Jan. 24, 2010
Tim Miller - Allstate AFCA Good Works Team Trip December 30 December 31 January 1
Driving to the airport at 2:30 am, exhausted from not sleeping, but getting excited about my time in New Orleans.
Get to the airport, check through, no problems.
Get on the airplane to Miami, first time flying American Airlines (usually a Southwest guy), fall right asleep.
Wake up upon landing in Miami, the most crowded airport I have ever been in.
Leave for New Orleans, quick trip, can't sleep b/c I am too excited, land within two hours.
Walk through the airport, filled with Jazz memorabilia, one of the nicest airports I have ever been in.
Get directed towards a car to drive us to the hotel.
Nice limo!!!! Can't wait to check out the Roosevelt hotel.
Pass through much of the city of New Orleans, still torn apart by Katrina, very difficult to imagine what people here have been through.
Get to Roosevelt, the nicest hotel I have ever been in! Christmas decorations galore!
Meet Jim Vergata, he will be our guide and director throughout the trip, reminds me of an older Clark Kent.
Sent up to our Hotel room, the nicest one I have ever been in, the most comfortable beds ever.
Have our first meeting with the Captain of the New Orleans Police Department, first meeting with the rest of the Good Works Team. Everyone is great, meet people from Michigan and Clemson all the way to Bethel. Everyone is very similar to I am, outgoing personalities, nice guys, very genuine people.
Retire for the night, extremely tired from the trip.
Wake up at 8 am - head to the elementary school that has not been opened since Katrina.
Head down to the Conti room, a room set aside for the Good Works Team to have breakfast.
Get to know more of the guys, immediate connect with Dave, quarterback from the Colorado School of Mines. He is pre-med, and talk about being a doctor/where we wanted to go to med school.
Get on the bus, arrive at the school to meet Dennis Hayesburt (actor from Allstate Commercials-CERRANO!).
Brand new school, completely renovated, kids are going to love it!
Set up a class room with fellow Good Works Teammate Chris Owens. Then set up the gymnasium. Great feeling giving these kids a brand new opportunity. They deserve it!
Afterwards, went to an older school to help kids move in that were originally schooled in a condemned building. Such a change between the old and new building, old building is on the border of being condemned. Cleaned out entire building so new desks could arrive.
Set off to the Superdome to practice halftime showing. On the filed at the superdome is incredible! The stadium is deceiving, it looks small from the outside but is HUGE from the inside.
Head back to get ready for the Allstate Fanfest.
At the Fanfest, we meet Florida and Cincinnati fans in the French Quarter, and are introduced to the crowd in a nice ceremony on stage. Great feeling hearing cheers form the crowd. People came up to me afterwards saying thank you and telling me that my actions are what is right with the world and that we could really bring about change. That was great to hear!
Head to dinner with the Good Works Team, have a great meal with Jim, talk to him about football the entire time!
Head to the river bank to watch the fireworks go off at midnight! Great way to spend New Year's!
Wake up to go to brunch with the leaders of Allstate and the Sugar Bowl.
Meet with top execs and have brunch. Cool feeling being with these guys, have so much power yet are so cool!
Have grits and crepes and an omelet with crab meat! All delicious!
Receive a police escort to the stadium! Fans thought we were the teams, it was a cool feeling hearing the crowd go nuts for the bus.
Go up to the suite on the 48 yard line, greatest seats ever!
Meet the guy from the Allstate tailgate commercials, hysterical guy!
Walking down to get ready to go on the field. Surprisingly not nervous at all. I find that I get nervous in front of small crowds, but with a lot of people, I am not nervous at all. I was pumped for everyone to see me on TV and for Hopkins to be represented with pride.
Walking out to the field, hoping I don't trip. I am filled with pride to be representing my family and Hopkins football. One of the happiest times in my life, huge smile on my face!
Wave to the huge crowd of 65,000, all cheering for us! Start chanting "Good Works!"
As I walk off the field, we pass a Gators section, and I have to do a Gator chomp (I like Florida!).
Go back up to the suite to watch Tebow dominate! Unfortunately, didn't get to meet him.
As we walk back to the bus, I must say that this was the best weekend of my life. I have to thank Allstate and the AFCA for providing it for us, Ernie Larossa for nominating me, Coach Margraff for maintaining the excellence that Hopkins Football exudes, and my family for putting up with me.