Hour 19: 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 22
It's a half-hour before the game and the roads running through the Greektown are paved yellow with tradition. Latecomer students who savored that extra hour of sleep and alumni who just managed to get their families up and out of their hotels migrate to their respective Greek houses. A new dad in a pale yellow polo shirt carries his curlicue blonde miniature Tigers fan toward the yard filled with fraternity brothers and barbecues.
"Dad, I see it! I see it!" she screams in excitement.
Ten minutes before kickoff, Tiger Ave. is transformed from another row of Greek houses into a runway headed straight to Memorial Stadium. But the men of Alpha Epsilon Pi aren't heading over just yet. It's dads' weekend for them and many other houses and the crowd is larger than usual. A normally crowded parking lot now spills out onto the sidewalk.
Continue down the road and Corey Hart's "Sunglasses at Night" blasts out of the speakers coming from Alpha Gamma Sigma fraternity. Keep walking and you'll hear another soundtrack to another tailgate with another family. On your left, you can find the men of Pi Kappa Phi, grilling up burgers and tossing around a football in the perfect-for-gameday 72-degree weather. On the right, Pi Kappa Alpha members host their dads gathered in the backyard who have staked out their tailgating spot around the unused beach volleyball court. Nope, no one's playing volleyball today.
They're a short walk from the stadium, and little by little the Greeks and their dads trickle down to the game. But by the time it's halftime at the game, those who held back reunite with those who gave up at halftime and once again, Greektown is alive.