Friday, January 30, 2009
I'm sure avid fans of Pitt football already know about this, but I think this story posted by Michael David Smith on Fanhouse.com about Larry Fitzgerald, is very eye-opening. The gist? Growing up in Minnesota, Fitzgerald was a huge Penn State fan and admits,
"...I always liked LaVar Arrington and Brandon Short and I always wanted to be a Penn State linebacker."
Fair enough; Penn State was/is a great program, especially if you want to play linebacker. Something got in the way of Larry making it all the way to State College, PA though. That something, was the weather:
"On our way driving to visit Penn State it was raining really hard and the visibility wasn't good enough so we spent the night in Pittsburgh. My high school coach told me that Tony Dorsett and Dan Marino and Mike Ditka went there and that there were a lot of great players who went there. So we went over to their facility and the coaches didn't know we were coming. I met the coaches and we gave them my tape and that was how the relationship started."
Wow, to think that the Fitzgeralds weren't even planning a stop in Pittsburgh, and that the Pitt coaching staff knew practically nothing about Larry, really speaks volumes about how circumstantial this chance meeting actually was. Of course, you know the rest of the story, so I won't bore you with the details, but it's truly fascinating how these things end up sometimes. I know Pitt and the Big East for that matter, is proud to have Larry representing them in the NFL (and Superbowl!). Best of luck to him and all Big East alums on Sunday.