CLEVELAND - The parents of Coach "Chud" are speaking out about their son's new gig as Browns head coach.
Gary and Ruth Chudzinski couldn't have been more proud Friday. They were all smiles as we sat down at the kitchen table of their Fremont home -- the excitement buzzed all around us, even in the voice message a family member left that played out loud, " … just calling to congratulate you and Ruth on your son's accomplishments!"
Both Gary and Ruth immediately looked at one another and laughed saying those are the phone calls and messages they've been receiving all day. "It's just a really a nice thing that he ended up being a head coach where he always wanted to be," said Gary.
Gary and Ruth, Rob's Chudzinski's parents, said they received word last night, via a phone call from Rob.
"He called us and he, first of all he said, 'Do you know who this is?' and of course we recognized his [voice] and we said, 'Sure we do!' And he says, 'Well do you know you're talking to the next head coach of the Cleveland Browns?' and then we just, you know, really lost it," said Ruth.
"That's kind of the way he likes to break news to us," she continued, her and Gary both laughing as they looked at one another again.
As they told us more about their son growing up an "Orange and Brown" fan, Ruth and Gary smiled recalling the memory Rob shared in Friday's Browns press conference of how he and his cousins used to watch Browns games from outside, in the snow … and sometimes shirtless!
"They wanted to be in the dog pound. That was their thing," said Ruth.
Gary said one of his oldest memories of Rob's love for the game and team goes back to his early days when Gary said Rob would make pretend he was one of his idols, Ozzie Newsome.
"I remember him asking me to throw the ball where it was difficult to catch," said Gary, "because he wanted to make the all-star catch so that was quite humorous."
That same hunger for a challenge Ruth and Gary said motivated Rob throughout sports, from playing football where he grew up in Toledo to his career as a Tight Ends Coach and Offensive Coordinator. But is it enough to be head coach for the Cleveland Browns?
Gary said, "I agree everybody's saying, 'I'm going to do this, I'm going to do that.' but Rob has been very successful, thank God, in most everything he's done. So when he faces a challenge, we've seen enough to know that we're going to get the best out of him."
Both are 100% behind their son, but if Rob does get into some trouble, his dad jokingly said, "If things get tough and you need a play. I have my cell phone and I'll call it in to you!"
A more extensive interview with Gary and Ruth Chudzinski is available in "video" tab.