Tag Archives: ncaa autographs

‘On The Road With psuGator02’ – UNC Tarheels Basketball – January 26, 2011

‘On The Road With psuGator02’ – UNC Tarheels Basketball – January 26, 2011

Bank United Center
Coral Gables, Fla.
7:15-10:15 p.m.
Wednesday, January 26

Had no idea what to expect since this was my first time ever doing postgame in Coral Gables. Having to be up at 6 a.m., it’s just too far for me during the week. But I’ve decided to do the elite teams when I can. Let’s just say that I was pleasantly surprised with my UNC totals after hearing so many horror stories. The graphing part was amateur hour for me as I decided to try a silver paint pen on a few of the photos. In 25 years of graphing, my staple has been the blue Sharpie. I still like the paint pen, I guess, but I’m gonna have to figure out how to perfect it.

It couldn’t have been a better situation considering Harrison Barnes, the only player I really wanted, hit the winning three-pointer for UNC with only a few seconds left in the game. I thought I might have a chance at a few guys if I stood near the court’s exit. But not one person stopped, though coach Roy Williams did shake a few hands. Got to the bus a few minutes later and it didn’t take long before UNC started boarding. Luckily for me, players, for the most part, came out every few minutes, making them easier to graph. Every single person associated with the team stopped and signed autographs AND posed for pictures if asked.

Roy Williams: 1/1 (8×10) in silver paint, 1/1 (8×10) in blue Sharpie. The paint on the first ran because, and this is a guess, Williams pushed the pen into the photo when he finished signing it. I showed him the gob of paint at the end of his graph and he asked, “Did I do that?” I then gave him another photo and he signed that as well, this one in blue Sharpie. I asked him to inscribe “HOF” but his response was, “I don’t feel comfortable doing that. But you can go ahead and write that on there yourself.”
Reggie Bullock: 2/2  in blue Sharpie
John Henson: 2/2 in silver paint….the amateur that I am, I didn’t let the paint dry on the first so it smeared. I had him sign it again and this time he signed in the perfect spot. I just hope I can erase the smeared graph. The graph on the other 11 that he signed was beautiful but not in the best spot
Harrison Barnes: 1/1 in black Sharpie, 1/1 in blue Sharpie, 0/1…I knew he was going to do the ball because he kept eyeing it as he signed for others. He walked to the middle of the bus after he finished the ball. I told him that I would give him the custom if he would sign the two 11s. Instead of taking the custom, he signed it and gave it back to me. I tried for a third, but he would have no part of it. I was able to get two out of him, but I could see this guy becoming VERY difficult. I was shocked that he didn’t ask to personalize either item.
Other: Former Heat star Tim Hardaway, UM QB Jacory Harris (was sitting near me with a number of attractive, half-naked women), Desmond Howard and Jimmy Graham were also in attendance.

‘On The Road With psugator02′ – Andrew Luck – January 3, 2011

‘On The Road With psugator02′ – Andrew Luck – January 3, 2011

Orange Bowl
Miami Gardens, Fla.
Monday, January 3, 2011

I didn’t want to graph the game at all because I’m still feeling like crap and because I didn’t think Luck would be that accessible. But when I heard that Arod, Tiger, Elway, Bruce Smith and a bunch of other celebs were expected at the game, I figured I’d give it a shot. A co-worker gave me a free ticket so I really had nothing to lose (other than $30 to park …..$30 WOW).

I sat idle until the start of the fourth quarter. A friend had told me that Bruce Smith was drinking at in-stadium nightclub Liv. Must be a new place because I don’t recall it being there last year during Marlins’ games. Was able to talk my way into the club level but then was stuck outside Liv because I didn’t have the required $325 ticket. Smith had three ways to get out, with only one exit accessible to me. I knew exactly what he was wearing but I didn’t want to go all-in with one guy and also didn’t want to miss Tech and Stanford. So I left after 20 minutes and made my way toward the busses.

Some people at the game had told me that Elway, Smith, Plunkett and maybe others would be at a postgame bash at a nearby hotel. I had one Stanford mini left and really wanted to save it for Plunkett, hoping he would do the Heisman inscription. With that being the case, that left me with nothing for Luck. Another grapher had decided he was going to get Luck to sign his ticket stub, asking him to inscribe “MVP.” I thought that was a great idea but when I took one look at my stub, already bent up, I realized I needed to find someone to give me theirs. First person I asked said it wasn’t a problem. And it was a real stub too, glossy compared to the lame stub given to people who have free tickets.

