When one marries a military academy graduate, it is known that one day each fall is sacred. The Army vs Navy football game. The two academies have been playing each other all but 4 years since 1899. This game is now the last game of the regular season, played the weekend after the conference championship games. This year was the 117th meeting between the two, with Navy having been on a 14 game win streak. The academies do a series of competitions in the week leading up to the game, including the “patriot games” which are multiple events from tug-o-war to pull ups, a debate, boxing match, etc. Each school release spirit videos throughout the week poking fun at the other academy and showing school spirit. These videos include cadets, staff, even the secretary of the army got involved this year. They are creative and I really enjoy watching them each year.
This year we were unable to get tickets to the game so we decided to go down to Austin and watch with the West Point and Naval Academy central Texas Alumni groups. They have a big get together at a bar. It was such a great experience. There were a lot of younger old grads, but also some graduates who were much older donning their old West Point sweaters. Jason wanted to wear this absolutely ridiculous shirt and I was expecting him to be the only one in such an outfit…oh was I wrong. Almost every old grad there had on sweaters, jackets with WP patches, WP robes, letter sweaters, uniform jackets, and other attire. There were probably 200 people there, 90% for Army. I had such a wonderful time meeting new people, Jason seeing old friends, and feeling the brotherhood rooting for the Black Knights.
This year proved to be the year West Point broke the streak! The game was full of turnovers, great defense, and lots of running plays. Every time the Black Knights would score, the old grads would sing a song cheering on the team. There was also a chant they would do when good things happened. One guy would stand up on the chair and raise his arms. With each arm movement everyone would yell a different word. It was so awesome hearing everyone yell together and know what was going on. One off the best parts of it was the fact that everyone was so respectful. There were people cheering for both teams and there were no problems.Even though there was plenty of alcohol drank, nobody was out of control or messing anything in the bar up. They were all respectful and willing to help anyone that was in need. As time ran out, everyone was going so nuts that people outside the bar were stopping to look in to see what was going on. It was a great experience and I absolutely cannot wait until next year.
GO ARMY! BEAT NAVY!