CINCINNATI - In what is being labeled as "Post-Game Interview Shenanigans," the University of Cincinnati's baseball infielder Ryan Quinn may just be the most creative video "extra" in all college athletics.
"Some spur-of-the-moment pranks that I did for fun have completely blown up into this nation-wide phenomena," Quinn said of the post-game video footage he and his teammates created. "The past 24 hours have been so awesome."
The baseball team has gone viral, but not for what takes place during the game. The clips appeared on ESPN2 show "Highly Questionable" hosted by Dan Le Batard and ESPN's Sports Nation. Affiliates from USA Today, the Cincinnati Reds, and SB Nation are just a few of the organizations buzzing about the bearcats' post-game video tactics.
"This is unreal," Reds third baseman, Todd Frazier, tweeted about the video to his 32,000+ followers. "The thought they put into this is top notch #bearcatbaseball. Good stuff."
To see one of the videos, click here: http://ftw.usatoday.com/2013/05/cincinnati-bearcats-postgame-interview-gifs/
In the background of a number of interviews between the media members at GoBearcats.com and the influential player for that day's game, the 21-year-old Quinn and a few other key teammates can be seen impersonating Queen Cleopatra on her throne, deep-sea scuba diving, or dueling knights from medieval time.
"Well, I'm certainly not shy in front of a camera, so I saw the opportunity and took advantage," said Quinn after UC's win against its cross-town rival. "I smiled at the camera in one of our wins over Xavier in early April, and it just escalated from there. It got a couple laughs at the first real skit, so, obviously, I had to keep it up. I couldn't disappoint anyone."
After the initial "video blast" on April 17 with a win over Ohio State, other teammates wanted to become more involved.
"Quinn came up with most of the ideas himself, and whatever he said, we made it happen," said Andrew Strenge, senior UC pitcher. "My personal favorite is the ‘pig roast' where he's hanging off the tarp roller. Pretty genius, really."
JP Jackson, senior infielder, was lucky enough to be nominated as the lead "backstroker" in the swimming video.
"I was honored [to be in the video]," Jackson said. "Quinn is not only a good friend but a hard-nosed ball player and probably the best prankster I've ever known. If anyone is deserving of this sort of fame, it's him."
Quinn, who was the team's designated hitter for most of the 2012-2013 season, doesn't mind the publicity a bit, and neither do his teammates. After every win, putting together the video skits became a necessity to create optimism in the midst of a stressful season for the Bearcats who went 6-18 in conference play.
"The team would anticipate every post-game interview just to see what Quinn had up his sleeve," team captain and roommate, Justin Glass, said. "We were putting so much pressure on ourselves to win this season, but the video bombs kept the team loose. It reminded us what being a team is all about. It reminded us why we love the game."
While making the videos led to instant fame, Quinn is just the same guy he's always been.
"Quinn is the exact same guy you see in the videos," Glass said. "But even though he's always the prankster, he is one of the hardest workers I've ever known, on and off the field. That's what really matters."
Quinn is still, humbly, in awe about the whole situation.
"I just can't believe this is happening," Quinn said. "Can you believe what a corny, smile-for-the-camera can do?"
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