Thursday, April 14, 2005

Of Popes Named Urban and Football

From the greatest sports writer alive quoted in the local Portland (Oregon) paper..Oregon Live

"The first half was nearly over, and there were hundreds of fans still outside standing in line to get tickets," reports Mike Bianchi of the Orlando (Fla.) Sentinel. "Except there weren't any more tickets. So fans actually bought blank slips of paper to get them into the stadium.

Marino Casem, the old coach at Southern University, had it right. He once said: 'On the East Coast, football is a cultural experience. In the Midwest, it's a form of cannibalism. On the West Coast, it's a tourist attraction. And in the South, football is a religion, and Saturday is the holy day.'

"So, the flocks made the pilgrimage to see the unveiling of a young Catholic coach who is named after eight popes. The only thing missing from this coronation was the white papal smoke rising out of Century Tower to announce the new leader of Gator Nation. . . .

"There was such giddiness over Urban Meyer that the university had a chef cooking up made-to-order omelets for the media in the press box. For Ron Zook, I believe, we were served stale cornflakes and cold Pop-Tarts."