Last night as we entered Coors Field, and before Dan got wanded, we were handed coupons for a free large Papa Johns Pizza. We thought it had to be a buy one, get one free or some other promotion like that, but the only catch was that you had to order the pizza online. So that's exactly what we did as soon as we got to the hotel last night. Since it was only good for Denver area Papa Johns we ran it back at 10am this morning when they opened. That caused us to get started later than planned, but saved us some money and a lunch stop.
Dan started the drive as I quickly fell asleep, which has become the norm once we get on our main route. We pushed into the flat farm lands of Nebraska, eventually stopping in Kearny, NE as the fuel gauge was leaning towards E. After a quick meal at Quiznos and a fill up we finished out the drive to Lincoln, pulling in at about 6:15 local time. Another 500 miles down.
We had just enough time to check in and get our bags up to our room at the hotel before we had to head out to Haymarket Park for the Lincoln Saltdogs vs. El Paso Diablos game. Haymarket is a great ballpark, on par with even the newest spring training facilities in Arizona. Not only is the ballpark great, but the playing surface is immaculate. A great park for a minor league club and an amazing venue for college baseball. The Cornhuskers have played all their home games here since it's opening in 1999 and pack'em in for regular season and post-season play (over 9,000 for the first day of regional play this year). There are three main concession stands as well as auxiliary stands for beer and ice cream, both of which were needed as the gametime temperature was 95 degrees. The Saltdogs also do a great job as far as entertainment with a kids playground down the right field line and a speed pitch area down the left field line. The grass berms were a popular option for families attending the game. On the whole a great minor league baseball experience.
After the game we trekked across the freeway to visit one of the great college football meccas, Memorial Stadium. We couldn't find an open door to give it a good look, but the place is massive and from what we could see inside, we were impressed. The grandstand is pretty steep, which must make it seem like all 90,000 fans are right on top of you. A very impressive place even from the outside.
Tomorrow we head to Omaha and are glad that we'll get to see the hometown Cal State Fullerton Titans take on North Carolina. CSUF had another nail-bitter today, but pulled it out as the Titans always seem to do. I'd be excited to see anyone play in the College World Series, but it's nice to see a team I've followed closely for the entire season. It looks like the 2nd game will feature Oregon State vs. Rice which should also be an excellent game. We'll be rooting for the West Coast teams as usual.