Well, I suppose I was like most other long-time Jr. Blues fans when I heard about the sale of “our team”, change is difficult! I didn’t know what to expect from the new owners, specifically Dan Ferguson, that California interloper, coming out to the Midwest to buy “our team”. Was it to be out from under us? Would he move the team back to California? Just exactly what did he have up his sleeve? Was this a conspiracy to move the long running consecutive franchise out of Springfield? Wow! Questions flew a mile a minute. Rumors were rampant, and none of them were upbeat either.
“That’s it!” I thought. If the Jr. Blues are gone, so am I! I wasn’t going to broadcast another game. I wasn’t even going to follow the team anymore…but wait a minute. Some semblance of common sense kicked in for just a minute, and I thought, “wait, I haven’t even talked to them yet. Maybe they’re not as bad as the imagination makes them out to be.” Hold the Presses! Yesterday, and today Barb and I had the opportunity to talk, at length, to Dan and Tony (Zasowski, new coach) and they are not Ogers after all. In fact I liked what I heard from both guys. Tony will bring a new style of hockey and new faces to the Nellie in persuit of the Robertson Cup, and Dan is willing to listen to anything that will help make the Jr. Blues and him successful. I like what I’ve heard, and I think good things are in store for the team, the fans and the entire Central Illinois area.
And, on top of everything else…”our Coach”…well up to time of the Finalization of the sale anyway, Joe Dibble has been hired by the Janesville Jets! While it was difficult to hang on to the old saying, “When one door closes, God will open another”, during the dark hours and days of uncertainty, I am happy to say without any reservation whatsoever, there are good times ahead for the Springfield Jr. Blues, our new owners, and for Joe. Everyone has appeared to land upright and ready to build toward a very positive future. I like what I’ve heard, and what I’ve seen so far. It points toward new friendships, and great working relationships, so…Let’s Go Blues!
Now, a side note. We need your help! We’ve lost some Billets for next year, and we need about three or four families to step up and open their homes and their hearts to some fine young men who will be coming in to be the next edition of the Jr. Blues. If you would like to become a host family for one, two, or more of the guys call the Jr. Blues office at (217)525-2589. We’ll do everything we can to make it an enjoyable, rewarding experience.
Finally, why don’t you come out to Lincoln Park May 19th for Jamboree in the Park from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm. It’s the annual Springfield Park District Jamboree, and you might just get a chance to meet and greet the new coaches of the Springfield Jr. Blues!