Monday, November 26, 2007

Advice from the Great War for College Football Fans

During World War 1, veterans used to tell newcomers to the trenches that the best way to survive was to “keep your ass down and your mouth shut.” That advice came back to me this weekend as the top team (LSU) lost for what seemed like the tenth week in a row, opening up a new top spot.

What’s amazing to me is not that the highly-ranked college football teams lose to what should be “inferior” teams. College football is by its nature unpredictable, and every year several highly-ranked teams are paper tigers.

What amazes me is the arrogance of the average fan when his team suddenly finds itself nearing the top ranking. They become absolutely insufferable: they should be ranked higher, they’re the greatest team ever, finally those losers ahead of them got their comeuppance, etc. They never seem to think, for one second, that their team is simply next on the chopping block.

It’s important to keep things in perspective, particularly if you derive psychic happiness from something like college football. That’s especially true during a year like this, where teams like Appalachian State are revealing that the emperor has no clothes. The best tactic would be to simply keep your ass down, your mouth shut, and hope that your team can win out in their bowl game.

After that you can brag all you wish, and others have to simply suffer you.