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  #1  
Old 06-11-2004, 05:03 PM
hoosier hoosier is offline
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Nice article about TKE, RR

_
Posted on Fri, Jun. 11, 2004

Who says there isn't life after football?

By Mark Story
HERALD-LEADER SPORTS COLUMNIST


Stubborn idealists have long clung to the belief that college athletics should be more about college than athletics.

We realists long ago accepted that football players mostly go to college to play football.

The aspiring offensive lineman was among the latter.

Like so many college athletes, he came from a background of humble means.

There was never enough money. Today, we'd say his dad had a "substance-abuse" problem. Back then, the non-charitable just called him the town drunk.

Like so many of our athletes, he became especially close to his mom. In many ways, this God-fearing woman raised her two boys on her own.

Even though no one in his family had ever gone to college, the youngest of the two children decided that he would.

He had his heart set -- funny how this works -- on the very school his girlfriend, the preacher's daughter, had already chosen.

"I'd like to say I went to college for love of learning," he would say, "but probably I was more motivated by love for a pretty girl and a love for football."

On his campus visit, he went out of his way to look up the football coach.

I want to go to college and I want to play football and I want to do it here, but I don't have much money ...

A football program can NEVER have enough offensive linemen, of course, so the coach went to bat and found the aspiring guard enough aid money to get into school.

It all went wrong from the start.

The young player spent his freshman year glued to the bench, sat over there and fumed and sulked.

By the time the year was over, he had decided to quit. Not only football -- college.

So he went back home and got an outdoors job with a surveyor, was gonna work and make money and forget about this coach who, he was sure, had no use for him.

Yet, on the first day of college for what would have been his sophomore year, the now ex-college football player couldn't go to work.

The rain was falling so hard, several bearded men in robes started building Arks.

What the heck, he figured he'd go back to campus for the day, say hello to his old frat buddies in the TKE House, be with his girl.

When he got there, the pangs inside his chest felt like earthquake tremors. Only then did he realize how badly he wanted to return to school.

So, he went back to the football coach, Ralph McKinzie -- the man on whom he had quit -- and again asked for help.

God bless the college coach who really does put helping kids above his own ego. You never know if the player you save could go on to change the world.

McKinzie got a player to whom he didn't owe a darned thing back in school and with his financial aid intact.

Yet, midway through his sophomore season, the guard STILL wasn't playing -- had started the year fifth string.

And it was killing him.

Finally, one day in practice, McKinzie installed a running play that called for the right guard to pull, get out on the perimeter and put a defensive back on his bottom.

In practice, they were using an assistant coach as the "defender" to be blocked; problem was, even against a coach, nobody on the team could get out there in time to make the block.

At long last, the head coach turned to one of his scrubs, essentially said, let's see what you've got.

Nothing improves a football player's mobility -- nor his hostility -- like desperation combined with unexpected opportunity.

At 'Hut!' the lowly scrub roared around end and delivered a block so ferocious, the poor assistant coach/defender "ascended as if he'd been hurled by a shot-putter and seemed to dangle in mid-air for several seconds."

Next game, there was a new starter at right guard.

Funny thing. It was such a long struggle for him to win the job he coveted; but when he did, he was bullet-proof. For the rest of his college term, nobody could beat him out.

Of course, in the Hollywood ending, the blooming of his football career would've awakened an equal passion in the new starter for his schoolwork.

Instead, by his own account, the right guard worked just hard enough to stay above the 2.0 it took to keep him eligible for sports.

Give him this: In doing that, at least he remained in school and got an Economics degree. Many, many college football players don't even do that, of course.

Then, college -- football -- was over.

He took a job out of state. Moved way out west, got married, had kids, got divorced, re-married, had more kids, switched careers three different times, moved back east and then -- where does the time go? -- it had been 50 years.

And they were planning a celebration for his graduating class back at the old campus.

All his buddies wondered if the old right guard would show.

