Category Archives: Chivalry Is Dead
Judging from the commentary here, at other blogs and in my e-mail box, I think it’s safe to say that the new tailgating restrictions announced by Michael Adams yesterday are being met with something less than universal acclaim.
Kinda scary how much that scene resonates here, isn’t it?
And, yeah, it’s certainly fair to vent some wrath in the direction of a few bad apples. But looking back at how things have gotten to this point from the perspective of someone who’s tailgated on North Campus for almost thirty years, I find it pretty easy to discern the school’s fingerprints on the body, too. Stadium expansion, an unprecedented level of campus construction over the past decade and the decision to move fraternities off Lumpkin Street each have had a noticeable impact on the North Campus tailgate scene.
Throw in the rising number of night games, with crowds consuming for longer and longer periods of time, together with the administration’s ineptness in planning for the same, and you’ve got all the ingredients for the perfect storm. That’s basically what we got with the Auburn 2007 game. And then we saw more of the same last season. As we’ve seen on more than one occasion, giving Michael Adams an excuse to act generally isn’t going to end well. So here we are.
The thing to keep in mind is that this isn’t being totally driven by a power trip. In fact, I don’t think that’s even the primary motivation for this. The bottom line for this is the bottom line. This is about changing the motivations and the expectations for the (reasonably) well-heeled – the folks like you and me who spend the money on season tickets and like to make a social event out of six Saturday afternoons in the fall. We’re being herded in a new, more profitable direction.
The first hint of that is in the timing of the announcement itself. If you think choosing to impose the new policy shortly after contributions were due was merely innocent timing, I’ve still got that Hahira beachfront property for sale.
But there’s more than that in play here. One real key to what’s in store is the four-hour pre-game restriction. That’s not going to impact the uppah crust folks who’ve paid a lot more money to tailgate elsewhere and it’s not going to have an effect on the twenty one-year olds who’ll stroll up to North Campus with styrofoam coolers and chilled cases of Natty Light, both of which will be thoughtlessly abandoned at the first opportunity. Nah, that’s only going to matter to the families and groups who travel on game day and want to have a chance to set up tents and grills and settle in for a while with folks. The responsible people.
The other key, which seems to have gotten less attention than the North Campus rules, is the complete campus ban on pull-behinds like trailers and cookers. Again, this affects the same group – the very well-to-do and the irresponsible will care less about it.
When you look at this, it’s hard to see how it’s going to have much of an impact on what Adams is crying about. If you’re really worried about trash, for example, how do you not ban something like styrofoam coolers? But if you look at it as a step along the way to monetizing more of the tailgating experience, it makes much more sense.
I posted a long time ago that if these guys could figure out a way to charge you for the air you breathe on campus, they’d do it. An exaggeration, sure, but consider where this is all likely headed, at least in my humble opinion – to a point when the university charges a fee to retain a designated tailgate space on North Campus and a license fee for pull-behinds. The gamble in the short term is to create enough grumbling about how the new rules don’t really fix the underlying problems – much of which the school had a hand in creating – so that Adams can use that to take things to the next level and wring a few dollars more out of a block of folks who don’t share as much of the blame for existing conditions.
There’s no way to win on this. If you complain about the new rules and threaten to pull financial support over it, they’ll spin that as part of the concern over how things have gotten out of hand. If you complain that the new rules don’t really fix the problem (they won’t) and that something more effective needs to be done, you’ll give Adams another excuse to take action.
And that’s the perverse genius of the man here. It’s not just that he’s going to get us to pay money for something that we used to get without charge. It’s that he’s going to do that and make us grateful for the opportunity.
In the end, we’re all nothing more than wallets.
Grab your plate and get your day started…
- I missed this when it was initially posted, but Ivan Maisel shares something Texas AD DeLoss Dodds has to say about slowing down the conference expansion talk: “Texas athletic director DeLoss Dodds believes all the nerves on edge because of expansion could be calmed if the NCAA passed legislation removing the minimum of 12 members needed to stage a conference championship game. Then there would be no need to add members in order to jumpstart revenue…” Okay, but then what would be the point of playing a round robin schedule in the Big East or Pac-10?
- This isn’t about football, but I’m not pleased that Kentucky was able to out-recruit Georgia for this student-athlete. A school with our obvious resources should never lose out on a player like Fetch.
