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On the BCS Trophy Being Displayed at Wal-Mart

As many of you have doubtlessly heard, the BCS crystal football Alabama just won will be on display at Wal-Marts in Tuscaloosa and Gardendale (a suburb on the outskirts of Birmingham) over the weekend. It'll be in the Tuscaloosa location on Saturday and the Gardendale location on Sunday.

Needless to say, this has been getting a ton of attention nationally and has prompted more than a few jokes:

Las Vegas Review Journal:

No word whether the sale of toilet paper and Tide laundry detergent will be part of the promotion. That would be appropriate considering 'Bama fans often use rolls of T.P. and a box of Tide to convey the inspirational message "Roll, tide, roll."

San Diego News Tribune:

Nordstrom Not Available for Tide Trophy Display

The SBN main site is getting in on the action too:

Before you start making jokes, fool, read that again: a Wal-Mart Supercenter, y’all, not just any Wal-Mart. You won’t just be going to look at the BCS Championship Trophy and then buying some lightbulbs. You’ll be getting yourself a new set of radials, gassing up the car, and possibly getting your taxes done all in the same place, man. What other college football team offers all that with the chance to see the title trophy? No one, that’s right. Alabama doesn’t just deliver championships. They deliver value.

Or just check the plethora of 140 character quips floating around on Twitter at the moment. A few examples:

Just heard you'll be able to see Bama's BCS trophy at Wal-Mart. Insert joke here.

Alabama BCS trophy to be displayed in Wal Mart. I guess the local Piggly Wiggly was closed.

I'm not even going to go into the hilarity of comments from readers of the Knoxville News Sentinel and Clarion Ledger calling people from Alabama rednecks (pot, meet kettle.)

One thing everyone seems to be conviently ignoring though is this:

As presenting sponsor of The Coaches' Trophy, Dr Pepper is partnering with Walmart to host the free public displays on the weekend.

Perhaps I'm interpreting this wrong, but it sounds to me like this trophy would be on display at a Wal-Mart (or some other retail outlet) in Austin today if the Longhorns had managed a win. But that's way too easy to overlook given the opportunity to make a cheap redneck joke at someone else's expense.

Personally, I don't like Wal-Mart and do anything and everything in my power to avoid shopping there. I know this sponsorship deal means that these particular Wal-Marts are going to be moving a trainload of Bama gear over the next few days. I also know those stores were probably going to be doing that anyway, so I'm not really bothered by that at all.

Finally, the Denver Post gets it (emphasis mine):

The University of Alabama is going to display its new national championship football trophy at a place where almost anyone can see it: Wal-Mart.

The fact of the matter is, the trophy is being displayed in the town of the university and in a suburb of the state's biggest city. It will give a TON of people a chance to see something they might not otherwise be able to see. Not everyone can hop in their car to go see it in Tuscaloosa and given the number of people that likely want to see it right now, it's not a bad idea to show it off for free (the Bryant Museum does have a very modest admission fee) in a place with gigantic parking lots that is easily accessible. It'll be residing in the Bryant Museum soon enough for generations of fans to enjoy and this whole "incident" will barely be remembered...and those that keep bringing it up only wish the trophy spent a weekend in a Wal-Mart near their favorite team.

ed. (by Todd) - I'm going to throw these out here on the main page, the first because I wanted to do a similar post and then saw Nico had beaten me to it (great minds...) and it's also better than the sarcastic/arrogant one I was going to do, and the second because it raises a solid point:

From me:

My response to all of this?  “Why yes, us stupid rednecks are displaying our NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP TROPHY THAT YOU DON’T HAVE at Wal-Mart. Also, IT’S OUR NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP TROPHY on display. Just so we’re clear it’s the TROPHY PRESENTED TO THE NATIONAL CHAMPIONS, ALABAMA. Where are you going to display your cute little non-NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP trophy (doesn’t apply to Tennessee, South Carolina, or LSU fans….)?”

From TopDaddy:

Florida displayed their trophy at various Alltel locations throughout Gainesville, and had to limit the number of views at each location, leading to public outcry.

LSU displayed theirs at various Verizon locations (giving the same result as above) and then put it on display at 2 Chevy dealerships as a result.

I guarantee those respective fans who waited in lines for hours only to be turned away would have loved for the display to be at such a place as Walmart.

And now since Dr. Pepper is the main sponsor of the Trophy, they make the rules, whereas the universities have been in charge of this in the past. So if it’s their decision to find the venue with the most parking to put this thing on display, there’s nothing anyone can do about it. One thing’s for sure, it’s going to be utter pandalerium at those locations…