There were articles on ESPN this week about which is better NFL
football. I will admit that the NFL is my favorite, but I also like college, high school, and pee wee football too. Hell, I like to sit on the beach and break down total strangers throwing mechanics (His release point is too low, Desmond. I wonder if he's had any kind of shoulder surgery. Get our medical people to check it out). There are 2 reasons the NFL is better. The first is the playoffs. It determines a real champion on the field. Despite the fact that Division 3, 2, and 1-AA college football use this same breakthrough technology to determine their champions, the highest level of college football chooses to let the media/coaches decide the 2 best teams and let them play it out in a championship game. The second is the competitive balance the teams have from year to year. You just don't see games that are won by 50+ points on a regular basis in the NFL. College teams buy these games against inferior competition every year.
Those are my two reasons. I don't need 20 reasons why the NFL is better. 2 is twice as many as I really need, but in the interest of fairness I'll look at the alleged 20 reasons
why the college game is better.
1. Passion - Yeah, I get a good feeling when North Carolina
wins a game. I get the same sensation when the Panthers
win a game too. If my diploma is supposed to make me cherish one more than the other, then I would have to feel the same why when the Carolina fencing
team wins a big match. I don't.
2. 25-year-old millionaires - So I should resent someone younger than me who makes more money than I ever will? What about the millions the college guys generate that go into the pockets of coaches, administrators, and other hangers on? I only resent people I work w/ who make more money than me and don't do as much work as I do.
3. Rivalries - A long time ago, the minister at our church called me out on using the word "hate" to describe my feelings about things. Since then I try to stay away from that word and say I don't like something instead. I hate the Dallas Cowboys
. I don't like Duke
, but I have a grudging respect for the many other things they do besides play basketball. I hate the fucking Dallas Cowboys.
4. The postseason - To refute the logic that every game is a championship, I say if every game is a championship then no games are a championship.
5. Bowls on tv - I too like having bowl games on everyday for weeks at a time. I generally don't make plans around any one of these games, but I watch a lot of tv and the MPC Computers Bowl
always seems like a good idea. Still, I worked my errands and obligations around last year's Redskins-Buccaneers
game, so I wouldn't miss a thing. And I don't really like either team.
6. Playbook buffet - If you had all of your time to devote to stopping a certain offense, a good football coach certainly would. Unfortunately, the players in college football are bogged down w/ other obligations like classwork and can't devote the necessary time to solving these problems. There's a reason none of those gimmick offenses make it in the pros.
7. Overtime - College football overtime sucks. Each team gets the ball on the 25 yard line and tries to score. When do offenses ever get the ball on the 25 yard line? It doesn't happen in the normal course of a game unless there's a big special teams play or the defense creates a turnover. The college brand of overtime eliminates special teams entirely except for the field goal unit. It's not a football game at this point. It's a practice drill that you run at the end of the day. Did I mention college football overtime sucks?
8. Stadiums - I'll confess that my favorite football stadium is Armfield Athletic Center
. It's also the only one w/in walking distance of my house. However, I would have a new favorite if they knocked down all the trees in Price Park
to build an NFL stadium.
9. Ticket Prices - It is expensive to get into an NFL game. Some of the newer teams like the Panthers have even added the expense of getting a personal seat license
to go with the seats. The only problem w/ the college game criticizing this is that the whole thing is based on the college model. I couldn't get a sniff of good seats
in the 3 years I bought UNC football season tickets. There's a big difference in the price of a $30 seat in the endzone and a $30 seat on the 50 yard line.
10. Commercials after kickoff - I can honestly say I had never noticed this. At first I thought "It's on tv. There are commercials. Deal w/ it." Then I thought if this complaint were accurate 100% of the time, they would immediately go to commercial after the opening kickoff. That only happens when there is an injury or some other catastrophe. I rule this claim fraudulent.
11. More bang for your buck - The difference in the length of NFL games vs. college games does not have anything to do w/ the length of halftime. Ok, the 8 extra minutes of halftime might make you think the 6 minute difference technically makes the college games shorter, but NFL games all have the requisite tv timeouts that drag a game out while all college games aren't broadcast on tv. I can go to the Guilford College game that starts at 1 and walk home in time to see the end of a noon game on television. That doesn't make me feel like the college games are shorter.
12. College halftimes - Yeah, this is a great thing about college football that the pros can't touch. The main reason I'm thinking about going to see A&T
play football this year is I want to check out the band.
13. Dynasties - Using socialism to disparage the NFL? I like socialists a lot better than the exploitationists who profit off the inequitable exchange b/w athletes and universities. I might have been a little more leniant on this kind of stuff if he had kept the Panthers out of his bad-mouthing (especially when compared w/ Michigan, Nebraska, and USC).
14. JoePa - Only sportswriters who have run out of ideas would write stories about the demise of Joe Paterno. This guy is probably the main reason I wear black sneakers. That's right, I take my cue on footwear from a 70 year old man. I also have two pairs of wingtips that my dad gave me, so I take my footwear from 70 year old men too.
15. Traditions - Ok, the only traditions associated w/ the NFL are drinking and gambling, but those same traditions exist at any major college program too. In fact, if my team's
most memorable tradition was hurling airplane bottles of Jack Daniels'
in the stands, I might want to reduce my capacity to less than 100,000 and add a few luxury boxes (or a jail
16. Songs - Unless Golden Earring
has an honorary doctrate from some place, I don't care about the songs.
17. The Heisman - "[I]t is, in fact, awarded to the best offensive player on a national championship contender". This is a quote from the argument that the Heisman trophy
makes college football better than the NFL.
18. Keith Jackson - I think he's retired. Still he was one of the best tight ends
the Eagles ever had.
19. Championship sites - These games roll around the same area. If the NFL wants to pump a bunch of money into Detroit every 20 years, I don't have a problem w/ that. The games all look the same on my tv anyway.
20. Eternal youth - I'm not going to argue against this one.