Girls, I cave. When I saw Heather & Emily's posts this morning about this linkup. I jumped on the bandwagon because well..duh. Insert all the Tennessee hashtags. #vfl #volnation #gbo #brickbybrick
(P.S. Emily's post will probably crack you up as much as it did me. "imaginary football team" I died.)
Today I'm linking with Shelly to share a little piece of my heart that bleeds orange. It's no secret around here that we're pretty big Vols fans. That being said, there's MANY people I know that DIE-HARD fans around here...I mean, they take the "bleed orange" thing to a new level of fan-dom.
I could care less about pro-football until the Super Bowl and I'm ALL about some food, commercials and half-time show. But now, college football...that's a different story. Somehow my love for college football and specifically UT didn't come from family and didn't come from having been born and raised in the South, or always living an hour and a half from Knoxville, it was self-taught at some point during my early teen years.
TN fans are loyal and even after the worst season, they'll come back next week saying, "We've got a good shot next year!" Disappointment doesn't last long.
TN fans love their history and traditions. They live for Saturdays in Knoxville. I know probably everybody linking up today will say something similar to this...which, by the way, I just LOVE. College football fans are the BEST to the teams they adore!
I thought I would share just a few of the things I love the most about our beloved team and traditions. A couple of years ago, the UT band, "The Pride of the Southland Band" came up with a catchy take on rapper, Lil Jon's song "Turn Down for What" (which I have NO CLUE what the heck that means) but the Vols' "THIRD DOWN FOR WHAT" erupts the stadium every time our defense holds the offense to their dreaded third down. Love it or hate it, it was true marketing GENIUS on the band's part!
No matter where you go on Saturdays around here, you'll see the masses decked out in their orange, cars and houses flying their orange flags. Car dealerships bring out the orange and white balloons. The East Bound lanes of I-40 are a sea of orange on Saturday mornings.
Only this week we'll be wearing orange on Thursday. I'm still not sure I like the idea of playing on Thursday night, but nonetheless, I've got my outfit picked out already for work that day!
We love our coaches and past coaches. Unless they turn out out to be idiots like that Kiffin rascal who's just a nut-job. A few years ago former coach, Phil Fulmer, was our "celebrity" at the hospital's annual golf tournament. Goes without saying he drew a HUGE crowd that year for our event.
And then, there's our current coach, Butch Jones. You want to talk about a man who came in and fired and a team, school and fan base up...here's your man.
What would a Vols post be without mentioning the most beloved Vol for Life of all times..ever. We're from the south where we name our kids after him, our pets after him, our roads after him, our buildings after him. We were suddenly die-hard Colts fans and then quickly die-hard Broncos fans. #16 will always have us wrapped around his finger!
Game Days in Knoxville. Do we even have all day to talk about the events and excitement in the air?!
The band and team make their way through campus a couple hours before the game for the long-standing "Vol Walk". If you come to a UT game, you don't come for kickoff, you come for the Vol Walk before the game, if not, you're considered late and in which case may the odds be ever in your favor.
Neyland Stadium sits right off of the Tennessee River. Many fans come in by boat, creating what we call...wait for it...The Vol Navy.
Two years ago, the school rolled out the Checker Neyland game early in the season. Our endzones are painted our famous orange and white checkerboard, so why not spend hours conjuring up a master plan to do the same to the whole stadium?! Fans simply check a website prior to the game to see if they're ticket has them wearing orange or white for that day...and voila...the perfect plan comes together in all of this beauty!
I mentioned the band earlier, but yall...this band. They're the best! You'll be singing "Rocky Top" in your sleep for days after a game!
Prior to the teams taking the field, the band plays and eventually forms our "power T"...when the T separates...here they come!
Oh Neyland Stadium....how we love you and the 102,455 fans you seat every weekend!
Game days are made exponentially better with your favorite fans. before Stephen and I started dating (which thankfully, the Stafford family are die-hards) I typically went to the games with my cousin Jared. He often gets season tickets and we would have the best time!
Jared's sister, also my cousin obviously, Ann Marie and I have also enjoyed our share of games together!
But in recent years, I've found my favorite game day date!
Last year we carpooled to Knoxville with our friends Katie and Robert for a game and we had the best time together. This season, Katie and I are both pregnant, so we may have to wait until next year before we do this again! You can bet our babies will be decked out in their best orange!
And if none of that convinces you to like our Vols, here's one of the best hype videos for this season! Watch 'til the end for a little preview of September 10....we're playing The Biggest College Football Game Ever! Can't take the redneck completely out of us...we're playing football at a racetrack!
It's Football Time in Tennessee!!!