Sunday, November 21, 2010

A Classical Gas

My family and I have just returned from the Florida Classic football at the Citrus Bowl in Orlando. Bethune Cookman University, my wife's undergrad alma mater, lost to Florida A & M... my late father-in-laws Alma mater, as well as many other members of the family on my wife's side.

To the players and the schools, this is the Superbowl, as I quickly learned in my first Classic experience. The bands as well, I might add. But there were no losers Saturday. These are two historical Black Universities...and, not the only two. And, the kinship was palpable. No jeering. No fighting among fans. No animosity or nastiness. Just a good-natured rivalry which was enjoyed by a huge crowd of fans who look forward to the event each year.

And, make no mistake, it IS an event. It was a great example of what good, clean sportsmanship is about on and off the field. Coaches shaking hands with each and every one of their players during warm ups. Alums aging from their 20's, I dare say, to and past the century mark getting acquainted and reacquainted.

The halftime show was tremendous. The F.A.M.U. Band was out standing, but the marching 100 is more like the marching 350 these days. (They had us outnumbered)

Good food, good friends-old and new-good fellowship and good times. I'm the better man and fan for attending. I didn't attend an H.B.C.U., but as a man of color who is proud of his lineage, I wish I had...and, I'm glad my wonderful wife did.

However, please like the classic are for everyone of every color who enjoy sports for what they should be. Not just to watch guys playing for draft position on the board are rankings in the B.C.S.

Do yourself a favor and attend an H.B.C.U. event soon. Just don't try to get our seats. They are already spoken for. :)