Bearcat Baby Makes Surprise Appearance
Date: Oct. 24, 2002
And Happy Homecoming for Alumni Couple
By: Eric Lose
Phone: (513) 556-3001
Photos by: Lisa Ventre
Bearcat football's newest fan was two hours late for his first game, but he almost turned the end zone at Nippert Stadium into a delivery room.
Season ticket holders and University of Cincinnati graduates Lisa and Lyle Clem rarely miss a game. When the Bearcats played Texas Christian University on September 2nd, Lisa was 10 days from the due date for their first child. With eight minutes left in the fourth quarter UC was down by 15 points; the situation was a little slow until Lisa told Lyle "I think my water just broke."
Lyle said, "Her worst nightmare was that it would happen in a store of something, and here we were eight rows up in the end zone. We were sitting in the southeast corner of the stadium, and my car was in a garage at the northeast end," said Lyle. Security helped escort them down across the end zone and through the band. Lyle rushed for the car but encountered another obstacle: "I forgot where I parked," he said, "it was one of those days."
Security helped them cut through traffic and the Clems headed for the hospital. Baby Clem's imminent arrival may have panicked his parents but it brought good fortune to the team: the Bearcats started a come-from-behind rally. "Six of us were all piled into my jeep heading to the hospital," said Lyle, "when we heard the cannons going off in the distance, so I tuned in the game and learned we had scored."
The Clem's made it to delivery with time to spare and still were able to share in the Bearcat victory.
"One of the nurses had been listening to the game," said Lyle. "After Lisa was hooked up to the monitors we ran back to check the score and learned UC had won.
Within an hour we were in the operating room and Lucas was born. "
Word of Lucas' near-appearance at the game spread to the athletic department: soon after his birth he received an autographed hat and card from head football coach Rick Minter and Dean Billick, deputy director of athletics. "I thought it was really kind of them," said Lyle.
When asked if he would take his son to a Bearcat game, Lyle responded "Absolutely. I don't know if it will be this year, he's kind of little for it right now."