Thursday, January 12, 2012

An Examination of Habitual Depth

Well, it sure turned out to be a good thing that college football made us wait until we were a third of the way through January before having its National Championship Game. As if the first go-round between 'Bama and LSU was not at lest borderline brutal to watch, the rematch was worse. It is almost impossible to spend a boring Monday night in N'Awlins. Almost. Kudos to Nick Saban's kids for winning the game and to the kids from LSU for having had just an extraordinary 2011 season. Their problem was simply one of timing: all of their good playing occurred during 2011. As they found out on Monday night, that was so "last year".

The greedy suits who run college football kinda, sorta got what they deserved this year. A season pockmarked by scandals at Miami and Ohio State and the end of an empire at Penn State that may or may not have been ruled all of these years by an emperor sans clothes needed a big finish to try and refocus the public's attention on the sport from the back page to the sports page. It did not get one.

Somewhere Oscar Wilde is smiling. It was Wilde after all who wrote, "No man is rich enough to buy back his past." As the powers that be who run college football learned this autumn, the odds get no better when a lot of men appear at the "Returns/Exchanges" window simultaneously. Not even when they agree to pool their considerable resources in a vain attempt to enhance their bargaining position.

2011 was chock full of teachable moments for the people who oversee college football. I wonder if they actually learned anything. A very wise man once observed that, "Very often the difference between a rut and a grave is the depth of the habit." Left unsaid is that it is a damn sight easier to extricate yourself from the former than the latter.

In which of the two does college football (and those who run it) find itself? Time will tell.


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