FORMER PHILADELPHIA EAGLES QUARTERBACK MIKE BORYLA TALKS ABOUT HIS COLLEGIATE/NFL CAREER AND SUPER BOWL LVII.
By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs
Are you ready for some football?
Super Bowl (LVII) 57 will feature the Kansas City Chiefs (14-3) with their unflappable quarterback Patrick Mahomes and the mighty Philadelphia Eagles (14-3) who are led by the remarkable Jalen Hurts.
This epic game kicks off Feb. 12 at 6:30 p.m. (ET/PT) from State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona and will air on Fox.
As of this writing, oddsmakers have the Philadelphia Eagles as 1.5 favorites to win Super Bowl LVII. They arrived here by trouncing the San Francisco 49ers 31-7 in the NFC championship game. The Kansas City Chiefs defeated the Cincinnati Bengals 23-20 in the AFC championship.
The Chiefs, under former San Francisco State University offensive line coach Andy Reid, will make their third Super Bowl appearance in four years. That's very impressive. Reid also coached the Eagles from 1999-2012.
There are several impressive storylines surrounding Super Bowl LVII. Most notably, the game is being played during Black History Month. It will be the first Super Bowl in history to feature two Black starting quarterbacks with Jalen Hurts and Patrick Mahomes. Then there are the Kelce brothers. Eagles' center Jason Kelce, 35, and Chiefs' tight end Travis Kelce, 33, will make history as the first set of brothers to play against each other in a Super Bowl.
So, now the question is who will win Super Bowl LVII and hoist the Vince Lombardi Trophy? Will it come down to a field goal, an interception, a dazzling one hand catch, or a key tackle for the Chiefs or Eagles to prevail?
I don't have any skin in this game. I can simply sit back and enjoy what should be--barring injuries--a spectacular Super Bowl. I'll leave the predictions to the experts. That's why N2Entertainment.net reached out to Mike Boryla a former Stanford University All-American quarterback (1973) and Philadelphia Eagles QB (1974 to 1976) who was selected to the Pro-Bowl in 1976. Boryla also played for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 1978.
Boryla, 71, who currently lives in Colorado with his wife Annie and their four sons, is an author who wrote the book, "The Case of the Disappearing Quarterback." He's also an actor and performs a one-man stage play titled "The Disappearing Quarterback."
Boryla took a moment to chat via email with N2Entertainment.net about his collegiate and NFL career, and who he believes will win Super Bowl LVII.
Read on to find out what this outspoken, former gridiron star had to say.
Q. When did you realize you were going to be a pro athlete. Did it come from your athletic background since your father Vince was an NBA player with the New York Knicks. How much influence did he have on your career, good or bad?
A.I had a vision when I was 11-years old sitting in the Stanford Stadium with 103,000 screaming Russian and Americans watching the Russian American Dual Track Meet. I was sitting very close to the high jump pit. I saw Valeriy Brumel set the world record in the high jump. The stadium erupted into a roar, applause, and cheers. I was so shy back then. It startled me. I knew then that I was going to be a quarterback at Stanford and that fans would be applauding me in that same stadium. I also knew that I was going to play pro football at quarterback. My dad was a control freak. That is what we called psychopaths back in the day. He hated me playing football. I was an all-state basketball player and my senior year at Regis, he said I couldn't play football because I might get hurt because I already had a full scholarship to Notre Dame to play basketball. I had to get my basketball coach Guy Gibbs to talk my dad in to let me play football. I did and I became the best quarterback in the history of Regis High School and the history of the state of Colorado. I won the Denver Post Gold Helmet Award as the top scholar athlete in Colorado after the football season. I wanted to go to Stanford. My dad wanted me to go to the Air Force Academy which is just down the road from where we lived. I told my dad I was not going to the Air Force Academy because I couldn't play Pro Football because I would have to be a fighter pilot over in Viet Nam for six years. He said I wasn't good enough to play Pro Football. I said I was going to Stanford. Then he tried to bribe me with money because he was a millionaire. He told me he would give me a $1000 for every month I was in the Air Force Academy. I told him no. I am going to Stanford. He was so mad that he didn't talk to me for three months. I went to Stanford, and I had to work to get the $3000 of partial tuition grant that I received. Throughout my life whenever the Lord wanted me to do something my psychopathic dad always tried to get me to do the exact opposite.
Q. What are some of your fondest memories of playing at Stanford?
A. I loved Stanford from the very moment I set foot on the campus when I was 11-years old. I felt at home when I was at Stanford. I felt safe because my dad was 2,000 miles away. My coaches were John Ralston and Jack Christiansen. They were both wonderful men. Not at all like my father. I was Playboy Magazine All-American in 1973. My favorite memory of playing football at Stanford was May of my junior year until August right before the start of my senior year. Here is what I did: All expense paid trip to Chicago to have my picture taken for Playboy Magazine. I had dinner at the world-famous Playboy Club in Chicago and stayed at the famous Playboy Penthouse Towers. Next, I was selected by the USO to go on a six week all expenses paid USO trip to Korea, the Philippines and Japan. I will never forget it. It was absolutely incredible. I spent a month in Hawaii before my senior year started. I used the per diem they gave me to pay for it. A big shot Stanford football fan was in Hawaii with his massive sailboat. He invited me to sail from Pearl Harbor to Maui on his sail boat. It was absolutely incredible. I will never forget it. I came back to Stanford for my Senior Year. My best game was the Washington State game my senior year at Stanford. I threw five touchdown passes--a record for Stanford at that time-- and I was named MVP of the Stanford team. I am very proud of the MVP award because the players vote on it.
