- Tuesday, 17 September 2013 02:00
- Author: Logan Booker
Yesterday I wrote a column which expressed and mapped out my theories of ESPN dispatching their uber-popular pregame show, College Gameday, to broadcast live in Athens on the Saturday of September 28th when the LSU Tigers come roaring into town. The responses I received all day long were baffling to me. And they should be to you, too.
Disclaimer: By reading this disclaimer you are hereby NOT ALLOWED to get offended by the rant that is about to follow. It is my opinion and my opinion only, as you are certainly entitled to your own. Let’s debate below if you feel the need! I’ll be waiting…..
In yesterday’s piece, I mentioned that UGA is an unimpressive 3-12 whenever ESPN broadcasts their show from a site in which they are playing, Also, I mentioned that only twice in the twenty year history of the show has the circus been brought to the Classic City.
Here some of the responses I received.
There were a few positive people who said they would like the show to come to Athens, but they were far outnumbered by responses such as the ones above.
To the naysayers, please put down the superstition pipe.
If you think for one second that there will be a single player in the locker room at UGA this afternoon who just lost 10 lbs in sweat, while practicing to hopefully give you the result you want in a sporting event, that doesn’t want Gameday to come cover him and his team, you need to snap back to reality. And if you honestly believe there is some magical force or transparent pixie dust that wafts from the Gameday set over to the field of play which only negatively affects the players with the G on their helmet, once again, you need to snap back to reality.
All too often I see UGA fans whine and gripe with lines such as “ESPN hates us,” “Why doesn’t Aaron Murray get the headlines?,” “Why does Bama get all the love?,” “I am so sick of only hearing about all the media darlings.”
But then when that publicity becomes a possibility, those same fans cite some long, evil, mythical curse in order to not accept it? I don’t follow.
Well, it’s time for us all, myself included, to put on our big-boy pants and be ready to run with the heavy hitters of the college football national landscape. And in order to do so, we are all going to have to be more accepting of publicity, and stop acting like a ten-year-old who believes if he steps on that crack that he will indeed, break his mother’s back.
If ESPN releases the hounds to assemble in Athens, the boys on the football team will be getting exactly the love and publicity that they deserve. There will be extra drive and pep in their practices during the week. They will have realized that the reasons and goals each. and. every. one. of. them. chose and set when deciding to commit to a program with the magnitude of the University of Georgia, in the mighty Southeastern Conference, is paying off.
And can you imagine the buzz in Athens come Wednesday… Thursday… and into Friday afternoon when SportsCenter starts airing live segments from the UGA campus?
You say you love the town of Athens? Do you think the small business owners of your nostalgic favorite places don’t want Chris Fowler ordering that big steak for dinner, or Samantha Ponder taking her NFL quarterback husband’s credit card out while sifting through the expensive dress racks? All these guys need hotels while they are at at. But I guess the Tuscaloosa or Columbus economy is much worse off then that of Athens. Therefore, we should push ESPN in their direction for the sole reason that with such an economic boost and unheralded publicity comes with it the unstoppable force that makes fans to forget to cross their fingers when Aaron Murray drops back in the pocket or put on their lucky socks before heading to the stadium. I get it now.
Though the majority of us are alumni or fans, I think we forget all too often that these are a group of X-Box generation kids playing for the representation of 30,000 enrolled students who are inspired more by who headlines TMZ rather than the amount of money you donated to the Hartman Fund last year in order to bring your spouse or neighbor along with you to their school’s sporting event.
These kids grew up in a generation where they truly believe if the spotlight is not on them, than they simply do not matter. I promise the last thing you should worry about is the players feeling the need to live up to the weekly hype or choking under the pressure that Gameday brings with it. They would be thrilled to death that for once that bright light is zeroed in on them, instead of having to hear you whine further more about Urban Meyer or Nick Saban’s deal with the devil.
But wait, I got beside the point once again. It has nothing to do with the players, the coaches, the spotlight…. none of that. I forgot that Professor Dumbledore and Hermoine Granger (Harry Potter references, for those not on my rant level at the moment) are recent employee of ESPN and have been assigned to the special, top-secret task of preventing the University of Georgia from winning every time ESPN’s humongous, unstoppable publicity machine selects a game to broadcast from in which their football team team is participating.
I guess the black jerseys were their first project?
As we all know, superstition is only real on the golf course or when a baseball pitcher has a no-hitter going. So bring on College Gameday!!
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