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Fans Don't Get Mad, They Get Ties and Sour Grapes

January 24, 1988|Associated Press

MONTGOMERY, Ala. — It's boxes of sour grapes for boxes of ugly ties.

Workers at a Montgomery radio station were eager to get rid of the grapes, collected to send to Syracuse football Coach Dick MacPherson in response to 2,000 ties sent to Auburn Coach Pat Dye by Syracuse fans upset that he decided to go for a tie in the Sugar Bowl.

"It's getting pretty ripe in here," said Larry Stevens, general manager of WHHY, where the boxes of sour grapes were stacked for shipping today.

"The station smells like a horrible, old corner-grocery store," said Jimbo Wood, the station's program director.

Wood said he came up with the idea of sending the grapes after the Syracuse fans sent the ties to Dye.

In the Sugar Bowl, the Auburn coach decided to go for a field goal rather than a touchdown with four seconds left in the game. The 30-yard field goal tied the game, 16-16, the only blemish on Syracuse's record.

"I first thought about sending them oranges, but that seemed too much like Tennessee or Florida," Wood said. "I wanted a signature fruit. . . . The ties were sour grapes, so we decided to send them sour grapes."

In addition to the station, there was a collection point in Auburn and a "Suck It Up Syracuse" party at a Montgomery nightclub Tuesday night to collect more sour grapes.

Dye's ties were collected by a Syracuse radio station.

The Auburn coach decided to autograph them and sell them for $100 each, with the money going to Auburn's general scholarship fund.

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