Still working on finishing up the final bit of writing that my committee has asked for, but in the meantime, I did find time to enjoy the Utah football victory over BYU on Saturday. My good friend Jon, of Spring Break trip to NYC fame, flew down from Seattle with the primary purpose of being in attendance at the game, and thankfully the Utes did not disappoint.
Our game day experience started at the Muss (that's the Utah student fan club) tailgate, where we ate chicken wraps and marveled at Ute fandom.
I even got my picture taken with retired long-time Utah play-by-play man Bill Marcroft.
There was a superfan contest judged by no others than Crazy Lady and Jared from Subway (wearing a Utah jersey). From what we could tell it looks like Jared might not be eating at Subway as much any more. Working on a bit of gut. I'm just saying.
After the tailgate we headed down to the stadium with plenty of time to watch some pre-game warmups.
Just across the aisle from our seats there was a group of about 20 BYU fans (in the Utah student section mind you). They certainly took a lot of abuse throughout the game, but were wise enough (or maybe just really patient) to avoid starting any physical violence, because things might have gotten really bad then.
Marching Band - Script "Utah"
It was also Senior Night so they had all of the Seniors come out individually. The timing of this was all screwed up, with the PA guy saying their names waaaaay after they had run out and was usually 3 or 4 people behind. It's too bad, we had some great Seniors who deserved better if you ask me. Oh, well. Oh, this picture is of P/K Louie Sakoda who at one point a few years ago was, IMO, the best player on our team.
Now, BYU has a tradition of doing a polynesian war dance called the Haka before their games. As they were lining up to begin said dance, some Utah players took issue with them war dancing on our field, and wandered over to exchange some words.
Before long most of the team had joined them.
And after some posturing, BYU decided maybe it wasn't the right time to being Haka-ing.
Then the game finally got under way, and I really didn't do a good job of taking pictures during the game. For one, I was sitting too high to get decent pictures, and for two, I was too busy watching the game. Here are a couple decent shots:
Louie kicking a PAT. I especially like the way the focus was on the hands near me.
Shot looking behind us at the Muss. Actually during a quarter break while some kid was down there shagging punts for cash.
Driving for another TD
Here's Brent Casteel Tip-toeing down the sideline for six
I took this video just hoping to get a shot of the Muss doing their "3rd Down Jump", but it also ended up being a play where DE Paul Kruger made a sweet interception of Max Hall. However, at that point, I stopped filming because I was so excited to watch the game.
Utah went on to win the game in convincing fashion, which meant that we had finished our regular season 12-0 and are pretty much a sure lock to go to a BCS bowl game. And as my personal rule is that if the Utes ever go undefeated and qualify for a BCS game then I have to go out on the field, we made our way down toward the field and prepared to make the 10 foot jump down from the student section.
A quick video of the immediate aftermath of the game.
We decided to stop and get pictures showing the crowd on the field
At first, we were just down there, looking for anyone we knew or anything going on.
Eventually we figured out that there was a truck over on the far side where they were going to award the conference championship trophy. So we headed over there and watched as Coach Whittingham, Brian Johnson, and Paul Kruger accepted the trophy.
We eventually made our way off the field, which was kind of slow moving. Along the way, we passed DB Sean "The Legend" Smith who was up in the front row of the student section signing autographs and taking pictures with people and just having a good time.
Anyway, it was a really fun game, although perhaps not as euphoric as the first time we went undefeated and qualified for a BCS bowl. Definitely this team had more ups and downs in their undefeated season than the 2004 team, which certainly led to its share of heart attack finishes over both Oregon State and TCU. I'm excited to see what bowl we end up going to and considering making travel plans to join them. Guess we'll see.