It’s finally here, football season! Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy baseball and NASCAR, but football is where my passion lies. Today, I wanted to take a couple of moments and list out the top five things I like better about college football over the NFL. Next week, as we ramp up for the NFL season, I’ll do the reverse. So, without further ado…
5) Saturdays – It seems silly, but one of my biggest gripes about the NFL is that they play on Sundays which we try to reserve for worship and rest. Saturdays, on the other hand, are wide open for me and I can usually catch at least two games each game day.
4) Marching Bands – It sounds funny, but I love when the marching band breaks into the fight song after a score. I love when the band fires up the crowd. I hate Ohio State, but I admire the tradition they have with their band dotting the “i” in Ohio. Marching bands add to the overall atmosphere of a college game day that few other things can.
3) Formations – In the NFL, everyone tends to copy one another. In the college game, you still see glimpses of the game’s past from the triple option to the wishbone or more modern and exotic formations like the spread and the pistol. Every time a team lines up in the ‘bone, you have to imagine a guy like Barry Switzer smiling.
2) Rivalries – Floyd of Rosedale. Paul Bunyan’s Axe. Army vs. Navy. The Red River Shootout. It seems no matter what the team, they have at least one long time rival that they absolutely hate. As an Iowa Hawkeyes fan, I get a little more excited when we play Wisconsin or Minnesota than I do Indiana or Michigan State. Why? It’s all about bragging rights. Plus, several states have in-state rivalries like Iowa-Iowa St where the battle is intense no matter how bad the two teams are.
1) Tradition – This ties in with number two, but the college game is all about tradition. Sure, Michigan’s helmets look old school. They’re supposed to. Texas hasn’t changed their uniforms in forever for a reason – they work! Homecoming, passionate alumni and programs that approach 100 years or more all lend themselves to the tradition that few other sports have. The fact that most colleges aren’t building new stadiums every other year lends to the legacy that these programs have. Tradition is the crucial thing that separates the college from the pro game.
So there you have it. I’m not saying that the college game is better, but these are the Top 5 things I enjoy about the college game more than the NFL. Next week, I’ll fill you in on what I like better about the NFL. Until then …