Reusse: Look, things had been too quiet at Winter Park anyway

  • Article by: PATRICK REUSSE , Star Tribune
  • Updated: June 21, 2012 - 7:56 AM

The Vikings are hilarious, they are embarrassing, they are heartbreaking, but they never are boring.

hide

Former Vikings RB Onterrio Smithlost his helmet after a run in 2003 against Kansas City. He later lost his job in one of the most infamous incidents in the Vikings history.

I've been writing sports columns for various Twin Cities dailies since February 1979. The finest moment of this duty occurred on May 10, 2005.

Late in the afternoon, Star Tribune sports editor Glen Crevier called and said Vikings beat reporter Kevin Seifert was writing a story that running back Onterrio Smith had been detained at the Twin Cities airport a month earlier, trying to get through security with an "Original Whizzinator."

Seifert's report revealed that this was a device intended to provide a lifelike appearance and a clean urine sample, if one was to be monitored as he undertook a drug test, say, at the behest of the NFL.

"I know you're supposed to be off today, but would you want to write a column for tomorrow's paper?" Crevier asked.

The boss was asked to repeat slowly the details of Seifert's report and then I said: "Glen, I would pay to write a column for tomorrow's paper."

When the debate turns to the Vikings' greatest off-the-field moment, there are Purple followers that insist it should be the "Love Boat," while others support a first-round draft choice hitchhiking away from Mankato after one morning practice, or a coach scalping Super Bowl tickets, or another coach issuing a communiqué from a location that was remindful of a Saddam bunker.

Yes, there are handfuls of these spectacular episodes, but I continue to argue that "The Original Whizzinator" -- and Onterrio's contention that he was carrying it for his cousin -- ranks No. 1 on the list of Vikings smiles.

And let's face it:

The reason the Vikings' stadium initiative made it through the Legislature with ease, in comparison to the difficulties faced by the Twins for a ballpark that required no state contribution, is because they never are boring.

The Vikings are hilarious, they are embarrassing, they are heartbreaking, but they never are boring.

The Twins lose and their fans start with disgust and move quickly to apathy. The Wild loses and its fans make excuses. The Timberwolves lose and the fan base becomes the lost legion of Target Center.

The Vikings?

They make us laugh. They make us cry. They make us shout, "You have to be joking." They make us dress up in horns and braids and head to St. Paul to sing "Skol, Vikings" in the Capitol corridors.

The stadium cleared its final legislative hurdle May 10. Do you think it was a coincidence that this was the seventh anniversary of Onterrio and the Original Whizzinator being revealed to the world at startribune.com?

These things are simpatico in Vikingland -- chuckles and celebrations, triumph and tragedy.

There might have been a younger and naïve element that was thinking things were coming together nicely for the Vikings now that the stadium issue was finally decided.

Heck, only one Vikings arrest had been revealed publicly in the six weeks since the stadium bill passed: New fullback Jerome Felton charged with a DWI acquired in the drive-through line at a McDonald's.

As I recall, it was a Hardee's drive-through in Mankato where Keith Millard had his crash three decades earlier.

See how it goes around and comes around with our beloved Purple?

Felton was quick to apologize, and General Manager Rick Spielman (the Vikings' first since Jim Finks) stayed busy turning his roster into one of the three youngest in the NFL.

Spielman had wound up with his man, left tackle Matt Kalil, and landed extra draft choices in the process. Adrian Peterson was talking about being back from his knee surgery for the season opener.

This was Smooth Purple.

A single blip on the radar occurred when receiver Percy Harvin showed up for an OTA workout on June 5 and wasn't around on June 6. Asked Harvin's whereabouts, coach Les Frazier reminded reporters that the "O" stood for optional.

Harvin arrived at the mandatory minicamp Tuesday as the Vikings' most popular player. Then, Percy told reporters he was unhappy. Then, it was revealed Wednesday that Harvin had requested a trade due to this vague unhappiness.

Vikings fans reacted with confusion, followed by panic, followed by curses toward the football gods.

In other words, we're back to our non-boring normal in Vikingland.

Ain't it great?

