It’s the final countdown

Brady Fredericksen

These next three weeks are about to be the worst of the year. I don’t mean that in a bad way — really. I want them to be lovely, too.

Maybe it’s because I, like many of you, am a senior counting down the days (hours, minutes, seconds?) until graduation. I have a love-hate relationship with these final three weeks of my college career.

I mean, anyone can relate to the idea that — with only three weeks left in the semester — studying has moved considerably lower on the things-college-kids-love-to-do list.

Really, the best part about the next few weeks is the sports. It’s the intramural sports that you’ve decided to play, in part, so you could work off that Thanksgiving weight gain. Getting a head start on that inevitable New Year’s resolution isn’t bad either.

It’s the sports going on here at GVSU. Sure, the football team left you with a little to be desired (see: defense), but there are still some great and potentially great moments coming up in other sports.

Women’s cross-country won its second national title in three seasons last week. Soccer is going for three titles in four seasons in Georgia on Thursday and both the men’s and women’s basketball teams are off to strong starts in the non-conference season.

It’s the Laker pride that students once had as a naïve freshman. Think about it this way: you deal with a lot as a student trying to get everything finished before finals, but those student athletes have that and an entire separate life on the field or court to succeed in, too.

Busy or not, I’m sure they also have time to sit around and watch other sports — just like you. Bored from studying? Let’s look at the Heisman race. If you’re reading this, you’re obviously a fan of sports who has a take on this bronze trophy; one that spells certain NFL doom for the majority of its winners.

It’s a two-man race at this point. Are you the fan who roots for the up-and-comer in Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Football… errr, Manziel? If you aren’t riding Manziel, you’re gunning for the defensive upset with Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o, right?

There’s no clear-cut guy. It’s either the freshman who’s lit up the scoreboard and led his team to complete surprise status or the defensive player on an even more surprising team in the BCS National Championship game.

I love me some Johnny Football, but I’ve got to give it to Manti Te’o. He’s a helluva player with a helluva story. Really, hype wins awards in sports – just ask Robert Griffin III last season.

But how about those Fightin’ Irish, eh? Former GVSU coach Brian Kelly has to be college football’s coach of the year (with A&M’s Kevin Sumlin in second) based on the fact that he finally has Notre Dame back to being rightfully relevant.

That’s amazing, especially considering Notre Dame couldn’t even be back when it had that whole “decided schematically advantage” thing with Charlie Weis.

Props to Brian Kelly and his coaching staff — including fellow GVSU head coaching alum, Chuck Martin — they’ve done what many in college football said was impossible. They’ve revived a sleeping giant, and with a date against Alabama or Georgia for the farcy title of national champions, it’s hard not to root for the Irish — no matter if your allegiance is maize and blue or green and white.

Take a deep breath, because there’s a ton to look forward to during this exam and holiday season. Don’t sit and fret about the dramas that come with life and school — study hard, but actually try to have some fun, Lakers.
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