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Far above the golden valley, glorious to view

November 10, 2012

I am proud to be a Jayhawk.

One of the things that brings a school’s population together – rejuvenates it, makes it proud – is athletics. While there should be – and are – more important things than who won a game or match, watching a team fight to the end – no matter the outcome – is meaningful. It makes all those people watching feel like they are a part of something greater than themselves. And you know what? They are.

Today, I witnessed the University of Kansas volleyball team lose a heartbreaker to the Texas Longhorns – a loss in the full five sets. It was a bummer, but I am still unbelievably proud of this team – my team. They fought hard until the end, and even though the desired outcome didn’t work out this time around, the Jayhawk volleyball team is still my favorite team to watch, in any season, let’s be honest.

I went to my first Jayhawk volleyball match last year because my friend was in the volleyball band, and after that first match, I was hooked. Volleyball matches became an outlet for me – a place I could go to release emotions, watch a team that loves the sport and each other, and feel a part of something great.

I love this team and this sport. In fact, last Wednesday, I traveled 88 miles to watch KU play Kansas State at K-State (We won, for the record!). I go to the home matches, and I listen to the away matches on the radio. However, the season is almost coming to an end, and I find this rather sad. Even though it’s basketball season and there are plenty of opportunities to release energy or get an outlet or whatever, for me, there’s nothing quite like sitting in the Horejsi Family Athletic Center and watching the Jayhawks kill their opponent. I can’t describe it, and whenever someone asks me to put into words why I am so invested in my Jayhawk volleyball fan-ness, I give it an attempt, but nothing I say can truly explain the sense of calm, pride, and joy that I feel when I sit there and watch my team.

Perhaps it’s all a part of that feeling of being a part of something greater than oneself. That thing? Jayhawk Nation. Cheering on the Jayhawks last year made me feel like part of this Jayhawk Nation. We come together to cheer on these girls as they leave everything on the floor. They represent us, and no matter the outcome, we are proud to all be a part of Jayhawk Nation. The same goes for all of Kansas athletics.

Today, I brought several signs to the volleyball match. They said: This is our house. This is our time. We are Kansas. Go Jayhawks! When the match ended, I stayed, displaying my “We are Kansas” sign proudly. When the players left the court, I stayed. When the players returned, I stayed. I stayed for a long time after that, for no reason other than to just show the girls that we are proud. We are Kansas.

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From → Sophomore

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