Sunday, July 16, 2006

Story Time #2

A couple quick hitters, then a story since I don't have much else to talk about this weekend. God this time of the year is dull.

-I like the Flip Murray signing. Even though I believe I called him "the worst player in the NBA" several times during the playoffs (obviously exaggerating), he's a slasher, he can put the ball in the basket (though he didn't really show that against Detroit), and his contract is VERY reasonable. Now, if he had accepted the offer of the entire midlevel which we supposedly offered him, you would've seen a VERY angry Yost Built post. But for $1.8 million per? I love it. Flip, ya might wanna dump that agent.

-I also like the Krys Kolanos signing for the Wings. Low risk, potentially high reward. You're probably not going to get anything great out of the guy but it doesn't hurt to take a look. He's probably another Boyd Devereaux, but if he can put the concussions behind him we could have a pretty decent player. I don't get not making an effort to sign Donald MacLean though. He was the AHL MVP and was effective in his stint up with the Wings. If they're going to need cheap player to fill out the roster, why not keep your most effective minor leaguer?

-Mike Spath reported that a "very good source" is telling him that Pat Kane will be playing college hockey next year and it will be between Michigan and BU. He'll be enrolling in January after finishing up his high school course work and playing in the USHL. That'll be just a huge pickup for one of those teams, and God do I hope it's us. I've said before that the USA players that have wowed me the first time I saw them the way he did were: TJ Hensick, Jack Johnson, Robbie Earl, Phil Kessel, and Peter Mueller. Not a bad group. That wouldn't be the worst way to recover from the loss of Trevor Lewis. Here's hoping Red and Co. can get it done.

Now time for a story about the famous Michigan/MSU triple OT game:

I wasn't supposed to be there, when Braylon Edwards started snatching those passes out of the air. I work on the stat crew for Michigan volleyball, and they had a game originally slated for 7:00. They came on over the PA and announced the game had been bumped back to 7:30 and I figured I was fine. But as the game started to drag on, I realized that there was going to be trouble. Michigan was down by 17, and my time at the stadium was drawing to a close. Braylon caught the pass that sparked the comeback when I had about 5 minutes remaining.

Everyone started swinging their hats in the air for the ensuing kickoff, myself included. What I forgot was that as the sun went down, I took off my sunglasses and put them on my hat. So when I started swinging my hat in the air, I flung my sunglasses about 50 feet down the row. And of course they were Oakleys, not some $5 pair that I bought at Walmart.

I went to search for them, but in all the excitement after the touchdown, I didn't have a prayer. But I made my decision right then. I was staying. I wasn't going to leave a $150 pair of sunglasses under the bleachers to go get paid $15 for working a volleyball game.

You know the rest of the story in the game. Michigan came from behind in one of the most unbelievable football games of this era. As the fans finally filed to the exits, I started walking up and down the rows. Lo-and-behold, my sunglasses were still there. And as luck would have it, when I flung them, they slid underneath a bleacher so that no one stepped on them.

I sprinted from Michigan Stadium over to Cliff Keen Arena, and arrived an hour late for the game. I told my boss "I know you're going to think this is the biggest bullshit excuse in the world, but...." and explained the story. Luckily he didn't care. I'm still not convinced he believed it. I wouldn't have. But I was all set to leave the greatest game ever played. And even though it didn't seem lucky at the time--I think my exact words were, "Great, we're going to lose to State, and I lost my Oakley sunglasses"--flinging my sunglasses kept me from missing everything.

10 comments:

Tom said...

While I would still rank the win over tosu as the greatest feeling I've ever had after a football game, the '04 MSU game was easily the most emotional football game I've even been to. I remember sitting down on my bleacher, head in hands, wondering how my senior year had come to this after one of those diarrhea-fast MSU RBs had scored on a long counter-draw to put State up 17.

That game was rediculously long, something like 4.5 or 5 hours. I wore shorts and a T-shirt and remember being cold after the game but not caring a bit. I don't know that I've ever been so wrung out in such a short time before or since. Going from arrogant expectation, to here-we-go-again-nervousness, to hope to utter despair, to here-comes-another-Michigan-comeback-that-will-fall-just-short, to we're going to overtime! to exhilaration tempered with relief.

What a game...thanks for stirring some memories!

Anonymous said...

Pat Kane has the utmost respect for Jack Johnson and if he goes to college, Michigan has to be a fsavorite. They have had MANY lunches etc and Pat LOVES and RESPECTS Jack. We'll see.

Anonymous said...

Jack Johnson had dinner with Jim Rutherford tonight in Dearborn-any word?

Colin said...

Man I loved that MSU game. First, I found myself saying "Well at least I'm not a douchebag like the rest of those assholes leaving the stadium. I'm a masochist. Let's lose by 40!" Not only that, but I had to be the only person in the stands with a jacket. I thought it was going to rain over the weekend, bought an overly expensive one and needed to justify the purchase by wearing it. Not only was I joyous, like everyone else, but I was warm too!

What a fantastic game. I'll never forget that. Penn State 05 and Minnesota 04 (exact opposite of Minn 05) were close though. Considering our schedule this year at home, I'm not overly hopeful for a similar experience.

Jeremy said...

That's cool that you're a stat keeper for volleyball. Perhaps we've seen each other at games; I (a regular reader) was one of the founders of The Zone and have been at every volleyball game since then that did not conflict with football.

Packer487 said...

Jeremy, you guys are absolutely AWESOME. I've commented to Mark Rosen before that I can't believe how great the atmosphere is in Keen now. He loves you guys.

Not gonna lie, I lose it every time you get the "Slow and awkward" chant going.

I'm sure you've seen me. A lot of the times, I'm the one that runs the stats from the scorer's table up to the radio booth. Your section likes to yell things at me when I run by :-)

Keep up the great work. I love going to games there. It's like a smaller Yost.

Jeremy said...

Glad you enjoy it. We have a hell of a lot of fun up there and I've been really happy that it's taken off so well. We try to keep it classy and funny but still get in the girls' heads as much as possible.

After our first game, Mark came over to us and gave us this legendary quote:
"You guys are assholes-- but you're OUR assholes!"

I'll mention something when I see you this fall.

Jeremy said...

Haha, I see you're also the guy with the dry erase board at the hockey games! Hilarious stuff; the ND goal count was classic. I was in the band so I saw all of your work.

Packer487 said...

Yeah definitely come say hi sometime. I'm not going to be working every vball game because I'm also going to be running the scoreboard for men's and women's soccer and field hockey, but I think I'm doing about 7 games.

Mark seems like a really good guy. I've liked working with him.

I really wish I would've thought of the dry erase board sooner. I had glass seats for 3 years and I didn't bust it out until the last year. Gajic would always crack up when he saw some of the things we'd write. Hensick just always looked confused.

One of my friends knows Chris Trick from Notre Dame, and she told me that after the game he was like "This kid had a sign up that was like Michigan 39, Notre Dame 7. That's just embarassing!"

Good times...can't wait for hockey!

Jeremy said...

I brought a dry erase board to one of the volleyball games. It's a great way to channel spontaneous cleverness.