In the past couple of years, Wayne Hardin deservedly made the college football Hall of Fame and it took him three ballots to do so. This year, Paul Palmer was up for the third time and he missed out but I’m certain he will get in before long.
If there were a Hall of Fame for college football fans, Dave “Ed” Edwards, who preferred to be known as NJ Schmitty, would be a first-ballot selection. It’s easy to be a fan of Notre Dame, Penn State and Alabama. Those are what I refer to as front-runners.
I’d call NJ Schmitty a “back-burner” because he followed mostly losing Temple football teams as a devoted fan for 35-plus years but Schmitty suffered the indignity with a relentless sense of humor. The thing that separated Schmitty from most of the rest of us was that Temple was his “adopted” team, not of his own blood. He was a Susquehanna College (now University) graduate and could have easily adopted nearby Penn State as his college team, but he took Temple and loved it as one of his own.
He was a frequent poster on Owlscoop.com and Owlsdaily.com and never got caught up in any heavy arguments, instead preferring to find the humor in the posts of others. He was the originator of the Owlscoop Hall of Fame and that is captured here for perpetuity. (Thanks, Ikers.)
Many of you have met Schmitty. I have had the distinct pleasure of his company and hospitality at many Temple games. For those of you who have not met him, you surely know who he is because of a large oversized TEMPLE ‘][‘ on top of an old Chevy conversion van could not be missed at any Temple home games and you could hear the deep and hearty laughter coming from his tailgate at every game, whether the Owls were 9-4 or 2-10.
I was stunned to hear of Schmitty’s passing in the last few days. I didn’t know he was sick, but he will be missed more than he will ever know. The only time I ever called him Dave he scolded me. “It’s Schmitty, Mike,” he said.