Teddy Bridgewater with Savannah Price in her hospital room
Savannah Price is a big University of Louisville fan.
Boyfriend Ian Kelley asked Teddy Bridgewater to visit Savannah
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) --- Savannah Price is a big University of Louisville fan. She's a 21-year-old business finance student at the U of L, recovering from surgery at University Hospital. She is recovering from a surgical procedure she delayed as long as possible, although she was diagnosed with Crohn's disease when she was 7.
She says the biggest reason for the surgery was to restore her health, because her condition had deteriorated to the point where she couldn't take care of her 4-month-old son, John. But upon checking into the hospital for surgery, Savannah was not in good spirits.
So her boyfriend, Ian Kelley, threw up a Hail Mary, asking Louisville quarterback Teddy Bridgewater last Tuesday to visit Savannah in the hospital -- via Twitter.
"I even told Savannah it's probably like a 10 percent chance he shows up," Kelley said.
That's because Ian and Savannah had never met Bridgewater or had any social media interaction whatsoever. The Heisman hopeful (@teddyb_h2o) has more than 7,000 followers, enough for him to host a #TweetTeddyTuesday Q&A with his followers each week.
But Bridgewater responded. "@Kells_Ian @savannahcprice Okay, I'll arrange that," he tweeted back, less than 30 minutes after the request.
Even so, Savannah didn't hold out hope. She had the surgery, and several days passed. She told Bridgewater Sunday it was fine if he couldn't make it. She was sure he was very busy. After all, he is Teddy Bridgewater.
Then on Sunday night, Price received this tweet:
"@savannahcprice how bout I come now?"
"Okay, wow," Savannah said was her reaction. "It was crazy how it was on the fly ... I was amazed."
After the tweet, Bridgewater was on his way. He arrived Sunday night around 10. Despite their on-line interaction for several days, Savannah was in awe.
"I wasn't expecting to be emotional or star-struck, but when he came in through my door, I started tearing up," Savannah said.
Savannah said Bridgewater stayed for about 30 minutes. Kelley couldn't be there. But he said that he and Price are so passionate about U of L football that they had considered making their son John's middle name Teddy. Savannah was 7 months pregnant when the Cardinals won the Sugar Bowl last January.
Kelley said the surprise visit was the lift that his girlfriend needed.
"She's been pretty down lately. She's had a rough time with her surgery," said Ian. "I knew Teddy would lift up her spirits."
That it did, even if it rendered Savannah speechless.
"My mom had to run the conversation because I was so star struck," said Savannah, with a laugh. "It was just a casual conversation. He came in here, asked me how I was doing, and found out about my story."
Bridgewater told Price that he was in the same hospital in January for a procedure to fix his jaw.
"If I could summarize it, he could be this big hot shot, but he's really not," she said. "He came in here just to visit a fan, was really down to Earth, and very soft-spoken. It blew me away when he was in here."
Most athletes, collegiate or professional, have Twitter accounts. Many will visit people in the hospital, as part of a team function or bowl game organized activity.
Sunday, Bridgewater gave another example why he's different. Under the cover of night and behind the veil of social media, the future pro chose a random fan and decided to make her day, not caring about the media attention he might get for the visit.
It's not surprising that Bridgewater couldn't be reached to talk about his visit with Savannah, and that's fine. Teddy doesn't talk the talk. He just continues to walk the walk.