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150 attend Quarterback Club meeting despite rain

About 150 football fans braved the elements to help the Selma Quarterback Club kick off its 2008 season at the Farmers Co-op on Monday evening.

“The first meeting’s gone great,” said W. Forrest Hatfield, the club’s quarterback. “It’s a great crowd despite the rain.”

Guest speakers Lance Taylor and Ian Fitzsimmons of Birmingham’s JOX Radio entertained attendees. They are the hosts of “The Roundtable,”a sports talk program dedicated to sports throughout the state.

“For guys, this is the holiday season. This is our Christmas,” said Fitzsimmons. “You can tell it’s football season.”

The radio personalities discussed Auburn, Alabama and other teams throughout the state, but keyed on the evolution of sports media.

“It used to be taboo if you would arrest a player or coach,” said Taylor. “I think coaches and players don’t get the benefit of the doubt.”

They insist that recent bad press — inducing incidents such as former Alabama coach Mike Price’s 2002 incident at a Florida strip club — would not have been brought to light had it happened five years earlier.

“Guaranteed, 10 years ago, Mike Price’s incident wouldn’t have been reported because the Internet wasn’t as prevalent in 1998,” said Fitzsimmons.

The meeting was slated to be held at Julius Talton’s river house — the annual home of the club’s inaugural meeting. But heavy rains forced the relocation to the Co-op’s indoor banquet room.

“We arranged this last week as a precautionary measure,” said Hatfield.

The Selma Quarterback Club was organized in 1941.

According to the club’s pamphlet, its purpose is to promote football spirit, fellowship and football knowledge among its members and to provide college scholarships for deserving Selma/Dallas County young men.