Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

October’s Harvest Is Ripe With Great Sports Pickings

Easter Sunday has never really been my thing. The 12 days of Christmas really wear me out. I usually forget it’s my birthday until half-way through the day. But every year, I hurt deep down when Halloween’s last jack-o’-lantern burns out, for I know that October has come and gone, and with it the most spectacular month in the sports world. For 31 dazzling days, our calendars are crammed with a cornucopia of pigskin and playoffs.

October marks the confluence of three great American sporting attractions. Major League Baseball comes to a climactic finish just in time for college basketball’s midnight madness, college and pro football are hitting full stride, and NBA tip-off is just around the corner. Weeknights are spent procrastinating your academic standing away as you listen to the distinctive voices of fall classic baseball, Joe Buck and Tim McCarver. ESPN’s Game Day crew serves as your Saturday morning alarm clock, and Sunday afternoons are spent dozing off to John Madden’s endearing blubbering.

A lazy summer afternoon at the ballpark has its perks, but there is nothing quite like playoff baseball. Legendary New York pitcher Whitey Ford once said, “You kind of took it for granted around the Yankees that there was going to be baseball in October.” Thanks to television, you don’t have to be a blood-sucking Bronx Bomber to experience baseball at its most thrilling. October is the only time you can watch the American pastime on TV when you’re not trying to fall asleep. The tension mounts with every pitch, building and building to a climactic apex of ecstasy (Reggie Jackson, Francisco Cabrera, Joe Carter) or misery (Bill Buckner, Steve Bartman, Byung-Hyun Kim). Is there anything better than watching Kirk Gibson round the bases on his hobbled leg or Curt Schilling exorcise Babe Ruth’s ghost in a blood-soaked pair of stirrups?

Maybe. The Texas-OU Red River shootout on a sun-splashed afternoon at the State Fair in Dallas might top it. The Golden Domers trying to wake up the echoes against the proud Men of Troy is pretty wonderful as well. Georgia-Florida is so intoxicating they call it the world’s largest outdoor cocktail party. As legendary ABC College Football announcer Chris Schenkel always said, “College football: What a way to spend an autumn afternoon!” Sure beats raking leaves or killing time at a pumpkin patch.

Under October’s harvest moon, legends are made. Reggie Jackson stamped his ticket to Cooperstown. Reggie Bush shoved his way into the Heisman race. Edgar Renteria became a World Series icon in 1997 at the young age of 22, Randy Johnson at the old age of 38.

I love October so much I’m planning the rest of my life around it. How can I get married on a Saturday when No. 1 might be playing No. 2? How can I fully enjoy watching one of my children come into this world if I’m watching game seven out of the corner of my eye?

Should I happen to die in October, I probably won’t even notice the difference.

To me, heaven is October.

Harlan Goode is a senior in the College and features editor at THE HOYA. He can be reached at goodethehoya.com.

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