Peanut butter and Jelly. Salt and vinegar. Craig James and hookers. Some things are just made for each other.
One of the hottest topics in college football today is paying players. One of the other hottest topics in college football today is paying players legally. Many have opined that the NCAA’s amateurism rules appear to have been chiseled in stone by the hand of Joe Paterno. They hearken back to a day when, for a sawbuck, you could take your best girl out for some French fried potatoes and a hamburger sandwich, fill up the jalopy after you’d run out of gas on lover’s lane, and still have enough to put down on Kentucky basketball to cover the spread. Which they never did, weirdly enough. Up yours, Adolph.
The times, however, are a changing. Women can vote, black people can play in the SEC, and that fiver won’t even cover the 3d glasses for BaySPLOSION! 2011.
Some are against paying players, however. Some because it ruins the purity of the sport, some because it’d kill 123,000 conspiracy threads on fansites, or make a certain call in radio show actually be about sports. But mostly, it’s because of the money. Only a few programs actually make money as it is, and those are the ones with heeled boosters that run on bourbon and bacon grease. So, whither the revenue stream?
And then, like Nick Fairley 2 seconds after the whistle, it hit me. Much was made of the fact that Cam Newton wore 17 different UnderArmor logos on his unis, not even counting the logo’d tracks he left in South Carolina linebackers.
There’s a perfect match, however, that solves everybody’s problems. If there’s an entity that knows how to milk every last $ out of a logo, and matches the rabid, irrational love of the SEC, it’s got to be NASCAR.
I think it’d go a little something like this….
"Ladies and Gentleman, welcome to the Iron Bowl by Valvoline on the SECSpeed Channel, I’m Keith Jackson, and my partner is Rusty Wallace"
"Thanks Keith, we’re in for a real barnburner today. If you look on our Sprint for Atlanta cup standings you’ll see that the Wal-Mart/Alabama Crimson Tide team is in the running for another national championship, if they can make it by the PayDay Loans/Auburn Tigers. The Tigers struggled earlier in the year after losing long time sponsors Colonial Bank and Victoryland, but a fresh infusion of cash helped stave off a disappointing season, and they only needed a pay stub and two forms of ID."
"Whoa Nelly! That’s right folks, Nelly’s new album drops next week, available for download on iTunes. Now let’s hear from last week’s hero of the Georgia game, Barrett Trotter. Let’s go down to Tracy Wolfson on the Cammy Cam Juice (by Gatorade) Cam."
"Barrett, last week you lead your team on a fourth quarter comeback against the Georgia/Keystone Light Bulldogs. How were you able to pull that off?"
Barrett adjusts PayDay Loans hat while a manager puts a Coke bottle on each shoulder.
"Well, first, I’ve got to thank PayDay Loans, Dollar General and the rest of our sponsors for putting together a great team this year. And the guys back on the sidelines made some adjustments late that allowed us to make a final run. I’d also like to thank Bounty for picking up Coach Taylor’s contract for the year; that really helps us out."
"What adjustments did you make?"
"Well, as you know, Coach Malzahn runs the Miracle Whip Spread offense, and the Tabasco hot read on the play was wide open."
"Back to you Keith"
"If I was 40 years younger, I’d smack that…"
"Keith, we’re on air."
"Hold the AT&T Mobile PHONE! Now we’re down to Matt Yocum and Coach Saban."
Coach Saban steps up on a Jack-in-the-Box height enhancing box. Assistant coaches cast Golden Flake potato chips about like flower girls.
"Coach Saban, would you like to talk about your issue with Coach Dooley and the Tennessee/US Army Volunteers?"
""I'm more upset about Les Miles," Saban said. "He's the most unprofessional little scaredy-cat I've ever seen in my life. He won't even fight me like a man. So if somebody will text me his address, I'll go visit him at his house and show him what he really needs. He needs a whooping, and I'm going to give it to him. He was flipping me off, giving me the finger, totally unprofessional, two scores down. He's a chump."
"I went over to go talk to him, he gets out and throws some little baby punches, I get out and he goes and hides behind some big guys, but he won't hide from me for long. I won't settle it out on the field, it's not right to wreck games, but he'll show up at a game with a black eye one of these days. I'll see him somewhere."
"Ummm, back to you Keith"
"BigUns! She’s got…"
"And that’ll do it for the Lowe’s/Home Depot/True Value pre-game show, we’ll be back for kick-off after a few words from our sponsors."