Bloggin' Scoggins Logo

Blog

Bloggin' Scoggins

Scoggins: Superfan from New York checks off Vikings bucket list item

MANKATO -- Jonathan Donath can rattle off the six most memorable days of his life in a matter of seconds.

His wedding day, the birth of his two children, the day he hit a hole-in-one and “the two days my dad brought me here.”

Here would be Vikings training camp Mankato. Their first visit came in 1998 when Donath was 18, the second trip coming in 2001.

“It was Randy Moss’ rookie year [in ‘98],” he said. “Cris Carter signed my Cris Carter jersey. It was the greatest day of my life. I don’t want to insult my wife by saying that.”

I’m guessing no offense taken since she’s probably used to her husband’s obsession with Twin Cities sports teams.

Donath grew up in St. Louis Park but has lived in New York since 2000. He’s a 36-year-old chiropractor.

 When he read that the Vikings will no longer make Mankato their training camp home after this season, Donath made arrangements to bring his 10-year-old son, Eitan, for a visit. Just like his father did for him.

“This was a bucket list,” he said. “I don’t care how much it cost.”

They originally planned to visit camp Thursday but bad weather in New York delayed their flight, causing them to land in the Twin Cities at 4 a.m. They decided to visit Mankato on Friday instead.

Dad wore a Percy Harvin jersey; Eitan wore his Adrian Peterson jersey.

Despite living in New York, Donath says he watches every Vikings game, every Gophers football and basketball game and he bought NBA League Pass so he can watch every Timberwolves game.

He buys tickets every time the Wolves play the Knicks at Madison Square Garden, and Donath and his son take a trip every summer to catch a Twins road series.

Donath’s daughter, Talia, was born the night of the Twins Game 163 in 2009. Fifteen minutes after his daughter was born, Donath received a flood of congratulatory text messages.

“I’m like, how do they possibly know I just had a baby?” he said. “I had taped the game and I was like, shoot they told me the Twins had won. It ruined the game for me because I got home from the hospital at two in the morning and watched the whole game even though I knew [the result].”

Donath and his son are scheduled to fly home Sunday night after attending the Twins game. They’re not going back to New York empty-handed.

Eitan scored Sam Bradford’s autograph on Friday.

Gophers' Rodney Smith: Etiquette, fashion and life under Fleck

CHICAGO – One of the best things about covering the Big Ten media days is extended access to players and coaches in a relaxed setting.

The Gophers had their media sessions on Tuesday and I was able to spend about 30 minutes with star running back Rodney Smith.

It was the longest conversation I’ve had with Smith and I found his answers to be thoughtful and funny.

Here are a few highlights:

Smith was asked about the $5 Bits of Broken Chair Trophy, which mascot Goldy Gopher introduced in 2014 as a reward to the winner of the Minnesota-Nebraska game.

“It started my redshirt freshman year,” Smith said. “I saw it on Twitter. I thought it was a real trophy game because I’m from Georgia. I didn’t really know much about the trophy games. It’s interesting.”

Smith added: “When we had it I don’t remember seeing it, now that I think about it.”

Smith on the impact of the upcoming $166 million Athletes Village: “That will be a big deal for the University of Minnesota. It definitely helps with recruiting. When I came on my visit and I saw other schools, when I saw University of Minnesota and how our facilities stack up to other schools, I wasn’t really impressed honestly.”

Smith said he visited East Carolina, Georgia Tech and Georgia when he was in high school.

“Once you see those other schools, you could tell that we’re a little bit behind,” he said.

On what he liked about Minnesota when he visited: “I fell in love with the city when I got here. Growing up in Georgia, I didn’t hear anything about Minnesota. I thought it was country, farmland. I fell in love with the city. And I thought about opportunities after football with all the Fortune 500 companies in the Twin Cities. And I thought it was time for me to grow up as a young man.

On the first time he saw snow: “I was nervous. The first time I saw actual snow, I called [former strength coach Eric Klein] and said, ‘It’s snowing. What do you want me to do?’ He said, ‘We still have workouts. What do you mean?’ I was like, ‘How am I going to get there?’ He said, ‘You’ve got to walk.’ In Georgia, we get a little bit of ice, everything is canceled.

