Tonight the Alabama Crimson Tide basketball team makes its bi-annual trip to Memorial Gymnasium in Nashville to play in one of the goofiest venues in all of sports.
For some reason through the ages we’ve arrived at the notion that it’s cute to let teams or schools individualize their ballparks or arenas. I’m not talking about logos and paint colors. I’m talking about affecting the field of play.
In baseball, Auburn has the 15 ft. deep left field with the 200-ft high wall. Duke has the gym from the 1940’s, where if you go for a loose ball out-of-bounds you will die. In the pros, the Red Sox have the big green monster. The Detroit Tigers used to have the 4-foot wall in the outfield. And there are other ridiculous examples.
Not so much in football, but in other sports we feel like it’s okay to jerk with the visiting teams, shaking up the basics of the game so that the contest itself is a huge adjustment for the visitors.
Case in point, when Alabama takes the floor tonight in Nashville, they will be playing in the only gym that I know of in America that places both teams in the “end zones”, per se, instead of on the sidelines.
Vandy, where in the world did you ever get the idea to do something so freaking stupid? You’re supposed to be a school of elite, blue-blooded geniuses. But by your calculations, we’re all glad you weren’t given the job of designing the common door. There’s no telling where the doorknob would appear.
We’ve all met that person that is so smart, he/she lacks the basic intellect needed to function socially. Vanderbilt University must be chocked full of such folk.
So, to help you Vandy, I’ve prepared a diagram for you:
The intrigue of your spastic set up wore off decades ago. It’s no longer cute, but annoying as heck. We get it; you wanted a competitive advantage on your home court, and you definitely have it.
But to even things up, when you come to Bryant-Denny next season we’re going to make your team stand along the back of the end zone. And you don’t get headphones to talk to the press box. Your coaching staff gets to share one walkie talkie.
Beyond the logistical strain it puts on teams, the end zone benches just look stupid on television too.
Mike Slive, this sounds like an issue that’s trivial enough for you to pick up the phone and call someone about. Wanna take care of this?