The Washington Post

That time a Cowboys fan spit at Mark Moseley

(Washington Post file photo) (Washington Post file photo)

Serious question: What members of the current Redskins will be appearing on local radio stations in 20 years to talk about their memories of days gone by? Santana Moss would make sense. Alfred Morris, if he sticks around for a few more years. London Fletcher and DeAngelo Hall maybe. But it’ll be hard to find a stable of guests like the one that exists now.

Anyhow, that’s beside the point. The point is, Mark Moseley was on ESPN 980’s Inside the Locker Room this week to talk Dallas stuff, and he recounted what is surely an oft-told story that I’m not sure I’ve heard before.

“I had some wild things happen when I was playing in Dallas, that’s for sure,” the former league MVP said. “I had a guy spit in my face one time in Dallas, coming off the field. Remember that tunnel? You had to go into a tunnel, kind of like what we have at FedEx Field now, you had to go into this tunnel, and people were leaning over the top. Well this guy leaned over and he [said he] wanted an autograph. He leaned over, and when I stopped to give him an autograph he spit in my face. And his glasses fell out of his pocket. And I reached down and picked up his glasses and handed them back to him and never said a word. Just wiped it off.

“I still had the helmet on, and it kind of hit the top of my helmet. And the next day in the Dallas Morning News there was an article by a sportswriter, and he talked about that, he said how unclassy that was by one of their fans in Dallas, that he actually spit in his face. And he said Mark Moseley was actually nice enough – gentleman, I think was the word he said – that he actually picked up his glasses and handed them back to him without slugging him in the face. I’ll never forget that.”

“They’d be writing a different article, Mark, if it was me,” Brian Mitchell noted.

I couldn’t find the Dallas article, but the incident was indeed recounted in media reports a few years later. This is from the Miami Herald in 1983:

As Mark Moseley left the Texas Stadium field in 1979, a group of Dallas fans gathered above the tunnel leading to the visiting team’s locker room, as they usually do, and taunted the players. The Redskins had just been beaten, 35-34, in the final minutes of a game that had knocked them out of the 1979 NFC East race and the playoffs.

As Moseley approached the tunnel, one man began cursing and screaming so furiously that his glasses flew off and landed at Moseley’s feet. Moseley politely picked up the glasses and prepared to hand them to the Dallas fan. At that moment, another man at the top of the tunnel leaned over and spit in Moseley’s face.

“Take that you [bleeping] fat leg,” he screamed.

Moseley said nothing. He handed the glasses to a security guard and walked into the tunnel.

And this is from The Post in 1984:

“After the game, fans were hanging down over the tunnel (to the locker room). One guy dropped his sunglasses. I picked them up to give to him and when I looked up the fan spit in my face. I couldn’t believe it. Neither could the policeman next to me. I just gave the policeman the glasses and kept walking.”

Dan Steinberg writes about all things D.C. sports at the D.C. Sports Bog.



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Dan Steinberg · October 11, 2013