Friday, October 14, 2016


Well, as an EMU alumni and strong supporter of EMU sports, particularly the football program, I will forever have a soft spot for Western Michigan University football. Here's the story. About two weeks ago my lovely 7 year old daughter and I were watching the Western Michigan vs Central Michigan football game on the TV in our Ypsilanti Normal Park Neighborhood house. In the opinion of my sharp eyed daughter, Western Michigan's uniforms looked, um, "Terrible." In particular, she did not like the brown trimming on top of the shoulder pads. It  just bugged the heck out of her each time there was a close up of a WMU player. I have to admit that I totally agreed with my artistic and opinionated 7 year old daughter. I half joking said to her, " You should write a letter to the WMU football team and throw in your two cents on the issue. She liked that idea, but she decided to go a step further

The next thing I know is she is sitting at the dining room table with all of her brown and black markers. She also had out her large construction paper  tablet. Well, she is an artist after all. She was in the dining room working away at the dining room table while I continued to watch the game. Suddenly, Sadie announced, "Done!", and waved me over. She had drawn a picture of what she thought Westerns jersey SHOULD look like. She had in essence re- designed the Broncos football uniform with a well thought out illustration complete with little notes and directions on the picture. She also wrote a note on the picture which said the following:

"This is what I want your uniform to be." Followed by the picture. Then underneath the picture illustration she wrote, "I really don't like the uniform you have now." I know it was a little cheeky, but so be it, I thought to myself: That's my girl!
 The next morning I looked up the address for Western Michigan football and mailed her picture/letter to the football team. She was thrilled. I was hoping someone at with the Western Michigan football program would respond in some way. I expected that just maybe a WMU PR person or intern would send back a form letter, But NO! Thursday when collecting the mail from our Normal Park mailbox I found a large envelope hand addressed to my daughter. The return address was Coach Fleck: Western Michigan University Football, Kalamazoo Michigan. Fleck, as in head WMU football coach P.J. Fleck? Yes, indeed!

Here is what coach Fleck wrote to my daughter:

"I absolutely appreciate your suggestion. We will look into your design in the coming year! We are proud of all our jerseys color and creativity! Thanks for your opinion! R.T.B.

Coach Fleck.

Thank you to coach Fleck for taking the time to write a hand written letter response to my daughter! Coach Fleck is a real class act. This devoted EMU fan and alumni now has a soft spot for Western Michigan.

Jeff Brown
Purple Walrus Press.

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