Of the Civil War, Older Brothers, and Rosa Parks

OK, Duckies, I promise the good stuff is coming—yes, there is something we all can do for the U of O, and I, a Beaver fan, will do it—however, there’s some unfinished business regarding the Civil War that must be explained.  Before I begin, let me just say, if you’re a gracious Duck fan, I apologize—this isn’t aimed at you…and, thank you for being a decent human being (you can skip now to the sixth paragraph).

Duck fans like to tell Beavers that we’re “younger brother.” I absolutely agree—at least about the relationship.  See, like the younger brother, we’re used to not getting all the attention.  We’re not the bigger, stronger football program.  We have to content ourselves with hoping to have a good season, being loyal fans, and enjoying the nostalgia and excitement college football can offer, knowing that it would be a miracle season if our team ever went to the Rose Bowl, let alone a national championship.

And, as anyone can tell you, there are two types of older brothers.  There’s the older brother that is kind, protective, helpful, and gracious; he realizes that his level of accomplishments are beyond his younger sibling, and worries about competing with his peers.  Then there’s the brother who’s an absolute fucking dickhead.  He rubs every accomplishment, no matter how trivial, in his little brother’s face.  He picks on him.  He goads him into pointless arguments.  He does everything in his power to make his sibling’s life a living hell.  And when things don’t go big brother’s way, like when he gets rejected by a girl because he has no class, or gets beaten up because he’s a douche bag at school, he’s takes it out on little brother.  Blaming him for his failings, he beats mercilessly, needlessly on his little brother; he’s mean for the sake of meanness.

Unfortunately, most Duck fans act like that older brother—the asshole.  And because of that, as a Beaver fan, I hate your team.  Me and many of other Beaver fans won’t root for your team—EVER—because most Ducks don’t win graciously.  Oh, and stop whining at us every time you lose a game as if we’re a bad people because the poor Duckies lost—it certainly hasn’t been the Beaver’s fault anytime recently.  Indeed, I pray to God the Ducks lose every game they play, and your fan base’s behavior has everything to do with it.  Maybe if Duck fans that I don’t even know didn’t have to rub my nose in losing the civil war every year, for an entire year, or make some clownish comment EVERY TIME I wear my team’s colors, maybe then I’d consider rooting for you for the sake of the state.  But until someone can explain to me why I should expend positive energy for a team that fosters a bunch of out of control, asshole fans that treat me and every other Beaver fan like shit all year, every year, don’t hold your breath.

Are there some awful Beaver fans out there?  You bet—but all Duck fans have to say is, “score board,” and be done with those people.  Beaver fans have no choice but to take it; and, let’s face it—losing humbles, whereas winning breeds arrogance—so a simple understanding of human behavior logically dictates that Duck fans are far more likely to be assholes than Beaver fans.  And, frankly, they are: ask other fan bases how they feel about the University of Oregon and their fans.  Then again, maybe you don’t care…

Anyway, I do care about the state of college football.  It’s an absolute joke.  How is it that three one-loss SEC teams are ranked above any other conference’s one-loss teams, given that none of them play anyone other than directional-state-polytech in their non-conference schedule?  And why is it that a Notre Dame team (albeit undefeated) that nearly lost five times during the season, including barely squeaking by Pittsburgh in TRIPLE OVERTIME, is given preference over any of those one loss teams?  WHY ARE THE OREGON DUCKS, WHO LOST ONE GAME ALL YEAR—BARELY—TO AN OUTSTANDING STANFORD TEAM, NOT PLAYING FOR A NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP?

That’s right—me, Beaver fan who hates the Ducks, is absolutely furious (and paradoxically glorified) that they aren’t playing in the Natty.  It’s completely absurd.  But it should prove to Duck fans that they aren’t big brother after all…they’re middle brother.  Big Brother is the entire SEC, because let’s face it, any team from that conference gets something that no other college football team gets outside of USC or Ohio State—they get to lose a game and play for the national championship, just about every year.  Think for a moment about how insanely fucking stupid last year’s game was: LSU, who had beaten Alabama during the regular season, then had to play an additional SEC championship game (while Alabama ate turkey and rested), which they won, only to face…Alabama, for all the marbles.  They ended the season 1-1 against Alabama, with a better win loss record than Alabama, having beaten more good teams than Alabama, and yet, they weren’t champions, just runners up.  Anyone that tries to justify that outcome making sense should be drug out into the street, beaten, and shot.

Moreover, think about the ranking system.  Does anyone really think that Notre Dame is the best team in the country?  I don’t.  I’m pretty sure if they were even on turnovers, the Beavers could beat them (and, as we’ve established, we’re not all that good), and I’m certain any team in the top ten of the BCS could as well.  The point is, realistically, every team in the top eight has had a great season for different reasons—is Notre Dame’s the most magical?  Sure.  But that doesn’t mean they’re the best team in the land.  Just look at the NFL.  In the last several years, the team with the best record doesn’t win—it’s the best, most complete team that wins when it counts.  AND, it doesn’t matter what division you’re in, or what name is on your helmet, unlike in college, where some schools have a baked-in, unfair advantage over everyone else (SEC, Notre Dame, USC, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Texas, maybe Florida State), every single year.

Luckily, there’s a solution—actually a thread of solutions—but let’s start with the most viable: don’t watch the championship game.  Don’t watch.  An effective boycott of the Natty would horrify the BCS, and more importantly, their sponsors.  But don’t stop there, take it a step further: boycott any games in which SEC teams appear.  Or even further: all postseason college football games.  But you say, “well I want to watch my team.”  That’s fine—watch that one game, or watch another couple.  As long as enough people refuse to watch the joke that is the national championship/postseason college football, there will be a sizeable effect, especially if a large group of people make a public point of doing so.

Overall, we should be horrified that perhaps the most exciting sport in all of America is the one that lets us down precisely when it should be peaking.  It’s like reading a great novel, or watching a fantastic movie, only to see them end horribly.  But there’s a ready answer with a massive boycott of the National Championship game.  If we don’t do it, we all have to ask ourselves: are we OK being little brother to the SEC?

About The Author: Jay Scott

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