Pickering stated: "Rick has
demonstrated he is a winner, and I would expect him to have a good
program in both sports after he gets a chance to do some recruiting
of his own. I expect him to make great strides in our program, since
he comes from a school with great winning traditions.
"I am certainly grateful to Todd
Spellman for keeping the program going this past year and know that
Todd will continue our tradition as an assistant coach to Rick."
Jean Ann Miller; Lincoln
Carpenter comes to Lincoln College
after coaching menís soccer at State Fair Community College in
Sedalia, Mo., for the past 10 years. Carpenter compiled a record of
211-30 over his 10-year period and had national champions in 1998
and 1999. He was named Regional Coach of the Year in 1997, 1998 and
1999 and was selected as National Coach of the Year in 1998 and
[to top of second column in
Carpenter has coached 10 first team
All-Americans and had two players selected to the Parade magazine
All-American list. He has also coached four major league soccer
players and eight professional indoor soccer players. Carpenter has
served on the coaching staff of various soccer camps in the St.
Louis area and served as executive director for various soccer
programs in his 10 years at Sedalia.
"I am getting in on the recruiting
program too late for this year, but I am already looking toward
recruiting for the following year," Carpenter said. "I have several
areas in mind for recruiting. We have eight sophomores and 10
freshmen this season, and we will go with what we have. It will be a
little tough the first year or two; however, I expect our team to
"As for softball, this will be my first
year of coaching. I have played a lot of baseball, including playing
on a state championship team in summer baseball. Softball will give
me a new challenge."
will join the teaching staff at Lincoln College and will also be a
Completion of the Cardinal tribute
I mentioned last week
at the end of my story that that was only the beginning.
[See "My Buck tribute."]
As I went off to
college, I took Jack Buck and the Cardinals with me. One of my
greatest Cardinal moments ever took place in my college dorm room.
We were getting some
late-night study in when the Cardinals were playing the hated Astros.
The Redbirds had the game in hand and then let the lead slip away.
Houston tied it and we went to extra innings. That was just our cue
to pop more popcorn. In the top of the 12th the Astros exploded for
three runs and it appeared that our doom was sealed. But wait. Our
leadoff man walked, and the next man up was plucked by a pitch.
Someone else hit a seeing-eye single that loaded the bases.
While all this was
going on, more and more people were pouring into our room. If you
ever saw my roommate, Gene Adams, you would realize what a sight
this was. Consider that a dorm room is no bigger than a broom
closet. Now picture me in that room with a 6-foot-5, 220-pound man
of steel. Now conjure up a dozen other scruffy characters from down
the hall in the room. Soon the guys from upstairs were piling in as
well. They said they came for the popcorn, but the drama of the
moment was the real attraction. Jack Buck was the pied piper. While
many of us had already given up, Jack never did!
Roger Freed stepped
to the plate for the Cardinals. Roger was a giant of a man and a
player that you always hoped would continue to get better. I donít
think that ever happened. But on that particular night, there was
magic in the air. Few times in my life have I seen Cardinal and Cub
fans come together like they did in the wee hours of that morning.
As the count moved to 3-2, Mike Shannon said, "Olí Abnerís done it
again!" Then Buck let loose with one my personal favorite all-time
calls: "Freed corks one into left Ö good night, everybody Ö the
Cardinals have just won the game 7-6 on a grand slam by Freed!"
You should have seen
the dorm that night. That hit set off one of the most raucous
celebrations that I have ever witnessed. Guys jumping up and down on
beds, popcorn everywhere, Mountain Dew cans shaken up, shooting foam
across hallways. You wouldíve thought that the Cardinals had just
won the pennant. But no. It was just another magical Buck moment in
another lost season. But it wasnít lost on me. And it wasnít lost on
that dorm full of guys!
Other Cardinal memories or stories
They just keep
pouring in. Thereís the story of Buck and his wife on a flight that
was delayed. Oftentimes when that happens, someone will collect
everyoneís boarding pass along with their dollar and pull out a
winner. The lucky person drawn wins all the money in the bag.
