CINCINNATI — When the Cincinnati Bengals drafted him in the fifth round Sunday, punter Kevin Huber — a hometown product of McNicholas High and the Cincinnati Bearcats — was playing a round of golf at California Golf Course on Kellogg Ave. here in town
Meanwhile, Chase Coffman, the tight end out of Missouri, was anxiously sitting at home in Peculiar, Mo. for the second day in row when the Bengals selected him in the third round of the two-day NFL draft.
“When I talked to Chase, he had been sitting at home all day staring at the TV,” said Bengals coach Marvin Lewis. “Kevin was on the golf course. Obviously, he didn’t want to sit at home. I think the big tackle (Joe Thomas) in Cleveland who came from Wisconsin a couple years ago was out ice fishing.
“Everybody kind of goes through it differently.”
I remember when massive defensive tackle Jerome Brown was drafted out of the University of Miami in the first round by the Philadelphia Eagles in 1987, he was at a gala party of family and friends in a restaurant in the Coconut Grove section of Miami. So taken up by the moment, he went outside and bought some diamonds that day from a guy on the street. The stones turned out to be fake.
A few years later, I was over at the Dayton home of Ohio State linebacker Michael McCray for a draft day gathering of his family and friends. His mom had prepared a big spread of food. There was a lot of initial joy and anticipation, but as the day wore on, McCray got more and more nervous.
He wasn’t picked the first day and on the second, as the rounds went by and was still sitting at home, the mood changed. It was uncomfortable. He ended up retreating to his bedroom and never came out. I sat for a while with his family — notebook still at the ready — and finally just packed up and went home. He wasn’t drafted.
A long time ago, when Miami Hurricanes running back Ottis Anderson was drafted in the first round of the 1979 draft — the sixth pick over all by the St. Louis Cardinals — I was at the family gathering at his small home in West Palm Beach.
There was all kinds of down home food and at the end of the day — after a couple of meals and a lot of laughter and stories — his mom packed up a big box of fried chicken, greens, mac ‘n cheese, cornbread, sweet potato pie for me to take along.
That was my favorite draft day in three decades of covering the event.Tweet