I'm a TCU alum. And for the first time in my generation, TCU went to a BCS bowl this year. The kids on the team were under extraordinary pressure. The last championship for the school was in 1938. Talk about a dry spell.
Last night's game was a very big deal. My facebook page has been smeared in purple and GO FROGS! notes for days. I can't tell you the number of friends who bought tickets to Phoenix for the game.
And the team lost.
Now, a loss in and of itself really isn't a big deal. It's how the team lost that is so much more painful: Andy Dalton, the quarterback, threw three interceptions. His receivers dropped passes in the end zone. Clearly, the pressure was simply too much. And Murphy's Law prevailed once again (when you REALLY need something, you don't get it).
Most of us are able to avoid a colossal TV meltdown. These kids - from 18 to 22 - had their worst fears realized while broadcast to millions. As a mother, I wonder if the pressure placed on these students is simply too much, too soon. In the scheme of their entire lives, how much - really - does one bowl game matter?
Today I hope the team's fellow Frogs are being supportive and remembering just how far these kids had to come, how deeply they had to dig to claw their way to national prominence. That is a victory that will more than likely be overshadowed by a bitter loss. Unfortunately, that's part of life. You win some big ones and you lose many more. The key, I'm beginning to realize, is the journey and the lessons learned from it.