Friday, January 13, 2012

Bowling ~ Alamo Style

Continuing our bowl experience...

We had a nice walk over to the Alamodome with a number of the Baylor faithful. The City of San Antonio was ablaze with green and gold. Including the Tower of the Americas.

The girl was mesmerized though she was rather upset the interlocking "BU" that had been projected on it the evening before for a pep rally had disappeared. :-)

After a brisk walk up a number of flights of stairs (felt a lot like P90X, to be quite honest), I had to give my peeps a few minutes to catch their breath before they would agree to pictures. But, alas, I was victorious!

We arrived in time to see the sea of green and gold appear and, friends, it was a beautiful sight to see. Part of following the team so closely is that you get to know the players and their personalities. I can assure you that we have a roster full of great athlete who are also fantastic young men. Because of that, I really wanted them to be rewarded for all of their hard work all season with a bowl victory.

And things really started out well. The band put on quite an exciting performance...

...and paid tribute to the great State of Texas...

...and then we had an unexpected treat. We knew there was going to be a military tribute but had no idea the national anthem would be sung live by none other than Lee Greenwood.


And then it was time for the game to begin, friends.

We cheered as our boys took care of business in the first quarter...

...and were feeling pretty darn good about the state of the game when the score looked like this after one quarter of play.

And then something very unfortunate happened. Our offense got out of rhythm and our defense left the building for a while, which led to Washington scoring 28 unanswered points. And I was beside myself. As was the rest of my family.

In fact, the phrase "if you can't play, get off the dang field" may have been uttered from my lips a time or 20.

I was, truth be told, on the cusp of becoming very angry. For a number of reasons. But decided to enjoy a rousing halftime show anyway.

Around this time the folks at the Alamodome cranked the air conditioning down significantly (perhaps due to some unnamed fans being hot under the collar) and Tonto's knee began throbbing.

But we persevered and saw the Huskies' lead dwindle to three points. And then we allowed them to score again immediately.

Roller coaster doesn't even begin to describe my emotions, y'all.

At this point, Tonto looked at me and let me know that his knee would not allow him to see this game through. Not in person anyway.

So the girl joined the two of us in descending the steps for the last time in search of a place on the Riverwalk to have dinner and watch the rest of the game. My parents remained at the game as representatives of the group :-)

After watching the girl take in the lights on the Riverwalk for the first time (another story that was a sweet moment, friends), we ended up at Joe's Crab Shack where the host immediately informed us that we were now ahead. 

Say what?!?!

We joined with some other Baylor fans in cheering the team to victory through the remainder of the second half. Well, the cheers were inbetween some lamenting and gnashing of teeth (just being honest here) but - in the end - the Bears were victorious.

And we also educated a number of servers on the history of Baylor University and the athletics programs as a whole.

One a marketer, always a marketer. We just don't know how to turn it off. What can I say?

My parents joined us and we moved to a Mexican restaurant while Tonto headed back to the hotel to rest his knee. About 2am we finally made it back to the room where we watched highlights of the 67-56 win repeatedly.

Yes, you read that score correctly. It was what they call an offensive juggernaut, I believe.

And it's so true what they say, y'all - victory is SWEET.

Particularly when you know the stories of a number of our players who persevered through much hardship to become offensive MVP (looking at you, Terrance Ganaway aka "Gangway") or displayed tremendous leadership to younger teammates as an entirely new defensive scheme was introduced (hello, Elliot Coffey)...and don't even get me started on Robert Griffin III, Robert T. Griffin (who lost his mother the week before), Philip Blake or Nicholas Jean-Baptiste.

To say this team is special and will always hold a place in our hearts is a significant understatement.

We will never forget December 29, 2011. Or the 2011 season. From start to finish, it was electric. And we are so thankful to have been a part of history.

Sic 'em, Bears!