Reporting Bob Haynie
In September of 1977, I was 12, Jimmy Carter was President of the United States, Harbor Place didn’t exist, Led Zeppelin was still an active band and Van Halen had yet to release its debut album.
Something else was happening here in Baltimore during that September.
The Orioles were in the midst of a pennant race and the Baltimore Colts were the two-time defending AFC East champs about to embark on a season in which many predicted would end with a trip to the Super Bowl.
Fast forward to 2012.
The Orioles are in a pennant race and the Baltimore Ravens are the defending AFC North champions and have been picked by some experts to win the Super Bowl.
It’s been 35 years since a September was this exciting for Baltimore’s MLB and NFL teams.
The Orioles would go on to win 97 games back in ’77. Unfortunately, that was only good enough for a second place finish to the eventual World Series champion Yankees.
As for the Colts, they would finish 10-4 and capture their third-straight division title. But, for the third-straight year, they would lose in the division round of the playoffs. This time to the Oakland Raiders in a double OT thriller at Memorial Stadium.
1977 was also the last year the Colts would have a winning record. The next year, QB Bert Jones got hurt, the losses started to mount and attendance began to decline.
In March of 1984, the Baltimore Colts ceased to exist as owner Bob Irsay moved his team to Indianapolis.
The Orioles would contend for the next six years and in 1983, would finally win the World Series.
Hopefully, in 2012, the Orioles and Ravens will have happier endings to their seasons than what we saw in ’77.
But it’s September and both teams matter.
That hasn’t been the case for a long, long time.