He did.

Stood up in front of every body, and delivered a mea culpa to satisfy even the most snooty academician.

He recalled that the graph of his college academic performance tracked much closer to the 2.0 needed to stay eligible for football than the 4.0 that represented genuine scholastic excellence.

Looking everyone in the eye, he said, "Even now I wonder if I had made better grades, what more in life I might have been able to accomplish?"

Which was when every soul in the place burst out laughing.

Now, it may help you to know the college in question was Eureka College.

And on May 9, 1982, when the old football player stood at his alma mater, tongue planted firmly in cheek, to lament his indifferent academic record and the opportunities it must surely have cost him ...

... Ronald Reagan was in the second year of his first term ...

... as President of the United States.

Rest in Peace, Dutch, Rest in Peace.
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Old 06-11-2004, 05:13 PM
hoosier hoosier is offline
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Bruce Walker says: a dime for RR

The Case For A Reagan Dime
By Bruce Walker (06/10/04)
The death of President Reagan, the greatest person in the last fifty years except for Alexander Solzhenitsyn, reminds us of many things. His death reminds us that wisdom is not superficial complexity. His death reminds us that marriages based upon love transcend calamity. His death reminds us that global wars can be won with little blood if the champion of freedom has will, candor and compassion.
Inevitably, Leftists consider FDR a "great president." Reagan was much greater in every way. As we remember Reagan, let us now begin to put his genuine greatness - second only, perhaps, to George Washington, in American history - into perspective. The pigmy Left will nip at his toenails until he his mortal body is dust. Conservatives and other normal people should simply thank God for Reagan.

Both Franklin Roosevelt and Ronald Reagan took office in the middle of terrible economic problems. Reagan had America in the middle of the longest period of economic growth in its history when he ran for reelection. FDR had America in an even deeper Depression when he ran for reelection in 1936.

Ronald Reagan, whose absence of any prejudice or bigotry was legendary, appointed Sandra Day O'Connor, the first woman, to the Supreme Court. He groomed brilliant black people like Alan Keyes and Colin Powell into leadership roles, rather than appointing black flacks and hacks.

Franklin Roosevelt did appoint the first woman to the cabinet, but his record on civil rights was abominable. He appointed Tom Clark, who had joined the Ku Klux Klan, to be Attorney General of the United States. He appointed Hugo Black, who had also joined the Ku Klux Klan, to the United States Supreme Court. His first running mate, Nance Garner, hailed from a town in which blacks were not even allowed to live. How bad was FDR on civil rights? Consider that even the black Marxist W.E.B. Dubois did not vote for FDR after the 1932 election.

Prosperity and civil liberties were both slam dunks: Reagan was vastly superior to Roosevelt. What about the really big question both men faced? What about the evil empires each man faced and the question of war and of peace, of freedom and of tyranny, of safety and of democide?

Franklin Delano Roosevelt took office and Adolph Hitler took office at almost the same time. FDR had overwhelming majorities in Congress, and those majorities would grow. Moreover, FDR thoroughly grasped how to use radio and film. As many people have noted, FDR, like Ronald Reagan, was a "Great Communicator." So what did he communicate? Not much.

FDR had six and a half years from his inauguration to stop the Second World War, prevent the Holocaust, and bring hope and freedom to Europe and the Orient. He commanded almost as a dictator the most powerful economy on the planet. He had enormous leverage over England and France, because of their heavy war debts. He also was initially viewed favorably by both Hitler and Mussolini. He had his so-called "Brain Trust" to advise him. How does FDR stack up against Ronald Reagan in confronting global evil? Not well at all.

Franklin Roosevelt confronted an enemy which scarcely had the power to harm a single inch of American territory, while the Gipper defeated an enemy with the power to destroy mankind in a matter of minutes or to confront the American Navy with a reasonable prospect of success or to overrun Western Europe in a few days.

