Freshman year, I went to Alabama for spring break to volunteer and we stayed and worked in Tuscaloosa – home of the University of Alabama. Most of my fellow schoolmates weren’t really familiar with the religion that is college football. Our taxi drivers were instrumental in explaining the relationship people have to college football in Alabama – one of my friends asked, “So, what do you do when it isn’t football season?” to which the driver responded, “… we talk about football…”
This spurned me to think about the influence of college football versus the NFL; and I can say with conviction that college football is infinitely better than the NFL. Here’s why:
1. College football players are college-aged. That means they’re between 18 and 23 (ish). Could you do that shit when you were their age? With all the crazy ridiculous pressure and athleticism? I didn’t think so.
2. They don’t get paid millions of dollars – this sport is still an extracurricular for them. They have to balance class AND being a Division 1 athlete.
3. College football is relevant to the whole country, not just the choice states with NFL teams. According to Wikipedia (I know, super reputable), there are 24 states without any major sports teams (that includes football), and there are only 9 states that do not have D1 football teams.
4. These athletes are real people – they’re famous athletes but also just regular college students. They get the best of both worlds; they’re like the Hannah Montana of sports!
5. They have awesome (and sometimes stupid) mascots that are always really funny (i.e. the Ohio State “Buckeye,” the Stanford “Tree”).
6. They have better tailgates. Chances are you’ll have lots of friends there, you can go visit other people and get lots of food, and its just an overall good time.
7. They have AMAZING halftime shows, performed by other college students. For example, the Ohio State Marching Band. Enough said.
If you haven’t seen them perform, you need to watch this. Now. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DNe0ZUD19EE
8. The fanbase is a school, not a city. This means that everyone associated with the school – faculty, staff, students, community members, alumni, etc. – support the team.
9. School spirit! There is so much school spirit, it’s ridiculous. Just take a look at the student section.
And now, GAME DAY OUTFITS!