Sometime in the late 60s or early 70s, I was driving home through Cincy on a Sunday when the Bengals were playing the NY Jets. The game was at UC’s Nippert Stadium, which then hadn’t been expanded or surrounded by buildings.
My pal and I stopped, and, along with a bunch of others, watched the game from a hill overlooking the stadium.
We could sense the action from that distance, but it was hard to observe any details from such a viewing spot. We got a sense of the action, but none of the subtleties.
That’s kind of how I feel at this juncture covering U of L football and the upcoming hoops season.
I blew out my knee in a fall 10 days ago. Surgery to reattach tendons. Rehab. Long long long recovery period ahead due to the nature of the injury and lengthy time necessary for proper healing.
So I missed most of the BC game over the telly because I was just out of it that day after the injury and a fitful sleepless night in the hospital.
I missed Chris Mack’s first Media Day. So I didn’t get to ask Akoy Agau about his nomadic existence since he last donned a Cardinal uni? Or Jordan Nwora how it feels to be a national hoops hero? Or chat up Will Rainey about our shared alma mammy, J.M. Atherton HS, and how it feels to follow in the tradition of Charlie Tyra and Rick Wilson?
I missed the Red/ White Scrimmage. So I didn’t get to observe Malik Williams, and his penchant or not for playing the post. Or see how the pack line D looks when my favorite team is running it?
I will be watching what unfolds for this year’s pigskinners from afar, via TV. But won’t get any up close and personal sense of whether they’ve spit out the bit, or summoned up some new resolve with a week off?
So too the first month or two of the basketball campaign. Since they aren’t being televised or streamed as best I know, I’ll have to check out the scrimmages over the radio, listening to Paul Rogers on the call as I listened to Ed Kallay in my long distant youth, conjuring the visuals in my mind.
The actual regular season tilts will be available for viewing electronically either on my Samsung or Apple computer. But it simply ain’t the same.
Damn, this is so far from optimal, I have no pithy phrases to assuage the disconnect.
Truth: It sucks.
Talk about some aching blue balls.
Appetite whetted at the Fourth Street Live Razzle Dazzle, and the ever present annual preseason buzz especially strong with a new regime taking the reins, this is a bummer. Unrequited anticipation.
You ever have a moment, whatever the circumstance, when you realize that life has just been considerably altered? Well, that’s what I realized while waiting on the ground in the damp parking lot for EMS to take me to the ER.
But forget the healing process, the trips to the doc. , the PT, the hassles of taking care of daily chores that are normally afterthoughts, I Want My Cardinals.
U of L basketball has been the epicenter of my winters for decades, the gravitational pull of sports fandom.
Sometime real life stuff intrudes on real life.
So I’m forced to watch the action from the outside, the little kid inside me pressed with his face to the candy store window.
Anyhow I’m going to do my best to provide some perspective. But it’s different doing so from Out Here. I remember seeing Joe Willie Namath beating up the Bengals that day back when, but I don’t recall much else. He looked like a little toy figure off in the distance.
So, sitting here in an austere room at rehab, my leg propped up, suitably immobilized so I can’t bend my knee, typing on a laptop wobbly perched on my good knee, I share my angst.
And that I’ll still be weighing in. L!C4 and all that.
This fan since ’52 abides.
— Seedy K