Thursday, January 05, 2006

Rose Bowl Field To Be Named For Vince Young

In use since 1922, The Rose Bowl Stadium is one of the most storied venues in football.  The Pasadena landmark has seen its share of legendary performances over the years.  However, no one has been better in that stadium than a certain quarterback from Texas.  As a result, stadium officials announced that its field will be named Vince Young Field.



Technically, the city of Pasadena owns the Rose Bowl.  However, Pasadena mayor Bill Bogaard explained why the decision was a no-brainer.  “He just dominated the Rose Bowl the past two years,” explained the mayor.  “Young proved that he truly owns that field.”



Defenders from USC and Michigan would not disagree.  In last year’s Rose Bowl, Young rushed for four touchdowns and threw for another to lead Texas to a 38-37 victory over the Wolverines.  With the stakes even higher on Wednesday, he did the same thing to USC.  Young rushed for 200 yards and three touchdowns, capped by the national title-winning dash with 19 seconds remaining in the 41-38 triumph.  After rendering so many Trojans ineffective, Young was offered an endorsement deal by LifeStyles condoms.  The only consolation for USC fans was that Will Ferrell was funnier than Matthew McConaughey in ABC’s pre-game promo.



Naming the playing surface after a person has become common in college football and basketball in recent years.  That scenario is now true for UCLA’s home venues in both sports, with Pauley Pavilion being the site of John and Nell Wooden Court.  It is unusual for a school to play on a field named for someone with no affiliation with that university.  However, UCLA head coach Karl Dorrell is just relieved that his porous defense does not have to face Young.  In fact, Dorrell dropped to his knees and begged, “PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE don’t make us play against that guy!”



However, Texas is attempting to add a game with UCLA to next fall’s schedule.  Providing another opportunity to play in Pasadena could help to keep the junior from bolting to the NFL.  A UCLA-Texas matchup would be a natural occasion to officially dedicate Vince Young Field, with September 16 being the best bet.  The Bruins are off that week, and the Longhorns also have a bye – a game versus Rice.  Texas would send most of its roster to Pasadena, while the Sigma Chi intramural team takes on the Owls.



Young is also lobbying the NFL to place a team in the Rose Bowl Stadium.  The Los Angeles area has been without a pro football franchise since the Rams and Raiders left town in 1995.  If a team lands in Pasadena, it surely would do whatever it takes to add Young to its roster.  Playing eight games a season on his namesake field would allow him to dominate the game like John Elway, Joe Montana, and Johnny Unitas could only dream of doing.  The sport would then be renamed “Youngball,” and the championship game would be the “Vince Bowl.”



Although he missed out on the Heisman Trophy, having his name on the field will ensure that Vince Young’s name will endure in the college football world.  Vince Young Field does pay tribute to a Longhorn who did win the Heisman, Ricky Williams.  The playing surface has great grass.