Have you ever been at the office, at a party or anywhere for that matter, when a guy comes up to you and says:
“Hey, listen to this joke I got. It is hilarious!”
Then he proceeds to tell you the joke and it doesn’t live up to its billing?
Few things in life are as good as they’ve been billed to be.
My wedding night didn’t go as I had envisioned. Sure, the action was good later, but I never fantasized about crossing the threshold at the hotel room only to spend the first hour helping my wife take pins out of her hair and assist her in removing herself from that monstrosity called a wedding dress.
Restoring my dad’s 1960 Corvette wasn’t all it was cracked up to be either. As a kid I used to love that car, but when I finally got my hands on it, the stress of driving it coupled with the expense of keeping it running outlived the fantasy of it being mine.
Often our fantasies are simply better than our realities.
Tonight’s Alabama-LSU game has been built up to the point that there’s no way it can live up to the hype.
For the better part of two weeks, you literally haven’t been able to turn on the television…pick a channel, and it doesn’t have to be a sports channel…where people aren’t disecting every angle of “the game of the century.”
Now there is reason for build up. It’s the first time No. 1 has met No. 2 in the regular season in conference play…hard to believe if you think about that. This doesn’t happen in the regular season very often, period. It’s two teams who are clearly head and shoulders above every other team in the country.
Maybe more importantly, tonight’s game is made up of two teams that play man football. Not dipsy-doo, trickeroo, spread offense crap. Quite simply the hunger for tonight’s game proves in part that the world is ready for the spread’s flag-football style to retire and smash-mouth football to return.
But can tonight’s game really live up to the 50,000 collective hours of analysis and speculation it has received?
It will be worth the time to watch it, that’s for certain, which is why CBS wisely jockeyed for position with ESPN to move it to primetime.
And it’s also fantastic advertising for both schools. Five years ago, if you would’ve told me that Alabama football would again be at the epicenter of college football, the standard, if you will, I would have told you you were crazy. Unlike Auburn fans who believe a win over hapless Ole Miss means “we’re back!”, I’m not a koolaid drinking Bama fan. At the time, I did not see anything pointing to this.
What Nick Saban has done at Alabama is nothing short of remarkable, and the same can be said of Les Miles. The debate has always been over what’s more difficult: Resurrecting a program from the ashes or keeping it at the top?
Les Miles has successfully done the latter at LSU. Nick Saban has done both…at two different institutions.
The coach who “had never had back-to-back 10-win seasons” is about to shelve his fourth consecutive at Alabama, and the coach who had never gone undefeated is well on his way to doing it for the third time in five years, in the regular season at least.
And tonight, as I file into Bryant-Denny Stadium with 102,000 others, I will witness one heck of a football game, led by two great football coaches and two incredible teams.
But no matter what happens, the hype will most likely be greater than the game itself. And we’ll have to wait until the next time Alabama is part of a game filled with this much hype.
We’ll just refer to that game as “January 9th”.