As a senior going to my last game in the OB, I am proud to say that I was part of the last class to enjoy four years there. For myself and my fellow classmates, we began our freshman year with a triumphant overtime win against FSU; probably the most memorable game for the class of 2008, the second possibly being this year’s win against FSU.
For that being the first game, it set a mighty high precedent. Though it has come close, never has my voice been so raspy the next day after my first game as a Cane. Never again did I see fans bring down the house with more chanting during a regular season game. The Metrorail was never again quite as loud as it was the night we beat FSU in 2004. Never have I felt so many people crashing down on me with high fives, fist pounds and chest bumps. On that hot night in September, the class of 2004 learned just how great it is to be a Miami Hurricane.
It is time to say goodbye to the good times in lot E4. There will be new parking lots to tailgate in and new police to “arrest” fans drinking underage. It is time to put to rest the old “light bright” scoreboard (a toy reference for children of the ’80s). It is time to say hello to real parking and goodbye to “$20, no block.” So long Little Havana. Hello Dolphin Stadium. Like George Harrison said, “All things must pass.”
For those freshmen who will enter UM next year, I say enjoy the new possibilities of your Hurricane football team with a new season and a new stadium to play in. Although many of you will never know what it is like to experience a game in the historic OB as a student at UM, we have to believe that our memories will be passed along from those who chanted all the way down the concrete ramps at a game’s end.
The class of 2008 is privileged to have enjoyed their last four years in the Orange Bowl. We will usher the OB into the history books with glorious tradition and rich history. Regardless of how well we play next season or whether fans like Dolphin Stadium better, there will only be one Orange Bowl. There will only be one place where I saw my first UM football game. There will only be one place where I remember exactly where I was sitting and who I was sitting with. Was it the sweet taste of victory that made that first FSU game so memorable? Was it the kid sitting next to me chanting voodoo in the fourth quarter? Was it being a freshman, not even one month into college? This was all part of that winning atmosphere, but most of all it was the magic of the OB.
Sam Rega is a senior majoring in motion pictures and philosophy. He may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit his blog at samrega.blogspot.com.