With thermometers already reaching 90 plus, it looks like South Carolina is in for its normal long, hot summer.
For those non-football folks, the year is segmented into four seasons, Winter, spring, summer and fall. College football enthusiasts break it down a little differently.
Winter is the “dark territory.” Then, it is all about spring practice and a second national signing day. Early June is all about recruiting and Dabo Swinney’s football camps. It is a great time to see the future stars of the Clemson Tigers.
Summer is about the excitement and anticipation leading to the preseason fall camp. It’s during this time, the team, despite the oppressive heat of summer, smooths out its wrinkles. The coaches evaluate every player to figure out the details and intricacies of their team. Putting the 2022 football jigsaw puzzle together.
Undeniably for pigskin devotees, fall is the most wonderful time of the year. It’s the season that legends are born. Where hope and passion runs deeply and dreams of championships are omnipresent in the minds of all.
A time where bragging rights are secured and the transformation from boy to man begins for some, and is nearly completed for others. As the oppressive heat gives way to the crisp fall air and the cheers of a grateful Death Valley fill the air, all that love football are in heaven.
Ironically, it’s there, on those long, hot days in late August that a team becomes a band of brothers and where those coveted championships are won. Every ounce of perspiration, each young man creates, puts him and his teammates one step closer to achieving greatness.
Sure, there will be healthy competitions at many different positions. The preseason naysayers and talking heads are going to create lots of loud and resounding noise. Fans will respectfully disagree on a myriad of different, hot topics. The drama, both good and bad, will be there too. The most important thing to remember about summer is, it’s fun to sit and wonder.
Every day, opening up computers and phones to find new, informative articles and interviews by the dozens. Celebrating or commiserating the preseason polls and arguing who should, or should not, be the Tigers starting quarterback. Asking constantly, if new offensive coordinator Brandon Streeter will open up the playbook. Looking with a keen eye, to see proof that the defense really is in good hands with Wes Goodwin and Mickey Conn.
Looking at it that way, it gives an entirely new slant to the term, long hot summer. Those frustration-fueled discussions create a different kind of heat. One, despite any real change of temperature, will remain long and hot until the final whistle has blown on the 2022 season. There is a lot on the line in the coming season but I suspect the Tigers are equal to the task. I believe this team has greatness within it.
Take heart, the annual funfest known as Clemson football is only a few weeks away. Until then, stay cool and hydrated because, on the field of play and in the trenches of fandom, the real heat is about to begin.
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