By Rosie Preston
College football fans who live and breathe in Alabama reserve every Saturday to watch the SEC teams play. Judging from the yelling and woo-hoping from the next room, that time has arrived.
I come from a long line of Alabama fans and love the excitement of a game. From this woman’s point of view, I must admit that I have a hard time relating to the arguments from year to year of what it’s going to take to have a winning team. I listen very carefully as my husband, my son and their friends talk about the players – what their reputation is, how they played in high school
what they’re expected to do for the team.
I bite my tongue and wonder as I try to compare this sport with one of the sports I’ve played. I was a pitcher on a girls’ softball team in high school. My dad was my biggest fan. He hung a tire on a tree for me to pitch through, and no matter how many times I would ring it, there were still many times I would miss. And no matter how much I wanted to play and win a game; I had to hope and pray that when the ball left my hand that it would be one of those good throws. If I may brag a bit on myself, I once received a trophy for Pitcher of the Year! My dad had four girls, and I was more or less always trying to hang out with him.
I try and imagine how it would feel to be a football player with huge players bearing down on meme as I’m trying to throw a ball, along with the fact that the field may be wet or dry. It may be a windy day or one of the other players may be grabbed as someone on my team is trying to catch my ball, and well… To tell you the truth, I just can’t imagine playing football.
To me, a good game is when the score is close. A bad game is when the score is something like 50 to 0. When the score is something like 21 to 14, both teams had to play well.
So with football, I don’t think about the mistakes made, or the referee’s decisions or firing the coach. I admire the guys who get out there and play and keep going and going. Most of all, I feel for the parents, especially if their son is the one who “made a mistake” or “didn’t do what everyone knows he can do.” I feel their pain. But that’s life, and it’s just a game. Hasn’t it been said that “It’s not if you win or lose, it’s how you play the game?”
My husband is quite the character when Alabama is playing. One time when Alabama scored a touchdown as he sat in his recliner, he threw his arms up in the air and yelled as the chair turned over and the back hit the floor along with chips, dip and sweet tea.
“Touchdown!” I yelled.
It wasn’t a pretty sight, but the unexpected never is. That’s why I think football should be just a fun game. Let the chips fall as they may (pun very much intended) and let the players be proud they made the team. Let the fans pat each other on the back and go home and kick back in their recliners and drink sweet tea. Because if we knew who the winner was going to be before the game was played, what fun would that be? Not knowing what’s going to happen next is the very thing that keeps the fans and players pumped up.
Or is it turned over?
Keep smiling, Rosie
Please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.