We miss you.
Three simple words so many of us are feeling right now in so many different ways.
Maybe it’s a physical sense of missing someone, them potentially living a state or two away and you — who is not supposed to be traveling right now — can’t see them. You miss them. There’s ways to stay connected, but you miss just being in the same room as them, and it’s not going to change any time soon.
I think we’re feeling a similar sense right now at The Champaign Room, but in a more emotional sense.
We miss you.
There’s more than 19,000 of you on Twitter — some of you are definitely bots, though, and I’ve come to terms with that — and the 10,000 plus on Facebook. When a recruit commits to Illinois, or the Illini upset a top-10 team, thousands more come out of the woodwork. Maybe they aren’t always following us — I’d get tired of the #TCRGIFParties after a while, too — but they’re there. And they’re part of the fanbase.
When we say at TCR that we do this for the fans, we really do it for the fans. We are fans — we’re writers, but we are fans. We want the Illini to win because it not only makes better content for us, it makes our community that much better.
So, back to missing you. You’re more than just one friend who we miss right about now. You’re thousands and thousands and thousands of people, and we should all take solace in that. There are ways for us to stay connected, but we really just miss being in the same (Champaign) room as you right now, and it’s not going to change any time soon.
Where does that leave us?
Well, even if Iowa parents go and storm the Big Ten HQ in the suburbs, there won’t be football this fall, even as much as we want it. We’re not going to pick an ACC team to cover — y’all hated The Rambler Room back in the day — or just waste your time for clicks.
We may not get basketball until much later than usual, and there won’t be volleyball or soccer or rasslin’ or anything of that nature.
We can cover how the University of Illinois’ covid saliva test got approved by the FDA, but you already know Illinois is the best college in the country.
So, yeah, there are still stories to tell, and when those opportunities arise, we’ll tell those stories. There is news to break, and when there is news of any nature and value to pass along, we’ll pass it along. There are things to say, and we’ll still have our pod guys do semi-regular Oskee Talks. There will be jokes to make on Twitter, and we’ll still be snooty and annoying when tweeting, but it won’t be nearly as often as usual.
As we enter this fall semester, nothing will be the same.
And where does that leave the future of TCR — like after this semester? That’s a really good question, and something we don’t know the answer to right now.
Like any good friend, we’re not going anywhere. We’re always a tweet or DM away, and our site is still here.
But until we’re together as one again, we miss you.