Fall doesn’t officially start until college football does. At least in my mind it doesn’t. And it doesn’t matter that the temperatures here are still in summer range – once Game Day shows up – it’s fall.
There’s nothing like college football. And it’s not even the game for me. I know nothing of line ups and offensive strategies and who’s debuting their new running game this season. None of that matters – except maybe the winning part. I’ve had the luck and gift of being able to sit and root for my team in one of the largest and loudest stadiums in the country and one that is a bit smaller, but filled with some of my favorite people on the planet.
It’s not the game.
It’s the friends.
Walking to the stadium, not driving.
The flask snuck in a well-worn boot.
The blazers on freshman and their striped ties.
The kiss when a team scores.
The tears that come when the team runs in.
The cheerleaders flying.
The dance team sparkling and full of bump-its.
It’s furry mascots that jack with the crowd.
Alumni that come back every season for fifty years and sit right next to you if you’re one of the lucky ones.
It’s rivalries, not money. It’s pride not endorsements.
It’s your mom or dad’s alma mater when you’re nine.
Then it’s your school. Your memories. Your stories.
Then it’s your alma mater that you teach your nine year old about. All decked out and face painted.
It’s just one more shade of color on a magical time.
You can keep your pro sports. I love the heart of college football.