Ed Odeven Reporting

This feature appeared in the Arizona Daily Sun on Dec. 4, 2003.

Sipping from Fountain of Youth

By Ed Odeven

Let historians decide if Juan Ponce de Leon ever discovered the mystical Fountain of Youth. As far as we know, Floridians have recently discovered their own youthful elixir — on the baseball diamond and the football gridiron.

Jack McKeon, the Florida Marlins’ 72-year-old manager, came out of retirement and led his ballclub to a World Series title in October. Two months later, Howard Schnellenberger, a 69-year-old head coach, guided the upstart Florida Atlantic University football team to a 9-2 regular season record and a berth in the Division I-AA playoffs.

Coming off a 32-24 win over Bethune-Cookman last week, Schnellenberger’s 13th-ranked Owls will face No. 16 Northern Arizona (9-3) in Saturday’s quarterfinals. Kickoff is set for 6:05 p.m. at the Skydome.

On second thought, Schnellenberger’s age probably has nothing…

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