Hoosier by birth, Boilermaker by choice

A cardinal in between “chirp, chirp”

I haven’t always been this way.

Thankfully.

When I was a child,

I did childish things,

Like root for IU and Notre Dame

I think it’s Corinthians

But i’m no Theologian. Far from it actually. I was baptized in a Lutheran Church. No one really knows why. It’s just what people did/do. One of the ways we assimilate. However, I did not grow up in a church going* household in any sense of the word.

I grew up like many of my contemporaries in Indiana as an avid IU basketball and Notre Dame football fan. I have flown the official 1988 Fighting Irish National Championship Pennant since I purchased it from initial trip to the Notre Dame University Book Store back in 1996. Whenever, which was all the time, as a kid my friends and I would be calling teams in the yard mine was always Notre Dame. The opponent was usually Miami.

I still am mystified by the Boston College Game. After winning the first Game of the Century the week before against Florida State. It was the worst feeling this Golden Domer ever felt. So many near misses.

We all know it goes in

I loved Bobby Knight. The scowl, how he dealt with the media, demanded respect, coached in front of the cameras. Seemed like a few of my coaches. But, as a kid I never thought of what he might be like when the cameras were not filming. My coaches tended to smile when the reporters came around. We all coach in our own way.

If he acts like this in front of a stadium full of people,

If he acts like that with the cameras and microphones on,

If he says those things in front of, and to all those reporters,

What must it be like when he thinks he can do or say whatever he wants?

I never really thought about this a a child

That being said, I think anyone who signed up to play for Coach Knight had a pretty good idea what they were getting themselves into. Then, the Neil Reid video came out. I was shocked, not by Coach Knight grabbing him in an aggressive way, but that the player was Neil Reed.

If there was ever a player that embodied toughness, basketball acumen, and exemplified what I believed to be a Bob Knight guy it was Neil Reed. Especially on those teams. He played through a series of injuries. Anyone who watched him run up and down the court in pain, favoring his shoulder, had to believe that this kid was giving it all he had. Somehow that still wasn’t enough for Coach Knight.

I watched, like the rest of the state, Robert Montgomery Knight’s fall from grace with a certain level of ambivalence. Ironically enough, I was in West Lafayette at that time.

Bailey, Chaney, Nover, Greg Grahm, Brian Evans, Coverdale. Great Players. Good Teams. No banners.

If a coach of mine, or anyone for that matter, put there hands around my neck.

You walkin over but your limpin back

It wasn’t until I was a Junior in High School that I realized Purdue was only a little over an hour away from Lake County. My family and I never really traveled farther south than crossing the Kankakee River into Newton and Jasper Counties, or farther north than Wrigley Field before I was 12. I first really noticed Purdue when Glenn Robinson signed to play basketball for the Boilers in and around 1990. The Big Dog was the first high school basketball player I ever saw dunk live in a game.

I transferred from Ball State to Purdue in 1999 after a successful Freshman year in Muncie. The shine of the Golden Dome and Touchdown Jesus were still my sole rooting interest in College Football. In short time Joe Tiller and Brock Spack completely shifted my attention to what was happening just up Stadium Ave within Ross-Ade.

Beat everyone except Wisconsin

Wins against Michigan and Ohio State at home in one year

1 B1G Championship

The Rose Bowl

Drew Brees, Roosevelt Colvin, Matt Light, Matt Mitrione, Tim Straton, Seth Morales, Jon Standeford, Then, Kyle Orton, Nick Hardwick, Rob Ninkovich, Ray Edwards and all the NFL’ers that gave Purdue the most Alumni in the NFL around 2010. Some heartaches. The Orton fumble against Wisconsin.

“Act like you’ve been there before!”

Screamed A B1G Nut

“We haven’t”

I replied

Leaving Ross-Ade after
Right in front of me and a few thousand of my closest friends every Saturday back then.
And a few times a year now.

The Cradle and The Den.

My roommates and I sold our Rose Bowl tickets. At the time they were our most valuable asset. It was a win win. We got some cash and some alumni got a thrill of a lifetime. I’m still shocked Marques Tuiasosopo and Rick Neuheisel out dueled Coached Tiller and Drew Brees that New Years Day in Pasadena during the 87th Grand Daddy of ’em all.

I wont even get started with basketball since 2000.

I’m no expert on life in and around Jordan and 3rd Street in Bloomington. I have fond memories of my weekends spent with my friends who attended. But there is more to a University than dusty old banners. The Greater Lafayette area, alongside the banks of the Wabash, has it’s own charm and culture.

pack up a tucker bag and take a look

For me at least a lot changed when I was in college. Truthfully it seems like the entire world changed from ’98-’03. That’s a different post.

It’s obvious to anyone familiar with Purdue University that this University continues to expand, explore, and evlove. Tomorrow however at Ross-Ade Stadium is a rarity. The crimson and crean are bowl eligible while the black and gold will be home for the holidays.

Boiler Up!

Hammer Down.

Let’s add another P to chain.

74-41
P’s to I’s

For the Seniors.

Ken

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s