Moultrie, Ga. - Few Southern communities have more commitment to their high school football program than Moultrie, Ga. The only public school in the entire county would be Colquitt County High School, and the fans file into Mack Tharpe Stadium to support their Packers.
A Friday night game can be a sellout and nobody would think much of it. It’s the Deep South, and high school football holds serious interest throughout many communities, Moultrie included.
Rivalry games with programs like Valdosta High School and Tift County High School are important, as are just about any Colquitt County game. Those rivalries helped to build tradition and community pride with the Packers football players.
Great teams have been a part of Colquitt County Football for decades. Colquitt Country won 1994, 2014 and 2015 State Championships. They were even awarded the 2015 National Championship by High School Football America. Those championships were built by players and fans alike, the latter of which may not ever go to the game but still have a great view of the game via a voice over the radio (see below).
For those that cannot make it out to the stadium to see the Packers play, or simply cannot travel to see them on the road, there’s another option. It’s a voice that the community has known for 33 years. This person is probably as much a part of the tradition of Packers Football as any player or coach in recent memory.
Durwood Dominy did not follow football growing up, but he came to be the Packers radio play-by-play man with a simple phone call. Dominy had been doing some local radio advertisements and his voice had been heard by a man that ran a local radio station.
“A guy on the AM station, which is out of business now, called me and said hey, I’d like you to do play-by-play football,” said Dominy of how his broadcasting career started to take shape. “I said man I never played football. Never saw a football game until I was 22 years old. Said I never called one (on the radio).
“He said, well I think you’d do a good job. I said one of my best friends owns the other radio station. I need to call Donnie and tell him. So I called Donnie on the phone. Donnie said, ‘I'll tell you what you do. You call him back and tell him you are starting with me next Friday night. I want you to do it for us.’”
While an unusual way to break into broadcasting, Dominy never looked back. He’s been broadcasting Colquitt County Packers football games ever since that phone call. Dominy really enjoys bringing Packers football to the Moultrie community and beyond.
“It’s the easiest job in the world. All I gotta do is tell people what I see. Whatever I see on the field, I try to draw a mental picture for them to see exactly what I see. As far as preparation goes, I don’t do a whole lot of preparation. I look over rosters and see if I got the names right for the visiting team, stuff like that.
“Then I show up, and it’s worked out for 33 years. That’s what we’ve been doing. You know, it was kind of unique to get in (to radio broadcasting) the way I did. Just a phone call…”
As for Colquitt County Football, Dominy explained the Packers and how they played over the years.
“It’s amazing. Most of the time, except for a few years, we’ve been the smallest team. We’ve always had defensively, good speed it seems like. We’ve always had good coaching. Consequently, we’ve been able to overcome some things that we didn’t have, like the size and so forth.”
Overall, Dominy described South Georgia high school football well with the following statement about having to play the teams away from Moultrie to fill out a schedule.
“When you play 7A football (opponents) down here, you play some good teams in your region. You play Lowndes County, you play Camden County, and we used to play Valdosta every year when they were in 7A. We still play them (but they are in 6A). With only four teams in the region, it means we have to reach out to get games.
“We have to play a lot of games outside of Atlanta because Tift County, Colquitt County, Lowndes County and Camden County are the only four schools in 7A outside of Atlanta. Every other 7A school is in the Atlanta area.”
To start the 2021 season, Colquitt County played at Marietta, a tradition-rich program on the north edge of Atlanta, and hosted Westlake High School, another Atlanta program that’s really good year after year. To say the least, Colquitt County wants to play the best teams from across Georgia. That’s also why so many people follow the Packers, regardless of what they actually may see as compared to hear.
“I have so many people that can’t get out (to see a game), that are shut in and love football, but they can’t come. I had a guy that called me. It’s been almost 15 or 20 years ago now. He talked to me for about an hour about football. All the players, everybody on the (Colquitt County) team and so forth.
“We got through talking and I said, ‘I’d like for you to come to the press box. I’d like to meet you if I could at the next ball game.’ He said, ‘Mr. Dominy, I’ve never seen a football game. I’m blind. But I’ve seen every play from the 50 yard line through your voice and that’s my Friday night listening to it.’ I got cold chills. That’s what it’s all about. That’s what I enjoy the most about football. Being able to give somebody at home that opportunity.”
With bringing the games to fans, Dominy also gets to enjoy the environment, even before the game kicks off.
“I like it all. I enjoy the atmosphere. Getting with the coaches ahead of time to talk about the game. Then, leading up to the game like we are here tonight, when players are coming out on the field, you get the adrenaline flowing and so forth to get that first kickoff and get it rolling.
“I just enjoy watching some of these kids now that I used to watch their daddy’s play. Way back there and now they’re (kids are) playing. For 33 years you’ve had this generation that’s come and another generation that’s gone. I consider it a ministry.”
Mr. Dominy is a one of a kind personality. He’s a Southern gentleman that’s also been throughout the state of Georgia to see some of the best high school football the Peach State has produced for 33 years. He brings the action to fans of the Packers and other programs across the state. He’s done wonders for many people around Georgia through his voice.
It was a joy to sit down and listen to him tell his stories prior to last Friday’s Cedar Grove at Colquitt County game, and it will be just as fun the next time as well.
Good luck to the Packers for the rest of the 2021 season. That’s a good team with a chance to make some noise come 7A playoff time.