September is here and fall is just around the corner which means Belmont students will soon begin to walk around campus wearing other schools’ hoodies and shirts.
This is an indication that another college football season is here, and Belmont fans still want to join in on the fun even though there aren’t any Bruins suiting up on Saturday afternoons. It can be really upsetting when you go to school in the heart of SEC country and don’t have a team to support during the college football season.
When I see all of my high school buddies who go to big football schools enjoying their Saturday mornings tailgating, embracing a deep tradition and then going to watch a lopsided football game, depression seeps in.
Even the other student newspaper sports writers around the Ohio Valley Conference get to gear up and cover their teams.
Yes, I’ve heard the joke that Belmont’s football team is undefeated since 1890, and no, I don’t want the Titans to be our team. I want something Bruin fans can call their own.
Even though both Vandy and the Volunteers are absolute embarrassments to college football, I envy the fact their Saturday mornings are filled with fan festivities before the slaughter.
Don’t get me wrong, I love Belmont sports. I haven’t missed a basketball game in two years and will take the occasional walk to E.S. Rose Park for a soccer or baseball game.
But nothing compares the energy and magic of college football.
I know it will never be possible for Belmont to have a football team. Where would we put a football stadium? How would we fill it? What women’s sport would we need to add to comply with Title IX?
Yet, this Saturday morning when the country is getting ready for week two of the season, I’m going to close my eyes and try to imagine what a Belmont football game would look like…
It’s a beautiful Saturday morning as I drive down Belmont Boulevard making my way to Brad Paisley Arena, located where Lipscomb University used to sit before Belmont bought the land.
It’ll be an exciting game because Belmont is playing OVC rival Murray State and we don’t have to worry about Ja Morant.
The Belmont community somehow convinced Rick Byrd to come out of retirement and coach the football team and he instantly became the best dressed coach in the nation. The sweater vest is back, baby.
I’ll be gathered around a group of die hard Bruin fans with Diet Pepsi in one hand and a Harrington Place Dining burger in the other.
Before the game starts, Bruiser — the best mascot in sports — will skydive out of Vince Gill’s private helicopter onto a little stage where the Christian Showcase winner will sing the national anthem.
It doesn’t even matter if we play well or win. I’ll just be happy knowing that I can see Rick Byrd chew out starting tight end Nick Muszynski and that I have a football team I can call my own.
Photo by Andrew Hunt.