Friday, October 16, 2015

7 Quick Takes- Michigan Football Edition

So, I'm gonna spend this quick take writing about something I am certain no other quick takers are gonna write about.  The other night, the husband and I were watching an ESPN special on USC football.  It was so good, and I kept thinking to myself, 'MAN- I LOVE FOOTBALL'.  And so, with the big in-state rivalry game tomorrow (and my triumphant return to the Big House) I decided to share with you seven reasons I love Michigan Football (memory edition).

I love Michigan Football because going to the Big House for the first time is one of my earliest childhood memories.  What is the Big House?  For all you who might not know (I mean, I hate to stereotype but I think most of the people who read my blog are Catholic Ladies who might not know) the Big House is the largest stadium in the United States and the second largest in the world (according to 'the wiki).  It's big.  And it is magical to walk into it for the first time.  But all that isn't why I remember my first game.
I remember my first game because my dad took me and my sister. I was five, my mom packed bite-size snickers (I have shared this before somewhere on the blog).  And I felt so so so VERY special. It's one of my most cherished memories.

I love Michigan Football because you never know what's going to happen.  You just don't.  Games can go either way.  Expected good teams, can be not as good as expected.  Undefeated teams can lose.  A few seconds left on the clock can be the difference maker.  I remember years back (maybe 10?) I went to a game with my cousin Aaron.  It was against Penn State.  Penn State fans are THE.WORST. I have never witnessed a fight in the Big House, that day I saw several from belligerent Penn State Fans (you know who you are).
Anyway, Michigan was behind with like 3 seconds left on the clock and it was their ball.

 I remember turning to a stranger next to me and asking, 'Is there anyway we can win this game?'
He responded, 'There is always a way'
We scored.  And won.  It was AWESOME.  ELECTRIFYING.

Speaking of strangers, I love Michigan Football because it makes strangers, friends.
There is nothing quite as magical as when you're in the Big House and Michigan scores during a big game.  Strangers become long lost friends as high fives and hugs are shared.  It's not entirely unthinkable that in an intense moment, one could grab the strangers jacket in front of them, or hand beside them.  Our family has sat in the same section since the 70s.   We sit by the same people every week.  We look forward to seeing them each season.  I don't know any of their names except 'Big John' the patriarch of the family that sits beside us and in front of us.  This summer, we were out in Detroit at a restaurant and one of Big John's son walked outside the restaurant.  Aaron pointed him out. It was so funny, like a fourth wall was broken.  That's our stadium family- how bizarre to see them in real life!
The agony of defeat
I love Michigan Football because of everything associated with October Football Saturdays.  The tailgates, the beer, the anticipation, the drive to Ann Arbor while looking at fall colors.  The smell, you guys, the smell of a crisp fall football Saturday gets me every time, and I love it.

I love Michigan Football because of all the things associated with November Football Saturdays.  The freezing cold that turns fingers to ice while walking to the Big House.

When I was in Middle School, my dad took my sister and I to a game in November.
You Guys.
We pulled up into our parking lot and my uncles met us.  The took one look at us and knew we'd freeze our little tails off (thanks Dad). They went into their cars and before we knew it, we were in mens clothing, jackets, hats, anything to keep us warm during the game. I won't forget my Uncle Danny telling me if I tucked my hands under my armpits under my shirt, I could keep myself warmer (seriously? It worked).
There's a love/hate relationship with November Games.
You wouldn't trade some of them for the world, but, at the stadium, there is an awareness that one's family room/big screen tv would be a heck of a lot more comfortable to watch the game.
Yet still, we go.

I love Michigan Football because of Game Day with my children.  They are starting to understand.  Saturdays are for game-day jerseys and special snacks.  While we watch, they 'set...hike!' on the floor with the players.  Big A thought it would be a good idea to pull a football upstairs the other week and play in our family room while watching (mom shut that SH$% down quick).  I love how our family watches together/apart. I love that my sons like to know who the 'good guys' are, and that they are already learning to detest the scarlet and grey.  There is something generational about being fans of this team that I just adore.

And finally, I love Michigan Football because of the Big Games.  The Good Games.
The games where you can feel something a' brewin' all week long.
Michigan has had a rough go these last few years, so we haven't had lots of games like it...
...the anticipation of a rose bowl
...the drama of the Big Ten Championship on the line
...the game when Michigan/Ohio State were ranked 1 and 2
...the games with National Championship consequences
...or the Game tomorrow.

Lil' Aaron's school is letting the students wear their Green/White or Maize/Blue today.  Lil' A is wearing his game day jersey today. He has been instructed to share a friendly, "Go Blue!" to anyone wearing green.

 It's gonna be huge.  And honestly, as the hype has been building in our state all week- the truth is, neither side knows who's gonna win.  It really could go either way.  And I'm thinking it's gonna go ours.  And I cannot wait!


That's it for me.  Check out more Quick Takes at http://thisaintthelyceum.org/



  1. Your love of Michigan Football sounds like my husband's (and my family's) love of Patriots football. We have football Sunday afternoons. All of us in our Patriots gear. TV blasting. Game snacks for lunch (or supper, depending on game time). There's something about the theme music for football that always gets me a little excited every fall......and then I miss it so much every February when it's gone. I love how sports bring families and strangers together. It's awesome being a part of something bigger than you are. I love that my two year old can say "Belichick" and that the four and two year old know to high 5 us when the Pats score. The one year old will get there, for now he's just happy wearing his jersey and hanging on to his little Patriots football. :-) Sports traditions are awesome. Have a fun Football Saturday!

    Kate in VT

    1. So awesome and totally our reality. There is nothing quite like fall :)

  2. I hope you don't hate me....I'm a Spartan alumnus and big Spartan football fan! :) I went to every football game in undergrad and camped out, stuck it out in the rain and snow, etc.

    Go green!