Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The "Why I Love Auburn Post" I Meant to Write

War Eagle, everybody! I'm pretty sure everyone watched the Iron Bowl on Friday, along with the encore broadcasts throughout the weekend, but I would be remiss if I didn't mention our triumph on my blog!
"Ugh, can we move on please? That game was like, FIVE days ago!" -Alabama fan

Last week I tried, without much success, to convey why and how I came to be an Auburn Girl. It turns out that to discuss one's love for Auburn and the Auburn rivalry with Alabama without offending Alabama fans is tough, and the diplomatic Libra that I am doesn't want to hurt anybody's feelings. I strongly feel that even as rivalries exist, we should respect other people's alma maters. The sidewalk alumni can still suck it.

If only we could live in a world where after each Iron Bowl, we could all join hands--Auburn and Alabama fans united--and sing songs in perfect harmony, and share a Coke and a smile, and forget about how much we hate each other. I'm so full of shit today. Then I read Kurt Branch of Auburn fansite contribute his thoughts to the Blogger Roundtable of You can read the post in it's entirety here, but I'll share a few snippets from his post, because he expresses my thoughts even better than I did...and without insulting anybody! Perhaps he isn't plagued with insomnia and consumed by a four-month-old baby who runs his ass ragged? Or maybe he's just smarter than me. Or maybe I should never write about sports. Either way, read my two-cents in bold beside his quotes.

But first a disclaimer, so that I don't have to worry all day that my post hurt somebody's feelings: To Alabama Alumni and Family who read this: I have nothing but love and respect for you. Life is so cold in your shadow, please don't hate me for celebrating Auburn's day in the sun. xoxo
"We all know that Alabama has the larger fanbase, and we all know why that's the case, and it's not because Alabama has had so many more graduates than Auburn. It's human nature to want to pull for the team that has a storied history, lots of championships, and all that good stuff. So, if you have no ties to either school, why not pick Alabama? It's the easier road, right?" Yeah, I basically said that in my post--only in a more fragmented, less articulate way.

"No, I'm not implying that every person in the state who didn't go to college pulls for the Tide." Not EVERY person. "I know tons of people who pull for Auburn who never took a class anywhere. But in general, for the most part, most Auburn fans went to Auburn or have a deep connection to the school, while lots of Alabama fans do not have any real connection to the University of Alabama. They, or their parents, just picked the team that was considered more of a winner way back when. That's not a jab. It's human nature, it's numbers, and it's the honest truth, whether you want to believe it or not. A "jab" would be to say, "I wear this Auburn shirt because I went to Auburn, you wear that Alabama shirt because you went to Wal-Mart."
"I love the family feel, and I love the connection that I have with a good portion of Auburn fans. I also love the underdog role that Auburn is so often forced to deal with. I'm not conceding to the whole "little brother" idea that Bama fans are so quick to mention, but Auburn does oppose the state school, has the smaller (and fine with it) fanbase, and resides in an area that would never be confused for a bustling metropolis." I wish Bama fans would stop pointing out that Auburn is cow pasture-adjacent LIKE IT'S A BAD THING. It's like when I was a kid and other kids would call me a "redhead" as an insult. Auburn is rural and quaint and lovely. Not every university can be located in a city so impressive and beautiful as Tuscaloosa. It's our loss, but somehow we make do. "That being said, looking at the two schools only, there are no glaring differences in terms of statistics, awards, enrollment, etc. Needless to say, Auburn does more, or at least equal, with less."

"Not to mention, the Tigers just won their 700th game in their own storied history. Only twelve other teams in the history of college football can say they have accomplished that feat, so Auburn is by no means a second-tier team or school." Thanks, Kurt, I did not know that! I like how your opinions are backed up with facts, where as I just write about my feelings. I'm such a chick that way.

