A Reunion at the Coaches Caravan
One of the unexpected highlights of tagging along on the Penn State Coaches Caravan has been the chance to run into old friends. Last year in Baltimore, it was Katy Whalen ’09, who was a student a few years ago when I taught a section of Comm 462, and who was nice enough to tell me that, honestly, she had no idea it was my first teaching experience. (She might well have been trying not to hurt my feelings, but I’ll take it.) Tuesday night in Philadelphia, it was Stephen Bogush ’91, ’94g, my old Penn State football teammate.
Well, sort of.
Back in 2006, Bogush—a Philly-area anesthesiologist—and I were fellow campers at the very first Penn State Fantasy Football Camp, which I covered for The Penn Stater. I got to meet his wife, Mary Tillman ’94g, and Bogush and I reminisced about the terrific experience at the inaugural Fantasy Camp—the laughs, the array of “old-man” injuries, the rush of getting to play on the Beaver Stadium turf on a glorious summer day. John Lagana ’62, who if memory serves was the senior member of that first fantasy camp, was there as well.
I ran into a few other old friends and acquaintances Tuesday night—always great to see my fellow soccer fanatic and occasional tailgating partner Brad Youtz ’96—and made a few new ones as well. While the coaches understandably remain the draw—as well they should: Bill O’Brien and Patrick Chambers were at turns impassioned, thoughtful, and hilarious on Tuesday’s stops at Penn State Berks and in downtown Philly—it’s a blast to see so many Penn Staters come together on the road. I’ve already heard from a few folks on Twitter who I’m looking forward to meeting or catching up with on upcoming stops. Hope to see you there.
Ryan Jones, senior editor