Frank Sr. says his son is "calloused" now, which is not to say that he's incapable of feelings. Saturday, Costa was the last one to leave the Hurricane locker room. He walked out of the empty Orange Bowl looking like any 22-year-old—black-and-red-checked shirt, tail out, baseball cap on backward—and joined the family and friends from Philly who had waited one bad year for Costa, this Costa, to appear.
"He took a beating down here from everybody, newswriters, magazines—everyone buried him," says Frank Sr. "But he kept it to himself. He took punishment from everywhere. Was it just? I don't know."
For the moment, it wasn't important. Costa called to his dad, and father and son shook hands, and that dissolved into the quarterback's second strong hug of the night. Frank Sr. said something only his boy could hear, and then the moment was over as friends waded in to speak to them both. "Hey," Costa yelled to somebody, "where are we going now?"
Not that it mattered. Every place is flawless on top of the world.