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Trying to Find Bobby Boswell's Foil

Since my boss has a particularly enthusiastic type of personality, he's decided that we need to launch an all-hands-on-deck quest to find the young lady who crushed D.C. United defender and MLS all-star Bobby Boswell in that episode of "GUTS" more than a decade ago. Thanks to some cracker-jack work by the DCU PR staff (and a google search), we now know that the young lady's name was Robin Rexroat and that she actually only beat Young Bobby by 75 points.

For the record, Jennifer "the Jaguar" Barnes finished a distant, distant third. And now she works for the Red Bulls. (Kidding.)

Anyhow, Robin's approximately 25-26 years old. If anyone knows her, please let me know. Or if you know Jennifer "the Jaguar" Barnes, I guess, also let me know.

But it gets more interesting. Somehow, I had previously failed to realize that the host of "GUTS," Mike O'Malley, went on to star in shows such as "Yes, Dear," and also to be "The Rick," the Boston-obsessed star of those ESPN ads. And also, just last May, he delivered the commencement address at the University of New Hampshire, which began like this:

Today, all across this country, Nobel Laureates and Pulitzer Prize winners are addressing graduates like you.

UNH brings you the guy from "Guts."

Your lives will only improve from this moment.

My trusty referee Mo was going to join me, but she's giving the commencement speech at Oxford.

For those of you who haven't heard, "Guts" was a sports show I hosted on Nickelodeon during the previous millennium. I am not ashamed of this. When you stand in the shadow of a presence as powerful as the Aggrocrag, you cannot deny your allegiance to it.

It goes on like this, but there are touching moments too, moments that make you want to grow and mature and be a better person and not make fun of Mark Brunell so much. I would say that Mike's remarks just blew away the graduation speech I had to listen to, except my graduation speech was delivered by a Washington Post employee. Really. But you should read his whole speech; it's actually remarkably good, as graduation speeches go. And I'm not just saying that because I'm about to e-mail this blog entry to Mike O'Malley and ask for his help in tracking down Robin Rexroat. Really. See, it turns out that I actually interviewed Mike about the Red Sox last fall, for a little celebrity Q&A thing, and somehow I wound up with his e-mail address.

(I can't find the link to our Q&A, but while searching I did discover Mike's USA Today NFL picks for week 12 of the 2002 season. He went 8-8. Not good.)

Anyhow, here's an excerpt from our interview, courtesy of LexisNexis:

Me: What would you have done with yourself if [the Red Sox] hadn't made the playoffs?

MOM: I would have rooted for whatever team was playing against the Yankees. Look, I take my baseball very seriously, I take the Red Sox very seriously, it's not lighthearted at all. For whatever reason, baseball got in my blood when I was a little kid. And the watching and paying attention and being on the precipice and then losing so often -- you take it very seriously.

Me: "The Rick," is that really you or is the character totally made up?

MOM: I was cast into that character. We share a likeness in terms of our rooting interest for Boston teams, but "The Rick" still lives in his mother's attic and collects worthless memorabilia, is unmarried without kids. I have two children, a lovely wife and I live in California. But we do share the same shirt size.

So hopefully Mike will be able to tell us how many former "GUTS" contestants went on to become professional athletes, how many of those have made all-star teams, and whether he knows how to find Robin Rexroat.

Oh, and some people have asked me whether Young Bobby had an opportunity to meet Moira Quirk, the show's co-host and referee whom Mike referenced above. He did. He said she was very short, and that she had to stand on some sort of prop to do the stand-up shots with Mike. And that she didn't seem to like him that much. Young Bobby, I mean.

By Dan Steinberg  |  November 14, 2006; 12:58 PM ET
Categories:  D.C. United  
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