Grambling State University G-Men loss to Cali 73 to 14 in Berkeley on Saturday, Sept. 5, but at the same time was a winner.
Despite the loss by the football team, GSU won with admiration, respect, and appreciation from University of California (Cal). GSU made history being the first HBCU to play at Berkeley.
I have traveled many places and seen many faces, but my presence in Berkeley felt like Spike Lee’s School Daze.
Now, please journey with me….
I parked my car in the parking garage for media staff. I was prepared to pay $25 as I saw the signs advertising the cost for public parking. I was surprised and GREATful when my parking was free. I thought, wow, Thank You CAL I was winning.
Then, I had to walk four blocks from my car to the Berkeley Stadium. No complaints with walking I was so elated to see all the students and the Cal FANS. As I was walking, I heard from a near distance “Hello Grambling”, which was evident of my support with my GSU shirt. I smiled and I continued to walk.
A Cal FAN couple told me, “Welcome Grambling we are happy you are here”. Another Cal FAN smiled with admiration as he shared, “Eddie G. Robinson was a GREAT coach and his legacy lives on forever. Then, I turned the corner passing a fraternity house with the frat guys outside barbecuing, one of the Frat threw the football at me. I jumped and moved to the right side away from the ball. So, my brother (Black guy who was a member of the fraternity) ran up to me and said, “Girl, you know we got to represent. You were supposed to catch the football” as he laughed. I told him I didn’t want to mess up my outfit. We laughed and I waved to the other fraternity guys. Then one of the White guys from the same fraternity walked up to me and said, “Grambling looking like that, I am going to Grambling…you looking good girl.”
I received a couple more compliments as I headed to the stadium. I had to laugh…two laughs, 1. These white boys were flirting…they had game. 2. When I turned the corner by the frat house, it reminded me of how I would turn the corner by the cafeteria from the union at GSU and guys would flirt as the girls walked by. I felt my Grambling School Daze. Love and Respect has No Color.
By the time I got to the stadium my thighs were killing me. I felt like I had just exercised. It is all love with me laughing from the compliments and smiling from the appreciation of GSU.
After Alan Blakely, GSU TV director, greeted me at the Media Information desk at Berkeley, he introduced me to Grambling student Taylor who was shadowing me as we covered game highlights and I reported the FAN fun. Alan is a white biker boy with so much HEART. We had so much fun covering the game. No Colors-Just LOVE.
Dr. Larry Pannell led Grambling and University of California Band together playing the Star Spangle Banner. Throughout the game both bands would give the Cal FAN and the GSU FANs a treat by playing Tupac’s California LOVE.
The half time show was amazing from the Grambling State University World Famed Tiger Marching Band. I watched from the press box. When Cal would score, the announcer would say Cal 7 – Grambling Nothing, Cal 21 – Grambling.
“The Band is Terrific” “That is the Best Band We Ever Had” “They Can Move and Play with Pure Talent.
The NOTHING, this went on through Cal 59 GSU Nothing. The score is supposed to be 59 to Zero. Not nothing.
I prayed God please let us score so the announcer can stop saying Grambling Nothing. Prayers answered, GSU scored 14 points against Cal’s 73.
Berkeley felt like a California Grambling.
Grambling is a humble town known for its love and hospitality, that is what I felt at Berkeley. It was as if it was Love-1love-Cal Love shining through!