Never Far From Home: Mr. Bearcat Glenn Sample

Glenn Sample once told me he'd never really lived more than 9-miles or so from the campus of the University of Cincinnati. He was proud to be a native son of the city and a part of the university in so many ways. On the eve of the biggest football game in the schools history, we lost Mr. Bearcat.

One of the great things I've been able to do is meet many former greats in Bearcats history. Glenn Sample is one of the many but also one of the men I'd admired the most. This spring Sample was so excited about Brian Kelly moving practice to the mornings he made it a point to come and watch as many as he could with the excitement of a young child. He loved Bearcats Football and knew this was going to be a special year.

Not only did Sample leave his mark on Bearcats Football, but also on baseball, the school and wrestling. That's right; Glenn Sample started the wrestling program at Cincinnati when the Bearcats use to have one. He also left his mark as the official scorer for the Cincinnati Reds for twenty-nine seasons.

While baseball and football were his major loves, it was the University of Cincinnati that had his heart.

Over the past few years one of the legends of the Bearcats always wanted to talk football when our paths crossed. Glenn always wanted to know about the newest commitment and if I felt the staff was recruiting the right players to build a winner. While I enjoyed talking with Glenn about the growth of the Bearcats football program and recruiting it was his passion for life that made me excited each time I saw him at Nippert.

A former All-American for the Bearcats football program under Sid Gillman, the man I called Mr. Bearcat was a fixture at the annual Captains Breakfast held prior to the spring game each year.

One of the greatest things Mark Dantonio allowed me to do was cover the Captains Breakfast when he was the head coach. It was here many former captains returned to campus to share their stories. Coach Dantonio believed his seniors needed to hear these stories and get to know the men who walked in their shoes before them. It was here Glenn would steal the show.

One of the many things about the breakfast was when former captains are given time to talk about the past. Glenn loved this time as he was proud to show off his magic trick and reflect on his time as a Bearcat. One thing Glenn always stressed was how he never left or lived far from campus.

Glenn Sample loved the Bearcats and I'm sure tonight he'll be watching over Nippert Stadium when the Bearcats take on Pittsburgh.

See, Glenn always told me he would never be far from home. And the University of Cincinnati was his home.

Thanks Glenn for allowing me the chance to know you and spend time with you during the past few years.


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