by Emily Moore | Co- Editor in Chief (Opinion)
Every Sunday, believers sit in shiny metal pews- rain or shine. They hold steady to their faith as miracles take place on soft astroturf, they hold their breath as unspeakable leaps of perfectly tuned athleticism. And with grace they player will grab onto the ball, and then magic happens-TOUCHDOWN.
Football in Texas is never simply a sport, a Sunday evening leisure activity or a tradition passed down through generations. No, Texas football is a religion.
“Football is so important in Texas. On the West Coast, it’s a social. On the East Coast, it’s a culture. Here, it’s a religion,” Major Applewhite once said.
Numerous plays, passes and interceptions can make non-believers conform. What has become the “great moment” of 2010 is a prime example of the holy attributes that surround Texas’ football-laced fantasies. The church proceddings were delt out in Memorial Stadium (a reassurance that religion can be carried past state borders), and became the third time that an unranked Texas team took out the Cornhuskers.
Other states try to adopt Texas’ teaching and preachings, such as the “Immaculate Reception” of Oakland and the Steelers. Yet, none have been able to truly integrate the Texas way of life into their own.
“If you want to surf, move to Hawaii. If you like to shop, move to New York. If you like acting and Hollywood, move to California. But if you like football, move to Texas,” Ricky Williams, a former American football running back once said.
While yes, some miracles come at a cost (“Music City Miracle” of 2000, where, clearly, the toss was forward and not lateral,) they are miracles through and through, making the fans even more devoted believers than ever before.
With a religion so diverse and eternally changing, its idols can take many different forms. For some, it’s Mack Brown and his skills to lead a loyal following. Others, it’s the charming, smitten wit of Michael Wheeler, Jaxon Shipley or Matthew Zapata. Regardless of personal preference, football is still a place where many different believers can come together and worship perfect combinations of athletic ability and chishled talent.
As true underdogs, the Texas Longhorns have proved to be able to move even the heaviest of boulders to win the game. A prime occurance of this divine strength and intervention took place Oct.19, 2002 in the KSU stadium. With only seven seconds left on the clock, Kansas’ Jared Brite went in for a field goal that would assure them a win – whether it was focused, driven talent or the hand of the football gods is a hotly heated debate for folks outside of Texas. Nonetheless, saintly Dusty Magnum came in to block the kick, and the victory was all for the Lone Star State.
No matter how many ‘Hail Marys’ Texas resurrects on the field, or how many times they prove to be the David in a ‘Goliath’ situation, they still have their godly appearance at number one for 45 weeks straight.