Saturday, January 13, 2007
Super Bowl Lament
Here in the northwestern corner of Wyoming, it’s just another cold January day. The Chiefs and the Colts are duking it out now. Later on another match-up will follow between the Seahawks and the Cowboys. I could care. To be sure, Indianapolis quarterback Payton Manning is the only player from any of the teams remaining that I can name. I’ll only know of today’s outcomes when I call my parents knowing they’ve watched these two events on one of their five TV sets scattered around the house.
As for me, I’ve seen my Super Bowl way back in mid-November when championship football games are supposed to be played. In my case it was in Centerville, Montana (rather than Phoenix, Arizona), where the Montana state high school eight-man title game was played out. And was it a doozie—as good as any professional or college game I’ve seen in my 46-plus years. The only other games that can rival that were other high school games in the past—Geraldine vs. Custer-Melstone in the 2003 Montana six-man title game comes to mind. Nevertheless, I won't argue with those who make such claims about this year's Fiesta Bowl between Boise State and Oklahoma. I didn't watch the game, but the highlights were brilliant.
There was a time not so long ago when I would tune in the “gridiron winter games.” However, after years of mulling it around, I’ve concluded that December should be reserved for the commencement of the basketball, hockey and wrestling seasons. No football game should be allowed to flow over into December for any reason whatsoever, even if it is played in a state-of-the-art, temperature-controlled dome or the tropics of Florida.
I’d like to think I’m as much of a fan of the game as those who follow professional football, but the deep winter months of December, January and February are not for football in my mind. Call it heresy, but come December, I’m ready to take a break from anything to do with the gridiron.
And the NFL isn’t the only guilty party in overextending the football season. Spending the first day of the new year watching twelve hours of college football on TV is simply wrong—that’s no way to start any new year.
Speaking of college bowl games, it’s getting worse—everyone wants to have their own bowl game! Could I be the only one who finds it absolutely disgraceful to see a 6-5 team in a post-season bowl game—touted by the commentators as if they were some kind of championship team?
Like any good thing found in this country, we typically overdo it until it’s worn out or we can’t stomach it anymore—assuming we haven't fallen numb to its oversaturation. Isn't this the case with Christmas, high-tech gadgets, SUVs, Brittany Spears and now football? Where is America’s sense of “modesty” these days? I like football way too much, so I’m ready to put it away when it should be put away—no later than November 30.
So, when this year's Super Bowl rolls around again, I’m out of here. Spare me the two hour pre-game show consisting of ex-jocks, talking heads and all the other fanfare and overproduced television commercials for what will likely be a mediocre football game. If I can stomach it, I’ll read about the big game in the newspapers or the internet. Besides it won’t be long now before the excessively long professional baseball season emerges from the cold depths of winter, but that’s a rant for another day.