First Husker Game

There is something to going to a college known for football and team spirit and being an engineering major who prefers to study. Most games days, I am holed up in the nearly empty libraries enjoying the seat selection and quiet. The campus is normally abuzz and that is not my scene at all. I also have very little idea of what goes on in football. My only understanding is that the football has to be carried over the final line into the endzone. But that doesn't mean that the experience was any less amazing. 

As most student tickets go, you have to get there early to get a good spot. Luckily, we were able to find spots around six seats up near the edge. I had a view of most of the field and the screen. Sitting there for over an hour watching the stadium fill up was impressive. We were in the shade, so the sun wasn't bad. Finally, it was close to kickoff and the band came out. I could not see the formations unless I looked at the screen, but the sound was impressive. Then, for the game, everyone stands up. We take off a shoe when Huskers kick-off. There are chants, led by Herbie, Lil'Red, and the cheerleaders/dance team on the field. The sea of red is no exaggeration. Everywhere you look is red or white. Everyone makes noise when the other team is making a play, and everyone quiets down when the Huskers make a play. I cannot follow the game much, but when everyone cheers, it’s so easy to join in. The excitement is palpable.

The few moments to sit were great, as my feet began to hurt by the second quarter. But there is no real time to sit otherwise. One, because it’s impossible to see between the people. Two, the entire experience lacks if you aren't cheering and trying to get on camera. The Homecoming festivities were not overbearing. The entire announcement lasted only a few minutes. But all the visitors and mini celebrations of the 150th homecoming were entertaining. The band during half time was also really fun. The references to alumni were pretty interesting. It is always impressive to see the cool formations of the band.

I got super salty popcorn during the third quarter. We came back to a tied score and the tensions rose. The fans were making chants about the ref's calls and everyone cheered loudly for any small victory the Huskers made. Finally, at the end of the fourth quarter, the Huskers were close to a touchdown with seconds left. With three seconds left, Northwestern called all three time-outs. Everyone was standing up, chanting and then quieting down as soon as the Huskers got back in formation. The Huskers decided to do a field goal at 21 yards. The tension was heavy. Everyone was silent. The entire student section was standing and watching. The players got ready and finally went. They kicked, we scored, and the entire stadium exploded in celebration. We all high fived around ourselves, people screamed and chanted and clapped. The team embraced as 13-10 remained on the screen.

So, though it was a stressful game in the second half, the ending victory was a great way to end my first Husker game. I will relish my few remaining quiet library Saturdays, but at least I know what everyone is so hyped to go see.