- Spencer Hall is rather colorfully upset with Turner Gill’s decision to ban cursing at Kansas’ practices.
- Bobby Bowden’s tower stood empty on FSU’s first day of spring practice.
- The header on Mike Hugenin’s preview of South Carolina says it all.
- Don’t miss this look back at one of my favorite Dawgs of all time, Jake Scott. I think of him every time I walk up to Stegeman.
- And cocknfire posts the mother of all did-Urban Meyer-do-Tim Tebow-right examinations.
There’s a pretty funny piece in today’s Wall Street Journal about the selection process that goes into matching frat boys and their dates at football games. I think this is my favorite part:
… Of course, too much football knowledge isn’t always a great thing: At a game several years ago, he says, his date surprised him by calling out plays, predicting which way the ball would go and explaining why certain penalties were being called. “It was emasculating,” Mr. Poteat recalls. “At a certain point I was asking her, ‘What happened there?’ “
You don’t need to waive a pellet gun around here to get served.
- While many of us are worried about how Willie Martinez is going to get the troops (and himself, for that matter) prepared for Gus Malzahn’s offense, I’m simply relieved that I won’t see Martinez squaring off against this.
- Dan Jenkins may be an old curmudgeon, but at least he’s an old curmudgeon who has a point: “You might be able to guess what I think about [the BCS]. I hate it,” Jenkins said. “I hate the fact that television sets schedules and game times and kickoffs. I hate that the BCS is running the traditional bowl games. I hate that Nike is dictating what everybody is supposed to wear … at their own pleasure.”
- And while we’re on the subject of TCU, if the Horned Frogs don’t make it to the title game, I hope this BCS scenario plays out.
- It sounds like Bud Foster wants to be a head coach pretty badly.
- Here’s a look at what’s made David Cutcliffe a successful quarterbacks coach.
- The college programs in the city of Houston to Tulsa coach Todd Graham: you’re dead to us, asshole. (h/t The Wiz)
- You may not know much about Al Golden now, but you’re probably going to hear his name a lot in the offseason.
Whilst scrounging around the website of The Oklahoman looking for Oklahoma State news (Mel Kiper thinks the Cowboys beat Georgia en route to becoming a top five team, by the way), I came across this rather remarkable tale of vindictiveness.
… Court documents obtained by The Oklahoman from Balogun’s lawsuit against the NCAA allege that comments made by the FOX TV announcers immediately after that play ultimately sparked the NCAA’s inquiry into Balogun’s past.
According to court records, the day after watching the title game and hearing Davis’ remarks about Balogun’s semi-pro past, an official from Florida State‘s compliance office contacted the Big 12 Conference and suggested the league investigate Balogun’s eligibility.
Give the jackoffs from Tallahassee credit for stick-to-itness: when the Big XII pronounced itself satisfied with Balogun’s status, the FSU folks went directly to Oklahoma and pushed the school into reinvestigating the situation. The rest, as they say, is history.
What this means for OU if it turns out that it played an ineligible player last season may not be too good – especially for a school that’s recently run a little too close to the edge of the envelope with Rhett Bomar. And aren’t FSU and OU scheduled to play each other in the near future? If so, I’m sure there won’t be any hard feelings on anyone’s part about this.
For some reason, I laughed my ass off reading this:
For the Miami football season-ticket holders still wondering about Tuesday-night phone calls: Yes, that was really Jacory Harris.
The Hurricanes’ starting quarterback and other teammates called season-ticket holders to thank them for their support and also to invite them to next Saturday’s Canes Fest event.
The reactions they got from fans ranged from disbelief to dismissal.
Harris, speaking at the Edgerrin James Room on the UM campus Wednesday, said two or three fans nearly hung up and then quizzed him to see if he was really the Hurricanes’ signal-caller.
‘[One fan] asked me, `How many players from Northwestern [High] went to the University of Miami?’ ” Harris said. ‘I was like, `Eight.’ And he was like, ‘Oh, I like how fast you answered that. It might be you.’ ”
So much for being considerate to the fan base in tough times. I guess they were waiting for Harris to start making his sales pitch for time shares.
All of which reminds of my favorite moment on Seinfeld: