Unknown "monster" players

OLD NO 9

AzB Gold Member
Silver Member
To help clarify it is Don McCaughey for the spelling :). Don was one of the best in Des Moines many years ago. Paul Baker aka Highway Paul is still around. I occasionally see him out at Prairie Meadows and he comes up to Big Dogs I believe on occasion. He used to play cards with my grandpa many years ago. We got to talking about and he told me a couple of stories. Both Don and Paul are great ambassadors of the game.

Hey Matt, thanks for setting me straight on a couple things, I'm real happy to be that close on the spelling of Don's last name considering that it seemed to be spelled differently every time I saw him and it was indeed "Highway Paul"

You are right both Don and Paul are great ambassadors of the game and I'm happy to hear that Paul still gets around. If I remember right not only was Paul adept at cards and pool but was also a pretty fair golfer. Was told one time he took delight in hustling club pros. While you say "Don was one of the best in Des Moines" I believe you could substitute country for Des Moines.
 

Michael Andros

tiny balls, GIANT pockets
Silver Member
Randy Brown. Legend has it, one of the best 9-ball players ever ( played all games, however ). Scuffled around with Wade Crane when Randy was 17, 18, 19. Snuck up on almost everyone. Played like a machine. The only part of his body that moved was his arm from elbow to fingertips. Just played phenomenal and was extraordinary to just watch play. Hailed from Clearwater, Florida ( same as Donnie Mills ). He passed away a few years ago, would be @ 65 now.
 

Rjmoncrief

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Eugene Browning. Period. Whatever happened to that guy?

Eugene was a monster. I was running with the best player in Alabama at the time,
Early to mid 80's, Steve Downey. We ran into Eugene in Gadsden. He and Steve played
$100 nine ball. Per game, not sets. Eugene wins coin toss and proceeds to put 9 racks together while Steve and I set there in silence. He finally misses. My boy Steve then goes to the table and puts 7 racks together and we're hooked $200 and I pull out of my half of the action. They played for hours and actually came out close to even. Eugene played a little stronger than Steve but Eugene came to us there in Gadsden at a place called The Players Pub, Steve owned the place and knew the table pretty well.
I believe Eugene is now in Texas. Steve still lives in Gadsden.
 

owll

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Tommy Sanders name comes to mind. NOt totally unknown but not
very well known for sure.

In todays world many players have no idea who Mark Tadd is/was or
Greg/Craig Stevens.

i saw mark tadd playing some kid on action game stream from i think derby city...it was funny announcers didnt know who tadd was, and kid had absolutely no chance....when i turned stream on, i had sound off, and my first thought was 'i wonder who the kid is that tadd is robbin." LOL
 

SJDinPHX

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
This thread has to be the greatest ever on AZB!..It spans over 8 years, and over 800 posts..For any pool nut (like me} it is well worth the time it takes to read the entire thread..More good stories, etc. than any other collection ever!..Do yourself a favor, and read them all!
 

ShootingArts

Smorg is giving St Peter the 7!
Gold Member
Silver Member
thought my partner was in this thread

This thread has to be the greatest ever on AZB!..It spans over 8 years, and over 800 posts..For any pool nut (like me} it is well worth the time it takes to read the entire thread..More good stories, etc. than any other collection ever!..Do yourself a favor, and read them all!


I have told this story a handful of times but it belongs in this thread. May be, but a search didn't turn it up. I was running a dirt track late model and a usually friendly competitor was Bobby S, Jackjaw. We were both out of work and he called me to help him on a few day job he had been offered, swapping transmissions on some ten wheel over the road tractors in a gravel parking lot. He figured we could do it with a standard floor jack I had and a piece of half inch plywood he had. I shudder now just thinking about probably a thousand pounds of transmission on that little six inch or less jack plate. With one of us laying in the gravel either side of the jack a transmission would have crushed one of us like a grape had it fell off the jack!

We had dropped two transmissions on the ground that day working from early to about five. Couldn't see much but our eyeballs after working under those old trucks with the whole undercarriage covered with dirt and grease and every muscle was so sore I felt like I had been beaten with an ugly elephant. Bobby didn't have any wheels and lived 25-30 miles away. On the way to his house we passed the three-way lounge. Had a few pool tables there and a pit in the woods out back where most arguments were settled. Often half the bar emptied out to watch a fight and they had everything but chairs and waitresses back there, did have a couple chairs come to think of it. Most importantly they had cold beer, very cold!

