1970 Tomcats get their wish(bone) in last game of season

ASHLAND, Ky. – Ashland’s 1970 football season became a turning point in coach Herb Conley’s career.

The Tomcats finished only 3-7 but it was a 7-3 victory over Ironton at Tanks Stadium in the last game that provided enough to keep Coach Conley around. He introduced the wishbone for the first time in that one and controlled the ball enough to pull off the upset.

ADI sports editor Mike Reliford had written a column about Conley, saying people needed to give him a chance, on the day of the game. Radio voice Dick Martin (Dicky’s father) did the same on the broadcast. Those strong voices and Ashland’s strong play on that fateful night set the stage for what was to come – a 56-16 record over the next six years.

In episode 3 of TOMCAT TALES podcast, Coach Conley talks about that 1970 season. Click here to listen.

Published by

Mark Maynard

Managing editor of Kentucky Today, the digital newspaper of the Kentucky Baptist Convention, since July 2017. Worked 42 years for The Daily Independent in Ashland, Kentucky, the last 12 as managing editor and editor and the previous 30 before that in the sports department, including 17 years as sports editor. I have been in the business since 1975 with more than 75 writing awards from the Kentucky Press Association. I have also have written eight books, used to run fast but now look more like I have a piano on my back. President of Amy For Africa, a faith-based Christian ministry serving Uganda. I'm a husband to Beth and father to Stephen and Sally, grandfather to Brooks and human to Opie!

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