Stewardesses donít usually like this game, because they say that 90
percent of the time someone in first class generally wins; then they
have to deal with a plane full of upset people.
It would be a little
different on this day. Buck and his wife were sitting in first class
when a little girl from the back of the plane who looked like she
could use the money panned through first class to collect the rest
of the boarding passes and money. Sure enoughÖ someone in first
class won. It was Mr. Buck. The fans booed heartily.
The little girl,
disappointed that she hadnít won, sauntered up to Mr. Buck with the
cash. "It looks like you won, mister." Jack told the little girl
that all he wanted was his boarding pass and his dollar back. She
was stunned when he handed her the bag full of money, $238 to be
exact. Buck could have never known this, but as it turns out, the
girlís dad had just lost his job and the family really did
need the money!
[to top of second column in
Cardinal manager Tony
LaRussa tells everyone that he always called Jack the Renaissance
Man. He said he always called Jack "a man for all seasons." He said
that Jack would always quickly respond, "Tony, what Iíd rather beÖ
is a man of the postseason!"
If you ever want to
hear a great joke, download the broadcast of a Montreal game played
10 or 12 years ago. Jeff Parrot was an Expo reliever that Montreal
had warming up during a rain delay. As Shannon pointed that out,
Buck said, "Parrot? That reminds me of one of my favorite stories."
He proceeded to tell one of the funniest Parrot jokes I have ever
heard. I laughed so hard, I fell off the bed!
Or thereís the story
of the little boy with MS who visited Buck and Shannon up in the
broadcast booth. They put him in between the two-one row behind them
for his safety because no ball had ever reached that area.
Beforehand Buck had
one of the interns go down into the office and bring up some
Cardinal T-shirts for the boy and his parents. As they broadcast
that inning someone fouled off a pitch and it was heading toward
press row. It hit a window and broke it, struck a couple of
counters, and dropped in the box of T-shirts right in front of the
Before the game, Buck
ó knowing that the visit was scheduled for that day ó had mentioned
to Shannon how great it would be if the boy could get a foul ball,
but he said that wouldnít happen in a million years because the boy
would be unable to catch it. When that ball landed in that box,
Shannon said, "I donít know who was more surprised and elated, Buck
or the boy." Shannon went on to say that Buck motioned to him to do
the play-by-play by himself, as Buck was quietly sobbing!
There are zillions of
these stories floating around, and Iíve just plucked out a few for
your enjoyment. Rest assured that Jack Buck was a greater man than
he was a broadcaster. And as a broadcaster, heís in the Hall of
Fame. I could never give him a better tribute than that!
For more Buck
tributes and Cardinal stuff, click on
As far as Darryl Kile
goes, I donít even know what to say. I think it has hit me too close
to home to be able to report on it impartially. I do know that I was
moved by how many men described how much this guy meant to
So, I guess we have
to ask ourselves, can we learn anything from these deaths? Maybe,
itís if you have something to say to somebody, go ahead and say it.
If you care for somebody, tell them. If you have someplace you want
to go, go there. If you have something you want to see, go see it.
And most of all, if you need to set all things right, donít waste
another minute. Set things right today!
And let me be the
first to practice thisÖ to all our loyal LDN readers. Thanks for
reading my crazy and zany stuff. And not only that, but for stopping
me on the streets and telling me so. That really means a lot to me
and I thank youÖ in fact, itís why I do it.
Itís made me realize
one of the many great things about where we live. We have great
people. Iím glad my son is growing up in a community like this one.
I just told a mother last week that if my son grows up to be
anything like her two boys, weíll be pretty proud. Heck, we might be
proud even if he doesnít!
Oh well, have a great week, everybody.
Stay out of the heat and we hope to see you soon.
["'Greatest Cardinal of them allí has fallen"]