We lost. My final home game at Rentschler field will be a memory of Dave Wanndstedt's mustache dripping with celebratory Gatorade. The jaws of life couldn't pry that image from my brain. I was caught several times in tears at the game (and in the days leading up to it). The Tuesday media luncheon forced me to consider a truth that, until that moment, I had done a good job of denying: that I was about to play my last home game, and that my days as a college football player were up. I wrote in an earlier post that my career would end without celebration or notoriety. In the depths of my soul, the days that I allow myself to dream, I wished that wouldn't be true. That a crowd of 40,000 would rise to their feet and unanimously decide that UConn football simply could not go on without Rob Lunn. But that is the beauty and tragedy of college football. Every week is a new battle (12 one-game seasons), and every season a crop of younger, better athletes. I whispered in Coach Edsall's ear, "thank you for giving me this opportunity..." I have often felt so blessed to share the field with great athletes and to participate at the pinnacle of my sport. And while I have run through that tunnel, made tackles, and sacked quarterbacks, part of me has always felt on those fall afternoons, with the sun hanging in the sky and the smell of brisk New England air that maybe I didn't belong. I am not a great athlete (there is stark difference between the athletic prowess of myself and Cody Brown) and I have caught breaks that gave me my opportunity to play. I have enjoyed every minute on the field, whether in Morgantown or Piscatway and now my playing days are over (well, almost). No one wants to play their last game, but I find a little comfort in knowing that at least I got to play mine. Corny and cliche, but we are the lucky ones. God gave me two legs (however uncoordinated) and the ability to use them on Saturdays. Basketball players can always play hoops, and swimmers can always swim. There will be beer-leagues for everything from hockey to baseball to bocce. But never again will I find 10 other guys that want to strap it up and terrorize opposing running backs and offensive linemen all day. My life is about to make a major shift. In the last five years I've read more offenses than books, I got my education on a field and not in a classroom. The lessons I've learned sweating and bleeding and crying with brothers (and I do consider them my brothers) are the most important ones to me.
Until next time,