cotton Bowl, Hall of Fame Bowl and the Sun Bowl.

Contact the writer: sbennett@citizensvoice.com; 570-821-2062; @CVSteveBennett

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