clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Sunday Morning Hangover: The Cupcake Dilemma

It’s time to put decades old notions away and bring more intrigue to the Alabama out of conference football schedule.

If you buy something from an SB Nation link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

Should Alabama play the other in-state schools?

Cupcakes. They are a sweet, breadlike food baked in a cup-shaped mold, served in the size of individual portions. They are also college football teams who are nowhere near the elite level of the Power-5 teams (at least most of them). The first definition is of “cupcakes” is a delicious one. The second one leaves a bad taste in the mouths of many football fans. Yet, it is something they will have to live with until drastic changes are made.

In the past, Nick Saban has railed against such meetings, yet he continues to schedule them. And then he complains when his players and fans do not share the same enthusiasm as they might for a Miami or a Southern Cal.

Below are the Alabama cupcake opponents since 2011 :

Kent State 2011
North Texas 2011
Georgia Southern 2011
Western Kentucky 2012
FAU 2012
Western Carolina 2012
Colorado State 2013
Georgia State 2013
Chattanooga 2013
FAU 2014
Southern Miss 2014
Western Carolina 2014
ULM 2015
MTSU 2015
Charleston Southern 2015
Western Kentucky 2016
Kent State 2016
Chattanooga 2016
Fresno 2017
Colorado State 2017
Mercer 2017
Arkansas State 2018
ULL 2018
The Citadel 2018
New Mexico State 2019
Southern Miss 2019
Western Carolina 2019

Last season, they were originally scheduled to host Georgia State, Kent State, and UT Martin. This year, it’s all retreads: Mercer, Southern Miss and New Mexico State.

As you probably noticed, several teams keep coming back for more. So not only are they boring match-ups, but they are repetitive.

The main excuse is that nobody wants to face the Saban Joyless Murderball if they don’t have to. The Southern Misses and Mercers of the world take the game because they like the paychecks that help keep their footballs inflated and the electricity turned on. There is also the exposure that their programs receive, even if it means an ass-whuppin’.

As mentioned above, we are stuck with these games for the time being. So, what is the solution? The missing ingredient from this recipe is just a smidge of intrigue. For many of you, I am guessing the above list does not even lift the needle off zero. But what if UA finally does away with the silly antiquated boycott against fellow in-state schools? And by that I mean Troy and South Alabama, and to a lesser degree Alabama A&M, Samford, Jacksonville State, and Alabama State (but not UAB. To h*** with those conspiracy-conjuring crybabies). Such pairings would certainly arouse more interest from fans and players alike. There is a good chance that many of these players faced each other in high school or may have even been teammates. For fans, you know there is surely a neighbor, coworker, friend, etc. who attended that school. It make cupcake games a little more fun.

Every other “Power” team seems to have no problem with doing just that. Below are just a few similar get-togethers that will meet on the gridiron this season:

  • Clemson-South Carolina State
  • Florida-FAU
  • Florida-South Florida
  • Texas A&M-Prairie View
  • Penn State-Villanova
  • Ohio State-Akron
  • Michigan-Western Michigan
  • Iowa State-UNI
  • Arizona-Northern Arizona
  • Virginia Tech-Richmond
  • Tennessee-Tennessee Tech
  • Auburn-Alabama State

It also interesting to point out that every other Alabama sports program face-off against these teams on a regular basis. The Crimson Tide men’s basketball team will face South Alabama in two short months, and Jacksonville State in December.

Some of the FOGs and #GOML crowd will protest with antiquated reasons that go back to the Bear Bryant years (I hate to be callous, but the man died 38 years ago) and even further back to the ridiculous notion that Alabama playing Auburn 128 years ago helped them grow into what they are today. Even if that is true, do you really believe that playing South Alabama is going to turn them into a superpower? Is Troy going to start stealing recruits from Alabama? Are you actually concerned that maybe these teams might beat the Crimson Tide?

Help me out here. What are you afraid of?


Should Alabama play Troy and South Alabama in football (#fUAB)?

This poll is closed

  • 86%
    Yes, that would be more interesting than another New Mexico State or Kent State game.
    (654 votes)
  • 13%
    No, I am concerned what it could do to the program.
    (104 votes)
758 votes total Vote Now


Should Alabama play Alabama State, Alabama A&M, and Samford in football?

This poll is closed

  • 76%
    Yes, that would be more interesting than another game with Mercer or Western Carolina.
    (506 votes)
  • 23%
    No, I am concerned for some reason.
    (158 votes)
664 votes total Vote Now

If you voted “No”, please share your thoughts in comments below.