February 20, 2009 1:36 pm ET by Kyle Whelliston
Bally definitely has a West Coast Bias, and this week we knocked once again on that golden door.
We visited San Jose State on Tuesday. Spartan fans, get on your feet!
No trip to the middle of the Golden State is complete without a side trip to Gilroy, a town that actually smells like garlic. There are towns in central California that smell like horse apples, so getting a noseful of Allium sativum L. is a welcome relief. (Bally can't comprehend any of this, because he doesn't have a nose.)
San Luis Obispo is a kind little town full of bike lanes, old folks and the California Polytechnic State University. Mott Gym is where the Cal Poly Mustangs play, and the upper section is the domain of the Mustang Maniacs. The team is really bad this year, but they keep showing up.
I didn't have Bally when I lived on the west coast, and I didn't know about horchata back then, the sweet creamy milky beverage of the gods. You have to go to the authentic Mexican places to find it, and it's usually served in styrofoam or Dixie cups from a slushie dispenser. I snuck a half-gallon of the stuff into my checked luggage.
At Saint Mary's on Thursday, Bally faced down his ultimate nightmare: a halftime contest in which mini-balls were lobbed at a target on center court. I mean, imagine if there was a master race of giants and they were lobbing humans at a bullseye for a gift certificate to a local restaurant. It's a day later, and he's still shaking.
It's okay, Bally, you're a king ball worthy of a fine mid-major throne.
Alas, it always comes time to leave. Farewell, California, until we meet again.
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