Sunday, September 07, 2014

UO vs. Michigan State (& GameDay!)

Saturday was a very big day for Oregon Football.  Arguably, the best non-conference game we've ever had - certainly, the highest ranking non-conference match-up that Autzen's hosted.   Number 8 Michigan State from the "mighty and strong" Big 10 Conference would face off against Number 3 Oregon Ducks.  And, all week preceding, all we heard from commentators would be if the Ducks could handle the "physical team and game" Michigan State would bring - as well as if Mark Helfrich could run a team as skillfully as his predecessor, Chip Kelly.  

It was an especially talked up game too, as College GameDay came to the University of Oregon on Saturday morning.  (We hold the record for most consecutive visits - standing at 8 - the previous was 6).   

(Note: All images in this post are courtesy of Eric Evans Photography)

It was a fun show - with our student body not needing to show up for fall classes until September 29th - I think they worried that no one would show up - but, our Oregon fans are very faithful!!!!

I love these guys - the first GameDay of the year is to fall as beginning listening to Christmas music is to Christmas.  (Which I begin November 1st, FYI).  =)

On every GameDay they bring in a celebrity local to the area or a famous alum.  They must have run out of prominent people over the 8 years, because our "celebrity" was our Duck Mascot - who is, I should note - quite a celebrity in an of himself.  "Puddles" had a lot of fun using props to make his predictions... and Corso was having a blast interpreting for him.  

When it came time for the Duck to pick from the match up of UO vs. Michigan State, he donned his own home-made Duck head.  And, then, offered Corso a present - which of course, was a real mascot head for him to wear.  

Then, the party exploded.  

Of course, the party didn't end when GameDay finished airing.  It had only just begun.  =)

We were actually supposed to be in attendance at this game.  However, Brayden texted me this Friday night:
Oh, OK.  I thought we'd THOROUGHLY discussed this - weeks ago, about whether or not we sell the tickets to go to Michigan State or go as a family - meaning John and Brayden would come back and forth from their weekend together at Men's Round-Up.  But, who am I to challenge a 15 year old son who would prefer to spend more bonding time with his daddy than attend such a highly touted football game?  You don't begrudge that... 

For sure, there was no way Mikayla would want to go without them - and with the temps predicted to be as high as 99 degrees at the game - and our seats facing the sun - it seemed like the best choice in the world to unload the tickets.  I wish I could say we are so gratuitous to give them away, but we have to write a check in April for an obscene amount of money to cover these babies, so if there's any way we can regroup on our losses, we try.  Thanks to Travis' efforts on StubHub and John's efforts on Craigslist - we did just that - and I chose to watch the game from home with Michele. 

All in all, it was divinely determined, as I ended up with a headache Saturday that would have made it absolutely MISERABLE to attend.  

But, I was "okay enough" to cheer from home laying on the couch with ice, a heat pack, or whatever-

Meanwhile, these are pics (taken from our guys' phones) of how the folks at Round-Up were able to watch the game - courtesy of live streaming from Michael.

They started out inside his trailer, but then the sheer crowd size (and "man smell"!) drove them outside and they were able to hook up with a flatscreen from Tadmor.  Now, that's a unique ministry Michael had - especially since he's known as the "Beaver-believer" of the group.  =)

At final count, there were over 40 men that ended up coming over to watch...

An outstanding pic of the place it all happened...

Our Ducks played impressive in the first quarter, but by halftime, with the Spartans taking the lead, many of us 'faithful' were starting to buy into the belief that maybe our guys can't handle the physicality, they are too young, and the coach isn't experienced enough.  I'm so glad our players couldn't hear the doubters, though, because they came out in the third quarter on fire.  By the end of the game, they'd scored 28 additional points to the Spartan's 4.  Final score: 46-27.  

Yes, that's reason for celebration!!!!   (Not to mention we moved up to #2 in the nation by Sunday morning!)

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