Friday, Feb. 5, 2010 | 12:52 p.m.
Everyone knows how much I love the San Diego Chargers. I was just sick when they lost that playoff game to New York because I really thought they could go all the way and win a championship.
So, I'm rooting for the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday to win the Super Bowl.
I've been a fan of their quarterback, Peyton Manning, for several years and admire the way he plays the game. He's a great leader and is always prepared.
I first heard about Peyton when I was coaching at UNLV and got to know his dad, Archie. We were in a golf skills video together during Peyton's senior year in high school. The video taught basic golf skills regardless of skill level — I was a beginner and Archie was advanced.
I asked Archie during the filming if his son was any good and he said, "Coach, he is really good." His dad was right and I've always kept an eye on Peyton ever since.
I've hosted a few Super Bowl parties over the years and have been able to meet some professional football players. They are always so big and strong.
I played linebacker for my junior high team, but in those days everyone was undersized.
Now, on to UNLV's game on Saturday against BYU.
BYU has played some of the best basketball in the league and has so many great shooters from the outside. I've watched a few of their games on television and have seen how they can beat you in so many ways.
The fans at the Thomas & Mack Center will make a difference for UNLV. A sellout crowd will bring some energy and make it tougher on BYU.
Those type of crowds remind me of the early days of the arena and two big games, against Georgetown with Patrick Ewing and Navy when they had David Robinson.
We were on national television for almost every game back then. What I did was let the networks schedule all of our non-league games. I told them we would play anyone anywhere, as long as they returned the game.
Syracuse wanted us to play up there, but Jim Boeheim didn't want the return game. His idea of a return game would be two games at Syracuse.
We did a home-and-home with Georgetown two times in the early 1980s when they were a power. Georgetown coach John Thompson would tell me we were the only school who would play them.
He agreed to come to our tournament the first year the Thomas & Mack opened. It was Clemson, Southern Illinois, Georgetown and UNLV.
We were going to open with Southern Illinois, but John called and said we had to play Clemson and they would play Southern Illinois. I said, "John, it's our tournament, we are the home team and we pick who we play."
We played Georgetown in the finals and they beat us by two points in overtime. I remember John Flowers had a dunk in that overtime that shook up the whole building. It was incredible.