Shorty Price Story: Alabama has seen its fair share of eccentric political candidates, but none quite like Ralph “Shorty” Price. A perennial “also ran” candidate for governor, Shorty’s campaign was as colorful as his personality. His unique slogan, “Smoke Tampa Nugget cigars, drink Budweiser beer and vote for Shorty Price,” became a trademark.
During one campaign speech, Shorty promised to reduce the governor’s tenure from four to two years, stating, “If you can’t steal enough to last you the rest of your life in two years, you ain’t got enough sense to have the office in the first place.” Despite his humor, Shorty rarely secured more than 2% of the votes.
However, Shorty’s true passion lay in cheering for the Alabama Crimson Tide. A fixture at every football game, Shorty, standing at just 5 feet tall, wore a black suit, a round-topped black hat, an Alabama tie, and proudly waved the Alabama flag. His antics included parading around the stadium, often joining the real cheerleaders, despite being inebriated.
Shorty’s deep-seated hatred for Tennessee, shared by many Alabama fans, comes to the forefront as Alabama faces Tennessee in Bryant Denny Stadium. Shorty’s unwavering support for the Crimson Tide and his peculiar actions, like somersaults off stadium walls, made him a beloved figure among fans.
In a twist of fate, Shorty’s antics took a turn during a crucial game against Notre Dame in the 1973 Sugar Bowl for the national championship. Drunk as ever, Shorty attempted to lead the Alabama team onto the field but was swiftly removed by New Orleans police. Unfortunately, Shorty missed witnessing one of Alabama’s classic games from a New Orleans jail.
Despite his unconventional behavior, Shorty remains a legendary figure in Alabama, remembered for his passionate support for the Crimson Tide and his eccentric political campaigns.