I'm racking the balls on a seven foot Valley for the first game when two guys came up wanting to play partners for a beer each. "Sure." They won the coin toss and one broke dry. Bobby, stone cold and after pulling wrenches and wrassling eighteen wheeler transmissions all day which was guaranteed to tie your arms in knots, ran out that rack from their break and then ran seven more racks before I got up. Before an hour was up I had shot twice and had thirteen beers in front of me.

We were supposed to be making seventy-five each for every transmission swap, brutal work. As we went out the door I said "Bobby, we gotta talk". Took a day to round up a little pocket change, got stiffed on the transmission work on top of everything else, and then me and Bobby went for a ride.

Made a double handful of short few day trips over the next six months or so but Bobby had a hard time remembering he was married on the road and his wife was a pretty good shot with a pistol or his old Winchester 30-30 western style carbine. I used to cut the engine and coast by his house and drop him in front of the woods just past it. I was partying just as hard but I was single. After a couple close calls I decided I didn't want to get shot over Bobby's partying and I shut things down. A 30-30 can leave a nasty hole!

We hooked up partners off and on for years until Bobby got into a lot of hot water, they thought he was either the knife man or a witness to a killing that happened at the three-way. A man Bobby and several others had been playing pool with earlier was killed and robbed for less than a thousand dollars. Bobby had to pull a fade and went to Texas, the classic GTT.

Years later we met a few times again but never hooked up for a little rambling again. Oddly enough since it was a low dive miles from either of our homes, the story started and ended at the three-way, perhaps the most dangerous bar within fifty miles but a hopping place on the weekends when they had a country band and the piney woods emptied out to come there.

Since every cowboy knows he is a lover, fighter, and pool playing son of a gun, the pickings were easy on the challenge tables as long as you didn't get greedy and try for a big bite. On the quieter nights whoever you were playing usually wanted to double up and catch up at the end of the night and might try that a few times. Played fifty a game eight ball on a Valley a bunch of times and a hundred a game a few times. Pretty sporty in the early seventies when minimum wage was a buck and a quarter and most of the guys on the table were working for that.

Jackjaw was loud and talked a lot, to people, tables, and pool balls. He drew action to him like a magnet. Had a sister who played pretty strong for a lady in those days too.

I miss the days when I could jump in the truck with a little scotchbrite or small piece of sandpaper and a brad tip tool in the watch pocket of my jeans, twenty bucks seed money, and plan on being gone a week or more. Gas at fifty cents a gallon or less and knowing the tricks of living cheap on the road made a lot of things possible.

Hu
 

DoubleA

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I was at The Brass Tap in Raleigh NC in the late 80's for a big 9 ball tournament held each yr. the week before the US open. Most of the best players in the world were in this tournament . Earl Kellum walks in late on Friday night & the pa announcer hollered out Earl Kellum is in the house, there is going to be bar table action here tonight. I noticed several pro players matched up gambling on the 9 ft. tables. No one wanted to play Earl Kellum on the bar box.
Earl was a great player and a good friend, he would keep you in stitches with his antics.
 

DoubleA

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
This thread has to be the greatest ever on AZB!..It spans over 8 years, and over 800 posts..For any pool nut (like me} it is well worth the time it takes to read the entire thread..More good stories, etc. than any other collection ever!..Do yourself a favor, and read them all!
Thanks SJD
 

jay helfert

Shoot Pool, not people
Gold Member
Silver Member
I have told this story a handful of times but it belongs in this thread. May be, but a search didn't turn it up. I was running a dirt track late model and a usually friendly competitor was Bobby S, Jackjaw. We were both out of work and he called me to help him on a few day job he had been offered, swapping transmissions on some ten wheel over the road tractors in a gravel parking lot. He figured we could do it with a standard floor jack I had and a piece of half inch plywood he had. I shudder now just thinking about probably a thousand pounds of transmission on that little six inch or less jack plate. With one of us laying in the gravel either side of the jack a transmission would have crushed one of us like a grape had it fell off the jack!

