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Verti-KOK, part 2

When we left the action in part 1, Ken O'Keefe had leaped off a bell tower into the Miami Dolphin team jet, a fact that lost on Coach Kirk Ferentz, who was incapacitated by Bell Tower Dizziness Syndrome at the time. We resume our plot two weeks later, in the Ferentz family living room.

Iconferentz_mediumWhy did Ken do it? I could have saved him, if it weren't for that damned BTDS. Oh the guilt! The guilt! How will I ever replace him? [picks up remote] Maybe this ESPN Classic marathon will take my mind off of things.

The 2009 Texas-Oklahoma game comes on the screen.

Iconferentz_medium Hold the phone. Who is that?

Iconferentz_medium Those jowls! That play-calling! It's the spitting image of my Kenny boy! Let's fire up the ol' internet and see what I can find. [Opens Netscape Navigator] Let's see... Greg Davis, 60 years old, predictable, obsessed with execution, keeps to himself, has a penchant for a perennially unsuccessful play. But what do the fans say?


Iconferentz_medium They absolutely hate him! By my everything-on-the-internet-is-wrong-and-evil theorem, he must be the best offensive coordinator in the land! Think of the possibilities! It would be like Ken had never left... <yawn> had never left... had never left... [Ferentz drifts off to sleep and proceeds to have the following freaky dream]


Iconferentz_medium I'm back on that ledge. Ken -- No!




Dolphinvert_medium Vertkokface_medium









Ferentz wakes up with a start

Iconferentz_medium Oh, it was all a freaky dream. But that gives me an idea.

A few phone calls later.

Iconferentz_medium Greg, thanks so much for coming aboard with us.

Gregiconsmall_medium No problem, Kirk. I'm really excited to have another opportunity. There's a play I think you'll go just bonkers over. It's called the wide receiver scree--

Iconferentz_medium There will be time to talk about that later. First, we need to make a few changes in wardrobe.

Gregiconsmall_medium Wardrobe?

Iconferentz_medium Yeah, it's no biggie. Everyone has to look a certain way here at Iowa. Understated, classy, affordable: that's the J.C. Penny's -- I mean -- Iowa look.

Gregiconsmall_medium Well, I'll make sure to get out to the store as soon as I can. Now, about the running game.

Iconferentz_medium These are your size, aren't they? [Pulls out a pair of khakis and a black shirt]

Gregiconsmall_medium Umm... yes, they are. But how did you know...

Iconferentz_medium Put them on.

Gregiconsmall_medium Here? Jeez, I don't know. Mack never made me...

Iconferentz_medium That contract can still be torn up, Greg.

Gregiconsmall_medium Well, okay. [Davis changes into new clothes]. Is this better?


Iconferentz_medium Yes, but something is still wrong... Lose the glasses.

Davisiowaiconsmall_medium Lose the glasses? But I need those to see! I'm extremely near-sighted. Without these glasses I won't be able to read the defense and call the appropriate play.

Iconferentz_medium The defense is irrelevant. Execution is all. I thought you knew that. Lose the glasses.

Davisiowaiconsmall_medium Well, tarnation. Okay. [removes glasses] There, can we talk about football now?


Iconferentz_medium Something is still not quite right. Ken -- I mean the Iowa offensive coordinator -- has darker hair too. It needs to be dark to ... umm... coordinate with the shirt. Here, I've got some shoe polish.


Blackhairicon_medium I'm pretty sure this is illegal.

Iconferentz_medium And you could stand to lose 50 pounds. Here, get on this treadmill.

Blackhairicon_medium No way! I'm an old man!

Iconferentz_medium But you've got the lustrous hair of a 30-year old.

Blackhairicon_medium I'm out of here.

Iconferentz_medium [pulls out revolver] Get. On. The. Treadmill.

Blackhairicon_medium This is definitely illegal.

36 hours later

Iconferentz_medium Alright, you can take the gauze off, Greg. I don't know why I made you put it on the first place, actually. More dramatic that way, I suppose. A quick brush through the hair and some brylcreem and ... voila!


Iconferentz_medium Oh, Ken, it's like you never left!

Kokdavisicon_medium My name is Greg. You know, this is getting a little weird. I'm afraid I'll have to...

Iconphone45_medium <Brrng> <Brrng>

Iconferentz_medium Hold that thought. Yes, who is it?

Iconokeefe_medium Kirk, it's me, Ken O'Keefe!

Iconferentz_medium But... what... how... who... why... where?

Iconokeefe_medium Yeah, I know I pulled a little trick on you back at the bell tower, but I can explain. You never let me take part in all your fun prank phone calls, Kirk. That was hurtful... very hurtful. So I thought I'd try one of my own. Did I fool you?

Iconferentz_medium Umm... well, I've got Greg Davis here dressed up as your exact double, so I would say, yeah, you ... almost had me there.

Iconokeefe_medium Maybe next time. I'm coaching with the Dolphins now, Kirk. It's been in all the papers.

Iconferentz_medium I'm operating on the theory that the everything in the media is wrong and evil -- must have missed it. That's great, Ken. Now my freaky dream makes a lot more sense. Except for the part with Grandma Ferentz and the Cyclone mascot... and the part with the blind singer from Road House.

Iconokeefe_medium Kirk, can I be serious for a second?

Iconferentz_medium Sure thing, Kenny.

Iconokeefe_medium Give Greg Davis a break. Don't make him be my replica, don't make him fit into a rigid notion of what Iowa football has to be. Let him be himself, let him experiment, let him grow.

Iconferentz_medium ...

Iconokeefe_medium I encourage you to adopt the Japanese business philosophy of kaizen, or continuous improvement. The Japanese think that if you make every member of your staff an active participant in the process of continually improving the productivity and creativity of the workplace, the entire organization will benefit. Be like the willow, Kirk: strong, but flexible.

Iconferentz_medium That is surprisingly deep, Ken O'Keefe.

Iconokeefe_medium Well, just think about it.

Iconferentz_medium Alright, Ken. I will. Now don't let those cougars get you. You're quite the catch now, Mr. NFL Coach.

Iconokeefe_medium Oh, no, there aren't cougars down here. It's more of an alligator and jaguar state as I understand it. And I've taken precautions -- Dan Marino gave me his spear-gun!

Iconferentz_medium That's my Ken. Vaya con dios, Ken O'Keefe.

Iconokeefe_medium Buy-a-condos to you too, Kirk. [hangs up]

Iconferentz_medium Well, Greg, I guess I owe you an apology. I lost my head there for a second. You can take that stuff off ... and regain all that weight. Oh, and sorry about the gun.

Gregiconsmall_medium That's alright, Kirk. And I'll get adjusted to Iowa, just give me some time.

Iconferentz_medium Yeah, a good friend told me I should do just that.

Gregiconsmall_medium Say, Kirk, maybe it was the extreme exhaustion and the shoe polish fumes, but I think I just had a great idea.

Iconferentz_medium I'm listening.

Gregiconsmall_medium Before the season, let's go on a team-building trip somewhere special.

Iconferentz_medium That's the stupidest id-- wait, you know what, Greg? I value your input and am listening to your concerns. Where did you have in mind?

Gregiconsmall_medium It's this quaint little mission in Texas. It's got the highest bell tower in the state...





or is it?