|Moke Jaekle at a recent pharmaceutical convention
"1st and 44"
Portville Captain To Put On The Panther Pads After 27 Years
by Amy Hildebrand, feature writer for the Panther Profile
PORTVILLE - After extensive negotiations with his wife,
Moke Jaekle, a 1979 PCS graduate and one-time captain of the Panther football team, has decided to try out for the alumni
gridiron squad that will be playing against a visiting Allegany-Limestone alumni unit.
The full-pads contest is slated for Saturday, June 3rd at 7pm on the Portville field, and Moke has already
been preparing for the adventure, juggling work-outs, his home life with Krista and their three children, his day job with
a local medical company, and his CEO position with the famed Pan-Con Corporation.
The Panther Profile caught up with Moke at a secret location up near the bullhead pond.
Panther Profile: Moke, just to refresh our memory and give the
audience some perspective...you were a senior star on the Portville varsity team back in 1978, along with Coach Swetland incidently.
You both went on to play football at Canisius in Buffalo. But while you were at Portville, you were the center and linebacker.
Tell us, why are you playing in this game in 2006?
Moke: Easy. We're playing Allegany. I don't even care about the new Limestone subdivision.
Bring 'em all on. When I heard we were playing a full-pads, tackling game against the Blue Devils...well, I looked at my
beautiful bride and said 'I'm in!'.
Watch Moke and his buddies beat up on Allegany in this 1978 video exclusive
|When Beatles haircuts were in
Profile: I'm sure you may know that the two towns have been gridiron
enemies since 1930. Tell us about your football experiences against this hated rival back in the Seventies.
Moke: Well, the very first football game we ever played as Ponies, the first time
playing for real against another town...it was at Allegany. We pounded them exactly 50-0. Gary (Swetland), Boomer
(Connell), and Jimmy (Reynolds) were all there from day one. We used to play them twice every year in Ponies and Midgets.
We were undefeated those four years.
The only time we ever lost to them in football was when we were sophomores on the varsity. Other than
that, we crushed them most of the time. Some of my fondest memories in school were those victories. Especially
the last time we played them...53-0...on the same field we're going to be on. I want to taste that again.
|With The Bear
Profile: We have to ask the obvious though. Why are you trying
to play in this game, when 10 days later, you will be celebrating your 45th birthday?!
Moke: Ya know, that's the same question Krista asked. And here's why.
Number one, I've stayed in shape all these years.
Two...I know I can play and contribute.
And three...We're playing Allegany.
Profile: OK, we'll come back to that theme. But tell us what
it was like playing under legendary Coach Bob Connell.
Moke: Oh yes, he's another reason motivating me to play this year. Coach Connell
instilled in me the desire to be a football man, and I've been one ever since. Specifically, a Portville football man.
Like alot of others, I've been following Portville football ever since I played. Sometimes it has
to be from afar...I live a couple hours away. But since Gary took over the program, I've been a big fan and supporter.
I have to see if I can make it through the practices and contribute in the game.
To get ready, I have to imagine Coach Connell getting after me to lift and run...right away.
Profile: What was Portville football like in your day?
Moke: It was fun and brutal. We loved it. My brothers loved it.
My friends loved it. And we loved all of the cheerleaders for sure.
Our high school life started and ended with football, even though we did alot of other things. But
football was like being in a war together. On offense, I was the center. Gary, Boomer, and Jimmy were the backs.
We formed a tight bond on all those teams growing up. I think that's why we all hang out more than ever today.
Portville football...another reason why I'm playing.
Profile: So are you hinting that you're going to try out for the center
position in this big game?
Moke: No @#$%& way! Maybe. But I'd rather try out for defense or
special teams. I don't want to be stupid. But, if Coach Swetland needs me...I'll do it. I have to aim high.
Profile: We've been doing some research in the old archives,
and we found that you had a few football honors - Border Conference all-star and you played in the Big 30 game.
Moke: Border Conference junior and senior years.
Profile: Yesss, you are correct. Excuse me. Um, now...tell
us, what is your greatest moment from your Portville football days?
Moke: I guess, it might be the Popcorn Trap. It was a play that we ran a few
times each game. As center, I had to help orchestrate a special blocking scheme that really tricked the opponent.
We usually ended up with a touchdown or big run. It was beautiful to watch it unfold...successfully.
But I really loved the hitting part. Especially on defense. I always had a good defensive
game against the Blue Devils, er...Gators, as I understand they are now called. I don't know if I can get used the Gators.
To me, they are the Blue Devils. Demons. Satan. From the pit of hell. Pardon my
French and competitiveness. Just the dream of playing against them is driving me to get in football shape.
|Moke attempts to break up a fight between the backs and linemen
Moke: Now that I think about it. Another reason why I want to play is
because of our senior year. 1978. We were predicted by the Times Herald to go undefeated, but we lost two games.
Profile: And you tied two games.
Moke: Exactly. But we don't mention the weird games from that season.
We do talk about it amongst ourselves as players, sitting around drinking beer at parties here and there. But it's not
something for the public. We only speak publicly about the victories we had in football. Not the ties. And
certainly not about the losses. Too much.
Profile: Can you tell us about the 1978 season as a whole then?
What happened to derail the prophecy?
Moke: Don't get me started. I will tell you some things, but don't push your
luck with the media guy-ESPN bull$%#@.
Profile: Can we mention the "white bread and strawberry preservationist"
convention that you recently attended in Washington?
Moke: Not until after the game.
Profile: Alrighty, then. Tell us why you guys did not go
9-0 your senior year?
Moke: In my mind, we were undefeated. In football, wrestling, track and field.
Like I said, we try to eliminate those negative thoughts and concentrate on the W's. I was undefeated throughout high
school. Krista can confirm that fact. I was also on all undefeated teams in college.
|Moke and yours truly watching PCS win the Section 6 championship in 2003 at Ralph Wilson.
Profile: So, are you predicting a certain victory against the
Gators in June, or what?
Moke: From what I know of football, whether I play or not, we will win. If
I play alot, that may mean either of two things - one, we are way ahead, and Gary is doing me a favor...and I really suck,
but I don't know it...then, that's embarassing. But maybe I really don't suck.
Two, if we are winning, and I am playing alot, and I am really playing well, not sucking, then...well, you
know, maybe I am doing good, and we are winning, and we are beating Allegany. And we will beat Allegany. Then,
maybe I can say, and you can say, and Krista will confirm...that I am playing good. I did play good. I will play
good. And, we beat Allegany again. It's all very logical.
|Moke Jaekle, current CEO of the Pan-Con media conglomerate
(EDITOR'S NOTE - The Panther Profile is a section of the Alumni Football Website, which is a
subsidiary of Portville Football, which is a division of pcs1979.com, which is owned and operated by Pan-Con Productions (formerly
known as Pan-Con Films), a division of The Pan-Con Corporation, an underground, international media empire. Moke
Jaekle has been the CEO of Pan-Con since 1999.)