Friday, April 18th, 2014

Observations from a trip to Doak

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It’s been a while since I wrote here. But I wanted to share with you guys my thoughts, opinions, and ponderings from my recent weekend excursion to Tallahassee.

The Good:

  • Needless to say, I picked a great game to attend. Although I try to get to Doak every year, thanks to Dustin Hopkins, I finally saw my first win since I was student back in 2005. And my dad, who has joined me each of the last four years, finally saw his first Nole victory.
  • EJ Manuel played well in the fourth quarter. He showed off his arm early, but the offense was inconsistent at best for the first three quarters. But what a fourth quarter.
  • It was a beautiful night for football. A bit brisk, but absolutely clear. And I am always impressed with the tinkerings inside Doak Campbell Stadium. The scoreboards look awesome.
  • I stopped off at Buffalo Wild Wings on Tennessee Street before the game. I probably spent more money there then I did on tuition. Always good to go back to a familiar watering hole.
  • Maybe I am getting old, and with old age comes respect, but all the students were really nice to me. As to be almost expected, a few people accidentally bumped into me along the way, but those that looked of student age immediately apologized. Good to see.
  • I was very impressed with the Garnet and Gold store in the Governor’s Square Mall. They re-did the inside of the store and created a cashier row that makes check out times quick even with a long line. So kudos to them.

The Bad:

  • The offense for the first three quarters. If I am not mistaken, we had less than 10 yards rushing going into the 4th quarter.
  • Where was the defense? Especially in the first quarter. The Noles came out pumped, with the crowd loud, and after a few good opening defensive plays, the Clemson offense methodically worked their way to the endzone.
  • Parking, parking, parking. If you follow me on twitter, I complained about parking, and I’m going to mention it here again. I’ve never had an easy job finding parking near Doak Campbell Stadium on game day, although I did find a lot on the far side of the intermural fields. I wish I could buy a one-time parking pass when I buy my ticket online.
  • Traffic. I never appreciated the idea of highway access to a stadium more. I actually heard a traffic cop tell a driver, “You should know better than to take your car out on a game day.” I had to go east down Appalachee Parkway to my hotel and thank goodness I remembered how to navigate backroads to FAMU and down FAMU Way instead of getting stuck on Gaines Street for eternity. Stone Valley Road to Cleveland Street to Eugenia Street to Railroad to Monroe to Appalachee. Just don’t get caught on the railroad tracks.

The Emotional:

  • It was an awesome night for Seminole athletics. Not only was Derrick Brooks’ number retired at halftime, but recently-named National League Rookie of the Year Buster Posey was also acknowledged.
  • Seeing all the cheerleader alumni recognized was also nice. I owe my cum laude recognition to a cheerleader. Back in 2003, I went into my final test in my final class as an undergrad with a 3.49 overall GPA. A few days before the test, I ran into a cheerleader friend of mine who had taken the final earlier and she told me all the questions to study. I aced the test and graduated cum laude. So I am forever indebted to the wonderful ladies of the FSU cheerleading squad.
  • Going into Doak, I had no idea Derrick Brooks was getting his number retired. But after seeing the numbers that were already retired and seeing a black curtain over a picture, I guessed it was Derrick Brooks’ day. No wonder there were a few fans walking around with Bucs shirts on.
  • Speaking of Tampa sports, I actually saw a few other fans with Rays merch on. I don’t ever remembering seeing anyone wearing a Devil Rays hat or shirt in my six years in Tallahassee.
  • For whatever reason, my seats were surrounded by parents with their little kids. One kid had on an FSU hat and waved a big FSU foam finger. I’m guessing it was one of his first games, as his parents were continuously taking pictures of him. After Hopkins’ kick, he went nuts. I think he became a fan for life.

Comments

4 Responses to “Observations from a trip to Doak”
  1. LuvunolesNo Gravatar says:

    Jordi
    Good hearing from you!

  2. ColeNo Gravatar says:

    I agree with most of this, but I don’t think people understand how good Clemson’s defense really is. With a backup QB and a terrible set of WR’s, I’m thankful to get 16 points.

  3. FsualyssaNo Gravatar says:

    Parking is crazy, but if you’re willing to pay 20 bucks you can park at the houses on belle vue way. It’s a 4 minute walk to the stadium and its a great place to tailgate. I live in a house with a huge yard and we have a great time tailgating with all the people who park there.

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