On Tuesday night we got a notice that FedEx had tried to deliver a package to our home while we were out and that I could pick it up, if I wanted to, at 9:00 a.m. at their Oxnard distribution center, or wait for them to try to deliver this mysterious package again Wednesday afternoon.
I had a pretty good idea what was in the package, so at 8:52 a.m. I was anxiously waiting outside of FedEx's locked doors for them to promptly open for possibly the most important working day in the history of the package delivery industry.
Here is the Mystery Package
By 9:02 a.m., the package was in my hot, sweaty little hands, ready to be ripped apart in the parking lot.
What was it it?
A Beautiful Ring
A Bron-Villeurbanne Falcons 2013 National Championship ring!!!
I got this package on January 8, 2014, exactly seven months to the day since we played the French Division III American football title contest in Lyon against the Pionniers from Tours.
Out of the Box, Still NICE!!!
None of these pictures really do the ring justice. It is marvelous!
How does it look on my finger?
Now, it needs to be said that over the course of my 48 seasons of coaching American football, we have been fortunate enough to be part of several league championship teams and even more playoff squads. Unfortunately, we had never been able to go all the way in said playoffs until this magical 12-0 season in France.
I know a lot of coaches who have won multiple rings and I can only wonder if they still feel the true wonder of winning it all.
I guess, what I'm saying is that this first ring for me is extremely satisfying and special.
Hammer Time was our Theme
I'm not sure which of our players came up with the icon to match our theme, but I loved it.
Gratifying to say the VERY Least
That afternoon, I got to wear my ring in public for the first time when I was scheduled to give my EuroBall pep/informational talk to a group of Seniors at the University of La Verne.
A beautiful little campus
at NCAA DIII ULV
ULV's "Big Top" Gym
Seven ULV Leopards who are
ready to take their skills to Europe
They were a good group that will be ready to go overseas as soon as they graduate in mid-May. Look for their profiles on EuroPlayers.com soon.
So far this "off-season," I have talked to about 25 Seniors from California Lutheran University, Occidental College and now the University of La Verne who want to explore the EuroBall option extending their careers on the Continent.
Good luck men!