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Legendary Wildcats

July 22, 2006

Valdosta -- The past meeting the present Friday at Valdosta high school, with current players attending a camp put on by former Wildcat QB's Buck Belue and John Lastinger.

Each going on to play at the University of Georgia, and are hoping the knowledge they shared today can help the new class of Cats look a little old-school.

John Lastinger graduated from Valdosta in 1979 before heading on to the University of Georgia.

"It's a part of your heart," says Lastinger, "and that's never changed. You care. You want them to do well. I want them to have the same opportunities I had."

Belue says, "This is something I've thought about for a long time, and really been kicking myself I haven't done it before now."

Belue quarterbacked Georgia to the 1980 National Championship, and says he was looking to share the wisdom of experience.

"We were very excited about having the chance to come out and work with the wide receivers and quarterbacks and share a little bit. That's what today was all about: A bunch of old guys sharing a little of knowledge with the young guys."

Wide Receiver Lindsay Scott is a part of UGA folklore, catching a 93 yard pass from Belue to beat Florida in Georgia's 1980 championship season.

Scott didn't play his high school ball at Valdosta, but Belue's championship teammate was helping out at the camp, and could be considered an honorary member.

"I'm not officially a Valdosta Wildcat," said Scott, "but I played with some guys that were Wildcats."

Lastinger says the spotlight always shines bright on Valdosta.

"They've got a lot of expectations, so the future is always bright, but the history is bright too, and sometimes that works against each other."

Valdosta finished as state champs Lastinger's senior year in high school.

The Wildcats have twenty-three state titles, the last coming in 1998.

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