Saturday’s at Sanford Stadium
Posted at 9:42 am on Wednesday, September 14, 2022 To see also : Atlanta Falcons season ticket holders can request cheerleaders for their seats.
When you think of college football, what comes to mind? Is it the pomp of traditions, fight songs and chants? Is it the atmosphere of 100,000 people coming together as a family to support a common goal? Or maybe it’s the anticipation of a new team that could bring a championship or the next generation of NFL superstars. Regardless of what comes to mind, Sanford Stadium in Athens brings college football fans a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
As a sports reporter with big goals for the future, the opportunity to cover the first University of Georgia football game of the 2022 season was something I not only dreamed of, but worked hard for.
Growing up, my parents would take me to Philadelphia Eagles games, Texas A&M games and everything in between and this not only developed a passion for sports within me, but also gave me the desire to bring that experience to as many people as possible. people possible. , which is why I decided to pursue a career in sports journalism.
When I arrived at Sanford Stadium hours before kick-off on Saturday morning, the parties outside the stadium were already alive and well. From the alumni back doors to the frat queue leading to the stadium, the streets were awash in red and black as fans were ecstatic to welcome the 2021 National Champions home.
After entering the stadium, the first thing I did was go to the field. Upon arriving at the field, I secured my spot in the northeast tunnel to witness my first “dog walk” as the 2022 Bulldogs entered the stadium dressed in their best suits, accompanied by the school band and cheerleaders.
Shortly after, the players took to the field and began their warm-up routines and had the opportunity to greet their family and friends at the fences before the game-day madness. Talking to wide receiver AD Mitchell and tight end Darnell Washington not only gave me insight into how detailed game day is, but how they are able to remain calm and focused.
“Playing at home is definitely an advantage because we can sleep in our own beds and be in our own comfortable environment,” Washington said. “The game days are long, but they are also the culmination of our hard work. People just go out and have fun.”
As the kick-off got closer and closer, the fans began to fill the stadium with red and black and you could feel the electricity. With thousands of students who always bring the energy along with “Mo Bamba” echoing in the PA system, I started thinking about applying for a master’s degree just to experience football games as a student again.
However, having the ability to take the field, work the press box and experience the game as a member of the media was something I’ve always dreamed of and will never take for granted. As I was escorted to my spot in the press booth and set up all my gear, I took a moment to look around, take a deep breath and absorb the moment.
Seeing all of the band’s traditions, all the way up to the team’s entry and everything leading up to kick-off not only showed me the passion fans have, but how college football really is more than a game for millions of people.
Although the Bulldogs went away easily with a 33-0 victory, the fans were involved until the very end. Every third down, every scoring play and anything in between, the fans were on their feet, shaking Sanford Stadium into the center.
Being able to have the opportunity to have experiences like Saturday is something I will never take for granted and it also gives me more reason to work hard to bring fans with me on this experience. I’m excited to spend more Saturdays among the hedges.