Former NFL Coach Tony Dungy drops in on Macon credit union

lfabian@macon.comOctober 2, 2013 

Credit union teller Sharron Spires hasn’t been this excited since she saw ‘80s heartthrob Rick Springfield backstage and passed out years ago.

Just before 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, she was nearly giddy waiting for former NFL coach Tony Dungy to arrive at MidSouth Community Federal Credit Union in Macon.

Doyle Crider, manager of the Lasseter Place branch, greeted Dungy, who made history as the first black coach to win a Super Bowl when his Indianapolis Colts defeated the Chicago Bears in 2007.

Dungy came to town Wednesday as the guest of Macon’s Roger Jackson, his former scout when Dungy was defensive coordinator with the Minnesota Vikings.

“We have some staff that are big fans of yours. One of them (Spires) may want to be on your next coaching staff,” Crider told Dungy as he walked in the door.

The branch is about a football field away from Central High School. The credit union staff is selling raffle tickets to fund Jackson’s Motivating Youth Foundation.

Giving back to the community is something Dungy has been instilling in his players for decades.

“They can do a lot without even knowing it,” Dungy said. “At some point, that playing career is going to end. How can you impact other people? How can you make your community a better place to live?”

Dungy was in Macon for a Wednesday night banquet sponsored by Jackson’s foundation, 100 Black Men of Macon-Middle Georgia and Mercer University. He was happy to visit the workers who helped Jackson raise enough money for 15 scholarships last year.

The staff again is selling $20 tickets for a 2014 Chevrolet Camaro to be raffled Dec. 23.

Jackson, who played five seasons for the Denver Broncos before beginning his scouting career, said Dungy has been a great influence on him.

“The things he stands for, I’m trying to implement and apply those things to my life and giving back to my community,” Jackson said.

Crider got into a personal red zone as he posed for a photograph with the two football professionals.

“I’ve never seen Doyle blush,” a couple of the workers said.

Wednesday’s brief visit won’t soon be forgotten.

“You’ve made our day and our year,” Crider said as the men left the building. “It’s going to be hard to get the work out of them.”

Spires summed up the visit this way: “I feel like I’ve been to the Super Bowl and won, man.”

To contact Liz Fabian, call 744-4303.

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