UMD Bulldog and Team USA goalie Maddie Rooney sported the Aerial Lift Bridge on the back of her helmet as Team USA took gold last night. There were a total of five UMD Bulldogs in the quest for the gold medal: Rooney and defenseman Sidney Morin for team USA, and forward Haley Irwin, defensemen Jocelyne Larocque and Brigette Lacquette were playing for Canada. Also, the U.S. team was coached by Duluth native Robb Stauber.
Once again, Eric Strand embarked on the 52.4-mile journey from the finish line to the starting line and back to the finish line of Grandma’s Marathon. The annual video is usually released in June, but hey, it’s not a race, it’s a marathon … an ultra-marathon.
I was on the UMD football team for two years. I had a locker and got equipment that wasn’t as nice as what important players got. I received most of the on-and-off-campus benefits that came with being in the football fold. I made it onto the lower tier of the second-string roster for a few practices by the end of my sophomore season in 1990. I was a legit but inconsequential member of the team. I never really played. I haven’t actually played football since November 1989, when my senior season as a Rochester John Marshall Rocket ended with a loss to the Winona Winhawks.
Some fellow seniors cried on the sideline of Winona’s stadium as our high-school football identities ticked away. I felt bad about not being able to muster that emotion. I couldn’t have said it this way then, but now I know I just didn’t much care. I mean . . . I suppose I would have preferred to win. It’s just that losing didn’t really bother me and I wasn’t bereft about that season ending.
No part of football for me had to do with feeling driven to win or averse to losing. Somewhere in my dudebro teenage brain I already knew that many aspects of football are stupid and creepy and “winning” and “losing” are illusory stories we tell ourselves to create meaning we can understand in an existence we can’t.