Dec. 25, 2012
SHREVEPORT, La. – Throughout the next few days, senior tight end Jordan Thompson (Rockford, Ohio) of the Ohio Football Program will be giving Bobcat fans a detailed account of Ohio Football’s fourth straight bowl trip. To experience a bowl trip through the perspective of an Ohio student-athlete, read Jordan’s first entry below.
Day One: Monday, December 24
Bobcat fans, hello from Shreveport!
Today was a busy day as everyone arrived at Peden early this morning around 7:15. After breakfast and some last minute instructions, we boarded the busses and were off to Columbus. When we fly as a team, one thing many of you may not know is that we fly out of Rickenbacker International Airport, which is located south of Columbus. With only two jet ways, this small airport allows us to board the planes relatively quickly, as I don’t ever recall seeing any other passengers waiting in the terminal when we’ve been here for previous flights.
Something different this year was all of the offensive players, coaches, and their families were on one plane, and all of the defensive players, coaches, and their families were on another plane. This is necessary due to the whole team (120 players) coming to the bowl game. For conference games during the regular season, only sixty-six players are allowed to make the trip. After a short two-hour flight, we touched down in Shreveport.
On our way from the airport to the hotel we caught a glimpse of Independence Stadium alongside I-20, the main artery in and out of Shreveport. Traveling around Shreveport is quick thanks to the Shreveport Motorcycle Police, as we have a police escort to every event throughout the week. If you’ve never been in a police escort, let me tell you that this is one of the coolest things about traveling with the football team. Watching the police systematically shut down the interstate and city streets from all traffic so our busses can travel without interruption is a neat experience. Upon our arrival to the hotel, we checked into our rooms and had some free time to explore and get a lay of the land. The hotel we are staying in is connected to the convention center, so it is a large place and takes a little bit of time to gain your bearings.
With some time to relax, some of the guys made their way up to the pool on the roof of the hotel to enjoy the view and sit in the sun. Did I mention it was sunny and 54 degrees on Monday? Quite a change from the cold and snow back in Athens! Others, including myself, found our way to the workout room to loosen up after sitting through the day’s travel.
Around five o’clock everyone boarded the busses and we headed across town to a bowling alley. During this time we were treated to some great southern food and took to the lanes for some friendly competition. Let’s just say the majority of us should stick to football, as scores surpassing 100 were few and far between. After an evening of bowling, everyone came back to the hotel. From there we were able to choose what we wanted to do with the rest of our night. Many guys headed across the river into Bossier City to take in a movie on the boardwalk, while others choose to stay in the hotel and hang out in the player hospitality room. I, along with some others, chose to walk around and explore Shreveport.
We have had a great first day, and I look forward to keeping the Bobcat Family updated on our activities throughout our stay here in Louisiana!