Sometimes, it still feels surreal.
Even now, five months or so later, something that even some of the heartiest of fans may have doubted would have ever happened indeed did on that cold night in downtown Indianapolis.
Georgia. College Football National Champions.
For me, in case there’s any doubt that it really happened, there are reminders, and I am sure it’s the same for many of you. When I am in my office, hydration comes from a 2021 National Champions cup. My car has a National Champs decal. Here in the home office stands a commemorative mini helmet with a National Champs logo, placed right next to commemorative coca-cola cans. Not far away from commemorative newspaper prints from the Orange Bowl and National Title game from the AJC, Red & Black and Athens Banner-Herald stands perhaps the best reminder - an illustration by the second-most famous Bulldog from Blackshear, former Red & Black cartoonist Mack Williams.
And for those of you who are William B. Hartman Fund donors, you probably have the schedule magnet of schedule magnets - one with the National Champions text on it.
I remember thinking as Georgia’s rivals won national titles wondering what I’d look most to. And honestly, this is it. That there’s no shortage of reminders all around, no matter what happens, that you were the champions.
And honestly, that totally to a degree changes the upcoming season outlook.
In year’s past, you almost obsessed over the season to come, almost thinking it’d be the end of the world if Georgia had the smallest thing go wrong.
Not, it’s almost a sense of calm. Sure, repeating as champions would be great. But there’s a feeling of ease that Georgia finally conquered the mountain last year. This team could go 14-0, 12-2 or even 8-5 and the disappointment probably won’t register.
Sure, you want to win. But for fans, at least, there’s no doomsday if you don’t win it all.
Will this team beat Oregon? It should, but if it doesn’t, sure there’ll be a disappointment from the fan base, but it won’t be a reach for flames and pitchforks.
Sure, the desire to win won’t go away, but there’s a pressure that got removed this past January from this fan base, and who knows, maybe it’ll make the ups and downs this fall a bit easier to weather.