FIU in the Little Caesar's Bowl: Our Polish Correspondent Has the News

Jacek Urbanczyk, Poland-based sports journalist, is Riptide's stringer for the Little Caesar's Pizza Bowl in Detroit, between the University of Toledo and our very own Florida International University. It will be played on Sunday. He's in Detroit to drum up enthusiasm for the Polish American Football League. His prose is being translated for us by Polish-American broadcaster Raymond Rolak. What follows is the second of Urbanczyk's "Postcards from Detroit," in which he bowls at the Bowl.

The Florida International University football team arrived in Detroit and is staying at a nice, older, reconditioned hotel. Toledo got the Major League hotel. I wonder if they flipped a coin. Both teams got a walk thru at Ford Field. It is the home of the Detroit Lions.

The players bowled at the Bowl. Yes they are bowling at the Bowl, [sic] pretty cool, huh? There was mingling with the opponents. Trash talk was included, but politely. The American college football players had a great time. I don't understand, "Your mama so fat jokes." They ate a lot of Pizza-Pizza. It is amazing how much the players eat. An army truly does travel on its stomach. The VIP's from both travel parties had a shi-shi reception at the historic Fox Theater. I was invited and then disinvited. Go figure.

I learned that Thunderbird Lanes, the bowling arena that the Golden Panthers played in (okay -my English is stunted) has a Miami connection.

It is an arena that hosted team pro bowling in 1962 and it is an amazing place. Again, with the Yes. Yes, it is an arena and has arcades and everything. It was the "home field" of recently passed Eddie Lubanski. Lubanski was a champion bowler who had back-to-back 300 perfect games in Miami in 1959. What was more amazing is that it was caught on film during a live television broadcast at Miami's Bowling Palace. Bowling is not too big in Poland, yet.

Another promotion is the Little Caesars Love Kitchen. The Little Caesars Love Kitchen is a semi-truck with a pizza bakery inside so it becomes a mobile feeding station. It will make an appearance in Miami and Toledo. This is to provide complimentary meals for those in need. Local Little Caesars franchise owners and company regional offices donate all food and labor costs for the Love Kitchen servings.

The Golden Panthers have rebounded after starting the season 0 - 4. They had a tough pre Sun Belt Conference schedule. Winning 4 of their last 5 gives FIU some momentum. The impressive 52 -35 win over their Sun Belt Co-Champions, Troy University is a light bulb going on, as Troy recently won the New Orleans Bowl.

I was in the Army, I value a bargain and I came across a coupon for last minute attendees. Miami to Detroit is a 3 hour plus flight. There are inexpensive flights on Delta Airlines on Christmas day. There is much to see and do.

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Jacek Urbanczyk