Cards: Topps 1990, Topps 1992, Topps Stadium Club 1992, SkyBox 1992 LL, ProSet 1992, ProSet 1992 PB, ProSet 1992 LL, ProSet 1992 Milestone, Upper Deck 1992, Upper Deck SP 1993, Fleer 1991, Fleer Ultra 1991, ProSet 1991, Proline Portraits 1992, Proline Profiles 1992, Proline Profiles 1992 #2, Score 1991, Upper Deck 1991.
When I heard that Haywood Jeffires was appearing with Ernest Givins at the GMC Monday Night Football Event in Houston I penciled it on my itinerary for that weekend. Held at the Katy Mall, it was pretty much a straight shot once I got to the 10. Unlike previous events and the Austin event held the previous year there was a limit on the vouchers to prevent multiple autograph requests. This was not announced before the event. If that had been the case, I may not have gone. Ernest was a last second cancellation- replaced by another member of the Fab 4, Curtis Duncan. Still I planned ahead in case of a problem and things worked out great.
Oh and the insane amount of cards that Haywood signed, I just used my autograph mind control powers on the handlers. After talking to them for a few minutes, they just let me ask Haywood directly when there were no more fans waiting in line. I mean the worst he could say was, “No”, right? I offered him any card that he wanted, but he just opted to sign everything I had instead. He loved my Houston Oilers hat, to which I explained to him it was classic, not vintage since it was actually an Apex hat from 1992. We talked about the preseason game against the Cowboys when Bucky Ricahrdson flipped a last second pass to his left hand and tossed a TD in the end zone, and about how long I’d been a fan of his, bringing up how I wrote him in the past for his autograph, when he used to shorthand his autograph to “H. Jeffires”. He asked me how I knew that, and I said that I was a real fan, remember? He tossed in the final photo with all the cards as a final send off. By far abashedly this was my biggest single player haul ever, beating out a previous in person appearance by Eric Metcalf by 8 or 9. I’m sure I’ll dig up a few more cards of Jeffires for next time, even though he’s already zoomed to the top of my most acquired autograph player list.
When I asked Haywood about who was the toughest matchup he faced, he first said the Browns with Minnefield and Dixon, then Pittsburgh, and finally just said the whole AFC Central because the teams all faced each other twice a year and they all knew one another so well. Jeffires was unaware of his status on Tecmo Super Bowl and had not played the game. Haywood and Curtis hugged when Duncan arrived. Apparently they hadn’t seen each other in quite a while and it was a nice reunion of sorts.