Fortunately, there’s a man…no, there’s a hero championing justice and righteousness, and perhaps saving our very freedoms in the process. You may remember him for his good works in taking on perfidious bloggers. His name is Buzz Bissinger. You may have read his book about trying to score weed on Friday nights or something like that (I never read it). Whatever. The point is, he’s turned his bile spewing on the college football world, and we’re all a little worse off for it.
EDSBS touched on it on Friday. But there’s so much more wrong with it. Take it from the top Buzz:
It’s a couple of weeks ago and I am watching the Alabama-Clemson football game.
It’s a pretty good contest, actually.
As a hater of all things orange I enjoy watching Clemson get dominated as much as anyone, but this was not a pretty good contest. It was a thorough ass-kicking.
The Crimson Tide is in the groove against a Top 10 team. But that’s not what truly interests me.
For someone who purportedly enjoys sports this is a strange statement. You’re basically saying, “Fuck the game. I want to focus on the periphery.”
I am watching the fans in various states of rabidity, wondering how long it takes to wash all that school-color gunk off your body once you lacquer it on, not to mention what precisely motivates someone to apply such gunk in the first place.
I stopped wondering about that when I was about 14. Apparently, Buzz just can’t let it go.
I am watching the cheerleaders in their somersaults and squats of perfect synchronism with those slapped-on smiles.
Some of them could be genuinely happy and excited, performing for the crowd giving them a rush and all that. I’m cynical but damn.
I am just watching the crazy spectacle of it all — frenzy and bloodlust and the low rumble of moans and the high-pitch of screams.
Yeah, it is pretty awesome.
I wonder why we need any more studies showing our nation’s education system to be in the tank when all you have to do is attend a college football game.
Oh, that’s not where you were going with that. Apparently sports fandom is a uniquely American trait. Our new peculiar institution. Far be it from me to call a serious member of the media ignorant on a blog, but read a story about soccer riots you ignorant fucktard.
There’s also the claim of a connection between a poor education and exuberance at an entertainment venue. You know how bad our education system must have been in the ’50s and ’60s because you can see the rapturous adoration of acts like Elvis and The Beatles in those old clips.
But mostly I am watching Nick Saban.
That’s just weird. I’ll skip past the stuff about Saban’s personality since EDSBS already covered it.
When I watch Nick Saban, it is hard for me to tell how much difference he is really making out there, notwithstanding the nervous pacing and urgent back-and-forth over the headphones.
Trust me. He’s making a difference, discussing strategy, trying to motivate players through chastisement or encouragement and so on. You wrote a book about Texas high school football and don’t know what coaches do during games? Knowing that, I’m kind of glad I never read it.
Despite the millions of pages that have been dedicated to the genius of the American college football coach, the game still seems quite wonderfully helter-skelter to me, ultimately determined by the successes and failures of the 22 players on the field who actually play it.
Again, this is just pure ignorance of the game. There’s gameplanning and grueling hours of practice to get eleven members of the offense to work in conjunction in order to advance the ball and eleven members on defense to work together to stop them from doing so. If it were helter-skelter then the coach who had the 22 best athletes on the field would always win. Such is not the case.
Does Bissinger really not know this or is he just pandering to those New York Times readers who look down upon sports fanatics as some sort of inbred mongoloids?
I get bored after a while. The spectacle wears off, and watching Nick Saban coach is about as much fun as watching a traffic cop conduct rush-hour traffic.
You could try watching the game. You know, the spectacle that is the central reason you’ve been able to watch Nick Saban on television?
But I still need my college football fix. So I do what has become my favorite pastime of late — I read the database of contracts for major college coaches compiled by USA Today.
Now this is just a bold-faced lie. Nobody’s favorite pastime is reading anything in USA today, let alone fucking contract details. And nobody who needs a football fix turns to contracts either. I think you’re full of shit, Buzz.
I read the one for Nick Saban, and it is a very good read, in particular for anyone who wants to know why the United States has become a second-rate nation and will remain so until we figure out what is important and what is not.
Second-rate in what regard? We have the largest GDP in the world. We live alone in spaces that many countries use to house entire families if not multiple families. Our system of higher education is widely considered the best in the world. Unemployment is low. We want for nothing in this country. Our poor people are fat for Christ’s sake. Get some perspective.
I learn that his pay this season, his second at ’Bama, is $3.75 million. Given that the average pay for a University of Alabama full professor is $116,000, that strikes me as a lot of money, even if all of it does come from revenues associated with athletics and not from state taxpayers. But the contract also makes it clear that the University of Alabama board of trustees don’t think $3.75 million is enough for Nick Saban. There need to be more perks. After all, he is the football coach.
What an original take on priorities. I’ve never heard this from anyone, ever, in my life. To give you an idea of how freash this take is, here’s a Bear Bryant quote on the difference in pay: “How many people watch you give a final exam? [About fifty is the reply.] Well, I have 50,000 watch me give mine – every Saturday!” This quote was attributed to him while he was coaching at Texas A&M, which was from 1954-57.
There’s a section about the Miami thing, which was necessary reading for no one. There’s also a lot of bitching about incentives and graduation rates and so on. This pretty much sums it up:
Alabama is 2-0 this season and currently ranked 11th in the Associated Press’s most recent poll, so the investment in Nick Saban may well pay out the dividend that Alabama is so desperately seeking in trying to restore itself to national prominence. Of course, the season is still young, and the fortunes of the Alabama team could still go in a downward spiral. Not that I think it will have much lasting impact on Nick Saban.
Because Saban’s an asshole who doesn’t care I presume. Which runs counter to that angry visage he permanently wears and you noticed while you were watching him instead of the football game.
If his team misses out on a big bowl game, he misses out on some hefty bonuses. But there will still be the country club membership. There will still be the use of the two automobiles for him and his family. There will still be the use of the non-commercial plane for 25 hours. All on top of the eight-year contract he signed for $32 million.
All of those things are paid for by the athletic department budget, which takes in hundreds of millions of dollars every year. Buzz actually did point that fact out, but it doesn’t seem to make him any more understanding of the salary and perks.
All in the name of college football.
Which is why Nick Saban should try to look a little happier on the sidelines. When you’re laughing all the way to the bank, you should at least be smiling.
See, he’s getting money for nothing. He doesn’t spend 80 hours a week coaching and breaking down tape and gameplanning. He doesn’t travel around trying to convince fickle 17 year olds to sign on with his program. He’s just down there watching the melee on the field, gesticulating and making jokes about the “student bodies” – if you know what he means – with the other coaches via his headset. It’s not as if there’s any pressure to win at Alabama. If only our priorities were straight.
Thanks Buzz. You’re doing God’s work.