Frederick, Md., native Cole Ahalt is what you might think of as a "tough guy." He's a hockey player. In fact, he was the captain of the Salisbury University ice hockey team not too long ago, and he was also the president of the Salisbury University ice hockey club.
So perhaps there's irony in what led Ahalt to having to make a Sunday night trip to the hospital last weekend. He didn't injure himself while delivering a punishing check on the ice or by taking a puck to the face. Instead, he injured himself … celebrating the Ravens' AFC North championship-clinching win against the Browns.
He told PressBox a little more about it.
So can you explain what exactly happened last Sunday?
Cole Ahalt: So it's actually kind of a funny story. When I was playing [ice hockey] in college actually I had dislocated my shoulder -- about two years ago, my senior year. So naturally I don't have the best shoulder as it is. So when the Ravens got the interception at the end with C.J. Mosley, I basically went to start yelling and cheer and flung my arms out and next thing you know, my arm popped out of the socket.
Did you realize immediately what had happened?
CA: I knew immediately because I had done it before and it felt just like it did before when I had done it before. I knew I had popped it out.
What was going through your mind? Other than the pain.
CA: I mean, even though I was writhing in pain on the floor, I was still in a good mood because the Ravens had just won. The way I see it, I like to think that my popped shoulder helped them run the next two kneel downs. It was great moral support.
You had to go to the hospital. How was it explaining to everyone there what had happened?
CA: I was at home and my girlfriend drove me to the hospital. I had to explain it, they all thought it was pretty funny.
What's the extent of the damage?
CA: They popped it back in at the hospital and took some X-rays just to make sure no bones were broken or anything -- and they weren't, luckily. I actually have a follow-up next week with an orthopedic to see if there's any damage there. For now they just put me in a sling. It's just a little sore. I still have motion in my arm but it's just a little sore. The next day was the worst but it's slowly getting better.
You're a hockey player, so I assume you're no stranger to injuries. What's the worst you've experienced?
CA: The worst injury has definitely been my dislocated shoulder. But I've now dislocated the shoulder twice and I've also broken my collarbone on this shoulder three times. My right shoulder's not so good. I also just have general wear and tear, body sores and stuff like that. Nothing too big.
Did any of your hockey buddies give you grief over suffering an injury while watching a football game?
CA: Some of my hockey buddies reached out to me, everybody at work, some of my good friends. Of course everybody was giving me [grief]. But you know, that's the way it is.
You reached out to the Ravens about trying to get tickets. Have you heard back?
CA: I did not, but I just thought it would be funny … you never know. It was funny because I know someone from
The Baltimore Sun put it in a story and then also my stepbrother was at the bar on New Year's Eve and he said he looked up and he saw my tweet on the news.
Do you sorta feel like you're kind of a good luck charm?
CA: The record of me showing up to games has been pretty stellar. I definitely have my superstitions that I like to stick to and me being at the games is definitely good luck.
Are you superstitious enough that you'd purposely throw your arm out of socket this week to try to help the team win?
CA: I would hope not. I'm not that crazy.
What if they're down by two touchdowns in the second half?