Joined: 20 Mar 2017
|Posted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 11:57 pm Post subject: Walker: Ted Ginn Sr. one proud "Pops" at Saints tr
|There were 3,545 Saints fans at training camp Saturday.
You'd be hard pressed to find one with a http://www.officialbengalssales.com/shop-by-players-cj-uzomah-jersey-c-1_12.html bigger grin on their face than one of the newest members of Who Dat Nation.
Ted Ginn Sr. flew from Cleveland to New Orleans on Saturday morning and flew back Saturday night.
He wasn't about to miss this day, a chance to see his new favorite team.
"Whatever team Ted is on, that's my team," Ginn Sr. said.
The Ted he's referring to, of course, is Ted Ginn Jr., the speedy veteran receiver the Saints signed in March.
So now, Ginn Sr. is a Saints fan, the fifth team he's cheered for in his son's 11-year career. He's rooted for the Dolphins, the 49ers, the Panthers, the Cardinals, the Panthers again, and now the black and gold.
Cheering for the Saints will come easy for Ginn, Sr.
He grew up in Clifton, La., just outside of Franklinton, about 75 miles away from New Orleans before moving to Cleveland, Ohio, when he was 11.
"I'm a Louisiana boy," he said, pointing to the Louisiana shaped medallion dangling on the necklace he wore.
Ginn Sr. would often bring Ginn Jr. from Ohio to Louisiana when he was a kid.
"I had to let him know where he is from," Ginn Sr. said. "It's special that he's in Louisiana now. It gives hope for other little kids and other family members. You're proud to see someone from your family go out and achieve such a goal."
Five other family members, a childhood friend, and one of his high school assistant coaches attended Saturday's practice as well.
But this day wasn't special just for Ginn Sr., the dad. It was also special for Ginn Sr. the coach.
He's the head football coach at football juggernaut Glenville High School in Cleveland, where he coached Saints first-round draft pick Marshon Lattimore.
"Anytime you can see two of your kids http://www.ravensshopsofficial.com/baltimore-ravens-ray-rice-womens-elite-purpleblack-nike-jersey-27-nfl-fadeaway-wd98942-p-942.html playing on this level, it's an exciting time," Ginn Sr. said. "It's very special to see them both on the same team."
It's not the first time Ginn Sr. has had former Tarblooders (yes, that's Glenville's nickname) on the same team. His son, along with Troy Smith and Donte Whitmer, were all teammates with the 49ers.
Ginn Sr., who has coached for years, is well-connected in football circles. It's why he made the time to pose with Saints running back Adrian Peterson as well.
He's known Peterson since his high school days.
Peterson and Ginn Jr. came out of high school the same year. Peterson, who played high school football in Texas, was the U.S. Army National Player of the Year in 2003. Ginn Jr., a cornerback at the time, was USA Today's Defensive Player of the Year.
The two played against each other in the U.S. Army All-American Game.
There's a particular play from that game that Ginn Sr. still laughs about.
"AP came around the corner and Ted was the only person there to tackle him," the elder Ginn said. "Ted went down on his knee and didn't touch him. He wasn't trying to tackle him. So we laughed about that today. We always keep that little joke going."
In addition to his son and Lattimore, Ginn Sr. was thrilled to see the other two former Ohio State players (Michael Thomas and Vonn Bell) on the Saints roster.
Ginn Sr. has an attachment Doug Flutie Jersey to former Buckeyes.
"It was great to see all the Ohio State kids," he said. "Some of them call me Pops."
On this day, Pops had plenty reasons to be proud.