Wednesday, November 13, 2013
Riverboat Ron Rivera now has his own unofficial poster.
Jim Kennedy, a 27-year-old freelance graphic designer in Raleigh who is a Panther fan, designed the above image with Adobe Photoshop. He put it a few places online Tuesday night and it took off, enough so that Rivera's college-aged daughter Courtney was among the many who retweeted it on Twitter.
A few of Rivera's braver players have started calling the coach "Riverboat Ron" to his face -- offensive tackle Jordan Gross likes to do it because he says it almost makes Rivera "blush." Quarterback Cam Newton says he doesn't do it, however, joking that if he did so he might get a memo from general manager Dave Gettleman.
Rivera, who became gambling on fourth down more often after the Panthers started 0-2 this season, has had fun with the nickname. He joked in his Monday press conference that the only thing he tells offensive coordinator Mike Shula on the headphones during games is "This is Riverboat Ron, let's go for it."
The Panthers, winners of five straight, are 5-for-7 on fourth downs this season.
Kennedy, a 2008 N.C. State graduate, said he was inspired to design the image after watching Carolina's 10-9 win over San Francisco Sunday.
"I was excited after the big win," Kennedy said. "I just had that image in my mind, and I wanted to create it and share it with folks. But I sure didn't expect all this. The interest in it has really exploded."
Posted by Scott Fowler at 3:20 PM