Q. Were you excited to play for the Philadelphia Eagles and share QB duties with Roman Gabriel?
A. I played in the Senior Bowl All-Star game after my senior year at Stanford. I was coached by Mike McCormick. I really liked Coach McCormick. He became a father figure to me since I never had a normal father. I wanted to play pro ball for his team which was the Philadelphia Eagles. Roman Gabriel was a great guy. I respected him but felt sorry for him because he was so obsessed with football. He was also a very good actor. He played a headhunter in the TV show "Gilligan's Island." He also was in a famous movie with John Wayne and Rock Hudson called "The Undefeated." When I told him I thought he was incredible in the movie he just laughed and said oh yea the Indian scout Blue. He was embarrassed about it.
Q. What were some of your other NFL accomplishments?
A. I started the last three games of my rookie season, and we won all three games. I set an NFL record. I became the first rookie quarterback in NFL history to win three games in a row. I was selected to the Pro Bowl in 1976. I was also selected NFL Man of the Year in 1976 as well because of all of my charity work I did for the Ronald McDonald House. The Ronald McDonald House just started my rookie year.
Q. Let's talk Super Bowl LVII. (57). The stage is set. Your Philadelphia Eagles take on The Kansas City Chiefs. As a former QB what do you see as the advantages by the Eagles' Jalen Hurts and KC's Patrick Mahomes? Which team has the best shot at winning Sunday and why?
A. The Eagles will win based on three items. 1. The Eagles have the best, biggest, strongest, and most athletic offensive line in the history of NFL football. 2. Jalen Hurts leg presses 600 lbs. That is unheard of for a quarterback and 3. The Eagles have the best director of player development in the history of the NFL. His name is Connor Barwin. The Eagles are like a finely tuned high performance race car and they are going to run over the Kansas Chiefs. These two Super Bowl Teams, the Kansas City Chiefs and the Philadelphia Eagles, are the best two football teams with the best coaching staffs ever to play against each other in the Super Bowl. The Eagles will win by at least 10 points. The only way they can lose is if Jalen Hurts gets hurt.
Q. You are among an elite group of Philadelphia QB's from Norm Van Brocklin, Sonny Jurgensen, Roman Gabriel, and Ron Jaworski, to Randall Cunningham, Donovan McNabb, Michael Vick and Ty Detmer. What's it like to be among such esteemed company?
A. I really appreciate that the Lord let me play for Philadelphia. I am so thankful. It was a wonderful experience for me. I met so many wonderful funny players. It was an unforgettable wonderful period in my life. When I started writing, my mind naturally gravitated to this wonderful incredible period of my life. My one man play The Disappearing Quarterback and my recent memoir book "The Case of the Disappearing Quarterback" are about this wonderful period of my life.
Q. As a QB either at Stanford or in the NFL did you have a bit of trickery and were there any notable plays that you did in a game?
A. In the Pro Bowl the coaches let my put in my favorite Eagles play and they called it the Boryla Special. When I got in the game with seven minutes to go and down by seven points they sent in the Boryla Special from the sidelines. I called it. I faked a fullback slant to the left side and dropped back and faked a reverse to the slot receiver coming across. The left offensive tackle yelled "reverse reverse" as loud as he could in hopes that the linebacker would go with the slot receiver. Then the running back would sneak out in the flat and run a flat and up. I hit Terry Metcalf for a 25 five-yard touchdown pass. It worked perfect. I still occasional dream about this play. And in my dream, I can always hear my roommate Stan Walters yelling "reverse reverse."
Q. Are there any Eagles players or other NFL players that you are friends with and hang out with today?
A. Yes. I still hang out with my tight end with the Eagles Charle Young, my middle linebacker friend Frank LeMaster and Kevin Reilly.
Editor's Note: Whether you're rooting for the Kansas City Chiefs or the Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl LVII, this game should live up to all the hype and be a real doozy. By chance if it's not, there are always the commercials to look forward to. Get this. The cost of a 30-second commercial this year is $7 million. Let's hope that money is put to good and entertaining use.
Speaking of entertaining. Country music star Chris Stapleton will sing the National Anthem. All eyes will be on Rihanna who will headline the Halftime Show. In addition, TV's "Abbott Elementary" star Sheryl Lee Ralph will inspire audiences with her rendition of "Lift Every Voice and Sing," as well as R&B legend Babyface who will grace us with "America the Beautiful."
Super Bowl LVII kicks off Feb. 12 and airs at 6:30 p.m. (ET/PT on Fox).
Photo Collage Provided By: Alien Ink.