Sunday, October 16, 2005

In which words fail me

I've been up much of last night and I still don't know what to say about that game. This was an experience I'll be hard-pressed to duplicate in a lifetime of watching sports. Even though Michigan is having one of its most flea-bitten seasons, I feel like I can just appreciate these kind of moments more than when I was younger, and the roller-coaster ride in that stadium beggared belief. Just in the last 5 minutes of game time, there was the gleeful surprise at Rivas' final long field goal which used every inch of the space between the uprights at his disposal; the eerie certainty, confirmed, that we were about to get an interception; the mystified frustration at the ensuing @$%&# 15-yard pooch punt; the frenzied intensity of the crowd as we gnashed our teeth during the final, Lazarus-like Penn State drive (actually, the crowd was gratifyingly intense most of the day, for a change -- even the wave couldn't get off the ground); the silent prayer, afraid someone would jinx it, as we waited for Stevie Wonder's final kickoff return (see picture); the locked-in, juiced-beyond-belief, solidarity once Steve gave us one last chance; and the out-of-body experience of the final ecstasy. The players seemed just as gobsmacked by the ordeal as the fans, climbing the wall and perching in the middle of piles of fans and running around in circles. To go through this with a bunch of great friends, clutching their expectant arms and screaming in their faces and cracking wise to cheer them up when they had tantrums and dancing down the street afterwards... I'm really lucky, and it's great to be a Michigan Wolverine.


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