Mann the Quad

Last 20140408manning0764 night at 6:30, campus had a fantastic pep rally to welcome Danny Manning, our new men’s head basketball coach.  The event was called “Mann the Quad” (perhaps a reference to the “Seize the Quad” events they have once every year or so) and it was both well-attended and fantastically fun.

20140408manning1032All due credit to our Athletic department and ARAMARK for making this a great event for everyone.  Athletics had brought their inflatable games from BB&T Field – giant slide, bouncy houses, and other inflatable games.  ARAMARK had ice cream sundaes, hotdogs, cupcakes, cotton candy.  This was something a good many of our students attended, but also a lot of faculty and staff, many of whom brought their kids.  There were free t-shirts and buttons, the Spirit of the Old Gold and Black Band, cheerleaders, you name it.  If it was fun and festive, it was there.

20140408-manning-0671The big excitement came when the Demon Deacon himself drove Coach Manning on to the Quad on the big WFU motorcycle that is used for basketball and football games.  Coach Manning is a *tall* guy, but he managed to get a lift up to the front of Reynolda without incident.  Once he got to the front of Reynolda, he went up to the steps of Reynolda (toward the Mag Room) to join Athletic Director Ron Wellman.  After a warm introduction, Coach Manning took the mic.

20140408manning1090Coach was warm and gracious, talked about coming home to familiar territory (he is from Greensboro). He talked about playing games in Reynolds Gym and seeing our former Coach Tacy there.  And I will freely admit to editorial bias (so filter appropriately) but Coach Manning won me over when he talked about some of the past star players and coaches he knew when he was playing college ball (and just after): Rodney Rogers, Randolph Childress (my eternal favorite, with all due respect to the other greats), Tim Duncan.  He talked about Coach Odom (who was here in the Rodney-Randolph-Timmy years).

Well-played, Coach Manning.  You had me at Randolph.  But then you sealed the deal when you talked with great respect about Coach Prosser, our coach who passed of a sudden heart attack in 1997.

So I am all in 100% behind our new coach and the players.  And I hope your students are too!  It was a wonderful day and hopefully the first of many wonderful days to come.



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