Once again, Mr. Heath pops out of the blue to drop some hot roundtablin' action on us:
Through a random sequence of events, you are now in charge of college football. By yourself, with carte blanche to make decisions that will be put into action (and the college presidents will sign up for whatever you're selling). So what changes will you make? Will you pay players? Institute a playoff? Nuke the University of Tennessee?
I spent most of Tuesday thinking about just what I was going to change, working out a number of ideas including (but not limited to!) an elaborate plan to drop D1A down to 80 teams and create a champions league type playoff, a mandatory mascot firing end zone cannon, the public beating of anyone who wears one of those ridiculous pimp costumes to games (looking at you, LSU), and free popsicles...but only if the weather is below 40 degrees, so you can tell the difference between the people that really love popsicles and the ones who would just take it 'cause hey, free popsicle. But then I got to thinking, "what's my biggest pet peeve in college football?" and I came up with my idea. There can be only one of a given mascot in D1A, meaning all the Tigers and Bulldogs and Aggies and Wolfpacks have to change their names and mascots. I initially thought that whoever was first to name their team got to keep it, but then decided it would be better to let the team with the awesomest reason for choosing said mascot would get the nod. For example, Georgia chose a bulldog because it sounded "dignified", Mississippi State because they apparently got tired of being Aggies and Maroons, Fresno State because a stray dog wandered onto campus and made influential friends, and Louisiana Tech because...well, just read for yourself:
In the autumn of 1899, five Tech students returned home from school. They came upon an old, hungry bulldog sitting under a tree. The boys fed the dog with what food they had and continued their journey. When they finally reached their destination, however, they found that the dog had followed them. Being sensitive young men, they sought permission for the dog to stay the night, and the landlord agreed - if the animal remained in the kitchen. That night the house caught fire. Their overnight guest was the first to awaken. The dog ran from room to room, rousing everyone in the building. Then, after all the other occupants had made their way to safety, one boy remained inside. The bulldog re-entered the smoke-filled house in an apparent attempt to rescue him, not realizing the boy had escaped in a different direction. After the fire was extinguished and smoke had finally cleared, the boys went inside to see if the dog had indeed made it out to safety. But when they entered, they found the lifeless bulldog lying in an unburned corner of one room. He had died from the smoke and the heat. Naturally, the young men were shaken due to the death of their new friend. So they picked him up and carried him to the place they had found him the previous day. They then dug a grave and wrapped him in two jackets - one red and the other blue. When the boys returned to school and related their story, the whole campus mourned the death of the homeless dog. The dog with no name had found a place in the hearts of Tech students. Two years later, Tech organized a football team and decided the team needed not only school colors, but a mascot. A unanimous decision was reached as the bulldog, the first hero of Tech, was given the honor. The school colors were chosen to be red and blue in recognition of the colors the bulldog was buried in.
So yeah, hero dog that sacrifices itself for a stranger is clearly the best reason to choose a bulldog as your mascot.
Of course, fickle and lazy as I am, I can't be bothered to look up the reasons why Auburn, Clemson, LSU, Memphis, and Mizzou, call themselves the Tigers, so instead I'll say Missouri gets the honor because Auburn has enough other nicknames and such that no one would notice if one went missing, Clemson because they knowingly wear those horrible all purple unis that make me want to vomit, LSU because suck it coonasses, and Memphis because Memphis basketball manages to produce in me the same blood boiling rage as Tennessee football and if I have to hear that stupid "T-I-G-E-R-S TIGERS!" cheer in Bartow Arena one more time I quite literally might snap and start with the stabbing. We get it, you finally learned how to spell one word and are tremendously proud of the accomplishment. Now go pay your players after they're done beating their girlfriends in crowded intersections, jackasses. But since I can't think of any reason to hate Missouri off the top of my head, Tiger it on up with my blessings.
(ed.- as pointed out in the comments, LSU are the Tigers because of a confederate regiment while Mizzou is named after a Union regiment. Still, suck it coonasses, NO ONE gets to be the Tigers).
Aggies and Wolfpacks? Eh, who cares, call yourselves whatever.
Ok, so maybe this is a stupid and ill thought out idea to implement if given absolute power over college football, but you know why this is the best I could come up with? Because there is nothing so wrong with college football that it needs to be changed. Sure, paying players and giving smaller programs better access to the big money games or starting a playoff has generated a lot of discussion and some reasonable, well argued pros and cons have been weighed by us, the rooting public, and none of it has done anything more than give us something to argue about during the long dark that is the offseason. And when the season mercifully arrives in a little over a month, are any of you not going to watch every last second of it that you can manage to squeeze in because the players aren't getting paid or because there isn't a playoff? Didn't think so. You'll be glued to it just like we will be because college football is still the greatest sport on Earth without any of those changes and you know it.