So the Raiders had another terrible loss, this time to Texas, but it was momentous for one reason: a third-string quarterback named Vinny Testaverde got to play. Now I'll be the first person to admit, I don't know the whole story, I'm not even sure this was the first time he played. But when I heard his name, I said, I've heard that name before, and sure enough, his father was once a quarterback for the Cleveland Browns, among other teams. Like father, like son. Son gets on the Tech team, walks on, gets to play quarterback. I wish him a successful career.
I almost went over to the Cowboys for a while there. I come from a territory where it was pretty routine to hate the Cowboys, not only if you were from the DC area, but also if you were from the vast NY area, everyone hated the Cowboys, and they hated them even more if they won or were successful more than a couple seasons in a row. You'd see them every Thanksgiving, for example, and they were an example, to me, of something you didn't especially want to see with your turkey. But hey, down here I find out they're God's team. And, they have a nice blue star and everyone wears that star. And, they're kind of middling, they blow it a lot, they are definitely not the Man U of football. So I begin to soften up, and say, if I take on the Cowboys, then I'll have two teams the Cowboys and the Indians, the Indians being the number one team on account of I love baseball, and I was born in Cleveland. Being born in Cleveland, I've taken on all the teams, Browns, Cavs, Indians, whatever, and in the end, I decided to stick with them, because, for what it's worth, doesn't matter if you have Jonny Football, or Bernie Kosar, or what. If you're a Browns fan, you stick with the Browns, good or bad. No Cowboys for me.
Now the Tech team, that's a different story. I work for Tech, I wear the red and black everywhere, I'm going to be for them on the weekend when Texas comes to town. People wear orange for Hallowe'en, and I said to them, how do we know you're not for Texas? Different kind of orange, they say, Texas Longhorn orange is kind of burnt orange, dark orange, whereas Halloween glorifies a kind of brighter orange. The Longhorns apparently weren't playing their best; they're not so good this year, but at least they weren't as horrible as we were. But what happened? Maybe our first two quarterbacks got injured, or just got exhausted. maybe they got the wind taken out of their sails, is how we used to say it.
What surprises me is the way Lubbock lives and dies for this stuff. People notice and care, who's quarterback, who's injured, what are our chances for any of our last games, do we really have a chance against Oklahoma, etc. Maybe some people have moved on and taken on bigger issues, like how to get dinner tonight, but for many people, it's a big deal. This is bye week. So, the paper is full of how we'll reconsider, move things around, practice a lot, etc. Nothing is happening. We get to watch all the other college football games this weekend. And the Cowboys, of course. The Cowboys are doing ok, apparently. Maybe they have a chance. Tech certainly doesn't.
You can be pretty bad, and still get a bowl game. That happened the first year we were here. Tech was bad, but it got into some bowl, and won, and everyone was in a pretty good mood all during the spring and summer when it seemed like the team was getting better, and had hope, and had a chance. I don't think we'll be in such a good mood this year. We won't even make it into a bowl.
Unless, of course, Vinny Testaverde catches fire. You figure, he grew up with football, his father was in the Hall of Fame (didn't win too many games, but racked up pretty good stats?)...anyway, what if he just does really well? I'd say, there's always a chance. It's his chance to go pro, and he'll want to. So I think, on some level, he's got the ability too look at that chance coldly, and rise to the occasion. There's hope.
So says the perpetual Browns/Indians/Cavs fan, who has seen season after season of disappointment.