Oggs brothers hope to add to family legacy

Meechie and Dominique Oggs of Sweetwater football talk about their relationship with their great uncle, the legendary Anthony Oggs, and how they hope to add to the family legacy

Demetrius "Meechie" Oggs enters his senior season for the Sweetwater Wildcats.

The tight end and defensive end stands out among most of the gold and blue practice jerseys inside King Berrong Stadium. His size and athleticism are hard to miss. His face lights up when asked about the makeup of the Wildcat football team this season.

"Our running backs are doing a terrific job at hitting the hole," Oggs says. "They're getting a lot quicker. And I have faith in quarterbacks to lay the ball up."

And who would know better when it comes to strong running backs? 

Meechie is the grand-nephew of Sweetwater football legend Anthony Oggs, one of the greatest backs to put on the pads for the Wildcats. 

"I don't think there was anyone that could catch him," Meechie says of his great-uncle, smiling.

The accolades Anthony Oggs earned at Sweetwater speak for themselves. In 1972, he set the state high school record for points scored in a single season with 247. The record would stand for 25 years, and is still just 49 points current state record holder and former Tennessee Volunteer Jalen Hurd.

Oggs also helped Sweetwater win two of its three state football championships in 1971 and 1972. He paired up with his lifelong friend, quarterback Kippy Brown, to form one of the most intimidating backfields in Tennessee football history. The Wildcats featured the likes of Steve Berrong and Sam Hurst, both of whom would join Oggs and Brown to play football at Memphis State (now Memphis).

"When you lead a team to a state championship, you're always going to be heralded as a hero. And he really was a hero," Sweetwater Athletic Director Mike Martin said in 2016. "He ended up being a lifelong Wildcat and he just inspires people. He was a great supporter and just the greatest athlete to come through here."

Oggs played running back, tight end, and receiver in three seasons at Memphis. He started a family there.

At age 32, he was involved in a collision on his motorcycle that sent him to the hospital. He was in a coma for months, and lost his ability to walk permanently.

"I went to the hospital almost every day," Anthony Oggs Jr., who was 7 years old at the time, said.

Oggs Jr. remembered seeing his father leave the hospital in Memphis. Anthony started showing off and did wheelies inside his wheelchair, eventually tipping himself over onto the ground. 

"That was Dad," Oggs Jr. said with a smile. "Not even three minutes out of the doors of the hospital. He wouldn't let anyone else help him get back in the wheelchair. He actually got back in himself."

Oggs returned home to Sweetwater. His son played football for the Wildcats in the late 90's.

"The guys I played football with, I still hang out with to this day," Oggs Jr. said. "It's really close-knit here, really family-oriented."

Oggs helped raise his grand-nephews, taking them to football practice and disciplining them when needed. He'd take Meechie and Dominique to football practice, and attend as many games as he could.

"Most of the time he'd sit right by the fence," Dominique Oggs said. "Or right on the top part [of the bleachers] here so he could see."

"Every year after every game, he'd call me and ask me how [the games] went," Meechie said. "Even with all the troubles he was going through, he was never down, never sad."  

Dominique doesn't need to look far to be reminded of his great-uncle when he steps on the field.

"Meechie looks a lot like him," Dominique said. "He was a really good family member to have."

Oggs died of pneumonia in August 2016. 

"He had talent, he had wit," Oggs Jr. said. "Even in a wheelchair, he was still the guy cracking jokes, making everybody laugh. He had a good spirit. That's what I want to be his legacy, which it is."

Back to present day. The Wildcats are coming off a 2016 campaign that saw them go 7-4 under Coach Ethan Edmiston. Sweetwater had a six-game win streak in the heart of the season, but dropped its final two region games and lost in the first round of the playoffs.

Plenty of work to be done, but plenty of Wildcats up to the challenge. That includes the Oggs brothers. 

The Wildcats kick off their season Friday, Aug. 18 when they host Meigs County. 

© 2017 WBIR.COM


JOIN THE CONVERSATION

To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment