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Gage Implosion: Vikings Share Fond Memories

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While thousands of students have lived in MSU's Gage Towers we can't forget about a certain group who made that dorm their home for a couple of weeks every summer.

This year will mark the 47th season the Vikings have traveled south of the Twin Cities for camp.

Bob Lurtsema says, "You can't make memories from a parking lot. What we did in Gage hall were lifetime memories."

For the first time in decades the rookies and the veterans will have different living quarters.
Bob Lurtsema says, "We did so many crazy things like a bunch of young kids in Mankato at

Bob Lurtsema AKA "Benchwarmer Bob" says his experience living in Gage is like none other.
Bob Lurtsema says, "I played 12 years in NFL and went to training camp but believe it or not I looked forward to it because you get to be back with your buddies again and the thing is you just can't explain it to people.

Now an established photographer, back in 1974-1985 Matt Blair was an outside linebacker for all 12 seasons of his career.
Matt Blair says, "Just the memories what we did in Gage hall just a good place. I think the most exciting was playing botchy ball with Coach Grant."

Another memory: the heat.

Blair says, "Back when we played we did not have air conditioning. It was so hot!"
And their 11:00 curfew didn't keep them from indulging in late night munchies.

Lurtsema says, "Once we got through bed check, we got on the phone and called Jake's pizza and we would drop a bed sheet and pull up the pizza."

Blair says, "Just interesting to be a part of something like that.. it's a tradition that's gone on for a lifetime, Mankato is okay!"

Lurtsema says, "When we get together we start talking about war stories, the rocket blasts, Jake's Pizza. We had fun in Gage and I'm going to miss that place."