Happy New Year Rebel Fans

Happy New Year Rebel Fans!

I hope you all had a safe and happy New Year. As you probably know, I spent it in Dallas with my son and many Rebel friends so we could see UNLV play in the Heart of Dallas Bowl against the North Texas Mean Green. We made some new friends there and were able hang out with ones I've known for a while. Road trips are always fun, and it was a little different being at a football road game, and not basketball.

On New Year's Eve, we all met up at the Hyatt around 9 p.m. At Midnight, a bunch of us went up to the terrace to watch the fireworks from the American Airlines Center. Everyone hugged and we got the heck back in the building where it was much warmer! Thank you to everyone who showed up, including Mike Lange, Brian Fuller, Bryan Cole, George Cole, Shawn Cunningham, Kyle Cunningham, Grant Wright, Paul Seifer and Darrell Price, plus so many more.

On Wednesday morning, there was a pep rally and send-off party at the Hyatt, put on by the UNLV Alumni. There were pastries and beverages and around 8:45 a.m. the band and cheerleaders lined up outside and started playing and cheering as the Rebel football team and coaches walked out of the hotel to the buses. There were quite a few Rebel fans out there wishing them good luck.

After the pep rally, we headed to historic Cotton Bowl Stadium. Of course, North Texas fans outnumbered us by the thousands, but we had a good crowd and tried to be as loud as possible. I had worried about the weather and hoped I wasn't going to freeze to death. Well, it turned out to be a gorgeous day in Dallas. It was 60 and sunny. It got a little chilly when the sun went behind the press box, but other than that, I didn't even have to bundle up. The stadium is so incredible. It would be pretty crazy to see that place filled to the brim with Texas and Oklahoma fans for the Red River Rivalry.
The Rebels came out strong and drew first blood marching down the field and scoring on a 95-yard drive. North Texas also scored in the first half and it was tied up at halftime 7-7. The second half didn't go so well for the Rebels. The defense was worn down, the offense couldn't get going and North Texas scored 22 points in the 4th quarter as the Rebels lost 36-14. They finished with a record of 7-6. I was very proud of the boys and Coach Hauck at turning the program around. I hope you all go out and buy season tickets for next year to support the team.
As soon as the game ended, our group headed back to the Hyatt to eat and watch the Runnin' Rebel basketball game on our phones since it was on espn3.com. The Rebs won that game 75-62 with BDJ leading the scorers with 24 points. The Rebs are home this Saturday at 7 p.m. against Air Force Academy.
Getting home from Dallas was quite the experience. There was a lot of bad weather in the midwest and northeast causing flight delays all over the place. We were supposed to fly to Albuquerque and change planes to LV, but ended up going to Austin and then sitting 4 hours, finally getting into Vegas at 1 a.m.

While boarding in Dallas to Austin, we noticed a young man in his Navy uniform, kissing his mom and little brothers goodbye. Mom was crying as she walked away. When I boarded, the only seat was in the middle next to the young man, who I noticed was also crying. After a few minutes, I touched his arm and told him it would be OK. I also said I was from a military family and had been through it myself many times.

He told me he was about to fly back to the base in San Diego and would be gone for a year out to sea. He said he was fine, until he saw his mom crying. I can relate to that. He told me all the countries he would be going to and we talked about his family and his job. At the end of the quick flight to Austin, he hugged me and thanked me for reaching out to him. He said he wasn't sure how he would have gotten through the flight. We exchanged emails and I told him I would keep in touch and I wanted to hear all about his adventures around the world. Stay safe Collin and keep our country safe!

I had to wake up early Thursday morning for a radio interview on KXNT 100.5 FM with Dayna Roselli and Nathan Tannebaum. I barely had a voice since I had screamed for 3 hours the day prior, and only got a few hours sleep but it was very cool talking about the Rebels on the radio.

I hope you all enjoy the pictures and videos and I will see you at the game this weekend. GO REBELS!