Well, it's July 5th.
That means it's officially time to talk casually about college football again! There's nothing I hate worse about living down in Alabama than constant buzz about Alabama and Auburn days after the season ends. Paul Finebaum, god bless him, has to endure endless ESS EE SEE talk from the day after the playoff to the start of the next season. I don't know if I could do that 365 days a year.
Thankfully, I am not a paranoid SEC fan. I am a reasonable superfan of the Mid-American Conference and am blessed with other things to concern myself with. That period from March to July is relatively enjoyable for me as a sports fan. I can sit back, relax, and watch March Madness as a true spectator. Catch EURO and Gold Cup action, maybe watch an odd baseball game, whatever.
But it's now July 5th. This means it's real. It's really real. It's time to talk preseason award watch lists, two-deeps, non-conference strength of schedules, and who will get the redshirts.
It's also time to assemble a tailgate playlist to end all tailgate playlists.
This, perhaps, is my favorite part of a football game. College football atmospheres are unlike any other. One of my favorite traditions at Kelly/Shorts Stadium was to enter the gates 90 minutes early (which was the earliest you could get in,) take my seat at the first row of the student section at the 50-yard line with my good friends, and attempt to get the DJ to play our suggested songs. Many dance parties were had. There were also impromptu choruses and attempts to rap. These are some of my fondest memories at Central, win or lose.
Now having graduated, my routine is slightly different. It primarily involves dressing up in a t-shirt and some sweatpants, cracking open a soda and listening to a pre-made playlist to get me hype for games. It's not the same, but it's something. I;m still trying to figure out how to get to Homecoming.
For me, I like a mix of old favorites, tailgate classics and guilty pleasures, with a dash of current musical taste. OutKast, Kid Cudi, fun., Daft Punk, deadmau5, The Black Keys, Florence and the Machine and Grimes all converge together to get me motivated to watch my Chippewas. (I have weird taste, sorry.)
Which makes me curious: what do you like to pre-game to?
This is always on my playlist, no exceptions. It should be on yours, too.