It was January 4, 2006 in a suburb of Dallas, Texas that forever changed my future. Although a normal Wednesday to some, this night, to UT football fans, was no ordinary school night. I remember it being way past my bed time with my eyes glued to the TV as fifth grade me watched Vince Young dive over the orange end zone pylon to secure the University of Texas Longhorns their fourth national football championship. From this day forward I knew that I would grow up to call UT my alma mater.
Fast forward nearly seven and a half years later, I was accepted to the school of both my academic dreams and athletic fandom. In the fall of 2013 I arrived in Austin ready to do two things, kick butt in school to get a degree and a really good job, and watch as much Texas football as humanly possible. To document my experience as both a fan and a student, I decided to take pictures from my seat at every game I attended.
This blog post is the collection of images and their stories of what I consider to be the three most important games I attended during my college career at UT.
My first game is best characterized as a great sporting event after a very hectic path getting there. First and foremost, I messed up my tickets and ended up in the non-coveted nose-bleed seats; when I say nose-bleeds, I mean the literal last/top row in the stadium. Given that I was too naïve to designate the student section on my big ticket, I was also too naïve to know you can photoshop your ticket to read the section all your buddies are sitting in. As if that wasn’t enough, my car was towed the night before from a UT parking garage because it wasn’t moved prior to 11:59 pm the night before. This required me to walk 3 miles, through campus, across interstate 35, and through east campus in 98 degree heat to get my vehicle. Fortunately, it was all worth it as I marched to my seat at the top of the stadium and witnessed this phenomenal sight, watching my Longhorns win 56 to 7 against the New Mexico State Aggies.
This shot was taken on October 10, 2015 in the UT student section at the Cotton Bowl Stadium in Dallas, Texas during the 110th playing of the Red River Rivalry between UT and Oklahoma University (aka “Texas-OU”). To put this game into perspective, the longhorns were trash. The pinnacle of collegiate football I expected had not come to fruition, but we did have a handful of wins and a new head coach in Charlie Strong keeping us hopeful. Number 10 ranked Oklahoma was favored with nearly a 14 point spread against an unranked Texas team; however, with coach strong on the hot seat, UT mounted an incredible defensive showing featuring 6 sacks leading the longhorns to a 24-17 victory and the glory of coach strong wearing “the golden hat” trophy.
Unfortunately this game has neither an incredible storyline nor a win for the Longhorns, however, this home game on Saturday, November 5th of 2016 against the West Virginia Mountaineers was my last home game as a UT undergraduate student. This game had some of the best back-and-forth drives that NCAA football has to offer, and I was lucky enough to watch it all from a box seat provided by UT’s SFL (Sorority and Fraternity Life) office. I love the band’s writing of the UT in this photo (taken 30 minutes before actual kick off) as it shows our school spirit in so many ways.
I hope that the pictures and their associated text featured above adequately captured the excitement and narrative of these UT football games. No matter your sport or your team, I urge you all to love your beloved franchise from your first day until your last. Hook’em!
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