During a summer filled with seemingly endless labor-disputes, NCAA scandals and a presumed lull in sports action, it felt as if the month of October was light-years away.
But now, sports fans can finally say: October is here.
October means much more than ghosts and goblins or the changing of the seasons. The sheer visual beauty of autumn is no match for the cultural unity and emotion October brings out in the sporting world. October is the best month of the year.
As this month begins, fans are reminded of the many reasons to be excited; the MLB Postseason takes place during October, the NFL season heats up and the NHL season is begins.
NBA fans, due to the current labor dispute, I am sorry, but it looks like you will have to follow college basketball for the time being.
But let’s not forget October’s reach does not just touch professional sports. In fact at the University of South Dakota, the buzz of Dakota Days and the ensuing football game on Saturday is a perfect example of how sports and October can unify any community.
Even at the high school level, students across the country come together on Friday evening to root on their school’s football team.
This unbridled devotion is exactly what the month of October is all about.
Whether you’re exerting school pride while cheering on your school’s team from the stands; or sitting in front of the TV watching the game with your closest friends, October’s ability to bring people together through sports is unprecedented.
Yet, sports would be nothing without emotion. Without the athletes’ emotional connection to the game or the fans emotional loyalty to the team they cheer for, sports would not be what they are. There is something about the atmosphere during this month that seems to strengthen the emotional aspect of any sport.
Imagine, it’s game seven of the National League Championship Series and anticipation is seeping out of every seat in the stadium. Thousands of miles away in the comfort of your living room, you can almost feel a light fall breeze hit your skin and the sweet aroma of freshly cut grass intertwined with the sweet smells of autumn filling your nostrils. It’s as if you are there. That same anticipation is what creates a the feeling of an emotional connection to the game.
But that is just what October does; it takes our already heightened love of the game and combines it with certain aspects only found during this month and creates a sports utopia. A place where the temperature is always 60 degrees, the game is always close and your team always wins.
It may all be in everyone’s heads, but every year when September draws to close and October welcomes us with open arms and fans can’t help but to feel at home. Welcome back October.