Wednesday, August 31, 2011

'I’m never going to refuse a handshake'

Here's an interesting quote from Kirk Cousins regarding his popularity on campus. The team ate at Brody Cafeteria on Monday night and Cousins is becoming even more of a celebrity around campus.

"The Brody cafeteria is well-known for being the nicest cafeteria on campus, so it already gets a little more traffic than most. That’s where we had training table last night, so the lines were pretty long. There were some people wanting to come over and say hello. Better than having them boo you. I’m never going to refuse a handshake or a person who wants to smile, shake your hand and take your picture. I remember having people tell me things can change so quickly, so when they’re supporting you, you want to thank them and appreciate it."

Since he received national recognition for his Big Ten Kickoff Luncheon speech, Cousins hasn't been shying away from the spotlight, and MSU fans are loving it.

Column: Dantonio's dedication to family unquestionable

Family has been one of the most important parts of Dantonio's success at MSU. He has always put off-the-field relationships ahead of what happens on the field. That hasn't always been popular (Glenn Winston, Chris L. Rucker, etc.)

With the loss of his father, Dantonio's dedication to family will help the MSU football team play through this tragedy, as they did last year when Dantonio had a heart attack.

Here is my column on the situation and moving forward.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Dantonio shares memories of his father

A lot of stuff from Dantonio's presser and player interviews. If you haven't seen it already, Dantonio answered several questions on his father, and it was touching to see how much of an influence Justin Dantonio had on the coach's life. Dantonio will coach Friday, but this clearly has been tough on him and he will be coaching with a heavy heart.

Here is some of what Dantonio had to say on his father:

"First of all, just want to thank everybody for all their thoughts, their prayers, their kind remarks, their calls, everybody out there who touched base with our family. I also want to thank our coaching staff. Pat Narduzzi did a great job in my absence there and the rest of our coaching staff just keeping things, again, business as usual and keeping the system moving."

"My father was a great man. My father was a guy that always told me as he told me in the last few days, you've got to take the good with the bad. He always told me to complete my circles, in other words, finish something, what you started. He believed that if you had the right tool you could fix anything, and I think he was a problem solver. He was a long time educator."

"Well, you know, these are some spiritual things, but I have a priest that talks about some drop dead core values, and if things happen that maybe these are the things you want to take into - you want to think about, in this particular order. You want to think about spiritually where you're at, and you need to think about your immediate family, and then you need to think about yourself, and then maybe the fourth thing you need to think about is what you do. 

"But it's the way it's always been here, and I've always said it, is that if I have a problem, somebody else can be head coach for a day or two days or a week or two weeks or last year or whatever the case. I will do my job to the best of my abilities, but when a problem comes, I take care of my business with my family. I expect our players to do the same thing, and they have. I'm never going to hold back a young man by saying, `Hey, can you just stay for one more practice or can you come back another practice early?' They have an obligation to their family and that's No. 1."

"My dad continually said, even on the day that he passed, `What are you doing here, you need to get back to work.' But that's him. So by coming back last week, he was a little bit stable, I was honoring his wishes, and by coming back after he passed it was very surreal because it was very quick, and I was back. I was back doing what he wanted me to do. So I'm honoring his memory and his wishes by doing that."

Monday, August 29, 2011

Dantonio's father passes away at 86

A little less than a week after Mark Dantonio returned home to Zanesville, Ohio to be with his family as his father underwent a medical procedure, Justin Dantonio died Sunday.

Here is Justin Dantonio's obit, which was provided by MSU:

Justin A. Dantonio, born March 31, 1925, peacefully passed on August 28, 2011.

Justin’s gift in life was his compassion for others — the way he loved his wife, Maryan, every day of their 57 year-long marriage;, the way he raised his sons, Frank, Mark, John and Mike, to be hard-working, caring men; and to his grandchildren, Justin, Ross, John, Katelynn, Kristen and Lauren, he embodied what it meant to be a good person.

Justin wanted to leave a positive impact on everyone he came across, and he did. He reached many Zanesville residents as a longtime educator at Roseville High School, John Hancock Junior High School, Zanesville High School and Tri-Valley High School.

Justin has built a beautiful, loving family. His memory will continue to encourage us to be better people. He has left an imprint on each of our hearts. He has completed all of his circles.

He will be greatly missed.

Calling hours will be held on Wednesday, August 31, 2011 from 2:00 to 4:00 PM and from 6:00 to 8:00 PM at THE SNOUFFER FUNERAL HOME, 1150 WEST MILITARY ROAD, ZANESVILLE, OHIO.

Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Thursday, September 1, 2011 at 10:00 AM at St. Nicholas Catholic Church, 925 Main Street, Zanesville, Ohio. Burial will follow in Zanesville Memorial Park Cemetery with full Military Honors by George Selsam V.F.W. Post 1058. To send a note of condolence to the family visit and click obituaries, find us on Facebook, or call our caring staff at 740-450-8000.