Flip the Field is the creation of two best friends who, for very different reasons, love the game of football. In fact, combined with our other passion for cooking and entertaining (check out our food blog, McNack’s Kitchen), football parties must be one of our most favorite things in life! Is that horrible?! Well, maybe, but our husbands don’t think so! Below is a little more detail about each of the founders of Flip the Field, Melissa Bryson and Denise Raymond.
Melissa learned to love football at a very, very early age. Her mom and mom’s mom both loved to watch football, so she did not grow up with any direct female influences who were not fans. She played football with her siblings and Dad in the front yard where she received the nickname, ‘Wrong way Riegels’ based on her inability to remember which way her team was going just like Roy Riegels did in the 1929 game against Georgia Tech (her alma mater).
When she ended up at Georgia Tech for college, she found out there were all sorts of intramural flag football leagues, both co-ed and girls. She immediately signed up and loved playing and learning more about the mechanics of the game. Additionally, after 4 years of high school sports where her teams generally stunk, she was finally on winning teams. Her sorority team won the sorority and school championship almost every year as did the co-ed teams she played on. In fact, her co-ed team won the state championship in 1990 and came in second in the state in 1991, 1992 and 1993. Being so competitive, football finally fulfilled the dream of winning and was forever cemented in her heart as something she loves.
After she graduated, she still played on some social co-ed flag football leagues until she hung up her cleats after she had a child. However, she still cannot turn down a pick-up game on the beach or the chance to toss the ball around at a tailgate.
Melissa’s husband went to the University of Georgia and also enjoys a bit of smack talk with his wife every year when UGA and GT play each other. Life is good except for every Thanksgiving Saturday in the Bryson house when one of them is not very happy.
Denise grew up as a Notre Dame fan. Her dad went to school there and introduced her to football. Although she still loves Notre Dame, her true allegiance lies to the University of Alabama. Imagine how thrilled she was when her top two teams played each other in the National Championship game in 2012! Obviously, Denise’s teams have had a good run over the past several years and has had many reasons to throw some parties (and rub it in Melissa’s face!). Alabama has won 3 of the last 4 National Championships.
Her kids have caught the football bug and wear their Alabama shirts and hats every Saturday throughout the season. However, sometimes they have a hard time watching a game with her when she is “screaming like a psycho-maniac” as they call it.
Her husband is an NFL fan. He grew up in San Diego and is a huge Chargers supporter. Since living in Atlanta, he has also become a Falcons fan, as is her son. So basically, all weekend every weekend in the fall is football, football, and more football. It really is the most wonderful time of the year!