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CNN Today

St. Louis Gets Rams Fever

Aired January 28, 2000 - 1:27 p.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR: Well, temperatures are frigid in Missouri, but football fans are running a fever.

ANDRIA HALL, CNN ANCHOR: The Rams are getting ready for their first Super Bowl appearance since they moved to St. Louis.

CNN's Jeff Flock is at St. Louis University. How're you doing, Jeff?

ALLEN: Hi, Jeff.

JEFF FLOCK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I'm good. And you know, I've solved it. The reason that the -- I almost said Cardinals. The reason the Rams have done so well is the pope. The pope was here one year ago almost to the day, and ever since he visited the Ram's home, the TWA Dome, they haven't lost a game there and they're in the Super Bowl.

So we thought we'd come here to Catholic St. Louis University and ask some people who know about sports and God to discourse on it.

I'm with Father Mitch Doyan (ph), who has some thoughts, I think, on how this all intersects. It was the pope's fault, or we should say thanks to the pope.

MITCH DOYAN, ST. LOUIS UNIVERSITY: We're absolutely giving him the credit. A year ago, we thought we needed all the help we could get, but now I think people are reflecting back on the pope's visit. And we're not the only town that has won a championship or gotten to the Super Bowl after his visit. So there's a connection there.

I think more than anything else the pope inspired us to be our best. And the Rams are certainly showing that. They're making us proud.

FLOCK: Whatever you want to call it, it was four-and-12 last year and 12-and-four this year. That's a miraculous turnaround in anybody's book, right?

DOYAN: Absolutely. Yes. All right.

FLOCK: We appreciate your thoughts on it. I want to talk to some other -- other members of your flock around here.

Ah-HALL. Somebody sweating on a machine. Have the Rams sparked you to new athletic heights?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, they have. They're very exciting to watch, and that's one reason I'm working out.

FLOCK: How big are the rams in St. Louis right now? Obviously, this is the first time they've gone to the Super Bowl since they've been here in St. Louis. What does the town think of it?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think it's excited the whole town. That's all we hear about and that's all everyone is looking forward to this weekend. So I think it's great for the city and it's really exciting.

FLOCK: Great. I thank you and I want to ask someone else about the Mark McGwire factor. Last time we were here talking sports, we weren't talking football; we were talking Mark McGwire. I mean, it looks like Mark McGwire. You've got a chest about as big as his.

What do you think?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're all very excited in St. Louis about the Rams. I'm a season ticket holder. I've been to every single Rams game since they came to town to '95. And there's been a lot of bad football, so I'm very excited about it.

FLOCK: You a baseball fan like...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm a big baseball fan too. Yes.

FLOCK: This bigger or that bigger?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think this is bigger, because we haven't seen a championship series in town since I guess 1980 -- well, 1987 when the Cardinals lost. So it's very exciting. It's been a number of years.

FLOCK: I thank you. I appreciate it.

Let's try and get one more comment if we can before we -- before we get too far away here. And I've got another man, I think, who is down in the middle of a workout but maybe has a word or two to say to us.

Are you a fair-weather Rams fan, or were you a Rams fan before -- before they got so successful?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I was a Rams fan about a year ago, I'd say. I just started supporting the Rams. Basically, I've seen the Rams be resurrected. You're witnessing the resurrection of a team, a city and a nation. But other than that, the Rams are on a victory challenge, and they're just going to up and higher and higher.

Go to ATL (ph) and bring it home, baby.

FLOCK: All right. You heard it here. And I think that's the appropriate way to end it, with something about resurrection as we see how sports and God come together here in St. Louis and hopefully for the good on Sunday.

That is the latest from St. Louis.

Andria, Natalie, back to you.

ALLEN: All right. And thank you for coming up with that pope theory. The pope will be watching.

HALL: I think Jeff is the one -- he's the one who put that all together I think. But hey, whatever works.

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