Here’s some ice chips from Minny that have yet to melt
Here’s some leftover Super Bowl tids and bits while making the trek back and trying to thaw out at the same time:
First, one Philly media member who was at the Super Bowl has some memories of Nashua and the Nashua Pride.
Geoff Mosher, who writes for Fanrag Sports and does talk radio at 97.5 The Fanatic in Philadelphia, made many a trip to Holman Stadium in the late 1990s and early 2000s covering the Somerset Patriots of the independent Atlantic League of Professional Baseball for the Courier News in Bridgewater, N.J. when they would square off against the Nashua Pride.
“What I loved about Holman was, when the Atlantic League was starting up, a lot of new stadiums were built – Bridgeport, Somerset, Atlantic City,” he said. “You always knew going to Holman, going to Nashua, you were still getting the old school, residential neighborhood baseball field.
“And I also knew there’d be 11 home runs combined with both teams and there’s be a 14-15 inning game. That was great on getaway nights, and (Pride captain) Glenn Murray would be hitting his seventh homer of the night. And I’ll never forget that press box (before Holman was renovated in 2002).”Mosher remembers the epic Pride-Patriots Atlantic League title series. The Pride won the first meeting in 2000 but lost two others before leaving for the Can-Am League n 2006.
“They were awesome,” Mosher said. “I remember when (Pride manager) Butch Hobson collapsed in the dugout (in New Jersey) and he had to be taken to the hospital. And he came back and managed the next day (in Nashua). … That was Butch for you.”
-Had a funny feeling about an hour before the start of Super Bowl LII that the Patriots were in for a huge fight. The Philadelphia Eagles, before they went into the locker room after pregame warmups, huddled together as a team for a little pep talk. They were focused and fired up all week, and it showed in the game. But have never seen an NFL football team do that before.
-High school wrestling is big in Minnesota and the Twin Cities area. How big? Even with the Super Bowl in town, the big story in last Saturday’s Pioneer Press was the wrestling match between local rivals and traditional state powers Apple Valley and Inver Grove Heights. How many fans showed up? Try 1,900. Wow. That would be off the charts in New Hampshire for a dual match.
-It was an interesting setup for the Super Bowl. The main fan experiences were in downtown Minneapolis while the media, which is usually situated near all of that, was housed and worked in the airport/Mall of America area. The Eagles and Patriots team hotels were attached to the Mall, and fans were always hanging around the entrance to the J.W. Mariott, which was the Patriots hotel. Strange to walk just across the way from the media workroom to attend Patriots press conferences instead of taking an hour bus ride to their hotel. The Eagles were located on the other side of the Mall. Yeah, walking back from one of them yours truly got lost.
— Word is the corporate sponsors weren’t too thrilled with the NFL’s selection of Minneapolis for the Super Bowl, not when the temperature hardly ever got above 15 degrees and the high on game day was a whopping five degrees. The Minneapolis Super Bowl slogan was “The Bold North”, as they tried to turn “cold” into “bold”. Even the state’s governer, Mark Dayton, joked during the “Handoff” press conference Monday morning that pats the current city on the back and highlights next year’s site (Atlanta). “I don’t know if there’ll be a lot of corporate transfers from Atlanta after (Sunday),” he said, referring to the bitter cold. “But we delivered.”
Yeah, how about delivering portable heaters. Ah, but after Atlanta the next two Super Bowls are in Miami and Tampa. It’s been 26 years in between Super Bowls for Minny, and you make have to make triple digits until the next one.
— Have to admit, while the climate wasn’t Super Bowl worthy, U.S. Bank Stadium certainly was. The place is a palace. But unlike a lot of other stadiums, it’s not located in a suburban area or in the middle of nowhere. It’s basically situated in a downtown neighborhood. As an example, the dropoff-pickup area for the media buses was along the street in a quiet neighborhood highlighted by the Hope Community Church. At least the media had a possible backup shelter plan if we missed the bus.
Tom King can be reached at 594-1251,firstname.lastname@example.org., or @Telegraph_TomK.