Last week someone told me that anytime they heard anything about Oklahoma State University, she thought of me. I couldn't have been more proud. I love everything about OSU.
I love OSU when things are good. Like when our basketball team played in the Final Four. When I got to walk through the end zone in my cap and gown. Like last Thursday when our football team was 10-0 and we were applying for National Championship tickets. When it's a beautiful fall day on campus and the fountain is dyed orange.
And I love OSU when things are bad. When I can't fill in "OSU" on a March Madness bracket. When we had to pile into the Student Union basement for tornado warnings. When we lose our first game of the season and potentially the chance at a trip to New Orleans. And when tragic plane crashes take away members of the OSU family.
If you're a sports fan, you know that my Pokes were upset last Friday. We lost in double overtime to Iowa State, which may have ended our dream of playing in the National Championship. And it really sucked. And coming from a football fan like me, I know this is shocking, but I sure wish that had been the worst thing that happened last week.
Then, we lost 10. Thursday night we lost 4. And Friday night we lost a football game. Sure puts things in perspective about the latter.
Yes, on Friday night those boys dreams were crushed. Along with those of everyone wearing orange. A Heisman was almost certainly lost. The chance of kissing the crystal National Championship trophy seemed to have slipped away. But they were able to walk off an airplane and sing the alma mater at the airport. And go home and hug their families. That's more important than the W any day.
If there is one thing I know about Oklahoma State in a tragedy, it's that we will never forget. We've said it and lived it for the last 10 years. In a field in Colorado. On a banner hanging from the rafters. At a statute outside Gallagher Iba Arena. In homecoming decorations marking the 10 year anniversary of the first crash. So today, I'm wearing orange. Because I love OSU. Win or lose. Happy or sad. Because I'm proud of the way we've pulled together in times of disappointment, in times of tragedy, and even in times of being targeted by terrible, crazy funeral protesters. Because I'm proud to be a Cowboy. Because we'll never forget. And because we are...Orange.