Reeling in the years with Carter, newest Daily alum

Daily Sports reporters are cocky, confident and knowledgeable. I’m no exception.

Three years of seeing your name in the newspaper, and knowing you have the best job on campus ñ getting paid to watch Gophers sporting events ñ can make your ego grow pretty big.

Yet, as my time at The Daily ends in about a week, there is still room for my head to get larger.

So I was thinking the other day, after all the interviews I’ve done in my time ñ including Gophers who currently, or one day, will play in the NFL, Major Leagues, NBA and even the WWF ñ why is it no one has ever sat down and interviewed me?

Well, the time has come. Last week I sat down and called myself on my cell phone. I was surprised I answered the first time ñ every other phone interview usually involves voice mail and a lot of waiting.

Anyway, I conducted an interview about my experiences at The Daily, what I’ll miss, who I won’t, etc. Now, I share what I said with you all.

Q: John R. Carter, what does that mysterious R stand for?

A: Technically Robert. But thanks to the email at the end of each story I’ve written, I’ve been called everything from rube to retard.

Q: So, you’ve worked here since Spring 1999. What will you remember most about Daily Sports?

A: Everything. From parking lot whiffle ball to White Chocolate. Chair football to eight-hour road trips with Admiral Nelson and Tiny Dancer.

We’re sort of like one of those clicks in high school. But instead of being a bunch of chicks who like to gossip about boys, we’re a bunch of men who act like boys.

Q: Obviously you’ve spent countless hours at The Daily, whether goofing off or getting work done. But what are your most favorite moments outside the paper?

A: There are so many. But they start with the all-expense paid trips to some of America’s great cities. Here’s what I’ve done:

Celebrated my fake ID’s 23rd birthday in Los Angeles in 1999 ñ after strolling down Venice Beach and climbing the Hollywood Hills.

Took in a Rangers baseball game and saw where John F. Kennedy was shot in Dallas.

Cruised Miami Beach and considered wrestling with alligators in the Everglades on my trip to South Florida for the now-defunct Micronpc.com Bowl.

Stood beneath the Arch and learned how Budweiser was brewed in Nelly’s hometown of St. Louis.

Went to every Big Ten campus. Best stadiums: Michigan’s Big House and Ohio State’s Horseshoe. Best bars: Kams in Champaign, Ill., Harry’s Chocolate Factory in West Lafayette, Ind., and the Airliner in Iowa City.

Q: Jackass, you’re a sports reporter! I meant, what are your favorite SPORTS moments outside the Daily’s walls?

A: AhÖ Let’s see, there are so many. Here are my Top 4, in descending order:

4. Brock “The Rock” Lesnar’s heavyweight national wrestling title in 2000. That dude is a monster.

3. The men’s hoops’ last-second 77-75 victory over Indiana on Feb. 9, 2000. The game turned out to be the last in Williams Arena for both “The Stiff” Joel Przybilla and “The General” Bobby Knight.

2. The volleyball team’s dramatic comeback over USC to reach the Sweet Sixteen in 1999. The Trojans were up 2-0 and on match point in the third game, when the Gophers roared back.

1. The football team’s 29-17 upset over No. 5 Ohio State in Columbus last season. Even though it made Glen Mason’s ego grow even bigger than mine, the win was sweet nonetheless.

Q: What is your favorite Minnesota sports facility?

A: Not even close. Nothing compares to Williams Arena during overtime of a Big Ten men’s basketball game. That place is louder a bunch of screaming 13-year-old girls on First Avenue after an N’Sync concert.

Q: You’ve had to deal with a number of Gophers coaches at the U. Any favorites?

A: Volleyball coach Mike Hebert and baseball coach John Anderson. They are both class individuals.

Q: Any you dislike?

A: Football coach and chief whiner Glen Mason. Put it this way: he got paid $250,000 for each Gophers win this past season. I would have coached a win against Murray State for leftover pizza and beer money.

Q: Where do you plan to go after leaving The Daily?

A: First, I’ll join the ranks of the unemployed. Maybe I’ll go hunt down Osama and Saddam. Or tend bar at Senor Frogs in Cancun.

But then I plan on pursuing a career in TV Broadcasting. Yes, I want to be on SportsCenter.

Boo Ya.

Oh, and good-bye.

For one more week John R. Carter
welcomes comments at [email protected]