We have not mentioned college football much lately, for which I apologize to folks in Alabama, Oregon, Florida, Louisiana, Indiana, and wherever else they are celebrating a top ten team this time around.
College football is roaring crowds, and some of the people in those crowds take the road games seriously enough to show up in the middle of the week in campers and live for days in parking lots adjacent to the fields.
College football is serious revenue…on some small number of campuses, revenue enough to replace unbalanced balance beams and rickety horizontal bars for gymnastics programs…enough to wrap wrestlers in new singlets and arm fencers with fancy foils.
College football is a route to riches and celebrity for the fortunate very few who make it to the NFL and stay healthy and useful for more than a few seasons.
For many fans of college football, the most encouraging news lately is that the much and perhaps legitimately maligned Bowl Championship Series, presided over by computers and their programmers, will soon be replaced by something like a post-season playoff similar to the NCAA Basketball Tournament. Then, by golly, those fans will know with absolute certainty which team is number one, or so the argument runs.
College football is a reserve quarterback at Ohio State tweeting earlier this fall as follows: “Why should we have to go to class if we came here to play FOOTBALL. We ain’t come to play SCHOOL, classes are POINTLESS.”
And college football is napping, at least for Northwestern. That’s because when Head Coach Pat Fitzgerald asked his team why they’d “come out sluggish” at the start of a recent game, his players told him the unusual 2:30 start had impinged on their nap time. Initially, Coach Fitzgerald was skeptical when his players said he should alter their routines.
“This is what I get paid to do?” he asked. “Seriously? Create nap time? It’s pathetic.”
But apparently the coach came around and agreed to required naps for everybody, at least for road games. Among those delighted with the policy is Northwestern quarterback Kain Colter, who, as far as I know, has never objected via twitter to his designation as a student as well as an athlete, and who knows when he has it good.
“Those hotel beds are really comfortable,” Colter said recently. “The pillows are really soft. We come down refreshed and ready to kick some butt.”