Thursday, December 1, 2016

Air Force Academy Football: A Bucket List Completion

There's something fun and exciting about going to sporting events.  It's easy to get caught up in the emotion of rooting for your team with thousands of fans surrounding you, isn't it?  That's why I knew when we moved to Colorado that we just had to knock an Air Force Academy game off our bucket list -- especially as a 20-year Air Force veteran.

True to our habit of not planning too far ahead of time, we waited way late in the season to pick a game, and by then, we only had one to choose from that fit our schedule:  the last one.  The last week in November.  In Colorado.  So we bundled up and headed out.

Fortunately, it was a beautiful day for so late in the year -- a balmy 50 degrees and sunny.  Our seats were on the home side on about the 35-yard line -- absolutely perfect!  All Academy football games start with a flyover of some kind.  This one included a two-ship of fighters, loud with the sound of freedom, as well as three members of the parachute team jumping out of a C-130 and into the stadium.  What other college football team can you get that kind of pre-game show?

One landing with the Army and Navy Flags and one headed in with the Marine Corps and AF flags

The final parachutist landing
I thought we'd at least have the entire first half of sunlight, but, alas, by the end of the first quarter, the sun was hidden behind the massive wall of the stadium, leaving us to start adding layers.  By the end of the game, we were cold, but it never got as cold as I feared, even sitting on those aluminum bleachers.

We were starting to get cold.  Oh, and notice the obviously absent AF fan gear!
The Academy was playing Boise State, and it was a great game!  We really got our money's worth!  Just when we thought AF was about to lock it up, Boise State would come back again.  In the end, AF won it 27-20 -- a doubly-sweet finish, not only to see AF win, but also, as an Oklahoma fan, to see Boise State lose (yes, I'm still bitter over the 2007 Fiesta Bowl game).  Our family looks forward to heading back to another Air Force Academy game next year, although perhaps a bit earlier in the season.  Oh, and if we're going to stay in Colorado, we might should invest in some Air Force Academy gear to wear to the ball games!

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