I started 2 things in 2006, and for me one of those things is coming to a close today.
In the spring of 2006, I married my impossibly patient, outrageously beautiful wife.
And in the late summer of 2006, seemingly to test her patience, I started HerLoyalSons.com.
After today, I’ll still be married to my wife.
But after 5 and a half years and 6 full Notre Dame football seasons, I’m retiring from the world of collegiate football blogging. I never expected it to go this far, and I never expected to see it come to an end. (But don’t worry, Loyal Sons and Daughters, HLS will go on. It just wont be impeded by me any longer.)
College Football, as a concept, is a wonderful thing. Or it was a wonderful thing. Back when we started this site, college football was still ostensibly about actual student-athletes competing for a championship while maintaining the ideals of amateur athletics. At least it was to me. Perhaps I was naive. Today, possibly in part thanks to the explosion of social media coverage of college football, almost nobody would attempt to tell you that the sport resembles the ideal at all and try to maintain a straight face. From Miami to Ohio. From Pennsylvania to Southern Cal, nobody need look too far to see blatant, and, for a time, horrifying, examples of the Frankenstein’s monster that is college football today. Just look at the various Twitter accounts of other college football bloggers and paid writers these days – a far cry from the relatively light-hearted bunch when Twitter first became a thing among us. Today cynicism runs rampant. The actual business of College Football is just a mockery of the ideal. That’s not to say I don’t still love college football or Notre Dame. It’s just to say I don’t think that the Notre Dame I believe in is playing on the same field as the college football industry I know. I’ll choose to continue to believe in that Notre Dame. I’m choosing to be a little less invested in this college football. I’ll withhold the rest of this screed for whoever I may meet in real life when we can talk over beers.
Instead I’m going to invest myself in some personal projects, and try to do a lot more to help protect the internet. Some of you may have noticed that I would plaster this space with anti-SOPA messaging on occasion. Unfortunately if I kept devoting this space to defense against assaults on the most important communications platform of our time, I’d have to rename the site to something like “SeriouslyStopTheseFingAHolesFromBreakingTheInternet.com.” And that URL is a bit ridiculous (and probably already taken). So instead I’ll be devoting more energy within my personal space to advocacy for the freedom of the internet and the freedom of information, discussions about what’s coming in our very near future, and observations about our crazy new, tech-infused world. That way younger generations can continue to start their own stupid websites devoted to their own favorite college sports teams. At first I’ll be doing it through my writing here, and tweeting here, but over time I hope to be even more involved. It’s important to me.
Biscuit will be taking over ownership and administrative control. It’ll be a bit of a process, probably, but as far as my official involvement with this site is concerned, I’ll just be a long-time, frequent reader. I have no doubt that Biscuit and Tex can build HLS into something big – really big. And I trust them to at least maintain the mission of HLS that sort of evolved over the years – to cover Notre Dame and collegiate football with a frank, sometimes funny, occasionally smart tone. Plus I know where Biscuit lives, so that should keep him from straying too much.
Thanks to so many really excellent people around college football, blogging, and sports writing who helped me and this site find a “voice” and garner some relevance in this niche. Thanks to the guys at Blue Gray Sky for first inspiring me to butt into the conversation, and then throwing advice my way whenever I asked for it. Thanks to the other ND blogs, who made me feel like part of a community, even if I wasn’t always the best member. Thanks to Biscuit, Tex, and all the past HLS writers for keeping this thing moving and keeping it fun. Thanks to my wife, for understanding that yeah, I’m the guy who can obsess so much over a silly game that I stay up late into the night compiling player statistics just to win some imagined debate about offensive philosophy. And to you guys and gals who, for whatever reason, did me the honor of actually reading my stuff on the internet, thanks. It was fun. It was awesome.