"Now what gets under my skin is when one of those many Alabama fans who didn't attend the school they pull for talks trash to me, as an actual Auburn graduate, using the word "we" when talking about the Tide. No sir, you didn't do anything. You didn't pay one dime, or sit in one class. Don't talk to me like you're better than me when I'm the only one pulling for the school I actually attended. This does not include you, Alabama graduates." It bears repeating: This does not include you, Alabama GRADUATES. "Although I do not agree with your school choice, you have all the right in the world to talk trash to me, make fun of me when Auburn loses, and take what I can dish out when Alabama loses. It is you that have done nothing but buy an Alabama t-shirt and then feel entitled to talk down at me or my school that I have a problem with." Amen! If I were an Alabama graduate, I would be aggravated by the "sidewalk alumni". Or maybe you get used to it. It's your beast of burden, Bama grads.

"Although it makes no sense, it's what makes the rivalry great, albeit infuriating at times. The whole state takes part, whether it's deserved or not, and gives everybody something to hold on to all year round." Um yeah, I find it mostly infuriating. I wish we lived in a world where the Auburn or Alabama fans were actual graduates of those universities, and the fans were respectful of one another and practiced good sportsmanship, and life was "rainbows and lollipops" all year round!


  1. Perfect. I couldn't have said it better. I wish I had had copies of this to hand out at Thanksgiving to some particular family members. Ha.

  2. I agree with some of this but I don't think that just because you didn't go to college or maybe went to a smaller college doesn't mean you shouldn't have the right to route for a team. I welcome fans that didn't graduate from The Univesity, in my opinion it just means we were good enough to win you over. I am definitely one Alabama fan that can claim my team without any reservations...Both my parents attended Alabama where by father played football and my sister and myself have bothed graduated from the university so I think I have the right to an opinion on the matter. And as a true fan from a great rivalry Auburn truely makes my blood boil (not the people just the team/school) and no painted picture of Auburn will ever change that. I am sure that Auburn fans feel the same way and I saw it last year when they all became longhorn fans at the end of the year. So for me I am about to put on my gamecock gear and my ducks gear until this season is over. I hope none of this sounded offensive once I get to talking it is hard to stop! :)

  3. I'm slightly with Sarah Beth on this one. and I know you're about to say "it's because you're both bama fans". but really, some of this stuff applies to auburn too. My news feed on facebook is FULL of non-auburn graduates talking smack to bama fans. I know Bama has fans like that, but we're not the only ones, AU has their fair share as well. And most Bama fans I know are only quick to point out the cow pasture thing because AU fans are quick to point out that Tuscaloosa is a town for "druggies". I was born and raised in Tuscaloosa and I'm not a druggie. There are stereotypes on both sides. I agree that the picture above of the Bama fan flicking the camera off is absolutely absurd and ridiculous, but you have to be honest with yourself and realize that there are just as many AU fans that would do that too. People on both sides of this rivalry tend to see one fan of the opposing team do something and then associate all of their fanbase with that personality. Not all Bama fans are the way you portray them, just like all Auburn fans aren't the way Bama portrays them. I would welcome living in another state so that I wouldn't have to listen to the constant arguing. November is my LEAST favorite month dude!

  4. @Sarah Beth and Marcie: Thanks for reading, sharing your thoughts and not attacking me for dissing Bama (Do people still say "dissing"? Probably not)

    @Marcie: I never knew Tuscaloosa was referred to as a town for "druggies". That's too bad, but it helps explain why Bammers might make fun of the city of Auburn. Thanks for the insight! I also agree that Auburn fans can be just as guilty as Alabama fans of being tacky and obnoxious. It makes me cringe, but I didn't discuss it here because the subject of this post is "Why I Love Auburn", not "Why Auburn Fans Sometimes Embarrass Me".

    @Sarah Beth: I don't mind non-grads who are fans of either school, I mind rude fans who didn't attend the school. Maybe it shouldn't matter whether a Bama fan is a graduate or not, but I personally can handle the trash talk better when it comes from a Bama grad. I feel Bama Alums have earned the right to be obnoxious if they so choose. And on the TWO occassions where I witnessed a Bama fan STAB a fan of an opposing team, I told myself they were just ignorant rednecks and there was NO WAY they graduated from The University.

    @Abby: Glad you liked the post, sweetie!