Those who know me best know that when the latter months of the year arrive, my focus and attention gets clouded with the obsession of college football and the love for the open road. What does that compelling combination lead to, one might ask? Well, on weekends such as this past, that means fillin’ the ice chests with plentiful amounts of adult libations, preppin’ copious quantities of grillable meats and readyin’ the SUV with college colors and headin’ out for one of the finer travel experiences possible – the college football road trip!
Since Texas A&M is among the newest members of the Southeastern Conference (SEC), that means the opportunity to see my alma mater, the University of Florida, and the Mighty Gators play even closer to Austin than ever thought possible. That said, early Saturday morning, we departed ATX and rolled two hours east to College Station, where amid the sea of maroon in Aggieland, we joined an impressive gaggle of blue & orange-clad Gator faithful, who, like us, had descended upon the great college football scene at A&M.
Having attended one other game up in College Station – the Thanksgiving Day battle with the University of Texas (HOOK’EM!) back in 2009 – I can say, once again, the A&M people, fans and Aggie brethren are among the most gracious and classy among all of the college football towns I’ve visited (which, over the years, is many). Nothing like the all-out Gator hatred I’ve witnessed at gameday scenes in other college hamlets like Knoxville, TN, or Athens, GA. These people get it. And as a visiting fan, I appreciate it. All of this kind treatment even after my Gators defeated the Aggies in a tough battle, 20-17. Makes for an excellent experience.
Additional thanks also goes out to the University of Florida Alumni Association, who kindly hosted a massive party tent in the heart of the A&M campus, throughout the day, with free food, ice cold beer, big screens with game coverage and stellar overall Gator spirit. Well done for a rookie visit to College Station, gang!
Needless to say, if you find yourself with an itch for the open road this Fall, have a free weekend on your hands and desire a boatload of fun, why not pop open the college football schedule of your favorite team, load up the car and head on out! There’s not a better time to be had. Cheers, y’all! Oh, and GO GATORS!