Hello, my name is D. C. and I’m an addict …
Yes, I do feel like that’s an admission I need to make at some 12-step group for college football junkies. Imagine it as a group of unshaven men in jerseys from universities such as Alabama, Texas A&M, Southern Cal, Clemson, Carolina, and even Rice, all gathered around tailgating tables and sipping cheap coffee while their faces and hopes sag.
Well, maybe not Rice. I’m not sure what they play is literally college football but some lesser talented facsimile of the game itself.
I have to admit I thought I had kicked the habit some years back when my broadcast career ended and I was able to take or leave the regular Saturday afternoon sacraments. Instead, I’ve found I’m not as free as I’d imagined, tuning in anything that bears any resemblance to college football I can possibly find.
As a matter of fact, just this past weekend I found myself camped in front of the TV, watching the newest addition of the college all-star games, the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA) senior all-star game.
First off, let me explain, this was football only in the sense there was a football involved. There were restrictions on shotgun formations, no rushing the kicker, and apparently no tackles harder than the shot you might take in a well refereed pillow fight. What a waste of time! The whole thing just made me hanker for more.
As the cold sweats of withdrawal set in and it became obvious there was no relief in sight, I turned my sights on college basketball, hoping for a quick hit and a little relief but was disappointed. Instead of wide-open adrenaline and bone crushing collisions, all I found was precision passing and commentators talking about “diaper dandies,” quality wins and reaching the NCAA tourney.
Don’t get me wrong: those guys are unbelievable athletes, but it’s lacking something I so desperately need — young guys throwing themselves about with reckless abandon with no thought to their own safety. Don’t even ask about the NBA. I can’t stand to watch two teams run from end to end, make one pass then wait for a single star player to take it to the hole. That’s not basketball.
What about the NFL, you might ask?
The NFL has some highly talented athletes and plays its own brand of football for sure, but it’s just not the same.
Look at it this way: Professional football players have a lot more at stake. And although there are those guys who do throw themselves in harm’s way without thought to their own safety, when there are multimillion dollar contracts to consider, that abandon doesn’t seem to come into play quite as often.
And as an afterthought, the NFL plays for field goals and would be satisfied with a 6-3 win no matter how I feel about it or how boring their product can be. Besides, that group seems to be heading the direction of professional wrestling where the show instead of the sport is what’s important.
The bowl season, all 457 games, are finally over, a BCS champion was crowned in Florida State and the BCS is finally dead. Next season will see the implementation of a four-team playoff system, which should be as dysfunctional as my own family, just not nearly as much fun, which should make the wait for next season that much easier.
Alas, such is not the case.
Instead it looks like I have months of withdrawal, pre-pre-pre-preseason polls, talking heads spouting about the upcoming season, and nothing but speculation on recruiting reports and signing days.
D. C. Moody is a staff writer for The Easley Progress, The Pickens Sentinel and Powdersville Post and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Views expressed in this column are those of the writer only and do not represent the newspaper’s opinion.