December 19, 2003
One down, one to go

The Chron's John McClain notes that after this week, a dubious achievement will no longer be associated with Houston.

If Detroit loses at Carolina, as expected, the Lions will own sole possession of a record they have shared with the Oilers for the last week.

Barring an upset by the last-place Lions over the first-place Panthers, Detroit will enter the record book with its 24th consecutive loss on the road -- a streak that began early in the 2001 season and can't end before 2004.

As a witness to the Oilers' 23 consecutive road losses between the 1981 and 1984 seasons, I can sympathize with the Detroit organization. To lose that many road games in succession, a team has to be bad and unlucky -- a difficult combination to overcome.

I was still in New York back in those days, but I remember how inept the Oilers were in the grisly post-Bum Phillips era. Even with the Oilers long gone, I suspect the city of Houston will be a little brighter on Monday morning. Of course, as McClain notes, there's this little matter yet unresolved:

Unlike the 1972 Dolphins who went 17-0 and toast champagne each season when the last undefeated team suffers a loss, there won't be any celebrations among former Oilers on Sunday when the Lions replace them as the worst road franchise in NFL history.

Unless Nielsen hoists a glass of milk with Luck, chief executive officer of the Harris County-Houston Sports Authority.

Someday, though, at a time when few, if any, in Tennessee will understand the significance, Houston football fans with long memories will pop the corks on every bottle of champagne within the city limits if another record is broken -- that blown 32-point lead that was written in the record book Jan. 3, 1993.

Oh, yeah. That one I was here for. Last time I'd felt like that after a football game was 1978. Thanks for reminding me, John.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on December 19, 2003 to Other sports | TrackBack

The thing I will never forget about that day in 1978 was that it was the first time my older sister had ever watched football.

Her comment regarding "The Fumble" was "That wasn't supposed to happen, was it?"

Posted by: William Hughes on December 19, 2003 7:35 PM

Ouch. I was out of the country for the Meadowlands game, and I STILL know all about it.

I remember a comparable, though; the Dodgers once gave up 13 runs and a 9-run lead in the top of the ninth on ESPN. I watched the whole train wreck in absolute disbelief.

Posted by: Linkmeister on December 19, 2003 8:15 PM