By Jo Emmert
The air is crisp and cool. Dehydrated leaves rustle on the ground as yoga pants and Ugg boots make their yearly comeback. Autumn has come back to Georgetown, and with it: Homecoming. We celebrate our homecoming throughout the week with soccer matches, Songfest rivalries and Greek tailgates, all leading to the main event of football.
For many of us, college football is a staple event of our weekend. We schedule our lives around the game, desperate to not miss one second of playtime. We throw ourselves into school rivalries, paint up, cheer and scream and offer helpful advice to the refs. Football is as American as apple pie and being confused by the metric system.
The full-contact game impacts the players much more than the fans (pun intended). Football is an immersive lifestyle that many have dabbled in since adolescence. It is a system that teaches values like teamwork, perserverance and a gracious attitude in winning or losing.
One does not play football without being touched by the respect for each other and for the game that all who touch that hallowed field possess. It is a game that calls for more than the win at the end of the night.
Players are expected to treat their opponents fairly, to play the game with respect and to leave every effort on the field. “If we can’t hold our heads up high at the end of a game, then we didn’t play right,” said Matt Byrd, a senior and a new part time coach.
“Football taught me what it means to work together,” Byrd adds. “Coaching helps see the game from all sides: not just as players and opponents, but the reasons why plays are called.”
The game is convoluted and painful. Plays are not always called fairly, actions become impulsive and the desire to win can override common sense. Nonetheless, football is a sport that rises above hostilities. Players and fans unite over a common field for the love of the game. It unites us in comaraderie, and regardless of colors or mascots, we line up and cheer for a sport we love.
The Georgetown Tigers come home this week. Our stands will be full of jubilant fans, Halloween colors and tailgaters. See you there.