Although I have enjoyed this book immensely, there are a few historical inaccuracies. I consider myself to be the self appointed Manual Football Historian of the modern era.
While Buddy Pfaadt was a pretty successful coach from 75-81, his record in the book is not based on facts. Buddy Pfaadt was the Head Coach at Western 73 & 74.
In his first year at Manual he was 2-2 against the Catholics and finished 7-4. Manual defeated DeSales and Trinity 14-7. They lost to St.Xavier 42-7 which was on a 2 year winning streak. The loss to Bishop David was 6-0. This game may have cost Manual another shot at St.X in the City Championship, because it was Trinity that lost in the final to St.X 11-10 on a safety late in the game.
This may be the heartbreaking loss mentioned in the book. The 76 team was 6-5. 1-3 against the Catholics. In the St.X game that year Manual had a touchdown taken away when it was ruled that Jeff Fletcher didn't get in the end zone that would have given Manual a 14-0 lead. The final was a 14-7 loss. They lost to Trinity 9-6 on a late field goal set up on a pass interference call. After losing Fletcher to an injury at Henry Clay, Manual went to a single wing offense featuring Steve Smith having the ball snapped directly to him for the Bishop David game. The final was a 17-0 loss. This was the last season that Manual has ever played all the Catholic schools in the same season.
It is reported that the 77 team missed the playoffs due to a loss to Bishop David 13-12. Manual won the District championship that year. The record was 8-4. This was probably Pfaadt's best team. The losses were to Seneca 15-6. Seneca had barely lost the County Championship to Trinity in 76 by a score of 3-0. The second loss was to Iroquois with Chuck Coleman 7-5. Late in the game Manual lined up for a 58 yard field goal. Nobody laughed. Unfortunately the snap was high and he never got a chance. The third loss was to Durrett in overtime 21-20. Manual rallied from a 14-0 deficit to force overtime. When Manual scored to make it 21-20, Fletcher was hit very late in the back and injured. He could not attempt the extra point. They did defeat St.X that year 28-27 in overtime in what I consider one of most dramatic games that I have witnessed. Trailing 21-13 late in the game Rodney Francis scored on 4th and goal from the 3. The same played was called for the 2 point conversion. In OT Manual scored on second down and made the extra point. St.X scored on first down, but the extra point was wide right. This was first time that I actually got on the field after the win.
One of the most heartbreaking losses of the Pfaadt era happened in the first round or the playoffs against Bob Redman and Ballard. Manual had hammered them early in the season 41-14. We also had 14-0 lead at half-time. After Ballard tied the game it went to OT. Rodney Francis threw a halfback pass to Kelly Hill in the end zone but he couldn't keep his feet inbounds. Fletcher attempted a field goal that went wide right and Ballard took over and kicked a field goal. From that night onward the Bobby Redman mastery of Manual began. His records from 78-81 were : 8-4, 6-5, 6-5, 5-5. Manual did not return to the playoffs until 88 under Steve Haag. I got a big laugh in the account of Rudy Sengel of the 38 team meeting Dr. Keepers at half-time of the 2004 St.X game. When she introduced herself as the principle and tried to shake his hand he said "the hell you are".