Dec. 19, 2011
Sunday/Monday Photo Gallery
So how can I explain Sunday any better than just straight up awesome?" Today was the day that gave my teammates and I an opportunity to have a little more freedom around town. This morning started early at 6:45 with a nice breakfast downstairs in the hotel followed by an hour and a half of meetings. All of the guys were excited after meetings because our next stop was to the famous Tropicana Field (Home of the Tampa Bay Rays). I can honestly say it was probably the most excited I have been to practice in the four years I have been at Marshall. Once we arrived at the stadium, we all hurried to the locker room to get dressed for practice. Kase Whitehead and I happened to be the first two guys out on the field. You know specialists, we get excited knowing this is a weather-controlled environment. Walking out to a football field in a baseball stadium was pretty unique. The team and I were very impressed with the stadium and all it has to offer. Coach Holliday has been doing a good job reminding us that we are down here on a business trip and to leave no regrets. We definitely did not leave any regrets on the field today.
The next three hours became "our time." We were able to get lunch on our own or do what we wanted. Many of my teammates, including myself, had family come in today, so I was able to eat some fresh seafood with my parents. We went to a restaurant around the corner called 400 Beach Seafood & Taphouse, where I tried the Mahi Mahi, which did not disappoint.
Once those three hours were up, the team hopped on the bus and headed to Tradewinds Beach Resort, which was where the bowl held its beach bash. Bring out the sun block! I got there thinking that we were going straight to the beach, but we were directed into a room that had a big buffet of food. Was I hungry? No... Did I eat? Yes! I think someone warned me a long time ago not to eat before you swim but that didn't stop me or anyone else. As we walked outside, there were huge sand structures that had the FIU, Beef `O' Brady's Bowl St. Petersburg and Marshall logos. They were a lot more impressive than any sand castle that I have ever made. The beach bash gave us the opportunity to hang out on the shoreline, play volleyball or go on a huge blow up slide. The bowl people then had a little contest between the two teams where we had to show off our belly flop, hula hoop, and dancing skills. The highlight of this event was when our buddy Brandon Bullock dominated the belly flop competition. On Bull's first trial, he tore his tank top in half, pulled a couple dance moves, then jumped. While in the air, Bull crunched his body and then spread out right before he landed. This got the whole crowd going (including the FIU fans). That reeled him into the second and final round. His Championship flop consisted of a couple more fancy dance moves prior to the jump, and then a twist in mid air-and flop. There was no one that had a chance at beating him with that flop.
The rest of the night Coach Holliday gave us until 10 p.m. This gave me another good opportunity to spend with my family. I am lucky enough to have some family from Jupiter, Florida that were able to come in a couple days early and we all were able to enjoy another nice seafood dinner. If you haven't been able to tell, I like seafood.
Today was a success. The team had a lot of fun together and the anticipation of the game keeps growing. We are hoping to make the Thundering Herd Nation proud and come home with a victory on Tuesday night. I mentioned that Coach Holliday keeps reminding us to leave no regrets. My teammates and I are not planning on it.