Postcard from Italy: Respecting the boundaries

Angelique S. Chengelis, The Detroit News

As I shot video of Michigan’s final practice in the amazing Stadio dei Marmi, designed and built in the ’20s and lined by 59 marble statues depicting athletes from many sports, I found myself drifting onto the field, way beyond the sideline where we were supposed to stay.

I wanted a good shot. The action was away from me and the offense was driving to the end zone. And then … a turnover. And then … my life was in danger, as three players running full steam were heading up the side of the field toward me, AT me.

For a split second I thought it would be best to take off for the middle of the field where Jim Harbaugh and most of the coaches were, but I thought my better option for living and having an opportunity to write this postcard was taking off to my left and the sideline. My video was still running and, yes, I said a four-letter word that begins with “S” as I dashed to safety.

Many years ago at a Michigan practice in Oosterbaan, the Wolverines had not thrown one deep pass, not one. I needed to get to the restroom, so I decided to cut across the field and put my head down and walked purposefully. Until I heard some shouting, looked up, saw then-assistant coach Terry Malone crazily waving his arms in that don’t-do-it way above him as Steve Breaston was running full force AT me.

From now on, I will stay behind the white line.

Twitter: @chengelis