By Bennett Gavrish
Abe Scherzer dreams about ducks at night, but not the kind waddling around the Public Garden.
In a city famous for its webbed-foot creatures, Scherzer, a 22-year-old senior at Boston University, plans his life and wardrobe around the University of Oregon and its mascot, the Ducks.
Scherzer has rooted for Oregon’s athletic programs from a young age and has kept that enthusiasm alive, even while studying print journalism on the other side of the country.
“I don’t think I’ve ever broken anything while watching an Oregon game,” Scherzer said as he scratched his blond hair. “But I definitely get very emotional.”
Scherzer grew up in Portland, Ore., and his father, Robert, has owned season tickets to University of Oregon football games for 25 years.
“Abe didn’t come to too many games at first,” Robert Scherzer said, “but by the time he turned 11, he was totally into it and I realized that he had slowly become as big a fan as I was.”
Many of Scherzer’s friends and relatives have studied at the University of Oregon, but Scherzer said there was something special about BU that led him to move away from the West Coast and his beloved Ducks.
Scherzer’s closest friends say he has no trouble expressing his pride for the University of Oregon even while going to school in Boston.
“Abe is the biggest Ducks fan I know,” said Couper Moorhead, a BU senior who went to high school with Scherzer in Portland. “You always expect to see him wearing a green Oregon shirt or jacket around school.”
Those who have lived with Scherzer have gotten an even clearer picture of the depth of his love for the Ducks.
“Abe and I lived on the same floor during freshman year and he wore slippers and pajamas with the Oregon logo,” said Conor Reilly, a senior at BU. “Oregon football is his religion.”
Scherzer got the opportunity to combine his interest in sports with his pursuit of journalism in the spring of 2008, when he studied abroad in London and worked for a TV production company that created World Cup skiing programs.
He strongly recommends that all journalism students take the opportunity to study outside of the United States, saying the experience “really mellowed me out.”
Scherzer plans to graduate a semester early in December, but he does not have any professional plans.
“I’ll think about that next week,” he said.
Scherzer said he might try to get a journalism job in Boston or work for a public relations firm that his cousin recently opened.
Either way, Scherzer definitely wants to return to Portland, so he can once again enjoy the highs and lows of University of Oregon sports.
“The only time I’ve ever really cried was when the Ducks lost to Oregon State in football,” Scherzer said, shaking his head. “That was a sad day.”