Yo-die, Adrian!

Oscar Palmer Robertson

Image by cliff1066™ via Flickr

This one falls in the realm of what my sons refer to as “Dad’s stupid stuff”. In the ’60s (mostly) there was this NBA player — an all-star — named Adrian Smith. His nickname is Odie.

So in the playground in my mind every athlete named Adrian becomes Odie.

I alternate between finding this irritating — and amusing.

The most prominent case currently is Adrian Peterson. I should say two cases because, as unlikely as it may seem, there are two Adrian — uh, Odie — Petersons in the NFL:

While I was recently reading the excellent book Looking Back 75 Years of Eagles History: Special Edition by Eli Kowalski, which I received as a birthday gift from Mrs. QC, I was reminded that my favorite NFL team, the Philadelphia Eagles, once had a quarterback — back in the ’50s before I was born — named Adrian Burk. He shares the league record for most touchdown passes in a regular season game, 7, with four other quarterbacks. I’ve rewritten his tombstone, so to speak, to read “Odie Burk.”

Then this morning I thought of the NBA Hall of Fame player from (mostly) the ’80s, Adrian Dantley. My first thought was this Adrian was an exception — No’die, if you will. But the more I thought about it … yes, I have thought of him as Odie Dantley — and will (sigh) continue to do so.

May you not be plagued by this sort of thing.

(Hearty thanks, by the way, to Minnesota’s Odie Peterson for fumbling in overtime last night and enabling Odie Peterson #2 and his Bears to beat the Vikings, 36-30, giving my Eagles the opportunity this Sunday to earn the #2 seed in the upcoming NFC playoffs.)

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