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CU Buffs Column: Go ahead, take a sip

Ryan Koenigsberg Avatar
July 26, 2015


As the Colorado summer reaches its dog days and the last bits of fresh water melt off the just-barely-snowcapped Indian Peaks, something else is populating a relatively calm Boulder Creek.

Kool-Aid. Sweet, sweet Kool-Aid. The nectar of the college football Gods.

A man of the town meanders down the path that runs adjacent to the sugary stream, his black and gold Crocs crunching fallen twigs from the overhanging trees. He’s thirsty, oh so thirsty, but as hesitant as ever to dip his empty canteen into the runoff.

You see, he’s sipped the Kool-Aid before, and he knows that while sweet in the summer months, that same sip may turn his stomach in the fall. He thinks better of it, but as he turns to put his canteen back into his patagonia backpack, right next to the flagon whisky he polished off last September, he hears a voice from above.

“Drink it,” he hears.

“RK? Is that you?!” He exclaims.

“Yes it’s me,” I say. “Drink the Kool-Aid.”

“Why,” He asks. “Why should I drink it?”

Why not is the better question. (“What did I just read?” Is also a good question.)

Every year right around this time, the fan base becomes divided. You’ve got the overly optimistic, the cautiously optimistic, the pessimistic, and the “show me” crowd. The groups bicker back and fourth about what to expect and whose expectations are too high, whose are too low, blah, blah, blah.

My advice to the fans is to join the optimists. You don’t need to be predicting a Pac-12 championship or anything like that, but as you sit there and think about the season, don’t hold back your optimistic feelings out of fear of getting burned. Let the optimism flow, dare to dream, feel the bowl game.

At this point you’ve done it enough, you know what it’s like to get your hopes up and then have them crushed. Sure, it sucks, but at this point you’ve come to realize that it really isn’t the end of the world. What you haven’t gone through yet as a fan of Colorado in the last decade, is the euphoria experienced when you do let your hopes rise and your expectations are finally met, and frankly, if you’ve made it this far, you deserve it.

This isn’t me telling you I think the Buffs are going to make a bowl game, in fact I’ll tell you I don’t think they are. But it’s not all that crazy to think it may happen, and as a fan there’s no better time than right now to believe in that dream. Everybody is 0-0, now is the time to get hyped up, to watch the old videos of the glory days that may even bring a tear to your eye, to think that player who was on the cusp last year IS going to make that step forward everybody thinks is so vital, or that the key player who wasn’t himself last year WILL be back to his top form.

Sure, it makes you vulnerable, but vulnerability isn’t always a bad thing. When you make yourself vulnerable and it pays off, the reward is twice as sweet.

Sure, it might sound illogical, but you’ve put tons of time, money and energy into watching some college kids play a game, you left logic at the door a while ago.

Think of it like this article, you probably should have stopped reading at the top with that weirdly romanticized fictional story, but for some reason you kept reading, and now you’ve made it here to the end, for the big pay off!

Wait, that was a bad example, there’s no big pay off…. Just drink the Kool-Aid.

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