Tony Angiuli was born in Lake Forest, Illinois and moved to the state of Florida when he was just four years old. As a child, Angiuli played many different sports. His favorite sport was basketball. Tony would play whenever he had a chance. As he got older Tony became more serious about basketball and went onto play for his high school.
The Florida Gators
A resident of Florida and with a love for sports, Tony decided to attend the University of Florida. At the University of Florida provided Tony not only received a great education, he was also able to witness two basketball National Championships led by Corey Brewer, Joakim Noah, and Al Horford of the NBA. Angiuli arrived at the university in 2004 and was there for when Tim Tebow became the starting quarterback in 2007. Tony was a frequent attendee at basketball games in the O’Connell Center in Gainesville (what Gators referred to as the O’Dome) and baseball games at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium (The Swamp). He was considered a “Rowdy Reptile” because of how often he went to the games. “Rowdy Reptile” is a perk program designed to grant great seats to regular attending students.
Tony Angiuli’s favorite basketball player is Kobe Bryant of the NBA. In Angiuli’s eyes, Bryant has been the most clutch basketball player in the league for the last 10 years. He’s been the most skilled player and the closest thing we have seen to Michael Jordan. Bryant is the most creative offensive player in the game and for most of his career was an underrated defender. It’s always fun to watch Kobe Bryant take over a game when he gets into his zone. He has a killer instinct and lets nobody stop him, even his own teammates. Tony has been a fan of the Lakers dating back to his early childhood.
Of course this year has been a pretty emotional one for any Lakers fan, and Tony’s no exception. Kobe Bryant gave a phenomenal final season
The Chicago Bears
Originally from Illinois, Tony Angiuli is also a fan of Chicago sports. He enjoys watching the Chicago Bears and is a diehard Cubs fan. While at the University of Florida, the Gators were hosting Vanderbilt, where current Bears quarterback Jay Cutler was playing. While Angiuli never leaves a Gator’s game early, he decided to on this day with the Gators up big over the Commodores. However, Jay Cutler led Vanderbilt to a huge exhilarating comeback to force overtime. Florida would go on to win the game but Angiuli doesn’t like to let go that Bears quarterback Jay Cutler gave him a great game that he missed most of.
Whenever he’s back in Chicago, Tony loves catching a game at the historic Soldier’s Field, just off of Lake Michigan.
The Chicago Cubs
Although Tony Angiuli has spent most of his adult life in Florida, his family has an unbreakable tie with the Cubs. When he was very little, his family would often take him to games at Wrigley Field. Later on when he was in Florida, his family would regularly gather around the television set to watch Cubs games. Even after he moved to Florida, Tony and his family would go to Cubs games whenever they were around Chicago.
One particular memory Tony has is of Sammy Sosa. With his herculean home run competition with Mark McGwire (which started one of the greatest Cubs rivalries), Sammy Sosa stood as as a baseball icon in Tony’s eyes. To this day, Sosa is one of Angiuli’s favorite players.
The Cubs, like the other Chicago sports teams, can sometimes seem hard to be fans for. They’ll do well for a long period of time, but will fail to land a division championship or World Series (even though they had one heck of a season in 2015). As Tony will tell you, it’s not about the statistics, the wins, the losses, it’s about the heart and personality of the team, and the Chicago Cubs have a lot of heart and personality.
Wrigley Field is a cultural heart unto itself, overtime while other baseball fields have been drastically renovated, and have traded out corporate sponsorships left and right (hello, US Cellular Field), the Cubs have stuck with Wrigley Field since 1927. Since then, the surrounding area in the neighborhood of Lakeview has become known as Wrigleyville. Even if the baseball field did change names, it’s neighborhood legacy would not be going anywhere anytime time soon.