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IS YOUR PET READY FOR THE SEASON?

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SKYMALL, YOU SAY THE WORD, WE CAN MAKE THESE HAPPEN

Kevin C. Cox
College football is a bonding experience.  A link to the past.  A source of regional and institutional pride, for alumni and outside admirers alike.  It's also a great outlet for people with too much disposable income to show what dangerously unbalanced loons committed true fans they are by buying stupid things.

You can only wear one alternate jersey at a time, though.  Eventually, you're going to run out of skin for future-predictive "national champions" tattoos.  You can only drive once custom-outfitted car at once.  What else is there to outfit, you might say?

I say you're not thinking like a true rich idiot, and you haven't spent enough time reading SkyMall.  What about your pets?  How do we know they support the team?  Yeah, you can buy custom collars and dog jerseys on Amazon, but do you really think that's enough?  Do you really think that shows that jerk Bob next door that you care more than he does?  [grabs lapels, shakes excitedly] Do you really think your little buddy is doing everything he or she can to support the team?

Let's go to the catalog, folks.

CUSTOM PET BEDS
Oh, a pillow, great.  That's a great bed for a dog.  A dog who doesn't care about the winning tradition we're trying to foster.  [throws bed out window]  Boy, you're sleeping like a champion today.

Hey, whoa, whoa.  We're gonna need to see some donations to the program if you want to stay in there, pal.

MOTIVATIONAL WALL GRAPHICS
It's not enough to want to be a champion.  You've got to think like a champion.

Motivation not guaranteed.

UPDATED STYLING
Kiddo, that traditional coat may fly with the AKC and Penn State, but you wanna stay relevant to recruits, you're gonna need to up your style factor.  The good folks at Adidas are here to help.

Yeahhhh, now you're ready to win the offseason.

THE IMPORTANCE OF NUTRITION
You eat well on game day.  Why shouldn't your pet?  How can you expect them to slog through four quarters of you drunkenly cursing your coaching staff on dry food?  No, football season calls for a dietary change.

This food is not approved for sale in the United States and is listed as a federally controlled substance.

ENGAGE WITH THE DIGITAL FANBASE
Someone's online saying something bad about your team, but you're stuck in a parole hearing big important business meeting!  You can't let your daily obligations get in the way of answering this egregious affront, can you!?  Well, fret no more.  You've got a teammate who's just lying around all day, and he loves pitching shade!  The RIVALS.COM PETSET translates your pet's everyday grunts, growls and discontented hisses into one of 12 pre-set phrases, like [derisive comment on the level of competition in opponent's conference] [insinuation of academic impropriety] [vaguely incoherent, possibly racist metaphor] and more!

As a bonus, there is currently no NCAA bylaw regarding well-trained animals tweeting at recruits.  Take advantage now!

PAWS-ON COACHING
Sit.  Stay.  Heel.  Play dead.  Stop sniffing me there.

The average person can train a pet to be a housebroken, friendly, well-adjusted companion, but they can't train them to be a winner.  Our staff of high-level, recently-or-soon-to-be unemployed collegiate coaches will scream strategies and platitudes at your animal in this week-long seminar, teaching them the ins and outs of the game.

This was one of his biggest success stories as a head coach.


YOU'VE JUST GOT TO BE THERE
Everything we've discussed is well and good.  Your pet is well-trained, well-fed, motivated and striped up like an idiot.  It's not enough.  To be a true, die-hard fan, you've got to be there on Saturday, cheering on the team in person.  Sadly, most stadiums aren't designed for animals.  (Notable exception: Connecticut's Rentschler Field, home to a nest of opossums who coached the team for most of 2013).

How's your pet going to show his or her true colors unless they're in the stadium?

I regret nothing.