This theme of this post can best be described as: JOY.

When I heard those iconic four notes to kick off ESPN’s first Monday Night Football telecast of 2011 last night, I must have looked like a kid who just won first place in the Pinewood Derby.  The lockout really is over! This is football! It’s real! No more pretending to care about the NBA, no more agonizing front-page coverage of golf (hobby, not sport), no more seeing UNC on the front page of ESPN for more accusations of academic and athletic impropriety.

(One can dream, right? Maybe just until October? Please?)

Hopefully, the noise that surrounds the actual sport of football – both pro and college – will drown out the BS that’s overwhelmed this offseason. When a guy named Uggla hitting bloopers over second base is front page news, you know we're in desperation mode. As a brief recap, let’s look back at how crappy this spring and summer has been for the sport:

Screw you, Marvin.

  • UNC, NCAA, Honor Court, Butch Davis, John Blake, Marvin Austin unbelievable moron. I’m not going to go into details here, because I tend to start throwing breakable things when I think about this too much, and my coffee mug is looking like it would make a highly satisfying substitute football.
  • The NFL lockout ordeal:
    • Six months of hearing millionaires arguing with billionaires over money most of us can’t even fathom;
    • Players complaining that they can’t support their families when they make more money than you or I will make in a lifetime;
    • Owners complaining that the players are being unreasonable as they rake in record profits then refuse to open their books;
    • Constantly hearing that the lawyers keep screwing everything up, as if America doesn’t hate lawyers enough;
    • Worst of all, having to listen to Ryan Clark and James Harrison bitch and moan about being punished for probably causing their opponents’ Alzheimer’s disease. Message to you two: Show some class, you assholes. Shut the hell up, stop throwing your entire body weight into a defenseless receiver’s head, and play football. Complaining about rules designed to keep you from becoming a vegetable at age 40 puts you on the same moral territory as your serial rapist quarterback.
      • Sorry. I'm a Ravens fan, and we have crushing inferiority complexes when it comes to the Steelers. Back to college:
  • Ohio State firing Jim Tressel and getting Terrelle Pryor totally screwed. Actually, outside of OSU fans, this one was basically a plus. Down with cheaters! (Cough)
  • Amid a rising tide of criticism about the inconsistent application of penalties, an overly complicated rulebook, and rampant agent-running in money-making sports, NCAA presidents meet and decide to do… well, nothing.
    • Actually, that's not true. They added more useless rules.
  • Texas A&M almost joins the SEC, except… someone forgot to tell the SEC, and it turns out no one in the SEC actually wanted them.
  • Oklahoma and Oklahoma St get rejected from joining the Big Ten (whom I have often, gleefully, maligned), because of… academic standards?! WHAT?! The Big Ten has NEBRASKA in it. Also, they can’t count, because there are 12 teams in the Big Ten.
  • Duke football… continues to exist. (Sorry guys, couldn’t help myself after reading that brilliant post about Duke football and staying strong).

So basically, these past six months have been horrible for fans of football. But you know what? It’s BACK!

In just two short weeks, it’ll be September 3rd and the college football season officially kicks off. I can’t wait to see the flyovers. I can’t wait to hear that first national anthem. I can’t wait to see the parachute jumper carry the game ball onto the field… the right field this time. I can’t wait to hear the roar of the opening kickoff and to feel the anticipation as a deep bomb hangs in the air. We’ll see safeties drilling receivers as they haplessly come across the middle, linebackers taking out quarterbacks, unbelievable catches, a running back juking some poor bastard out of his shoes, and coaches slamming their headsets into the ground.

All the politics, all the posturing, all the rules violations – all the crap we’ve endured goes out the window on Sept 3. Everyone’s got a perfect record, and everyone (well, everyone in a BCS automatic qualifying conference) has a shot at the big prize. 

<voice in my head: don't say it… don't stir up the locals… don't say it…AHHHH>

​Even Duke.


About Nate

I graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill in 2010. I've written about the UNC-Duke rivalry since my best friend from high school took his talents to Durham the same year I went to Carolina. Astoundingly, we remain friends in part due to a moratorium on talking around Duke-Carolina games. Though capable of rationally approaching the rivalry, I generally prefer low-intellect vitriol, because it makes me feel better about myself. Visit my blog at http://thebestmedicineis.wordpress.com
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8 Responses to Dit-Dit-Dit-DAH!!!

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  1. Mark B. Epstein says:

    You root for all the wrong teams. Despite this, this post is brilliant, timely and has me chomping at the bit for those 14-hour Saturdays where I can watch all or part of 25 different college football games followed by an 11 hour Sunday watching 4 different pro games (along with the Red Zone channel – how did I survive the first 46 years of my life without that?) Life can be very good…

    Oh yeah, did I mention that you root for all the wrong teams?

    1. Nate says:

      Thanks for the kudos, buddy. At least MD looks on the upswing with this Edsal guy, right?

    2. Shane says:

      Agreed, Mark, this post is the latest and best in a long line of things that have me desperate for football to begin. My favorite line: “my coffee mug is looking like it would make a highly satisfying substitute football.”

  2. Nate says:

    Addendum to my article: Really? Not two hours after I post a glorious ode to the sport, I find out that a UM booster was paying Vince Wilfork and Jonathan Vilma with HOOKERS!?

    Talk about a sucker punch.

    1. William says:

      Yeah, them and 70 other players (that Yahoo can corroborate stories for…apparently Shapiro named more than 100). Just unreal.

      Some funny stuff too. For instance, these guys were getting anything they wanted and yet Devin Hester only got a $3,000 engagement ring? Come on, Devin, you can go bigger than that! I bet he spent more on the rims he got for his “sport utility vehicle”. And I wonder how his lady-friend feels knowing that her ring came from ponzi money.

      Also pretty funny that he got $500 incentives for getting celebrating penalties after touchdowns…classy.

      1. Nate says:

        I really am just amazed. I mean, how can the NCAA not kill Miami over this? The athletic director at the time, Paul Dee, presided over the COI during the USC/Reggie Bush thing, and famously said “high-profile athletes need high-profile compliance” or something to that effect.

        I almost feel sorry for Miami, then I remember that game against UNC where they danced on our 50-yard line, immediately before we busted a reverse for a touchdown.

    2. William says:

      Also, funny you should mention a sucker punch…

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