So now I had something for Luck and Plunkett so I could focus on Tech. I just missed Lou Holtz, though a friend did get a picwith. I stayed on the Tech side and a few minutes later was able to snag Ryan Williams, who couldn’t have been nicer.

I had two Tech photos left and both were for Darren Evans, whom I never did see. No worries. From there I walked back over to the Stanford side. Lots of players were now walking over the barricades to talk to family near me. I didn’t recognize any nor did I need any. I still had my sights on Luck. Seemed like an eternity but he finally walked out, surrounded by security and coaches. Three Stanford busses were lined up one behind the other and Luck walked to the very first bus that was still accessible to the public. But before he got on, he stopped in the family section off to the left of the bus.

As he was making his way toward this section I was able to get his attention. I handed him the stub and he signed it in a rushed fashion. I asked for the “MVP” inscription but I don’t think he heard me, inscribing his number instead.

Andrew Luck: 1/1 (ticket stub from game)

He signed for probably 20 minutes but only for those people in the family section. One grapher gave his item to a security guard, who walked it over to Luck. Luck signed the item and gave it back to the security guard. I thought it was worth a shot so I did the same, and Luck signed my mini, gave it to the security guard, who then gave it to me. Mine was the last graph Luck signed before getting on the bus.

Andrew Luck: 1/1 (Stanford mini)

Everything to come would be a bonus so I made my way to another hotel, supposedly playing host to a postgame bash. I arrived there and saw most of the Tech team and that was it. I could’ve driven to another hotel but at this point it was 3 a.m. and I called it a night. Guess I’ll get Plunkett and Elway another time.

‘On The Road With psugator02′ – Isaih Thomas – November 20, 2010

‘On The Road With psugator02′ – Isaih Thomas – November 20, 2010

Utah Valley State at Florida International
4:15-5:15 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 20

I was already in Miami for something else so I figured I’d stop off at FIU on the way home to try my luck with former Pistons’ star Isiah Thomas, who coaches at the school (though I don’t see how he’ll be there much longer considering his dismal record but that’s a story for another day). Parked in the commuter lot and then scoped out the venue. Asked a very nice FIU student who was working security about Thomas. “Where does he park his car?” She pointed to the spot. “Is he here yet?” Said the girl: “He was here earlier but he had to leave. He’ll be here between 5 and 6.” So I plop myself under a tree and enjoy the beautiful weather that is South Florida. I’m guessing it was 74 most of the day. Like clockwork, Thomas pulls into the parking lot at 5:06 p.m. I wait for him to gather his things and then approach him.

He’s carrying a briefcase. I tell him that I collect sports folders — I want him to think that I’m a collector to prevent an ebay lecture — and ask if he’ll sign. I’m gonna try to recollect how the rest went down.

Thomas: If I sign for you, please tell your fellow collectors that I didn’t sign.
Me: Why would I do that?
Thomas: Because I don’t want anyone else coming after me to sign autographs.
Me: I don’t understand.
Thomas: Well they’ve been searching me out at restaurants and at airports.
Me: Well, you know that I would never do something like that. I draw the line at certain places
Thomas: I appreciate that but just tell your friends that I didn’t sign for you.
Me: I have to blog about it.
Thomas: No you don’t. Tell your friends I didn’t sign for you.
Me: OK. If that’s what you want.
Thomas: I don’t have a problem with people making money off me but I’m getting tired of signing at airports and restaurants.
Me: Have you ever had someone knock on the door to your home?
Thomas: Actually, that has happened to me a few times.
Me: You do realize that I would never do that.
Thomas: Yeah, you seem like a cool guy.
Me: What kind of a team is Utah Valley State?
Thomas: To be real honest with you, I hope they suck.

A lot of celebrities talk to you but none ever seem to try to make any kind of connection with you. I’ve gotten Thomas before but this time for whatever reason — maybe because I was the only grapher there — he tried to connect with me. As he walked away we shook hands, he smiled and then he thanked me for my kind words. I’m sure he would’ve done two items but I only had one thing with me.

Isiah Thomas: 1/1 (sports folder for coltsfan)

By the way, FIU held on to win the game 65-62.