Early in November of 2001, I emailed mom a link to an article at ESPN.com about the Gators. I wrote, “Check it out! ESPN is currently predicting a Miami / Florida match-up in the Rose Bowl!!!”

She replied on November 14, 2001, at 12:31pm:


Hi, Love,

Tres cool!!!!!!

Florida is simply looking like the best team in the country!!!!!

Jen and I are planning to be at a bar early on Saturday!!! Keep your cell phone warm.

Phone home, ET.

Love ya


Mom loved the Gators, but she really just loved sports in general. I can’t tell you how many times she and I would text each other at one in the morning to tell the other one to turn on ESPN3 because Air Force was rallying in the fourth quarter against Hawaii. It didn’t even need to be football. She’d call or text me out of the blue if a pitcher made it into the 7th inning working on a perfect game, or if tennis players I never heard of were in the middle of an epic battle.