Steve Graf could get Wally Pipped

Dave Nitz and his son Jay Nitz

Wally Pipp was the New York Yankees’ first baseman who had a headache on June 2, 1925, and sat out that day’s game. His sub? Lou Gehrig, who earned the nickname “Iron Horse” as he began a streak of playing in 2,130 games, starting nearly everyone, a Major League Baseball record that stood for 60 years. Gehrig became one of the greatest players in baseball history.

Graf, the voice of NCHS football for many seasons, had a previously-scheduled family trip over the Labor Day weekend and couldn’t broadcast the Natchitoches Central football game Friday night on KIX Classic Country 95.9.

Stepping in to help was Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame broadcaster Dave Nitz, who retired two years ago after 43 years as the iconic voice of Louisiana Tech sports, and his son Jay Nitz.

Jay usually broadcasts a Shreveport-area game but was off on Friday. He got his 84-year-od dad to come along to Natchitoches. For NSU fans dreaming of Louisiana Tech visiting Turpin Stadium, this was probably as close as you’ll ever get. And it was a treasure.

The give-and-take between son and father, and the sterling quality of Dave’s broadcasting style, combined with an exciting Natchitoches Central victory to produce an exceptional broadcast from the Norm Fletcher Radio Booth at Turpin Stadium. For the Nitz family, it was also a treat. They do work together on Louisiana Tech baseball but had never done a football game together.

It was a one-off, however, and that’s OK. Graf will be back next Friday with his passion and expert insight, broadcasting Chief football at Opelousas. You can enjoy the NCHS game broadcasts right here through game-day links on the Natchitoches Parish Journal.


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