Family Crisis – who to root for

The 2011 Rose Bowl Game between the University of Wisconsin and Texas Christian University has added a new dimension to the Beattie family.

The majority of the Beattie family are Badgers — University of Wisconsin alumni. Kim, mother of the family, and two of her three daughters, Lauren and Sarah, all graduated from Wisconsin. Andy, the father, is a graduate of Occidental College, but is a converted Badger fan.

"Most people in La Cañada know us as the Badger-Beattie family," said Lauren, who graduated from Wisconsin in 2004.

Katherine, Sarah's twin and an alumna of Texas Christian University, is one important exception.

"It's funny, because Katherine was raised as a Badger fan her whole life and now she's very conflicted with the Rose Bowl Game coming up," said Kim, a 1974 Wisconsin alumna.

So far, Katherine hasn't chosen a team to root for in the big game. She said she probably won't make that decision until the last minute, when her whole family gets inside the Rose Bowl to watch the game on New Year's Day.

"I don't really know if I can cheer against the Badgers; it would kind of injure me," said Katherine, a 2008 Texas Christian graduate. "We'll see how it is when we get to the stadium. It's definitely causing me some inner turmoil."

Sarah is also being pulled between supporting Katherine and rooting for her alma mater.

"Outwardly I'm trying to support [Katherine} and be really nice, but inside I really want Wisconsin to win. At the end of the day, I am a Badger," said Sarah, a 2008 Wisconsin grad.

The Beattie family is hosting its annual New Year's Eve party the night before the game. The party is expected to draw around 150 people, including both Wisconsin and Texas Christian faithful. A few hours after the party ends, the family will head to the Rose Bowl to tailgate the game.

Katherine's inner turmoil will be on full display New Year's Day. She's made a shirt specifically for the Rose Bowl Game. The shirt is purple, Texas Christian's primary color, with Wisconsin written across the front.

"I look at it like I can celebrate either way. I'll be happy if either team wins," Katherine said.

The rest of the Beatties are attempting to be as fair to her as possible. The family's La Cañada home is decorated with equal amounts of Wisconsin and Texas Christian paraphernalia. Andy has even declared himself a Texas Christian supporter for the game.

Still, this newly-founded Badger/Horned Frog rivalry has made for an interesting family dynamic.

"It's been fun being able to joke around with each other with the rivalry we have going on," said Lauren, who was a princess in Tournament of Roses Royal Court when Wisconsin played in the 2000 Rose Bowl Game.

"There have been a few jokes here and there, but it's all friendly. It's going to be an exciting game. Fortunately for us, the Beattie family will win," Andy said.

All jokes aside, the Beattie family feels lucky to have the rare opportunity to see this game together.

"This is literally a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity," Sarah said. "The stars just aligned perfectly. Both teams got their lucky breaks along the way and won the games they needed to. We are just so lucky to see this game together as a family in our own backyard."

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