We had dropped two transmissions on the ground that day working from early to about five. Couldn't see much but our eyeballs after working under those old trucks with the whole undercarriage covered with dirt and grease and every muscle was so sore I felt like I had been beaten with an ugly elephant. Bobby didn't have any wheels and lived 25-30 miles away. On the way to his house we passed the three-way lounge. Had a few pool tables there and a pit in the woods out back where most arguments were settled. Often half the bar emptied out to watch a fight and they had everything but chairs and waitresses back there, did have a couple chairs come to think of it. Most importantly they had cold beer, very cold!

I'm racking the balls on a seven foot Valley for the first game when two guys came up wanting to play partners for a beer each. "Sure." They won the coin toss and one broke dry. Bobby, stone cold and after pulling wrenches and wrassling eighteen wheeler transmissions all day which was guaranteed to tie your arms in knots, ran out that rack from their break and then ran seven more racks before I got up. Before an hour was up I had shot twice and had thirteen beers in front of me.

We were supposed to be making seventy-five each for every transmission swap, brutal work. As we went out the door I said "Bobby, we gotta talk". Took a day to round up a little pocket change, got stiffed on the transmission work on top of everything else, and then me and Bobby went for a ride.

Made a double handful of short few day trips over the next six months or so but Bobby had a hard time remembering he was married on the road and his wife was a pretty good shot with a pistol or his old Winchester 30-30 western style carbine. I used to cut the engine and coast by his house and drop him in front of the woods just past it. I was partying just as hard but I was single. After a couple close calls I decided I didn't want to get shot over Bobby's partying and I shut things down. A 30-30 can leave a nasty hole!

We hooked up partners off and on for years until Bobby got into a lot of hot water, they thought he was either the knife man or a witness to a killing that happened at the three-way. A man Bobby and several others had been playing pool with earlier was killed and robbed for less than a thousand dollars. Bobby had to pull a fade and went to Texas, the classic GTT.

Years later we met a few times again but never hooked up for a little rambling again. Oddly enough since it was a low dive miles from either of our homes, the story started and ended at the three-way, perhaps the most dangerous bar within fifty miles but a hopping place on the weekends when they had a country band and the piney woods emptied out to come there.

Since every cowboy knows he is a lover, fighter, and pool playing son of a gun, the pickings were easy on the challenge tables as long as you didn't get greedy and try for a big bite. On the quieter nights whoever you were playing usually wanted to double up and catch up at the end of the night and might try that a few times. Played fifty a game eight ball on a Valley a bunch of times and a hundred a game a few times. Pretty sporty in the early seventies when minimum wage was a buck and a quarter and most of the guys on the table were working for that.

Jackjaw was loud and talked a lot, to people, tables, and pool balls. He drew action to him like a magnet. Had a sister who played pretty strong for a lady in those days too.

I miss the days when I could jump in the truck with a little scotchbrite or small piece of sandpaper and a brad tip tool in the watch pocket of my jeans, twenty bucks seed money, and plan on being gone a week or more. Gas at fifty cents a gallon or less and knowing the tricks of living cheap on the road made a lot of things possible.

Hu

OMG, this is so frickin' funny, especially the last part. That was my "ammo" too, a piece of scotch brite and a tip tapper (sometimes I just used my house key to rough a tip). I also liked to start each day with a twenty dollar bill. Whatever I won that day got locked up!

I played in many bad ass bars, often starting out just playing for a drink (I would ask for $1 instead if I won, saying I don't want any more drinks now). I learned early on you DO NOT hustle in spots like this. You play your best and try to win every game, because if you lose you go to the back of the line. No one will bother you (almost no one) if they see you're playing your best and not hustling anyone. In fact, they all want to be the guy who beats you. I can remember times holding the table for hours and dozens of games. Every time a guy had a chance to beat me he would dog it. :rolleyes:

Most of my road trips around Ohio, Oklahoma and California were also short excursions. Of course I was on my own most of the time. Just me and my little Browning for protection. You do have a little more courage when you know you have back up when some tuch hog threatens to kick your ass. I made up my mind early on that I wasn't taking a beating for anyone and I never did. I discovered that if you stand up for yourself they usually back down and cool off. If a guy gave me a hard time I would give it right back to him. You cannot show fear! I can remember looking at some guy who wanted to fight me and telling him that I was a pool player, not a fighter. I even offered to give them their money back if they felt like I hustled them. No one ever took me up on that offer.

