Skip to main content

Toxey Haas Told Cuz Mossy Oak Needed a TV Show

Ronnie_day4While I was selling Mossy Oak, taking writers hunting and sending clothes to writers, ProStaff and friends of Mossy Oak, I was still shooting video footage and sending it to Will Primos for his video business. Back then, Mossy Oak couldn’t afford much help. We all just did whatever we could to get Mossy Oak rolling. One day I got a call from Toxey to come down to his office. I went in his office and sat down, and Toxey began to tell me why Mossy Oak needed to be on television. Toxey said, “Cuz, we don’t need to hire some TV firm to come in and shoot a television show for us. We need to learn how to do it ourselves. You started off running a VHS video camera from Sears and Roebuck. Then you moved up to a television camera. So, I know you can learn how to do television shows. I want you to head-up this television show.” 

I started learning how to do a television show. I knew that Mississippi State, only 15 miles from West Point, Mississippi, where Mossy Oak was and still is based, had a television and radio broadcast department and production school that taught young people how to do television shows. I went down to the college, met the dean of the broadcast school, told him our plans to have a TV show at Mossy Oak and asked the dean, “Do you think any of the students in your classes hunt?” He pointed to a young man and said, “That is Stephen Davis, and I know he's a hunter.” When class was over that day, I hung around and introduced myself to Stephen Davis, and I hired him on the spot while he was still in college to help us with TV production part-time. Then he and I began to look for the kind of equipment we needed to film and edit a TV show. Within six months, we had put together a full-blown TV editing suite. 

At that time, Gaylord Entertainment owned TNT. I met with those folks, and they gave me some really-good advice about the kind of equipment we needed, and how a TV show needed to tell a story. We started trying to figure out all this stuff on our own. I tell people the process we went through to learn how to shoot, edit and produce a TV show was much like trying to fly a two-seater Cessna airplane to the moon. We took all the advice we could get. We studied and tried to learn all we could about how to do this TV show that Toxey wanted us to do. Toxey told us back then, “When you’re shooting animals, that’s a very touchy subject for a lot of people. So, we need to bring all the video, all the production and everything to do with this TV show in-house.”

In 1995 we launched our first TV show on TNT. That was the same year that Browning came onboard with Mossy Oak and licensed Mossy Oak as the company’s official camo pattern, which at that time was Treestand. Those two events coming together at the same time is what really helped create the television shows and videos that Mossy Oak began to produce.

Day 3: Ronnie “Cuz” Strickland Does Mossy Oak’s PR

Latest Content