Sunday, January 20, 2008

frigid football loyal friends

Hi There. Some Housekeeping first. (
Its great that Lance is running the Boston Marathon. He did 2:47 at new york. What do you think he can do at Boston...and for a man who conquered the huge mountains in the Tour, I would think Heartbreak Hill would not be that much of a problem for the 7 time Tour de France winner. I still would love to see him attack the Ironman. How fast would he cover the 112 mile bike portion???


Snowy end to a great training week. 4 hours 30 minutes total from bike, run, elliptical, rope skipping, and my latest method of madness, rowing. Even though I notched my two upper body workouts, but missed a leg workout, I think it was a great week. My food consumption needs close monitoring.

Frigid Football, Loyal Friend

I write this while the AFC and NFC Title games are being played in cold, cold enviroments. In the 20's in New England and about zero in Green Bay. Kudos to the Einstein who thought it would be good to play a night game at Lambeau Field. Gheeesh. Speaking of Einstein. I so quickly left my car coming into the station today at 2:30 pm, that 4 hours later, I realized I had left it running in 14 degree weather. It was purring like a kitten. Toasty warm. It least I didn't lock it. What a goober!!!

As I watch Brett Favre and company, I flash back to my days with Casey Coleman. We were colleagues at Fox 8 for 17 years. Casey possessed a wit sharper than a drawer of knives. He spoke of a thermos. "It keeps, hot things hot, and it keeps cold things cold.......How does it know?".

Casey came from a legendary family of sportscasting. New Englanders who read this might remember Ken Coleman, the longtime voice of the Boston Red Sox. Casey chose his dads profession. My dad has been a insurance man. I chose something else. I believe I would have been swallowed by his shadow. Casey blossomed in his dads business, but he paid a price. Casey became an alcoholic. It wasn't until about 9 years ago that he climbed out of the bottle.
But on this Sunday, I think of Casey because of all those cold Browns games we covered.

This photo is of us doing a pregame show before the Browns met the Broncos in the playoffs in the 80's in Denver. Casey is on the left, I am on the right. It was the "Fumble" game. Browns fans don't need a reminder of what happened. We used to stand on a railing that was on the top of the Old Cleveland Browns Stadium. We were up so high and the railing hovered just over the field. We felt on top of the world all those Sundays, including the very frigid ones.

Back then, we could anticipate where every play was going. We had a birds eye view. Just yards below the heavens. Those were great times, second guessing the playcalls, cracking jokes.

Casey was a very loyal guy. Back when Bill Belichick was a rookie Browns coach, most everyone in town hated the guy. He was dour. Joyless at times. He ran everyones favorite q.b. Bernie Kosar out of town. Casey believed Bill would become a great coach. He was often a lone voice, touting Belichick's skills. Time proved Casey right. Its too bad Belichick would prove him right, but from another city,..Boston, not Cleveland.

This photo was taken, not long before Thanksgiving, 2006. A week after this was taken, Casey was dead of pancreatic cancer. He had fought it 15 months. He was Ali to cancers Frazier. He left an incredible legacy. Caseys fund at Recovery Resources helps those with addictions and mental illness receive treatment, they otherwise could not afford.
On his way to becoming sober and a lifesaver to many, Casey gave his life to the Lord. Touchdowns and Home Runs meant little to him. The only dunk that mattered was in the waters of Salvation.
When all was said and done...when, I, a humble friend, addressed the mourners at his funeral, I wondered out loud how Casey was enjoying the Heavenly Broadcast booth. And how he must have loved doing the play by play, while his dad was stuck doing the sideline reporting.

I think of Casey all the time. In the past 15 months, things that have happened in Cleveland Sports have made me wonder. Those midges that swarmed Joba Chamberlain of the Yankees during the playoffs. Did Casey have something to do with those?? Or the crazy bounce on the Phil Dawson field goal against Baltimore.
Casey used to kid me all the time about my triathlon training and racing. He thought I was nuts. I often think that myself. But through the myriad of life's experiences we have, our friends help shape us. They help guide us through the maze of life. Casey guides me, in some ways, from the grave.
Hey Case..should they have run the ball THAT play????


Marcy said...

This was a sweet post :-) It actually hits close to home as well. I also lost a dear friend to pancreatic cancer around this time last year. And you're very right. "Friends help shape us" ;D

Brian said...

As for Lance, how much faster can he go? 2.47 is really smoking.

I can't imagine being a fan sitting in WI right now. It's one thing working out, another thing to just be sitting there drinking cold beer. Some of the guys still wear short sleeve. Won't they catch frostbite? And call me a pansy but I still think Cleveland should have put a dome on. Some of the games are just too cold.

Christine said...

So sad for favre :( Can't wait for next season and The Brownies!! Maybe I'll actually be living in CLeveland so I can go to a game! Maybe I can join the CLeveland Triathlon Club too!! Maybe I'll just do that :)

The Lazy Triathlete said...

I was cold just watching the game last night. I can't imagine actually being there.

That was a great tribute to Casey. Thank you for sharing it.

Anonymous said...

Casey sounds like he was a great person and friend.

Those were some cold football games for sure yesterday. If my Cowboys had won last week, there would have been one game yesterday that wouldn't have been in such freezing temps!! (stupid Cowboys)

jbmmommy said...

I heard the cold was supposed to help the Packers, guess it didn't work out that way. Sorry to read about Casey, but it was a lovely post.

Kurt said...

I suppose I should feel sorry for Green Bay but being a Seahawk fan I am just not up for that! Love the post about your buddy Casey. That was great.

I believe Lance could break 2:30 in a marathon.

Great blog you have!

Eric said...

Thanks for the information on Casey. He always seemed like a class act on radio and TV. You are lucky to have him as a friend.

Lisa - Slow & Steady said...

Lance is amazing.

And nice post about Casey.

IronMatron said...

Loved this post. Great to read about Casey. Thank you for sharing it.
Sorry about the Packers. We watched it here to see who would be playing our beloved Patriots. Man it looked cold.

13akbal said...

I read an aricle once (that I can't find at the moment) where someone pegged Lance at 2:08 (insane) based on his Vo2 max. I'd love to see what Lance could do if he gave his heart an soul to the distance like he did racing bikes.

Charlie said...

"Rounding third and headed for home" Indians baseball starts in a couple of weeks.
It was amazing howmuch he continued to give until the end. It sounds as though he continues to give.
Great tribute.

triguyjt said...

thanks for all the kind words about the Casey post. He was a gem.

As for Lance. I think he could pop a 2:26 this April.
If I only had 1/5th his vomax haha
thanks for checking in

Tri to Be Funny said...

Very sweet tribute and it's wonderful to still derive inspiration from this life-long friend.

DaisyDuc said...

Thanks for sharing that about Casey...sounds like you two will forever share some wonderful memories!

GO I am even more excited about Boston this year!

Viv said...

Casey, sounded like a wonderful friend. I am glad you have such awesome memories.

I would love to see Lance come back to tri's and do the IM :-)