On the different classes that P.J. Fleck holds for players: “We have classes to help with things outside of football. We have financial class, an etiquette dinner. A swag class, we had stylists come talk to us about dos and don’ts. Like big guys shouldn’t wear stripes. Stuff like that. It was helpful. I appreciated it.”

On the etiquette dinner Fleck put on for players and their girlfriends/dates: “It was a fun time. For occasions like this, Big Ten media day, you don’t want to be at the table eating like a barbarian. We learned the correct etiquette in how to eat.”

Finally, Smith was asked about a report by USA Today that Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany will receive $20 million in “future bonus payments” in the context of an ongoing national discussion about student-athlete benefits and whether they should be paid. Smith paused before answering.

“Uh, proud of him,” Smith said, smiling.

TV Listings

Local Schedule

< >
  • Canterbury Park live racing

    6:30 pm

  • Indiana at Lynx

    7 pm on FSN, 106.1-FM

  • Cleburne at Saints

    7:05 pm on 1220-AM

  • Arizona at Twins

    7:10 pm on FSN, 96.3-FM

  • Vikings at Seattle (preseason)

    9 pm on Ch. 9, 100.3/1130

  • Canterbury Park live racing

    12:45 pm

  • Arizona at Twins

    6:10 pm on FSN, 96.3-FM

  • Cleburne at Saints

    7:05 pm on 106.1-FM

  • Canterbury Park live racing

    12:45 pm

  • Arizona at Twins

    1:10 pm on FSN, 96.3-FM

  • Lynx at New York

    2 pm on NBATV, 106.1-FM

  • Cleburne at Saints

    5:05 pm on 1220-AM

  • Loons at Seattle

    9 pm on FS1, 1500-AM

  • Twins at Chicago White Sox (2)

    4:10 pm on FSN, 96.3-FM

  • Wichita at Saints

    7:05 pm on 1220-AM

  • Phoenix at Lynx

    7 pm on FSN PLUS/NBATV, 106.1-FM

  • Wichita at Saints

    7:05 pm on 1220-AM

  • Twins at Chicago White Sox

    7:10 pm on FSN, 96.3-FM

  • Wichita at Saints

    7:05 pm on 1220-AM

  • Twins at Chicago White Sox

    7:10 pm on FSN, 96.3-FM

  • Canterbury Park live racing

    6:30 pm

  • Wichita at Saints

    7:05 pm on 1220-AM

  • Twins at Chicago White Sox

    7:10 pm on FSN, 96.3-FM

  • Twins at Toronto

    6:07 pm on FSN, 96.3-FM

  • Canterbury Park live racing

    6:30 pm

Today's Scoreboard

  • Toronto

    Chicago Cubs

     

    - F

    4

    7

  • LA Angels

    Baltimore

     

    - Top 2nd

    4

    0

  • St. Louis

    Pittsburgh

     

    - Top 4th

    6

    2

  • NY Yankees

    Boston

     

    - Bot 3rd

    0

    2

  • LA Dodgers

    Detroit

     

    - Top 4th

    4

    3

  • Miami

    NY Mets

    Delayed

  • Seattle

    Tampa Bay

     

    - Top 4th

    3

    0

  • Cincinnati

    Atlanta

     

    - Bot 2nd

    0

    1

  • Chicago White Sox

    Texas

     

    - Top 1st

    0

    0

  • Oakland

    Houston

    7:10 PM

  • Arizona

    Minnesota

    7:10 PM

    FSN

  • Cleveland

    Kansas City

    7:15 PM

  • Milwaukee

    Colorado

    7:40 PM

  • Washington

    San Diego

    9:10 PM

  • Philadelphia

    San Francisco

    9:15 PM

  • Minnesota

    Seattle

    9:00 PM

    NFL

No NBA games today

No NHL games today

  • New York

    Portland

    9:00 PM

    FOX SPORTS 1