A day that started out rather chilly turned into an absolutely beautiful day for football. A lot of people were in town due to homecoming, and a lot of people subsequently showed up to tailgate at Floyd Casey Stadium.
Beautiful weather led to a good tailgating day, and a good tailgating atmosphere. I've had people question me recently asking why I get to the games so early. My response simply being that I've been waiting around all week for Baylor football, and I'm not just going to sit around at home all day. I'd much rather sit in my fold out chair and soak in the sights and sounds of the tailgate areas. I also like getting there early to see everyone else set up, its become more of a ritual really. There are tailgates where people/organizations go all out with flags, speakers, smokers, etc. And then there are people who just roll up in their F-150, drop the tailgate and hangout there with a group of friends. I don't see much of the latter, but I know it goes on in the grass parking lot near the student tailgates, and I'm sure those people have just as much fun as I do.
You hear all sorts of music and see all types of people walking around before the game. Those that do bring speakers either hook them up their tv(s) to watch the other college football games, or just to listen to some country, rock, rap or mash-up music, whatever that group is into. Personally I hear a lot of country, which, makes sense. It is funny though that for some groups it is country for the first four or so hours before game time, but that last hour before people start pouring into the stadium the speakers are overrun with mash-up artists and Kendrick Lamar lyrics. As far as sights, you see everything from people trying to dress classy with as much as a white button up and bow tie/regular tie, to people who dress head to toe in green and gold body paint. And, before anyone asks, I have not seen the human pom-pom, but I assure if he was anywhere near where I tailgate, I'd have to go talk to home. Partly because there is just no way you could miss that guy walking around.
The turnout this week was pretty good. There still are not a lot of people showing up really early before game time, like five-six hours, but the majority of people are there an hour before the game, and a good amount are there two-three hours before kickoff. Would I like to see people get there earlier, sure, but I can understand people wanting to try and get stuff done before the game...I guess. Granted, Baylor is not known for great tailgates, but they are, nonetheless, fun tailgates. I'm interested to see the turnout, or at least what time people begin showing up, next year when water is involved. All in all though, it was a good showing and I'm happy people keep coming out early to support this football team.
I mentioned this briefly when I wrote about homecoming, but there is a certain buzz around campus about this football team. I had one guy tell me that since his Chicago Bears are doing so poorly, he just can't get enough of Baylor football to make up for it. There are people talking about where Baylor may finish in the BCS polls, what all of the polls mean, what needs to happen to the teams in front of Baylor in order for them to get to the national championship game. Sure, we talk about that stuff on ODB all of the time, but for your typical Baylor student to talk about that instead of chapel or how dumb long tee-shirts and nike shorts look together is really good for Baylor athletics. The Grantland article Mr. Seymour posted about yesterday said that Art Briles was not only changing Baylor football, but Baylor. And I have to agree. I've been here for less than a year and a half, but have been following the team for a while. I know that this time last year people were starting to lose interest in Baylor football, but not this year. Each coming week the interest from the students here gets higher and higher. Baylor football is in the air, and oh it smells so sweet.