This is how it always goes: The end of August rolls around and I’m excited.
This is weird: I am as excited for the season that Alligator Army is going to have as the one the Florida Gators will.
This last preseason Weekly Open Thread has often been a place for me to ask you what you want to read around these parts — and, honestly, this one is, too. If there is something specific you want me to write or publish on a weekly basis or something you want AA to focus on this fall, I’d love to hear about it.
But: This is a fall I am entering with legitimate hopes of building a staff of contributors that can bring perspectives I value and don’t have, write or produce other compelling content with expertise I don’t have, and alleviate pressure on me in so doing. I’ve been in touch with some really interesting voices, and hope to touch base with some more.
Though Alligator Army has been a one-man regiment more often than not, it stands likely to get real reinforcements this fall — and I’m jazzed about that.
But, yeah, I’m also excited about the season. I’m excited to be able to talk about games we can all see, not practices we can’t. I’m excited for performances and performers, storylines and sensations. I’m excited to hear full-capacity crowds once again.
And, yeah, I’m excited about being able to put thoughts of a world ravaged by a pandemic and so much more in the back of my mind for at least a few hours each Saturday — though, sorry, I’m still going to have to do some writing about it. I’m going to try to keep it to a minimum, but so long as COVID-19 is a significant threat in the state of Florida, it’s probably going to be relevant to the Florida Gators and University of Florida.
I hope it won’t be that significant threat for much longer. I hope we claw back some normalcy from this time of tumult. I hope a lot, really.
I’m excited for what we can do here this fall even if those hopes don’t work out.