I know this is old news since the announcement was made on Friday, but I didn't really have time to address it then and frankly took the news with a shrug of the shoulders and a "whatever, whipping Auburn on Friday is just as good as whipping Auburn on Saturday" attitude. But in thinking about it more over the weekend, I'm not nearly as magnanimous over this decision. To be blunt, this sucks. This sucks for the fans that will have to adjust their Thanksgiving travel plans, this sucks for the people who aren't fortunate enough to be able to take that day off to watch the game, this sucks for the state of Alabama's economy, and this especially sucks for the players who will now likely be forced to miss out on Thanksgiving with their families. Yet of all those involved, those that are least affected are unsurprisingly the ones with the most to gain. Alabama and Auburn will each grab an extra $500,000 for the deal, while CBS gets the ratings grab that the Iron Bowl represents on a day when most people are out shopping and gets to dump the so called rivalries like LSU/Arkansas and Tennessee/UK off to Saturday when people are more likely to watch. Of course, Mal Moore is sympathetic to our plight:
"This is taking place due to a request by CBS per their television deal with the SEC. Obviously, this is a great exposure opportunity for us with it being televised nationally by CBS. Whenever a game is moved off of Saturday it can present advantages or disadvantages, depending on a lot of factors. We're sympathetic to the needs of our fan base, so we understand this may cause some issues with travel or other considerations."
Spare me your tears, Mal, and think twice about saying you "understand" the issues with travel and other considerations to a populace that forks out millions of dollars every year for tickets, pay-per-view broadcats, and merchandise so that the athletic department can afford little perks like private jets to games. You clearly do not "understand" the issues and considerations here, or you might have taken into account that the entire state damn near shuts down for the Iron Bowl every year before accepting this "request" in the name of "exposure." And do not even try to tell us that Alabama simply doesn't have enough pull with the SEC and the networks (who know that Alabama is a guaranteed ratings bonanza or they wouldn't want to stick us on a day when ratings would otherwise be low) to get out of the deal. This deal was nothing more than a shameful cash grab at the expense of the fans who make the Iron Bowl the best rivarly in college football, and both schools should be ashamed of themselves for letting it go through.