Monday, October 27, 2014

We're SEC

A few years back, I was in Knoxville, TN for work and had the awesome opportunity to attend a Tennessee Volunteers football game in the beautiful Neyland Stadium. One of the cool things we were able to do was go around on golf carts and select the best tailgate of the day...which proved to be no easy task as we visited nearly a dozen tailgating groups that put everything I'd ever seen to shame...(not to mention the countless others we saw, but didn't visit.)

There was one particular tailgate that made me see college football in a whole new light...there it was, a Tennessee Volunteer canopy set up right next to a Florida Gator canopy, and the fans from each, eating, drinking and laughing together. I walked up to them perplexed, and asked how this was happening..."don't you hate each other?" - "How is it that Volunteers and Gators are getting along?"

The answer was simple enough...this lady looked up at me like I was the stupidest person on earth and simply answered, "We're SEC!"

There you go, they're SEC, one of the power conferences in college football, and "they can be best friends until the game begins" because of the South Eastern Conference family. I did find it funny that one of the Tennessee fans brought a Subway sandwich made up like a gator to the party...

Sitting down with fans from another team celebrating before a game still seemed so odd to a Ute fan, I couldn't imagine sitting down with a cold beverage and a brat tailgating with fans from Colorado State. 

It wasn't until years later, that I finally got it...

I was in Pasadena...going to see the Utes take on the UCLA Bruins. We parked about a mile away from the stadium, and we were a speck of red in a sea of blue. We must've walked through about 100 UCLA tailgates, and one particular party stood out. A whole group of UCLA fans had a game of flag football going on and as we walked by, the QB of one of the team looked over at me and said, "Hey Utah...welcome to the Rose Bowl," and he threw a perfect spiral in my direction. I caught it and he threw his arms up in the touchdown sign. I nodded and threw it back to him...he caught it and with a smile said, "See ya in the battle field." 

Not gonna lie, that felt good and I think I stood a little taller. I caught up to my family and said, "Sorry, I was just throwing the pigskin with a couple guys back there." My Dad smiled and said, "That's cool."

Ya Dad, it was was really cool...


I love college football, and Go Utes!!

1 comment:

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