Saturday, December 02, 2006

Saturday morning at Papa John's Stadium

Pulled into the parking lot at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium this morning, got out of my car and followed the Louisville marching band to the stadium. They were lining up for the Card Walk, a bit of pomp and cirsumstance where fans line the walkway and cheer on the players as they make their way into the stadium. Most college programs do it, but Louisville's was a tad more exciting than, say, Indiana, where it was the band and nobody else.

There was a few hundred fans dressed in Cardinal red lining the walkway, impressive considering it was 2 hours and 30 minutes before kickoff and it's pretty damn cold outside. I just missed snagging a free T-shirt. It hit me square in the hand and bounced to a teenager. Score it an error on me. The fat, 50-year old man dressed head-to-toe in Louisville garb sarcastically thanked me because the shirt was heading for him until I stuck my hand up. Rather than tell him the shirt probably would have been a little tight on him since it wasn't a size XXXXXXL, I just said at least it went to a kid. He sneered and waddled away. So much for Southern hospitality.

The stadium is impressive. Less than 10 years old with 40,000-plus seats that are all red plastic with chairbacks -- as opposed to the metal benches in most stadiums. They are planning to expand the place by about 20,000 soon. It'a way too nice a place to be named after a crappy pizza chain.

No surprises on the travel roster, aside from the fact that there's five kickers and punters and one true quarterback.


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