Game Day; Honoring a Coach

Saturday, well, for many of us it will be game day. Something about the NCAA, isn’t there? Compared to the NFL, it just seems a friendlier game, more enjoyable, somehow, and if you went to school amongst the red bricks, there were some memorable people. For me, it was Coach Jack Mollenkopf, and the trip to the 1967 Rose Bowl (and unlike some more storied programs, we won.)

A generation or so later, it happened again with Joe Tiller as coach, a man that Rockne, Wooden, and yes, Mollenkopf would have recognized, as their sort of guy. In any case, Joe Tiller died last weekend, at his home in Wyoming, and it matters somehow, just as it always does. Maybe you didn’t play Purdue Football, I didn’t and yet, the way Mollenkopf coached made me a better man. I dare say it was the same in 2001 for those guys as Tiller took his Boiler team back to Pasadena.

And now there is Jeff Brohm, in the same place as Mollenkopf, and Tiller were, perhaps even worse as he tries to revive a program that was almost destroyed over the last few years. Purdue is no football school, and yet, once in a while, it gets done, and done right. So, we’ll see.

Today, P.J. Fleck’s Minnesota Golden Gophers will row their boat on down to West Lafayette, many will be thinking of Joe Tiller, and whether Purdue is back for a time. I hope so, I still remember the magic back in the 60s, there is simply nothing like it.

And Fleck is a class act, this Tweet is from him, and that helmet is what Minnesota will wear today, Purdue has some things planned as well, but Fleck is a class act. Thanks, Coach.

Just because we can, here is the AAMB, from the 2013 St. Patrick’s Day parade, in Dublin, of course.

And something else new today, There’s a new Boilermaker X-tra Special to be seen. Seems appropriate somehow, since the one that is retiring is the one that led Joe Tiller’s teams onto the field, now that Jeff Brohm is trying to write a new chapter in this saga, a new special seems appropriate. I think we’ll like the new one, just like we like winning again. The video is rather long, and all you’ll really see is the tarp, but if you’re like me, you’ll also see some familiar places that haven’t been seen in quite a while. Enjoy.

Boiler up, and you guys in Nate’s way, stay safe!

Update: via ‘Hammer and Rails‘.

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