Nicknames: Part 2

Thursday night, the “Jolly, Old, Fat Man,” will come down our chimney and leave way too many presents to my very spoiled fourth-grader, Sam. I call Santa Clause the Jolly, Old, Fat Man. That’s my nickname for him. I’ve heard him called St. Nick, Santa and several other ways of describing this very generous fable of our imaginations.

This may be a very strange way to lead into my weekly blog. Christmas Day is this Friday, so I had to do something in the spirit of the holiday. However, I want to talk about nicknames. That’s why I mentioned my nickname for Santa Clause. Charlie, the sports editor of the Maryville Daily Forum, asked me how our players get along with so many new players. In other words, he wondered how the team’s chemistry was developing. Continue reading

Lessons from the Young

I know that blog #21 should be dedicated to all the spectacular events that have happened this past week. I am really happy for all the players and coaches of our national champion football team. I’m especially happy for Charlie Flohr, the quarterback’s coach, who is stuck in an office by the women’s basketball coaches. While all the football coaches and graduate assistants are on the west end of the second floor of Lamkin Activity Center, Charlie finds himself in a closet-like office with an unbelievable view of my office. The only advantage I see for Charlie is Lori Hopkins, my assistant, occasionally puts out candy on her desk. The rest of the time Charlie is at the mercy of women’s basketball as he tries to organize recruiting for another national championship freshmen class.

However, this blog isn’t about national championships. It’s not even about Northwest women’s basketball. I do have this to say. Several people have stopped me on the street and asked if I went to Alabama. As much fun as that would have been, even with Doug Rush driving, I don’t think our Bearcat bus could have made it back for our basketball game with UNO two hours after Coach Tjeerdsma accepted the championship trophy. Continue reading

Let it Snow

Monday night, the men’s and women’s basketball team fled Maryville for Hays, Kan. What did we flee from? Look out your window. If we had any chance to play our Wednesday game at Hays, we had to outrace the blizzard.

I laugh at the football coaches that are all bundled up for football practice this time of the year. Heck, we practice and play in 72 degree air, no wind chill, and never a hint of wind. However, nasty weather is a part of any basketball season. We’re sitting here in a Hampton Inn in Hays wondering if we’ll get home after the game. However, it can be a lot worse. Continue reading

Do You Remember Where You Were?

People always talk about where they were when they heard Elvis had died or Kennedy was shot or more recently when the Twin Towers were attacked. I could easily answer those questions, but being a coach, I remember where I was during significant sporting events just as clearly.

My father was a postmaster of a very small town. Postal regulations only were in effect when the postal inspector came once a year. I was behind the mailboxes listening to a very scratchy radio on October 13, 1960 when Bill Mazeroski hit a game-winning home run in the bottom of the ninth to defeat the Yankees. Did you know that was the first World Series that ended in game seven with a walk-off home run? Here’s a good trivia question – How many World Series came and went without a seventh game walk-off home run? The answer is 103. Continue reading