On the night before each Wayne Football game since 2000, team captains meet at Coach Jay Minton's house for a captains dinner. This tradition was started by Mrs. Minton who believes the time off the field allows the players to know more about their coach and gives them a place to relax before the pressures on the next game.
On this night, Chicken Breast, Mashed Potatoes and Green Beans along with rolls and dessert were on the menu. The team captains for 2003 who receive this meal are Marcus Freeman, Brandon Waller and Tyler Orndorff. Along with these three young men, a special guest captain is invited. This week David Day was the honored guest, I say honored because the tradition is that the special captain sits at the side desk and must remain silent until he is given permission to speak. (This tradition of the side desk and silence started the first year) The players have a chance to build a great relationship with Coach Minton and his wife and in the process build a friendship that continues after the playing days at Wayne.
In speaking with Mrs. Minton and having been a guest myself, I have always found ex-Wayne and current players around the Minton household. They may be doing things like playing billiards, ping pong, watching TV or even fishing in the pond in the back yard. ( Have you ever seen an all-American linebacker try and remove a fish from a hook) I have, trust me its not a great site! During this time the players talk about life, school and sports. Football is the main subject with the current player while ex-players catch up with how the program is doing and the challenges they face in life.
On this night the three captains tried to go fishing and when a thunder-storm started we sat and waited to see how long it was before they knew they should come in.
When the three came in (dripping wet) they headed to play some Ping-Pong and watch the Miami Hurricanes play on the TV. The Ping-Pong game was very exciting as Tyler tried cheating on his serve to beat Marcus. After correcting Tyler, Marcus destroyed him, just like he does ball carriers going for that extra yard.
In all, the night was great and I was glad to have been apart of it. While this great tradition carries on for Coach Minton and his wife, the players change each year. Mrs. Minton has great stories about the past players who have enjoyed this tradition and has great pride watching them succeed in life after high school.
I would like to thank Coach Minton, Mrs. Minton and the 2003 team captains for allowing me this chance to sit in and be a guest.
If you know of any traditions like the one in this story, please contact us and OhioPrepScene would love to tell everyone about it.