I guess I got Vandalized for yesterday's posting about Boise State's phenomenal Fiesta Bowl victory. For those who may have misunderstood my passions, I apologize. After all, I am a Vandal who graduated from the University of Idaho in 1969. I spent four years in Moscow putting myself through school by working at the Radio-Television Center. Each week when the Friday Report from President Tim White comes to my computer, I read every word.
I'm loyal to the University of Idaho as a graduate, but as mother to three Boise State University graduates, I also feel a loyalty. If the University of Idaho had won the Fiesta Bowl, as an Idaho native, I would have been equally proud. When anything distinguishes the state of Idaho in a positive manner, I'll sing its praises enthusiastically. And, when I have a personal connection, you can step that passion up a notch.
While watching the Fiesta Bowl Monday night, I was also proud for my brother when the West Point Glee Club sang the "National Anthem." He graduated from there in 1966. In spite of the legendary Army-Navy rivalry, however, I'm always proud to brag about one of our Sandpoint natives and one of my students who graduated first in his class at Annapolis.
I never attended a single class at Gonzaga University in Spokane, but over the past few years I've become a diehard Gonzaga fan. I rationalize this association to my Catholicism, but, in reality, the Zags put on some great entertainment for those of us in the region who suffer from cabin fever woes of long winters. I've heard many people comment that the winters go by faster when you follow the Zags. I tend to agree.
Last weekend we spent a wad and went to the Battle in Seattle for our first-ever attendance at a real live Gonzaga game. We were disappointed with the loss but not with the action on the court. It was, indeed, a treat to see a different view of college basketball and to take in the extras that folks watching TV don't see during the commercials. We don't hate Nevada because they beat Gonzaga. Instead, we just look ahead to the next game and hope for the best for the young Zags.
As a moderately informed sports fan who's not in tune with every nuance or piece of baggage that goes along with all aspects of sport, I'm happy when any team in the region is doing well. For example, I laud the success WSU is having this year, even though they beat our Zags. They're good, and they deserve recognition for the impressive record they've earned thus far. When they beat the Zags a few weeks ago, our assessment was that it was a good game and WSU wanted to win. We didn't hate them. I have a cousin or two (WSU grads) who will keep me in line about that.
As a Vandal and University of Idaho graduate, like most people, I'm disappointed that Coach Dennis Erickson abandoned ship one more time and headed off to the sun country. Nonetheless, I hold great hope that the new coach who came across the border from Pullman will dedicate himself to the Vandal football team and build a program that will once again succeed. The Vandals deserve his loyalty.
As an ecumenical observer who acknowledges and appreciates wonderful stories associated with success anywhere, any time---especially when it involves an Idaho school and, yes, especially when it's my own alma mater, I'll humbly "unwad my panties," as SickBoy suggested in yesterday's comments and say:
Go Vandals, Go Zags, Go Cougs, and Go Broncos, Go Seahawks . . . .