WITH A CHORUS of boos raining down from the Radio City Music Hall crowd, Matt Schucker couldn't help but smirk.
Luckily, Schucker, an Eagles fan, had expected this from the Giants-heavy horde, so he gathered himself and announced the Eagles' fourth-round selection of the NFL draft — Georgia cornerback Brandon Boykin.
Schucker, 28, who lives in Lexington, Va., but grew up in Lancaster, was the winner of an Eagles Facebook promotion that sent him and three friends to New York City for an all-expenses-paid trip to the draft. As part of the package, Schucker won the chance to announce the Eagles' fourth-round pick.
"I think I was more excited than nervous," he said. "I knew I would be dealing with a loud audience when I made the pick."
Schucker and friends sat in VIP seats for the first three rounds, and were able to see the Giants faithful lay into Brian Westbrook, who announced the Eagles' second-round picks from the podium Friday.
"I knew it was coming," Schucker said. "Westbrook — man, they just let him have it. I completely understand because he had his best games against them."
Schucker is a teacher and was hoping, for his students' sake, that his announcement would make it onto television. Sure enough, when pick No. 123 rolled around, the NFL Network cameras went to Schucker, wearing an Eagles polo shirt.
"We were watching the broadcasts on [ESPN and NFL Network] and they weren't really showing the fan picks at all," he said. "I knew my students would be watching. I got really lucky, for some reason, they just decided to show me."
Schucker said he fell in love with the Eagles in the Donovan McNabb, Westbrook and Brian Dawkins era and this experience has only strengthened his allegiance. He also was among the fans to attend a breakfast Saturday with commissioner Roger Goodell and got a chance to tour the draft set Friday. Along with Schucker, 250 fans won Eagles autographed prizes during the 6-week contest.
He had hoped that the Eagles would target Boykins, but when he saw the name on the draft card, he was relieved for more than just that reason.
"I was really hoping that it would be an easy name to pronounce," Schucker said, laughing. "That was the one thing I was nervous about. And I can tell you for sure, this is the first time I have ever looked at the fourth round of mock drafts." n