“We thought, there is no way The Rock is on I-75, just sitting there,” Will Seiler, Captain of Lovett’s Varsity Baseball team, told me.
And yet there he was.
This past Friday (March 22), Lovett’s Varsity Baseball Team was on a bus to their game against Cedar Grove. In typical Atlanta fashion, the bus was sitting on I-75 in Friday afternoon traffic. While the boys were talking on the bus, Nick Kemether, a junior, glanced out the window, only to see a large man in a pick up truck that looked a lot like Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.
“He said he saw him but everyone told him, no, it wasn’t possible,” explains Will. “But he insisted that it was [The Rock] and made us all look. Everyone in the bus turned around and it actually looked like him! So, we rolled down the windows and started waving and trying to get his attention.” And that is where the video started.
Laughing at the cheers and yells, The Rock, who is currently in Atlanta shooting Jumanji 2, pulled out his phone to catch the special moment of the Baseball Team waving him hello on the highway.
In the clip, The Rock rolls down his window and asks the excited group where they are headed. In unison the boys respond “We are going to baseball!” The movie star then asks, “You are going to it right now?”“Yes” the team cheers. “You going to kick ass?” the Rock shoots back. “Yeah!” the boys continue to cheer. Then The Rock pulls away, remarking that the driver of the bus “better keep his eyes on the road!” (https://www.instagram.com/p/BvZ3bgJhgEl/)
Soon after, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson uploaded the video onto his Instagram, which has over 136 Million followers. The video immediately went viral. Since he posted it, the video has gained over 19 million views, 22 thousand comments, and 3.6 million likes. The clip has also been picked up by ESPN, Gradick Sports, and Entertainment News among other social media and news outlets.
On Monday, the team was even interviewed by Access Hollywood. The news group sent the team interview questions which were captured and sent to Access Hollywood by Mr. McIntyre. In the interview, many team members answered questions about where the team was headed, the chance encounter, and how their game went.
After their run in with The Rock, the Lovett Boys Varsity Baseball team, who won the State Championship title last year, beat Cedar Grove by a score of 23-1. With all the publicity surrounding the video, it was not long before The Rock was informed of the Lovett team’s awesome victory. He shared his excitement in a colorful twitter post on Monday March 25th: “So I just found out that this team beats the [expletive] out of their opponent after this moment later this afternoon. I’m glad I can help motivate these athletes but the truth is #LovettBaseball doesn’t need much help.” (https://twitter.com/TheRock/status/1110390724284030976)
While the chance encounter meant a lot to the baseball players, it apparently meant a lot to The Rock as well. On Tuesday March 26th The Rock poster another video about the boys. His second post was of the video of the same encounter but from one of the athlete's phones. That updated video gained more than 20 million views in 1 day.
The video’s heartfelt comment read as follows: “For the most part, my life is insane and relentless, but when I’m caught in a surprise moment like this it makes me happy and warms my cold black heart. I posted a vid a few days ago of me pulling up alongside a bus of hyped high school baseball players who recognized me in my truck. Here’s the angle from one of the player’s phones. The players went on line and thanked me for this “pre game pep talk” and then went out and beat the other team 23-1. Yes. 23 to 1. And listen boys, clearly me driving my pickup truck with dried mud all over the thing says I don't ever [care] about trying to impress anyone. And neither should you. Just stay focused on your goals and keep being the hardest workers in the room. It’ll always pay off for the rest of your lives. Thanks for making my day and keep kicking [butt]. #LovettBaseball #TruckDrivingMan #HardestWorkersInTheRoom (https://www.instagram.com/p/BvfAKSHBwau/)
Maybe, just maybe, we will see that same mud covered pick up truck pull up to the Lovett baseball fields sometime soon. And maybe, just maybe, a bunch of Lovett Lions and a world-famous superstar can once again make each others’ days.