Although our friend Tyler is a Boilermaker alumni, he has roots back in Iowa and cheers for the Hawkeyes. We like him anyway. Especially Matthew. They go way back. To the day Matthew was born. :)
Back in the day, we had seats in the south end zone. We liked that perspective for watching the plays develop, snagging the occasional glove or wristband from a Boiler as he exited the field, or heckling an opposing player lined up for a kickoff return. Lewwwww-isssss. We watched kicks sail through the uprights (well, I didn't), held our breath as catches were made or dropped, and cringed at the sound of a big hit (well, I did). Sitting in the south end zone sometimes put us shoulder to shoulder with the opposing team's band who had a song in their repertoire for every down and every penalty. (Play the holding song!)
And here come the Hawkeyes!
One of my favorite parts of the pregame is the reading of I Am An American, by Roy Johnson, voice of the Purdue "All-American" marching band:
I am an American. That's the way most of us put it, just matter of factly. They are plain words, those four: you could write them on your thumbnail, or sweep them across this bright autumn sky. But remember too, that they are more than just words. They are a way of life. So whenever you speak them, speak them firmly, speak them proudly, speak them gratefully. I am an American.
We always tried to guess ahead of time what he would say for the description of the sky. On Saturday, it was "bright September". Of course, the whole crowd chimes in on the last line: I AM AN AMERICAN!
It was a great day for football, even though the scoreboard didn't end up in our favor. What was favorable, was time spent together, and the tradition of family, friends, fun and football. Boiler Up!