Our featured picture this edition is of some mighty fat frogs. These giant amphibious beasts had a belly full of crawfish, and hadn’t missed many meals. We are, of course, referring to the actual frogs here, not the ex-McNeese footballers holding them.
These three amigos had just passed a great night filling up a sack full of giant Louisiana bullfrogs. Living in Louisiana has a lot of advantages, and the existence of crawfish ponds full of super frogs is definitely high on the list.
The frogs basically didn’t stand a chance. They were being pursued by a frog-catching team raised on bad cafeteria food with voracious appetites. The entire frog catching team did hard time in the athletic dormitory and has never quite fully recuperated. From years of undernourishment and unheard of depravity, these guys are now pretty much always hungry. They would feast on these frog legs for days.
Pictured are Ronnie Klump from Basile, Robert Ardoin from Welsh and Zane Carter, who hails from Kinder. All of these hometown guys enjoyed outstanding athletic careers at their respective high schools, and went on to contribute to some great seasons representing McNeese on the football field.
Ronnie Klump was an outstanding punter who could consistently launched perfect spiral punts with height and plenty of distance. He was a natural, who basically took over the punting chores the day he stepped on the field.
Robert Ardoin started at the strong-side linebacker position and just didn’t make many mistakes. Robert played smart and physical and was a special favorite of linebacker coach, Hubert Boales.
Zane Carter suited up on the defensive line and was a disciple of some of Johnny Buck’s great Kinder High teams. Zane was a punter, and once took off in an out-of-town game and ran for a first down. Coach Buck told him later if he had not been successful, he would have had to walk back to Kinder if they had lost.
All these guys existed in the athletic dorm better known as “Zigler Zoo.” Each man is a better person for having survived that very frightening experience. Though scarred for life, these guys have all survived and, amazingly, lived productive lives.
Zane still holds the dorm title for the filthiest room in a living area famous for its level of extreme neglect. Zane and teammate Jeff Church brought living in dirt to another level. They were as happy as pigs in slop and very proud of not once changing the sheets on their beds.
It’s comforting to know that after great college careers, these guys went on, against great odds, and became respectable and very successful. Having survived the rigors of dorm life, all went on to be fairly normal.
The lessons they learned will last a lifetime. By most accounts, their eyes have seen sights in the “Zoo” that will not ever go away. Other human beings could not imagine some of the unnatural sights they lived through.
On a personal note, I lived next door to Church and Zano, and still hold them responsible for a number of mild neuroses. After a tough night of their taunting me through thin walls after bed check, I was desperate and climbed out the window onto the ledge. I forced entry into their room and, armed with a leather belt, began to wail away. They screamed and huddled together in one bed under a brown sheet. They begged for the beating to stop. But I may have lost control and actually begun to enjoy it.
All these ex-McNeese players contributed blood, sweat and tears for the Cowboy cause. They are the fabric of McNeese sports, and will always be extra-large athletic supporters. Go Cowboys!