Wendell Neal has been the Arizona Football equipment manager for the past 20 seasons. “Most guys that come through this program are very good guys,” says Neal. And he's seen a lot of wildcats turn into NFL pro's in his time in Tucson.
“Nick walked in and I’m like...I guess it was the size, the stature of him, and I was like oh my, this guy reminds me of Drew Bledsoe.” Which Neal still tells Foles to this day. It's not hard to see why Neal, and many others within Arizona Football are rooting for the former Arizona QB. “He was easy to like I know that,” says Neal. He continued, saying he just cared about people, and reminisced about how Foles would stay late after almost every game and talk to a woman battling cancer. “It gives me chills just talking about it”, says Neal.
As for the Patriots, and everyone's favorite fun loving tight end in the NFL…” There was a quick little encounter at our Pac-12 equipment manager's meeting in Las Vegas,” says Neal. Rob Gronkowksi happened to be there too, hosting a reality tv show. When Gronk asked if “Big Wen” was there, they told him not until tomorrow. “He says I’m leaving in the morning, but I’d love to throw him in the pool.”
Yes, Gronk is known for always having a good time, but he knew what was on the line too. “He was a lot of all business when he was here for practice,” says Neal.
But hopefully, Foles won't be throwing any balls to Patriots linebacker, and former Cat, Marquis Flowers. “I’m not surprised that he's in the situation he's in, because that's just his temperament,” says Neal of Flowers.
But in Neal’s opinion, either outcome is a win for him. “It's going to be a fun game to watch because I don't really have a horse in the...well I do have 3 horses in it.”
Super Bowl LII will be held in Minneapolis, Minnesota on February 4th. Kickoff is at 4:30pm on NBC.