Yes, another football related post. If you have no interest in football, I won’t be offended if you skip this one. Today is THE DAY! The national championship game between #1 LSU and #2 Alabama. If you know me in real life, you know I’m an avid Alabama fan. But do you know why?
I was born in Alabama. As a military family, we moved quite a bit, so it’s always a bit awkward when asked where I’m “from”. I usually say something along these lines: I was born in Alabama, but graduated from high school in Maryland. That definitely helps to explain my
obsession love for Alabama football. My family was in Alabama until I was almost four years old. We then moved back when I was in the 7th grade and finally left the summer before my junior year in high school. After law school, I moved to Birmingham and lived there for 1.5 years. And that was it. That solidified my fandom.
As any good Southerner knows, it is impossible to live below the Mason-Dixon line and not be affected by college football. Particularly in states like Alabama and Mississippi that have no professional sports teams. High school and college ball is all we’ve got. And so we embrace it.
When I first moved to Birmingham after law school, I looked forward to having the time to attend as many Alabama games as possible. I didn’t realize just how much I would identify with Alabama fans and with the team. Quite simply, I fell in love with my team. Living in the South (especially Alabama) you get hit pretty frequently with stereotypes. According to a lot of folks, Southerners are all: fat, stupid, ignorant, racist, lazy, backwards, Republicans, etc. And yes, some Southerners are those things. So are some Northerners, some Mid-westerners and some West Coast folks. But when I’m in a crowd of 101,821 folks singing the fight song or yelling “roll tide!”, nothing else matters. I’m not saying that Alabama football will save the world. But it does provide a pretty amazing distraction for a few months in the fall. There is nothing better than spending a gorgeous October day at Bryant-Denny Stadium, cheering on my boys and feeling the pride that comes with being an Alabama fan. And that is why I’m such a fan. The legacy (even though it’s tainted), the history (even if it isn’t always pretty), the football.