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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

6 hours, 3 minutes of Aggie football

Robert O’Brien

The Aggies continue to wave their towels to the end of the 6 hour game at Kyle Field on Saturday, Sept 3, 2022.

As the 12th Man gathered into Kyle Field Saturday morning for the first football game of the season, nobody expected the game to be finished six hours later in a mostly empty stadium.

Texas A&M opened its 2022 football season against Sam Houston State on Sept. 3. Current and former students and other Aggie fans packed into Kyle Field to watch the long-awaited game and to see last year’s No. 1 recruiting class snap into action on the field. 

However, a lightning delay shortly after halftime sent many fans hurrying home or to their nearby tailgate tents to seek shelter from the storms. Despite this, in the spirit of the 12th Man, some students remained at Kyle Field, waiting out the storms until the game resumed again at 4 p.m.

Psychology sophomore Darby Sanders said she watched people stay for 30 minutes to an hour after the delay was announced, who then left as it started to heavily rain.

“As more people started leaving and as it started raining on Kyle Field, people started trying to entertain themselves,” Sanders said. “There were about three separate groups of people leading yells, and I could just see across the stadium two people were standing and waving their towels the whole time. I was really impressed by them because they stopped eventually, but they went on for at least an hour.”

The reason Sanders said she decided to stay through the full game was because, growing up as an Aggie, she was taught to never leave A&M games early.

“I’ve gone to a few Texas A&M football games before I actually started going here, and even when it was like my parents with their three kids all under the age of 13, we didn’t leave those games early,” Sanders said. “You don’t leave Aggie football early. I was planning to stay until they kicked me out.”

Sanders said during the second half of the game she was impressed with the consistent loud sounds of Kyle Field. 

“After the delay, I didn’t want to get rained on, so I stayed up in the third deck,” Sanders said. “I wasn’t surrounded by everyone yelling, but I could still hear the volume level. It wasn’t anything close to what it normally is, but I definitely thought more people had left. I couldn’t see the first deck below me, but I’m assuming it was still pretty full because it was loud. I was really impressed by the amount of people that had stayed or come back.”

Economics senior Walker Robison said his game day experience was overall great, even though there was initially unpredictability after the lightning delay was called, continued weather updates gave them hope.

“It was a little uncertain. There were lots of people leaving which I can understand,” Robison said. “We thought, ‘The weather can’t last forever, so we’ll stick it out and they’ll tell us something if there’s no end in sight.’ They kept us updated pretty regularly, and the staff was pretty helpful and nobody was annoyed if you’re asking too much about the weather.”

The energy noticeably picked back up in Kyle Field once the game started to resume, Robison said.

“The vibe definitely increased once they gave us the clearance to enter the stands,” Robison said. “The players started warming up, and it was a little disappointing seeing how many people left, but I knew that it would still be a good experience considering where we were sitting and all the great people that were still there showing their support and energy.”

Economics junior Will Kohmuench is a member of the organization Team 12 and was tasked with registration and floating for the Letterman’s Association, a club for former A&M athletes, during the game. Kohmuench said he stayed at Kyle Field during the lightning duty to fulfill his duties. 

“At halftime, we got our first rain delay announcement. We’re like okay, this is fine,”  Kohmuench said. “But then one of my friends I was working with quickly pointed out that when there’s one lightning strike, there’s never just one quickly followed in succession.”

Kohmuech said it was an interesting situation dealing with Lettermen Association members cooped up during the delay

“We also had a lot of people try to get inside the Letterman’s Club that weren’t on the list on the so we felt really bad turning away a lot of people not able to give them shelter and air conditioning,” Kohmuech said. “Overall, it was three hours of waiting and hoping and praying that the game would start again because everyone who was working that game with me was there for six or seven hours at that point.”

Kohmuech said after the game resumed there was an empty vibe in Kyle Field, but the everyone still in attendance, who Lohmuech said were probably in the top 10% of the 12th Man, were pushing the Aggies more than ever. 

“Everybody was at the front of all their respective sections. There were some people in the third deck …which was kind of funny,” Kohmuech said. “We were all just supporting our Aggies but being like, ‘Hey, keep the foot on the throat — keep the gas pedal down. Let’s just let’s finish this thing beat the hell out of Sam Houston and let’s go home.’”

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