THE WORK FORCE...PAC 10 STAFF
INTRODUCING TAI PRUCE-ZIMMERMAN...
I am a Junior at Southern Oregon University, where I am majoring in sports journalism. While I love all sports, two in particular have special meaning to me. Baseball is my religion, while College Football is my passion. I grew up in Eugene Oregon, so of course I'm a lifetime fan of the Ducks, but I try not to let that affect what I write. In the past couple of years I've begun following college football much closer than ever before, and in the process I've gained a new perspective on the game. Among my experiments has been an effort to create a computer ranking system, and the process has given me an entirely new outlook on what objectivity really means.
As a Duck fan my favorite college football memory has to also be my first. When I was five years, old my father took me to see my first live football game, between the Ducks and BYU, who was ranked fourth in the country at the time. While the Ducks were expected to get blown out, the game was still supposed to be exciting, as it offered a chance to see two great quarterbacks play, Bill Musgrave and Ty Detmer. Of course I didn't understand the sport that well yet, and I was more excited about the fact that one of the players (Detmer) had the same first name as me, even though he spelled it differently and played for the other team....but hey, I was five.
Just in case you don't already know what happened in that game, the Ducks pulled off the huge upset, winning 32-16, and as my dad carried me out of the stadium, I was shouting “We doubled their score!” Keep in mind, I had just learned how to multiply by two. What I really remember, though, was the collective joy of everyone leaving that stadium; the spontaneous hugs and cheers were entirely unrestrained and uninhibited. That moment is the reason why I've grown to love sports as much as I do. I am always thrilled and amazed anew each time I see 50,000 strangers become best friends, because 11 men that none of them know personally just scored a touchdown. The ability to unify across all boundaries is a truly unique aspect of sports, and every time I see it I remember why I love this game.
Born in Dallas, TX and unsuccessfully raised as a Longhorn fan, I moved to Calgary, Alberta and was force fed the hockey lifestyle for many years. A family decision to move to Los Angeles brought me to South Pasadena where I would be closely tied to high school football as the drum major of the marching band, conducting the fight song with every touchdown scored. When it was time to go to college, the University of Southern California and its unbelievable band called out to me and thus I became, a Trojan.
At the tender of age of 24, I spend my Saturdays following the Pac-10 quite closely even having developed my own site on which I make predictions for outcomes involving Pac-10 teams. On the weekdays, being caught up in the lights and glitz of Hollywood (not to mention the gunk and the sleaze), you can find me peddling my bands, doing my day job as an artist manager.
Being the son of a preacher made it tough to check out the pro games on Sunday but I'm so caught up in college ball now, I sometimes forget there is a pro league. My favorite college sports moment would have to be the 1999 USC/UCLA match-up. Both teams were downright terrible that year but the Bruins held an eight game winning streak. Seeing the field fill with Cardinal and Gold and the stadium erupt in pandemonium as that streak was broken was an amazing moment that I will never forget.
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