MIGHTY: THE LIFE AND LEGACY OF PAT DYE
The legacy of Coach Pat Dye will always include the impact he had on Auburn University. “Few have done as much for Auburn as Pat Dye,” said Jimmy Rane, a member of the Auburn University Board of Trustees and a long-time friend of Dye’s. Rane is also the president and CEO of Great Southern Wood Holdings, Inc., the Abbeville-based company that Dye had supported as a spokesman and board member until his death in June 2020.
Dye revived an institution and turned pastures into paradise. But the best things he planted are the memories in those who loved him most. Many of those memories are shared in a new documentary that Rane produced, and it will premiere on September 25 on APT. The name of the film is “Mighty: The Life and Legacy of Pat Dye”, and it tells the story of Coach Dye’s life, of his football career as a player and a coach, and of his passion for horticulture and the outdoors.
A 1962 graduate of the University of Georgia, where he was a two-way starter at offensive guard and linebacker, Dye began his coaching career in 1965 as an assistant coach at the University of Alabama. He also served as head coach at East Carolina University and at the University of Wyoming before taking that role at Auburn. Among numerous honors, Dye was inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame, the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame, and the College Football Hall of Fame Division 1-A, and the playing surface at Jordan-Hare Stadium was named Pat Dye Field.
Shortly after Dye’s death, Rane envisioned a full-length documentary that would present a full view of Auburn’s former head coach. “Mighty” was two years in the making and includes interview clips from well-known associates, including his college roommate and close friend, Fran Tarkenton, as well as such names as Bo Jackson, Charles Barkley, Brett Favre, Gene Stallings and the late Vince Dooley. A number of family members were interviewed as well. The film features a wide variety of personalities along with archival footage from historic games and even some of Coach Dye’s famous locker room talks. Production on the film concluded last fall and premiered to a packed house at the Jay and Susie Gogue Performing Arts Center at Auburn University, which included many of Dye’s family members, Bo Jackson, Gene Stallings, Vince Dooley, and others. The APT broadcast on September 25 will be the first showing since that event.
“Pat Dye was an incredible football coach – racking up 99 victories during his 12 seasons on the Plains, along with 4 SEC championships,” Rane said. “He was also a man of vision. As athletic director, he pushed to expand Jordan-Hare stadium, then he pushed to move the Iron Bowl’s home game to Auburn’s home field. These were great steps for Auburn. But he was more than a coach. His commitment to nature is a legacy that will last for generations. These and other stories are the ones that I am so happy that people will be able to see and hear for themselves. It has been a great honor to produce this documentary.”