The announcements come over the loudspeakers at Bulldog Stadium as clear as they do from the pulpit at Whitehall Baptist Church on Marcoot Road in LaFayette. The man behind that voice is Reverend Ed Vines and his 33 years of experience announcing football games becomes clear from the moment he says “Good evening ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Bulldog Stadium.” Mr. Vines, a LaFayette High School Class of 1982 alumnus, makes every game feel like it’s the most important in the state. “I try to keep the fans in attendance motivated,” says Vines.
The start of Vines’ career as a football announcer came to him by a sort of divine intervention when at the homecoming game during his senior year he was pulled from the crowd by that night’s announcer and asked to say a few things. Since then he has always found himself with a microphone in his hand and a football game below his gaze as he sits in the press box above the field at Bulldog Stadium.
That moment lead to a few opportunities while in college at Southern Union and the University of Alabama at Birmingham (Class of ‘86). Vines believes his passion for announcing games has done a lot more than just make him the voice of Bulldog football. “It’s a gift from God that helps prepare me for my ministry and public speaking,” says Vines. A father and husband of two-the oldest son Jeremy is currently a sophomore at Alabama State University and the youngest daughter, Miciah is presently a sophomore at LaFayette High-Vines takes pride in both of his careers. “The love for my school and my community keeps me doing what I do,” says the preacher.
Either at Whitehall Baptist or at Bulldog Stadium Mr. Vines is another prime example of the good that comes from following your passions and ultimately enjoying what you do. Preaching the word of God on a Sunday morning and sending football tinged sound waves throughout the stadium on a Friday night seems to have been good to Vines and his family. During the offseason he also manages the clock at basketball games. “I want to help any way I can,” said Vines during halftime of the LaFayette/Randolph County game on Friday night. Despite the score he kept a smile on his face and an upbeat tone to his voice. The man clearly loves his job.
Mr. Vines’ services won’t be necessary next week when the Bulldogs travel to Lanett but if all things work out the way they have thus far this season we all will get to hear his smooth sounding voice over the Bulldog Stadium loudspeakers a few more times this season. Lucky us.
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