The Gipper defeated an enemy who was the darling of the Left. He defeated an enemy which was constantly being compared as morally equivalent to the United States, despite the fact long before the Holocaust, this enemy instructed Rudolph Hess, during his visit to the Soviet Union, how to cram families into box cars and how to exterminate millions of human beings.

Franklin Roosevelt defeated an enemy who was the demon of the Left, though Nazism itself was pure Leftism, and who the moguls of Hollywood rightly portrayed as savage brutes with bad intentions for humanity. There were many films before the Second World War began which told America in stark terms how bad the Nazis were. Other than Red Dawn, were there any films from Hollywood which showed the evil of the Soviet empire?

The Gipper defeated an enemy who had a militant, ugly army of Storm Troopers operating within America, their Swastikas morphed into other icons of the radical Leftism which is Nazism, Marxism, Fascism and other movements based upon hate. He did so without arresting these people or suspending their civil rights.

Franklin Roosevelt interned Italians, Japanese and German citizens because of their ancestry. He funding blatant propaganda funded with tax dollars. His Democrat Congress created the House Committee on Un-American Activities to investigate pro-Nazi and pro-Fascist movements in America. He trampled upon our liberties, rather than persuade us, about the evil of Nazism.

The Gipper defeated an enemy who had so demoralized its geographically logical victims that West Germany, Italy, France, Holland and Belgium had to be begged by America to allow us to defend them. Other nations, like Sweden and India, were vicious and unfair critics of America even though they, too, would be consumed by the Russian Bear. The first liberation of people from Communism, Grenada, was by order of President Reagan. No more peoples or lands fell to Communism while he was president.

Franklin Roosevelt was begged by Europeans and Chinese to help them stop Nazism, Japanese Imperialism, Soviet aggression and Fascism. He did not need to persuade them of the evils they confronted or beg them to be allowed to help them. Franklin Roosevelt allowed Germany to occupy the Rhineland, to annex Austria, to acquire the Sudetenland, to grab Bohemia and Moravia and finally to incorporate Memel into the Reich, all by steel fisted diplomacy from an enemy which had a military which could barely harm a single inch of American soil.

The Gipper came into office at a time when the Gulag was still very much alive. Mothers and children were still being sent to the Gulag, where the mortality rate for children was fifty percent per year. The blood of the Killing Fields, the genocide that continued unchecked during the morally numb years of Carter, was still fresh and warm.

But Reagan championed the cause of enslaved people without hesitation or qualification. He went to Berlin, not to empathize as JFK did, but to demand in the name of humanity that the new, improved Communist tear down the Wall. He armed the Afghans to fight against a Red Army which was systematically exterminating the Afghan people. Men like Eichman and Yamashita cringed when Ronald Reagan was president.

What about FDR? Do we assume that the millions murdered by Stalin were "unpersons" as many historians have done? Did FDR ever raise even a peep of protest about these starved, tortured and killed mothers and children? Did he even know about this holocaust? If so, he had a funny way of demonstrating that knowledge: FDR opened diplomatic relations with a government that committed a holocaust while it was committing that holocaust.

The Final Solution to the Gipsy Question was constructed in 1938, four years before its infamous Jewish parallel, and before the Second World War in Europe began. Where, exactly, was Franklin Roosevelt when this happened?

Between September 1939 and June 1941, one and one half million Polish mothers, babies, old people and fathers were crammed into airless, dark, filthy cattle cars and transported to the Gulag camps deep in the heart of Siberia. Did FDR ever whisper "That is evil"?

Ronald Reagan was not just a great president, but a great moral force in our times. Franklin Roosevelt was a nebish, a frat brat, a Clinton. Why not now recognize these two paramount facts? Why not a Reagan dime?
Bruce Walker has been a dyed in the wool conservative since, as a sixth grader, he campaigned door to door for Barry Goldwater. Bruce has had almost two hundred published articles have appeared several professional and political periodicals.
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