Are You Ready for some FOOTBALL??? Lion Up, Y’all!!

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My favorite pic of me and Gretchen

The relentless summer in the south feels like it never ends. I look at the calendar, and fall seems so far away. Fall may not come until early November depending on the weather gods that rain down sunshine here. The worst time is August. It’s the hottest month of the year unless July rallies and matches its intensity. The thought of more heat for more months is enough to get anybody down. The one thing that makes August bearable for any true southerner is what comes at the very end. It’s entrance onto the social calendar comes quietly, but once its launched, it is full scale party time down here. Are you ready for some football???!!!

When my second husband – a Chicago native – moved down south, he lamented the fact that people down here didn’t care about professional football. He could not understand why college football was such a big deal. “Why does anybody care about college football,” he asked incredulously. I looked at him with great concern and told him that he’d better not bring that up to anybody down here. I heard rumors that LSU starts their season this weekend against a northern team in a dome in Houston. My guess is those Yankees didn’t want to come down here in this brutal heat in August and play outside. I don’t blame them either. But, my focus is on the REAL game around here – Southeastern Louisiana University football. They won the Southland Conference last year and did pretty well in the playoffs. They are predicted to be even better this year if you listen to the hype. I – in my first ever commitment to the sport – purchased season tickets. I had so much fun last year that I couldn’t imagine not being at all of the games this season.

2014 SLU Football Season Hype

My partner-in-crime, Gretchen, and I are already discussing plans for Saturday. I didn’t get into the action last year until around October, so I missed some of the hotter games. Winter came on pretty quick after I started attending, and I remember sitting in the stands in the rain and the freezing cold watching football. My sister finds this wildly laughable. I have never been a football fan. In fact, I’ve never been much of a fan of any sport. For some reason, though, last season was really special. Part of it was getting to know old friends all over again after 30 years, but a lot of it was being a part of something magical. It has been a really long time since Southeastern had a championship team, and the small town school became the football sweetheart of the state. My most read blog ever … in the fabled history of Midlife Moments …. was the one where I chronicled their journey to glory. If you are interested, you can read it here. The season was pure magic. I, for one, cannot resist a dance with magic especially if it includes boys in tight pants.

So, I’m trying to decide what I’m going to wear to the game. Green and gold is the obvious color scheme. I’d love to do a real tailgate this year and even bring a dish like a good southern gal. Last year, I mooched off the Former Football Players’ Association’s offering. But, since I’m a season ticket holder, I think I need to step up to the plate – or the gridiron as the case may be. I hope that the momentum built last year in bringing old players back into the fold will pick up where it left off last year, and we’ll see lots of new faces in the upcoming months. It is the dream of the football coach and the former players association to build a robust community. What better time to get traction than in a winning season?

Last Year’s Runout Video for the Nicholl’s State Game – I just love this LION!!

This is what I love about SLU football games. Strawberry Stadium is a small stadium by big college standards, so it’s cozy. It’s easy to stand at the bottom of the bleachers and wave at your friends on the top row. Tailgating is inexpensive and easy. The alumni organization sets up a tent with food for all alumni and family. A few other groups have tents, but it’s mainly a large yard party in Friendship Circle under the shade of some amazingly beautiful live oak trees. If you don’t have SLU gear, you can walk 50 yards over the university bookstore and purchase what you need. An hour before the game starts, the marching band marches through the circle playing the fight song. They are sometimes accompanied by the team and maybe even some former players. It is reminiscent of quaint little scenes in movie scenes set in the south where living is small, people are simple and friendly and fun is what you make it. I’m already getting excited although I know there will be sweating … lots of sweating …this Saturday.

If you are in the area and have nothing to do this weekend, you should think about bringing your family for the cheapest family football experience around. I’m sure they have created an amazing ‘runout’ video to rally the excitement when the players hit the field, and you can count on some great popcorn and beer. Tickets are cheap, and there will be plenty to be had. If you want to buy your tickets online, you can buy them here. You can find me over by the Former Football Players tent in Friendship Circle when you get there. I know I’m not a former football player.. but… duh ... that’s where the boys are. LION UP, Y’all!!!

 

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