Patrick Reusse can be heard noon-4 weekdays on 1500-AM. • preusse@startribune.com

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

San Diego 21 FINAL
Denver 35
Detroit 10/26/14 8:30 AM
Atlanta
Buffalo 10/26/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
St. Louis 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
Houston 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Minnesota 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Seattle 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Carolina
Baltimore 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
Miami 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Chicago 10/26/14 12:00 PM
New England
Philadelphia 10/26/14 3:05 PM
Arizona
Oakland 10/26/14 3:25 PM
Cleveland
Indianapolis 10/26/14 3:25 PM
Pittsburgh
Green Bay 10/26/14 7:30 PM
New Orleans
Washington 10/27/14 7:30 PM
Dallas
Indiana 88 FINAL
Charlotte 79
Philadelphia 103 FINAL
Detroit 109
Dallas 85 FINAL
New Orleans 88
NY Islanders 3 FINAL
Boston 2
Pittsburgh 3 FINAL(OT)
Detroit 4
Vancouver 4 FINAL
St. Louis 1
Chicago 2 FINAL
Nashville 3
Arizona 0 FINAL
Minnesota 2
Carolina 0 FINAL
Calgary 5
Buffalo 0 FINAL
Los Angeles 2
Columbus 5 FINAL
San Jose 4
Connecticut 21 FINAL
(18) East Carolina 31
Miami-Florida 30 FINAL
Virginia Tech 6
So Florida 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Troy 6:30 PM
South Alabama
BYU 8:00 PM
Boise State
(6) Oregon 9:00 PM
California
North Texas 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Rice
UAB 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Arkansas
Rutgers 10/25/14 11:00 AM
(16) Nebraska
Maryland 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Wisconsin
Texas 10/25/14 11:00 AM
(11) Kansas State
Minnesota 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
Memphis 10/25/14 11:00 AM
SMU
North Carolina 10/25/14 11:30 AM
Virginia
San Jose St 10/25/14 12:00 PM
Navy
Northern Ill 10/25/14 12:00 PM
Eastern Mich
(25) UCLA 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Colorado
Akron 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Ball State
Massachusetts 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Toledo
Ohio U 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Western Mich
Ga Southern 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Kent State 10/25/14 1:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
Oregon State 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Stanford
Fla Atlantic 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(23) Marshall
Louisiana Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Southern Miss
(1) Miss State 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Georgia Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Pittsburgh
(22) West Virginia 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Texas Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(10) TCU
Michigan 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(8) Michigan State
Boston College 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Wake Forest
Central Mich 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Buffalo
Vanderbilt 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Missouri
Old Dominion 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Western Ky
UNLV 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Utah State
Temple 10/25/14 4:00 PM
UCF
(15) Arizona 10/25/14 5:00 PM
Washington St
Texas-El Paso 10/25/14 6:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Wyoming 10/25/14 6:00 PM
Colorado State
Syracuse 10/25/14 6:00 PM
(21) Clemson
Texas State 10/25/14 6:00 PM
ULM
(3) Ole Miss 10/25/14 6:15 PM
(24) LSU
(4) Alabama 10/25/14 6:30 PM
Tennessee
So Carolina 10/25/14 6:30 PM
(5) Auburn
(13) Ohio State 10/25/14 7:00 PM
Penn State
(20) USC 10/25/14 9:00 PM
(19) Utah
(14) Arizona State 10/25/14 9:45 PM
Washington
Nevada 10/25/14 10:59 PM
Hawaii
(2) Florida State 10/30/14 6:30 PM
Louisville
Troy 10/30/14 6:30 PM
Ga Southern
Montreal 5:30 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 8:30 PM
Calgary
Hamilton 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Toronto
Brt Columbia 10/25/14 6:00 PM
Winnipeg
Hamilton 10/31/14 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Winnipeg 11/1/14 3:00 PM
Calgary
Brt Columbia 11/1/14 6:00 PM
Edmonton
Toronto 11/2/14 11:00 AM
Montreal
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
Sep 14 - vs. New England NoonX30-7
Sep 21 - at New Orleans NoonX20-9
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pmX41-28
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pmX42-10
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit NoonX17-3
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo NoonX17-16
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay Noon
Nov 2 - vs. Washington Noon
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago Noon
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay Noon
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina Noon
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets Noon
Dec 14 - at Detroit Noon
Dec 21 - at Miami Noon
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago Noon

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Who wins and loses in football this weekend?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close