Remembering Cas - Cas, Cobra and a towel.

One of my memories of Cas (Len Casanova) happened when I was a freshman (1968) at Oregon. We had just finished a goal-line challenge out on the practice field behind Mac Court. It was offense vs. defense and the winner got to shower first and the losers had to stay out and do extra conditioning. We ran 10 plays, we scored on the first 6 plays, done deal for the offense.

While I was the last to leave the shower, I heard a rumbling coming from the old weight room. Then boards started to fly and with a sudden burst, my defensive teammates came roaring out of the room. John "Cobra" Marshall was the defensive coach and he was just a little upset by the outcome of our little scrimmage and had the boys knock down the wooden walls in the weight room.

Apparently, Cas was in the training room and came out to see what was going on… If you can envision this - all of the defense had gone into the locker area, I was standing just outside the shower, and Cas had confronted Marshall in between me and the lockers. I stood there with nothing but my towel and watched Cas lay into the coach about the destruction to the weight room. When he was done giving Marshall the business, he turned and saw me. He didn't say anything, but just winked and walked off.

Marshall on the other hand was really steaming and turned towards me. We just looked at each other. Then before I could stop myself, I said, "too bad they don't hit that hard on the field." Marshall started forward and I started to retreat back into the shower. Lucky for me, he got himself under control and just said "very funny" about four times and then disappeared.

I paid the price for the next two weeks as I was being hit at every opportunity by the defense for my comment. But what I saw Cas do was truly amazing. I know he wasn't happy about the walls, as evidenced by the way he ripped into the coach, but I could tell by the wink that he loved the spirit and enthusiasm that the young guys had shown that afternoon.


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