September 19, 2006

Rumor & Innuendo: Rumblings From the World of Sports

A reader wondered last week why I’m obsessed with Howard Schnellenberger. Then Louisville battered Miami in the battle between two of his former teams. The Schnell on the victors: “It’s a great, great thing to have a new football program emerge on the national football hierarchy, particularly one that has such a fairy-tale story.” That’s why I love this pigskin poet. So this week I’m on a collision course with all Schnell all the time.SchnellSpeak of the Week. The Wizard of Wordplay led his FAU Fighting Owls back to Oklahoma last weekend, another of his former stomping grounds, to face Okie State. The usually verbose coach was asked what reflections he had on returning to the state where he served one tumultuous season before being canned at OU. His terse reply: “None.”But His Highness of Hyperbole was back to normal when discussing the battle with the Cowboys. “We, like most of the folks in the Sun Belt Conference, look forward to playing these more-established and higher-funded programs with tradition abounding. As we continue to do that, I think it’s very important for our program to go through this gauntlet of highly experienced and great football teams. Even though we have to be really tough minded to handle this, we think this will help us over the long haul.”Alas, the Fighting Owls were nudged again, this time to the tune of 8-48. Ah, but they did tally their first TD of the season, which led Mr. Loquacious Pipe Smoker to proclaim: “I don’t know if it took any of the pressure off, but it’s always good to score a touchdown even if it’s against the reserves and particularly if you haven’t had one.”As for the future, the coach sounded pretty much like any other whose team started the season 0-3, being outscored 14-147, and facing a couple more road games. “Right now we have to reevaluate the things we’re doing and find out what we need to do to improve before the last game in this series.”Just so you know that our favorite quote isn’t one-dimensional, Schnell and Ms. Beverlee have been named honorary chairs of a North Palm Beach cancer research fund-raiser, which is the beginning of that burg’s social season. It’s the Baby Boomer’s Ball. This year’s theme: “Groovin’ in the ’60s.”So you can see, the Schnell is about good deeds as much as good words.BY SEEDY Kseedyk@culturemaven.com