Herschel Walker Could Benefit From Mike Hubbard’s Advice

Greg Markley



When running back Herschel Walker became a strong candidate for the 1982 Heisman trophy, a student on a journalism scholarship was assigned as his roommate at University of Georgia (UGA). That sophomore, Mike Hubbard, instituted a public relations effort that gained Walker the coveted award. Walker’s skills and stats were great and Hubbard handled the press adroitly. Hubbard eventually moved to Auburn, Alabama; the rest is political history.

Walker won the trophy with 1,926 points; John Elway of Stanford came in a distant second, with 1,231 points. When Walker won at the ceremony, the first person he hugged was Hubbard, for his top-notch work and friendship. On May 24, Walker won the GOP nomination for the U.S. Senate from Georgia.


Yet past personal failings, occasional lies and a critical press have dogged his campaign.  Also, Democratic incumbent Sen. Raphael Warnock has a record $40 million in the bank. It would be interesting if Hubbard, once speaker of the Alabama House, could consult with him, as in days of old. But Hubbard is serving jail time in Limestone County.

 He was charged in Lee County on 23 ethics violations, but is serving time for two felonies. He is expected to be released in January 2023. As Hubbard is in jail for charges related to weak ethics in his political actions, I doubt it’s proper for him to advice on an election.

“I just watched the rather balanced piece on ABC that included collaborating interviews with people in Herschel’s life over time,” wrote a reviewer of Breaking Free: My Life with Dissociative Identity Disorder. “I am a therapist and work with DID in my private practice. At the hospital where I also work (psychiatric) there are doctors and therapists who don’t really believe in DID.”

Walker was diagnosed with the disorder in 2001 and said he had a dozen distinct identities, known as “alters”. He claimed that some of his alters did good things, but others exhibited extreme and violent behavior.

Some proven lies have been: his claim that he graduated from high school as the valedictorian (a student, typically having the highest academic achievements of a class). He later said that was not true. Walker said several times his company, Renaissance Man Food Services, was the largest minority-owned food business in the U.S. He was way off. In April, it was revealed that Walker had repeatedly declared he graduated from UGA “in the top one percent” of his class. He was traced to that 2017 fallacy when presenting motivational speeches.

Good news came to Mike Hubbard on May 30 from the Federal Communications Commission. The FCC will not revoke radio broadcast licenses under Hubbard’s name ruling that his convictions on ethics charges did not automatically disqualify him. This means that when he gets out of jail, he has a good chance to proceed with his businesses and grow them.

”The crimes of which Mr. Hubbard is guilty are not trivial; indeed he is currently incarcerated as a result,” said Administrative Law Judge Jane Hinckley Halprin. “But not every felony is disqualifying.”

In 1994, Hubbard founded Auburn Network, Inc., and he holds the licenses for “News Talk 1400” WANI in Opelika, as well as “Wings 94.3” WGZZ, Waverly. His earliest release date from Limestone Correctional Facility is Jan. 8, 2023.

Not only was Hubbard a prime mover in getting Walker selected as the 1982 Heisman winner, he also did likewise for Bo Jackson, another great running back, in 1985. Hubbard’s book “Storming the State House: The Campaign that Liberated Alabama from 136 years of Democrat rule” (2012) was well-received.

 Hubbard reminds me of a Lee County doctor I knew who went to jail at Maxwell’s federal pen for 10 months for Medicare fraud. He ended up being self-employed in his medical specialty for more than 20 years after he left prison. The physician kept his medical license because his mistake didn’t involve damage to any patients; it was paperwork and insurance issue.

Will Mike Hubbard get into PR again by opening his own shop? Or will he revert to making commercials — he has a fine voice for radio, having done commercials for some time. Will  Walker proceed to the U.S. Senate and take it with the seriousness it deserves? Can you see Hubbard and Walker move ahead as friends such as they were when 20 years old? I think so. Novelist William Faulkner said: “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.” Indeed!

Greg Markley first moved to Lee County in 1996. He has Masters’ in education and history. He taught politics as an adjunct in Georgia and Alabama. An award-winning writer in the Army and civilian life, he has contributed to the Observer for 11 years.  gm.markley@charter.net.


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