Auburn fans don’t let facts get in the way of a good blog
Tis the season…the off season, that is; under 50 days until kick-off of college football 2008, and the mud slinging between Alabama and Auburn is in full swing.Â Ahhh.Â Breathe it in…it wouldn’t be July without it.Â Thanks to The Capstone Report (and other “lesser” blogs like it), we get to talk smack withÂ each another, cranking out one liners like there’s no tomorrow.Â Just conjure up a screen name, feverishly hammer out a blog, hit “submit comment,” and our little hearts race as we excitedly await our post making itÂ to theÂ screen.Â “That’ll show ’em,” we think, as we sit back and cross our arms, proud of both our accomplishment and contribution to humanity.
For those of you that don’t know, The Capstone Report is a blog for Alabama fans about Alabama sports–primarily football.Â It is unapologetically Alabama, though its creator (my opinion) does a great job of relaying information down the middle.Â Amazingly, at least half of the readership are Auburn fans.Â Don’t get me wrong; they’re welcome here.Â But while they won’tÂ purchase tickets to their own games, they’ll hit this site like fish going after a dough ball.Â And I think it is hilarious.Â Heck, we all think it’s hilarious.Â Why?Â I’m glad you asked.Â I’ll explain in a minute.
But first, there was a term birthed on this site a while back that absolutely epitomizes the Auburn fan.Â The term was one I had never heard before, but whoever came up with it deserves some sort of recognition.Â Just like the men who contributed to the discovery of the atom, the one who coined this term uncovered the very matter that makes upÂ our little brothers across the state.
The term?Â “Aubsessed.”Â Defined, Aubsessed means this: an overwhelming obsession with all things Alabama.Â Â TheÂ Auburn fanÂ eats it.Â Â He sleeps it.Â HeÂ breathes it.Â Â Heck,Â he lives it.Â Â Like an albatross weighing down the Ancient Mariner, the Auburn fan cannot pull awayÂ fromÂ hisÂ engrained Aubsession to getÂ just one more zinger acrossÂ “to them bammers” before prying his fingers from his sticky keyboard for the night.Â Correct spelling and grammar are electives in his quest, but the main thing is thatÂ he defends all that is holy to him.Â And that thing isÂ NOT Auburn football.
There has long been a debate in this state over what is most important: your team winning, or your hated rival losing.Â Without question, the Auburn fan’s AubsessionÂ zeroes in onÂ Alabama losing.Â Whether on the field or off, Alabama moving in the opposite direction of success is the orange and blue holy grail.Â If they have an actual part in that demise, it’s just a bonus.
I’m not a prophet, butÂ as you read this, your commentsÂ that will inevitably followÂ will prove my point for me perfectly.Â Â From the timeÂ this siteÂ was called “FireShulaNow” till now, nothing invokes a response from the Aubsessed nation like an article that heralds an Alabama accomplishment or sheds light on an Auburn shortcoming.
Comments rain down in a downpour as something strikes the Auburn fan at his/her core.Â Like a moth toÂ the flame,Â with yourÂ Aubie brothers and sisters youÂ just have to let out a collective “Unh-unh!”Â And yes, we that follow Alabama football, again on an Alabama website, think it is hilarious.Â Why, again you ask?Â Okay, you’ve been patient…here is the answer:
Because, over the last decade, ifÂ the fortunes were reversed betweenÂ our two schools, from where we stand, it would be as ifÂ AuburnÂ didn’t even exist.Â
A nine game streak–whichÂ AlabamaÂ still owns andÂ AuburnÂ doesn’t–would wipeÂ Auburn from our every day conversation.Â Talk would be of championships, and while this may have become clichÃ© to the Auburn fan, championships still actually matter in Tuscaloosa.Â But the most delightful thing to the Alabama fan about Auburn’s “success” is that the Auburn fan can’t enjoy it.Â Instead, he is stuck in the quagmire of continually trying to remind everyone of how great he–or in this case, hisÂ team–is.Â We’ve all known a person like that in life, and we all nod to appease him as we turn to walk away, chuckling under our breath.
If Alabama competed in a two team Western division, which essentially Auburn has done over the last decade, we would beÂ MOST concerned that we had only made itÂ to AtlantaÂ twice and wonÂ there once.Â We would question how a program like Arkansas, seemingly in a constant state of upheaval, had been there as many times.Â And our focus would be on what we could do to make our program even better.Â We might even gawk at the fact that LSU, if they get there this year, would merelyÂ tieÂ our number of appearances as the West’s representative.
But despite the myriad of problemsÂ AlabamaÂ has faced–most of them self-inflicted–what baffles the Auburn fan isÂ howÂ optimistic but realisticÂ the Alabama fan isÂ today.Â And the reason for this is, Alabama fans embrace the facts, while the Auburn fan just tries to win the blogfest.Â Facts like Auburn’s Iron Bowl “streak”Â being a direct result of an uneven playing field.Â Or stars mattering on the plains backÂ when Auburn could still land top talent.Â Or Auburn having 19 commitments that no other school of note wants.Â Or Auburn going 0 for 15 in head-to-head recruiting with Alabama last year.Â Or the latest revelation that at the height of its success and Alabama’s low, Auburn can’t sell outÂ and Bama can.Â So much commentary could be added about these and many other facts, but it’s not important.Â Like the sun rising in the east, these are facts that can’t be disputed.Â
In closing, no one is suggesting the Auburn fan shouldn’t be happy with the present state of the two programs.Â All that’s been suggested here is that somewhere along the way, the Auburn fanÂ should take a hard look at himself and pose the question,Â “Why am I so Aubsessed with an Alabama blogsite?”Â And then possibly take a casual stroll in the direction of fact and truth.Â Both endeavors may do him good, and possibly set him free.