By Andreas Roberts
Before and after the Lions took the field, the parking lot of the The Lincoln University’s new football stadium was the place for alumni, family and friends to be Saturday.
It was a perfect day for tailgating.
Nose-grabbing aromas filled the lot as fans popped open their trunks, share food and discussed old times. Smiles and laughter surrounded the parking lot as old friends reminisce on the times spent here.
“It feels like just yesterday we were practicing in ditches, and now we have our own stadium,” said former player and track star Matthew Coston. “Feels good to see the outcome of hard work.”
One of the biggest topics was how much the university has changed. Many alumni haven’t been back to the campus in years and are amazed at its change in scenery.
“It’s shocking, honestly,” said 2007 graduate Jared Carrol. “We never had the opportunities you guys have now: state-of-the-art radio station, new stadium and even new workout facility. It’s truly amazing, man, and I’m proud to come from such a historic place.”
While recent graduates discussed the changes, many of the older alumni seemed to be more concerned with the tailgating prices.
“For $250, I should at least be able to see the field,” said Kevin Jones, a 1970 graduate and former track team participant. “Some things never change. Lincoln found a way to get your money in ’69, and they continue in 2013. You think I can still get financial aid?”
Gathered underneath a tent in the far corner of the parking with Coston was another former player and track star, Kester Lewis.
“Man, I can’t explain how this feels—weird, I guess,” Lewis said. “You learn a lot in college which you don’t realize until you’re the one on the outside looking in. When those bills come in, you just want to be a kid again.”
Despite the chilly weather, the gathering of old friends warmed the atmosphere in the parking lot.
“Let’s hope we can get a win this year,” Jones said to a group of friends, laughing as they walked up the hill to the stadium. “That’s one thing that has yet to change.”
Jones and other alumni will have to wait another year for a win. The Lions lost, 34-14.