To say that NYU doesn't have a traditional college campus is to overstate the obvious, which is one of my gifts.
Highlights of my visit:
• Sept. 30: Parked Honey, my 1984 recreational vehicle, on Mercer Street in front of the Coles Athletic Center. Jeff Bernstein, the SID, met me on the street and presented me with my parking permit, but was quick to point out that it was no guarantee against ticketing or towing.
Thirty or more NYU athletes stopped by while I was parked there to chat and autograph the banner I am carrying with me. I met a cross country runner from Fort Morgan, Colo., soccer players and swimmers. Have to admit it takes a while to explain to them exactly what I am doing -- a road trip to visit all eight schools in the University Athletic Association.
Honey did attract some attention on the street. I must say she was the only RV I saw in Greenwich Village that day.
|Janice Quinn in her office.|
• Oct. 1: Janice Quinn is the quintessential UAA coach and administrator. She's a fast-talking, non-stop promoter of the country's first non-geographic athletic conference. She has nothing but respect for the kids who compete and their coaches. They carry heavy academic loads at top universities, practice or train 30 hours a week, and then travel just about every other weekend for three days.
> She was a top-notch coach and has the national championship to prove it. Her NYU women's basketball team won the Division III national championship in 1997, beating Wisconsin-Eau Claire 72-70 in the finals. The game's winning basket was scored by Marsha Harris, the team's leading scorer, who now a surgeon in New York. She's as intense as Bobby Knight, but she's not about herself. She loves and respects the kids, and thinks the UAA is the epitome of college sports.
> Before the NCAA championship game, she was talking to Satch Sanders, who played led NYU to the NCAA Final Four in 1960 and played on eight Boston Celtics championship teams, about the team's season and the finals. Some people would be happy just to be there, but Satch told her to get after it and win the whole thing. Her girls did.
|NYU captains Jane Barrett, Katie Gaston and Rebecca Assing|
• Oct. 2: It's the opening day of league play in soccer. NYU is taking on the teams from the University of Rochester. The UR men are ranked No. 8 in the country in one poll.
|NYU women led Rochester early.|
> Starting at 11 a.m., the NYU women take an early 1-0 lead on a goal by Rebecca Assing and win by a final of 2-1. How competitive is the UAA? Last season, the UR women won the conference and the NYU women were last.
On the road again
I am traveling from New York to Cleveland this week and will be at Case Western Reserve University from Oct. 6-9, where the Spartans take on the Violets in soccer Saturday. Then it's a quick trip down the road to Pittsburgh for Carnegie-Mellon against Washington University on Oct. 10.