It has been a difficult last few weeks. I've come in contact with so many great people. This weekend really emphasized that to me, as the student-athletics and coaches of the NIU football team really tried to make my last trip a special one. Yes, the Huskies did fall to Bowling Green Saturday night, but they made a solid effort. More importantly to me, they were all very gracious of the small acts I've performed for them over the past year. You don't work in this industry to be noticed. At least, I don't. I really love what I do because of the relationships I build. The "kids" are so important to me. You watch them grow and mature. You watch their successes and their failures, but most importantly you watch them become good people.
I've already been choked up a few times, but I haven't let anyone know. My avid readers know I can be emotional, so I'm sure that will come Tuesday night, if not sooner. People make the place ... and that is very true in this instance. NIU has some challenges. Fund raising can be difficult here. People can sometimes be very fair-weather. Above all of that though, you have very good people. All of these people are here, trying to make things better ... trying to improve their athletic programs or trying to simply make the department run. It isn't always easy at a "mid-major" and I realize that now, but everyone I've come in contact with has been great. These people know the challenges. They realize how difficult it is here at times, but these people will remain here in hopes to make this a better place. Maybe I just wasn't strong enough.
On the other hand, I cannot deny the fact that I am thrilled the next Lowe Down will be from Nashville, TN. It still is odd to think about moving again, but good opportunities are difficult to find. This is a great one.
I'll be sure to post my new contact info as soon as I get settled. I imagine that will be a week or so, but I'll be back on the web soon. I promise.
Thank you all for being supportive. It isn't always easy, I'm sure. But it means the world to me.