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

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

The Battalion

Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
A&M System’s Title IX director suspended after supporting Biden's Title IX changes
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • May 23, 2024
Texas A&M starting pitcher/relief pitcher Emiley Kennedy (11) hands the ball to starting pitcher/relief pitcher Brooke Vestal (19) during Texas A&M’s game against Texas at the Austin Super Regional at Red and Charline McCombs Field in Austin, Texas, on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
Aggies’ comeback falls short in 9-8 loss to Longhorns
Luke White, Sports Editor • May 25, 2024

As the fifth inning drew to a close in Texas A&M softball’s Super Regional matchup with No. 1 Texas on Saturday, the Aggies found themselves...

Texas A&M utility Gavin Grahovac (9) throws the ball during A&Ms game against Georgia on Friday, April 26, 2024, at Olsen Field. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
Southern slugfest
May 23, 2024
Beekeeper Shelby Dittman scoops bees back into their hive during a visit on Friday, April 5, 2024. (Kyle Heise/The Battalion)
Bee-hind the scenes
Shalina Sabih, Sports Writer • May 1, 2024

The speakers turn on. Static clicks. And a voice reads “Your starting lineup for the Texas A&M Aggies is …” Spectators hear that...

Kennedy White, 19, sits for a portrait in the sweats she wore the night of her alleged assault inside the Y.M.C.A building that holds Texas A&M’s Title IX offices in College Station, Texas on Feb. 16, 2024 (Ishika Samant/The Battalion).
'I was terrified'
April 25, 2024
Scenes from 74
Scenes from '74
April 25, 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
The Battalion May 4, 2024

The hardest goodbye I’ve ever had to say

Hannah Underwood
Hannah Underwood

This will be my 391st article for The Battalion.
It has been 1,334 days since I was first hired as a sports writer on Sept. 18, 2017, and what an incredible (almost) four years it’s been.
I’ve gotten to cover some amazing games, including a 74-72 seven-overtime thriller against LSU in Kyle Field (which was only my third football game to cover). I’ve navigated the challenges of this job in the middle of a sportsless pandemic. I’ve met some incredible people both in and out of the newsroom.
For what is supposed to be a joyous occasion, I think I have cried more this past month than I have ever cried in my life. Almost daily, the thought of having to leave The Battalion has popped into my head and sent me into a full-blown meltdown.
For those of you who know me, you know that I’ve never been a crier. I cry maybe twice a year — if that. My high school friends lovingly refer to me as the “emotionless” one of the group. And that’s normally true.
But for the last month, as my final days at A&M have quickly dwindled, I began grieving the inevitable: leaving behind Aggieland and the memories I’ve made here.
There is one specific part to my college journey that has solicited these emotions, though.
It’s not the late nights spent studying at Evans. I can count on one hand the number of times I stepped foot in the library.
It’s not weekends spent roaming Northgate. Again, I only went a handful of times.
It’s not strolls down Military Walk or Saturdays spent standing at Kyle Field or classes in Bolton Hall. While those were certainly parts of my college experience, they are but small pieces to a much larger puzzle.
Rather, the bulk of my time at A&M was spent in a sometimes spooky office in the basement of the Memorial Student Center, and it’s what I have always known I would miss the most upon ending my time in College Station.
The Battalion has been the defining factor of my college career, and without it I’m honestly not sure who I am or what I’ll do.
A year ago, I was offered a position covering football and men’s basketball for the Dallas Morning News, which I’m sure seems like a no-brainer to accept.
And it should have been. But for me, it was a heart-wrenching decision that represented something more than just a step-up career-wise. For me, it meant leaving behind The Batt, the only place I have ever truly felt a sense of belonging. I couldn’t fathom leaving before my four years were fully up. Heck, I’m still not ready for my time here to end.
So though I did accept the position with the Dallas Morning News, I also maintained my role as sports editor with The Batt, which was probably a selfish decision.
But here’s the thing …
I chose to come to A&M because I wanted to be the sports editor at The Battalion. That was always the endgame for me. And now that it’s over, I feel lost. I suppose every graduate feels this way — we’ve undoubtedly become accustomed to the agonizing reliability of schoolwork since pre-k — but it’s not the school part I’ll miss.
During my two years as sports editor, I have said “I hate it here” and threatened to quit more times than I can count, but those threats were never serious. I can’t imagine my life without The Battalion in it, but that’s about to be my reality.
I know I’m already way over my word count (that’s become sort of a habit, much to the chagrin of one editor in particular), but I have a few people I need to thank for making my college experience what it was.
First, thank you to my family, who allowed me to miss out on various holidays and get-togethers in order to cover games, write stories and follow my passions.
Thank you to our advisor Douglas Pils, who is undoubtedly the guiding light behind the magic that is The Battalion. You have encouraged me to do better and to be better daily, even though I’m sure I have disappointed you more times than I can count. You have been more of a father figure to me than you know, and I am beyond thankful for all the early morning “Where is this story at” and “Do you think we should do a story on this” texts.
(P.S. If you want to keep paying me, I’ll gladly stick around the Batt Cave.)
Thank you to my predecessor Angel Franco, who gave a chance to a quiet freshman and trusted her with assignments she was not at all equipped to undertake. I may not say it, but your support has meant the world.
To Brady Stone, I honestly don’t think I have enough space to thank you for everything you’ve given me over the past two years, but to sum it all up: Thank you for letting me annoy you on a daily basis with my constant worrying and pessimism; thank you for letting me sneak quotes into headlines and socials even though I know it pained you to do so; and most importantly, thank you for being from Hawkins.
Sidenote to Brady and the best dang page designer in the state of Texas Cori Eckert: Thank you for all the post-production McDonald’s runs. Any time I see the golden arches or hear the words “Hot and spicy,” I’ll think of y’all.
To my Battalion Family, past and present: I know I’m a pain to deal with, but please know that I love each and every one of you dearly. You have truly made my time here so special, and I am better for having known you. I wouldn’t trade those seemingly endless nights spent editing in the newsroom until we thought we were going to go insane for the world, although I will never take a normal sleep schedule for granted ever again.
There are truly not enough words to encapsulate my time at The Battalion, so I’ll just leave it at this.
For the last time as your sports editor,
Thanks, Gig ‘Em and God Bless.
Hannah Underwood is a journalism senior and sports editor for The Battalion.

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