Friday, December 17, 2010

Day 2 in New Orleans

E-Mail Ricky Hazel

Following Tuesday night's trip to the Rock-n-Bowl, most everyone in the travel party made a bee-line to Bourbon Street. Tuesday was really the only night for everyone to cut loose and take in the famous sights the French Quarter uniquely offers.

Many of the staff members, some coaches included, made their way to the world famous Cat's Meow for an evening of karaoke. Of course Aaron Taylor brought the house down with performances of a pair of his standards and Ryan "Pokey" Hayden also turned in a solid effort.

Wednesday morning got off to a more somber start with news of an accident back home in Troy that took the lives of two students from Pike Liberal Arts School. Everyone's thoughts and prayers are with the families of those youngsters at this time.

Following breakfast, Coach Blakeney had several phone interviews to do. He spoke with a radio station in Knoxville, Tenn., with Tim Brando for his show on Sporting News Radio, which airs during Friday's broadcast, and with Jason Toy of the Motor Racing Network for a football show they will air on Saturday.

Later in the day, Blakeney went live on local station WWL in New Orleans with former Saints quarterback Bobby Hebert.

In between, the Trojans went to the dome for their final serious practice in preparation for the Ohio Bobcats. The team went through a spirited workout for a little more than two hours.

After returning from practice, everyone had to make a quick change for dinner and the world famous Antoine's Restaurant, which is the oldest family owned restaurant in the United States. The evening was sponsored by the Sun Belt Conference and included a visit from Santa Claus, who had a special gift for Coach Blakeney, the 2010 Sun Belt Conference Championship trophy.

Follow this link to see photos taken by John McElwain of the Sun Belt from the evening. PHOTOS

Thursday promised to be another full day. I'll follow up with info from the events of the day.

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