My First Bowl Game: The Orange Bowl

Dan CollinsCorrespondent IJanuary 19, 2008

On January 3rd, 2008 I happened to be in South Florida on a family vacation and had an opportunity to see the Kansas Jayhawks take on the Virgina Tech Hokies in the Orange Bowl. It was a damp, rainy night in Dolphin Stadium and as the game was about to get underway I heard a mixture of fans chanting, "ROCK CHALK, JAYHAWK!!" and others chanting, "LETS GO HOKIES." It was one of the greatest experiences of my life.

I went to the game with my father and my sister's fiancé, who is a Kansas alum. He taught me the history about "Rock Chalk" and how the chant came to be. I fell in love with the tradition and the excellence of this great school.

When we walked into our section, my jaw dropped to the ground, what a sight, I was actually at a BCS bowl game. I immediately ran down to the first row to look over the wall at the Hokies, who were warming up. Then I heard the fans shouting as Kansas came running out on to the field in their rarely-worn Red Jerseys. I felt the excitement in the air.

Kick-off was finally underway and the moment was finally here. The game was scoreless until Aquib Talib intercepted a pass from Tyrod Taylor and ran sixty yards for a Jayhawk touchdown. After that, Kansas ruled the field going into the second half leading, 17-7.

Kyle Tucker punted on the first Kansas possession of the second half and it was received by Eddie Royal, who pitched the ball to Justin Harper to score an 84-yard touchdown. After that Kansas regrouped in the fourth quarter as Todd Reesing ran in 2 yards for another Kansas touchdown to go up 28-14.

As the fouth quarter wound down, Harper caught a pass from Sean Glennon to pull Va Tech to within seven points. It was too late though, Kansas ran out the clock and the night belonged to the Jayhawks. It was a tremendous story of a team that was not expected to do much in the 2007 season, who wanted to win and play together as one family. They shocked the nation and will be remembered in Jayhawk football history. I congratulate this team on all they accomplished and I wish the best to all of them. They will be a powerhouse again in 2008. "ROCK CHALK!"