Boda Getta Bah
Rah Rah Rah
Sis Boom Bah
WAR DAMN EAGLE
Kick em in the
Butt Big Blue
It truly is GREAT to be an Auburn Tiger! Yesterday I spent the day surrounded by thousands of football fans in an amazing atmosphere with best friends. Despite the freezing cold and wet weather, tailgating carried on as it does each week, but this time we were in Tuscaloosa for the greatest rivalry game (in my opinion), the IRON BOWL. If you don't live under a rock, then you are aware that yesterday my #2 ranked Auburn Tigers defeated a #11 ranked Crimson Tide Alabama team in the 75th match up of these teams. The game was what I would call intense and at times very disappointing (for both sides). Auburn managed to come back from a 24-0 deficit to beat the Tide 28-27. I can honestly say that I have never been stressed out over anything more than I was yesterday (and over a college football game). ha!
This rivalry, like most, has a long history and support of fans with a deep passion for each respective team. Not just the team, but the fans have a special dedication to the game and contribute to the atmosphere and love of the sport of football. Even people not from Alabama can respect the rivalry between these two teams, and I look forward to this week every year. At times it seems that the fans of these teams are more scared of the losing outcome than looking forward to the celebration of the win. Fans on both teams, like any good Southern team, display acts of common southern hospitality; however, both teams also have those obnoxious rude fans that don't know where to draw the line between common decency and their competitive nature. I like to think of rivalries as a friendly competitive encounter in which someone will be extremely happy at the end of the day, and the other will be extremely pissed off. My sister, Bridgett, went to the University of Alabama (and was a cheerleader). My mom, both of her parents, my dad, my youngest sis, and I all attended Auburn University. When it comes to football games involving Auburn or Alabama, we have always supported both teams, but this week everyone took their sides. There were a few fun text exchanges between Bridgett and I during the game:
Me (pre-game tailgating) - "War Eagle from a Crimson Tide tailgate."
Bridge - "ROOOOOOLLLLLL TIDE ROLL!!!"
Me (during 1st quarter) - "-10 yrds...that's a first!"
Bridge (before half time) - "You enjoying this game?"
Me - "Ummmmm" "No."
Bridge (AFTER the game) - "So I guess you liked the outcome of the game!"
Me - "Haha. yea, it was def better than the first quarter!"
And that's about how the day went. I rode to the game with my bestie, Jordan, and Lcook. We left with Ms. Cindy at 4am so that we could hit up a little Black Friday shopping before heading
to the tailgate. Luckily because we're so crazy, we missed ALL of the traffic. Between 5:30am and 7:30am we managed to make it to 4 stores before deciding it was time for some football. While shopping in ttown, we were all in our Auburn game day attire (including AU face tattoos). We encountered many "Roll Tide"s and the occasional comments. My favorite comment was from the dude at Best Buy who told us that it would only cost $200,000 to walk through the door. Funny. Once we arrived to the tailgate spot, we began setting up shop (since we arrived 30 minutes before all the bama fans). The Hackberry High Tiders welcomed us to their tailgate to hang out and watch the game, and the fun comments began immediately.
Auburn wasn't allowed to have our traditional Tiger Walk, so instead of letting that hold us back, we crowded the gates cheering for our team anyway. It was nice to see the fans who came out despite the weather. While waiting for the team, we ran into an older Auburn couple, and the gentleman was wearing an old "Beat Bama" button. I asked him how old it was, and he responded, "Old". He then informed us that this was his 52nd consecutive Iron Bowl to attend!!! THAT my friends is dedication! After cheering the team into the stadium, it was time to make our way back to the tailgate to catch the pre-game shows and find our chair for the game (ohhh and to get about 2 blankets each and bundle up because it was freezing...but I think I've mentioned that). =)
As the game was about to begin, one lady told us that as long as Bama was winning we could stay and watch the game, but when they were losing we would have to go. I jokingly commented, "Oh. Should we just leave now then?" Everyone laughed, and the Auburn fans loved it; however, maybe I shouldn't have opened my mouth so soon (especially now knowing how the first half played out). Of course, since Auburn did trail for the majority of the game, that meant that we were welcome at the tailgate, according to the opening remarks stated before the game. After the game was over, my friends and I were extremely happy. We may or may not have ran down the street jumping up and down high fiving other Auburn fans (tactfully of course). The people at our tailgate were less than thrilled at the outcome of the match-up, and were furiously packing their dishes and chairs into their cars (as I'm positive I would be doing had things ended differently). So we decided it was probably time for us to do the same, and get on the road to beat the traffic. While loading our coolers and chairs, a kind gentleman wearing crimson and white approached us and simply said, "Congratulations on the win. Your team definitely wanted it more tonight, and I will gladly support your team in the SEC Championship and hopefully the National Championship as well." We all thanked him for his kind words and all agreed that he was a true example of a fan with class, unlike the people throwing chairs at our tailgate.
The thing about rivalries and football is that every team is going to have those fans who don't show that class (Auburn and Alabama both), but it's so great when you run into the fans that do. Hopefully more people will learn to be the later of the two, and learn how to enjoy the game while also having that competitive team spirit. I hope that had we lost the game, my friends and I could have shown the same class of that gentleman to the Alabama fans around us. I am so proud of the guys for getting focused and fighting hard for that win, and I wish them all kinds of luck next week in the SEC Championship game! It really is GREAT to be an Auburn Tiger, and I believe in Auburn and LOVE IT!