It's been quite a week to put it mildly.
Not in my wildest dreams did I ever figure I'd live long enough to experience a West Virginia University bowl victory quite like the one Mountaineer fans witnessed on Wednesday night and into early Thursday morning.
Now, let's hope head coach Dana Holgorsen sticks around long enough to finally bring WVU that magical national championship. For now, I think most fans of the 'Eers are glad to be 3-0 in BCS Bowl Games.
While it was indeed something to watch on television, it would've been so sweet to have been at the Orange Bowl in person.
I know for sure a few old friends from high school managed to make it to the game and Calhoun County head volleyball coach Kelley Houchin and her family spent some quality time together in the Sunshine State and took in the Clemson thrashing.
No matter the sport, to be successful at it one has to put forth every ounce of effort and will to get the job done. There's no question WVU played an inspired contest and put on what currently stands as the best offensive performance in college postseason history.
It's that dedication, or love of the game, that makes any student-athlete successful at the highest levels.
I reckon the same could be said for my late cousin Sarah Hennen, a junior at Wirt County High School, whose public viewing will be from 2-7 p.m. today at the auditorium in Elizabeth.
Although she's never going to be remembered for being a first team all-state volleyball performer, she was much more than that to her teammates, family, friends and anyone who ever came into contact with her.
The loss of any loved one, and we've had more than our fair share this week alone in the Mid-Ohio Valley, is always difficult.
It was devastating two-plus decades ago when cousins Luke and Danny Hickman passed away during their respective junior and senior years at Calhoun County High School.
Three other difficult times come to mind personally.
It's been nearly a half dozen years since three-sport Roane County standout and Fairmont State football player Sam Craddock lost his life on his 20th birthday in a tragic car accident. Not long after Craddock's accident, fellow Raider graduate Carmelita Chambers met the same fate. Previously, the MOV lost Williamstown's Ryan Jobes.
I remember getting razzed earlier this year about why we weren't covering more Wirt County volleyball matches, but in the end the Tigers got some pretty good coverage I think en route to their eighth state net crown.
Of course, as it turned out for Sarah Hennen, it was her last performance in a Tiger uniform. Although it took a total team effort to beat a great Williamstown program in five sets for the state crown, Hennen finished with a match-high 20 kills and earned an all-tournament team selection.
As far as remembering my cousin, I think her oldest sister Kenna Wagner said it best.
"Sarah Hennen was a one of a kind young lady who touched the lives of everyone she came in contact with. A daughter, granddaughter, sister, aunt, friend and champion never to be forgotten."
Contact Jay Bennett at firstname.lastname@example.org