It's finally here. The single greatest thing there is. And I'm not talking about Fred Jackson's book, which is going to be like The Catcher in the Rye, only with better hands. It's going to be like Heart of Darkness, except with more heart. It's going to be like War and Peace, but with more war and more peace. I love you, Coach Jackson.
At this point I'm so delusional I watch Countdown to Kickoff and some fan videos.
I usually watch hype videos all day on Friday and then barely sleep Saturday. It's rough. One thing I remember is how much I love the sack. Remember Alan Branch leveling that PSU QB a few years ago? Blowing up screens are great too. Blow up some screens tomorrow, boys.
I don't even know what I'm drinking tomorrow. Right now, I've got an Oberon in my hand - the last of the summer's cache - we've got three weeks left in summer. But in some ways, today's the last day of summer for me. Tomorrow, it's back to Michigan Stadium for the start of fall and school and cider and oktoberfest beer and football and football and football.
Tonight, I'm going to finish my Oberon and sit on my porch for a little bit, wondering if just maybe everything could click - if a true freshman left tackle and the best defensive talent since Woodson are going to be as good as advertised. I'm going to wonder if a hyped running back who lost his way can pick back up where his high school days left off. Whether Alabama's former OC can bring some road grading magic up north. Will Devin Gardner - who I will defend until my dying days - be better with something other than cheese for ribs? (YES!) Will the defense finally be a Michigan (TM) Defense? (Dave, I owe you a nickel.)
Hopefully, these questions will start to be answered tomorrow. Tomorrow, Michigan will play a game with little football upside and tremendous pride downside. I'm not quite sure why this game against this particular opponent is happening. Is it to exorcise demons none of the current squad and few staffers still have? Is it to "get back to Michigan?" I don't know. And I don't really care. Tomorrow, Michigan will play football. That's all that matters.
These aren't questions I can answer right now (Devin'll be fine). And they aren't questions I really care to answer. Because having the faith that so many have had in the last decade in the grand old battleship that is Michigan football isn't an easy faith to have. It's one that often leaves these questions unanswered and hanging. But sometimes, just sometimes, those questions - those prayers - are answered. And I'm grateful, more than anything, to be along for the ride.
Until next week, Michigan Faithful, cheers!