Anyway enough BS for one day. Seems like another lifetime ago.
 
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ShootingArts

Smorg is giving St Peter the 7!
Gold Member
Silver Member
Long ago and not so far away . . .

OMG, this is so frickin' funny, especially the last part. That was my "ammo" too, a piece of scotch brite and a tip tapper (sometimes I just used my house key to rough a tip). I also liked to start each day with a twenty dollar bill. Whatever I won that day got locked up!

. . . .

Anyway enough BS for one day. Seems like another lifetime ago.



Jay,

It was another world in many ways. On the other hand a pool hall/bar I played in forty years ago is still alive and well on a two lane about seven miles from me. Doesn't look like the outside has been painted since then.

I found something listed as a pool hall in the phone book only about ten miles away but off in the piney woods. Went in the place and was made for a hustler when I walked in the door, I think it was the gray hair and beard. Then I ran three balls in a row on a Valley and that confirmed it! A pretty obnoxious redneck in there, no doubt plenty of buddies to back him up, and I don't have any intention of fighting these days so I just pulled a fade and forgot about that place. Those boys fight for fun and I've been too old for fighting to be fun since I was twenty-five.

Maybe I should have pulled a Smorg and told them I was a famous road player! Doug would have had them eating out of his hand.

Hu
 

Keith E.

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Hi i remember back in the Eightys there was a player stating that he was from Verdun Quebec Canada. Nobody new him he walked away with all the Money his name was Ray Martin Us Open Champion

Never forget that

Still smooth to this day and a class act as well.

Keith
 

pwd72s

recreational banger
Silver Member
Reading through this I read of early death, jail, drugs, going broke, etc. Gee, why is it that pool has a shady reputation? I'd certainly suggest the lifestyle...:rolleyes:

That said, I wonder how this compares percentage wise to the general population? Meaning, many who never touch a cue having the same problems?
 

Black-Balled

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Reading through this I read of early death, jail, drugs, going broke, etc. Gee, why is it that pool has a shady reputation? I'd certainly suggest the lifestyle...:rolleyes:

That said, I wonder how this compares percentage wise to the general population? Meaning, many who never touch a cue having the same problems?

I watched Cops over the weekend. Outlook poor!
 

nine_ball6970

585 speed drunk
Silver Member
Reading through this I read of early death, jail, drugs, going broke, etc. Gee, why is it that pool has a shady reputation? I'd certainly suggest the lifestyle...:rolleyes:

That said, I wonder how this compares percentage wise to the general population? Meaning, many who never touch a cue having the same problems?

I have spoken to Tommy Sanders at length on several occasions. He walked away from the game to lead a clean lifestyle and raise a family. He still plays very strong even though he only plays several times a year. Wouldn't see him for months and then he would just start running racks of ten ball like it is no big deal.

I asked him once why he never plays in the Texas Open. He told me he would feel selfish if he took those days off from work and didn't spend them with his family. Says a lot about his character and dedication to his family.

Someone told me he is a better than scratch golfer as well.
 

SJDinPHX

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
.... Those boys fight for fun and I've been too old for fighting to be fun since I was twenty-five. Maybe I should have pulled a Smorg and told them I was a famous road player! Doug would have had them eating out of his hand

Hu

Yes he would have Hu..I have used that approach many times myself..There will always be some hard-headed
redneck who thinks he can play, who will challenge you..The upside is, after you bust them. you can always say..
"I told you I was a great player"..Makes it hard for them to bit-ch, or want to fight!..:D
 
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JeaLouS44

Awesome John
Silver Member
Brier spivey`s daughter used to post on this form and not seen here for more than a year.

I heard stories of kenny Mccoy beating the pro player Howard vickery.
Bobby johnson played in tournaments till 1990.He played in lexington all stars.

I have a friend that saw Kenny beat Vickery.
He also said that nobody came looking for him.
 

Baby Huey

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
it;s pretty hard to be an unknown monster player playing nine or ten ball on a big table. Frankly it takes too much time to stay in stroke and working guys just don't have that much time. You can be an unknown monster playing One Pocket as the requirements are much different. Playing smart and safety play don't require the specialized ball striking skills the rotation games require. An example of this is Richie Grienier out of Los Angeles playing one pocket. He plays very well and it takes a top player to come into his house and beat him.
 
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