Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

October 10, 2013

All in the Game: The ups and downs of being a fan

By Jim Butler
Chronicle correspondent

CROSSVILLE — I suppose that I could have done what the Vanderbilt defense did, and just took the week off, but I decided to write a column anyway. I didn't think anyone would make the Commodores look as bad as the Missouri Tigers did. I had just settled into my recliner when the rout began and it didn't end until the final horn sounded. Vandy beat Mizzou on the road last year and, of course, I expected more of the same. Oh well, if a football loss is the worst thing that happens to me, then I've had a really good week. At least Jordan Matthews had another outstanding week receiving and he continues to break records.

Just as surprising, at least to me, was the way that Tennessee played a slightly decimated Georgia Bulldog team. They should have beaten the visitors from Athens and the diving attempt by Pig Howard in overtime could have gone either way. Georgia needs to get some running backs healthy quickly, but I don't know that would have made any difference against the Vols. Of course, Georgia would have to be Vandy's next opponent. I'm sure that Frank Gale's outlook is a little better, as he takes a week off to prepare for the Gamecocks and the old ball coach.

South Carolina has been somewhat of a disappointment so far and they are hard to figure out. They just barely survived against Kentucky in Columbia so the outcome against the Volunteers is unpredictable. Of course, Spurrier is known for his success against UT.

I don't know what Jedeveon Clowney's deal is, but if he is laying low to protect his draftability, then he just needs to give his uniform and his scholarship back. We've seen what he can do, especially against Michigan last year but nothing even close this season. How come we only hear about his injury after a couple of less than stellar games?

You know I like my sports just about as much as anybody, but I think we are letting them get out of hand and become a detriment of sorts. I read that in Kentucky opposing high school teams can't shake hands after the game because of the number of violent incidents during the exchange. Then, in Houston, Texans' quarterback Matt Schaub was hassled by a fan at Schaub's home, because of his poor play recently. All this is just going too far and it seems to be getting worse.

Can't we realize that it is just a game that is played for enjoyment and entertainment and it is not life or death?

Congratulations to Aubrey King for his hole-in-one. It took you a long time didn't it 'Pro?' I remember that I used to use my power fade to drive that par four on most rounds. That was back when donkeys flew.

Even though the Volunteers and the Commodores are off this weekend, there will be some lesser contests for us to watch and the baseball playoffs can occupy some of our time, also. Let's all enjoy the weekend without any stress as we prepare for conference opponents on the 19th.

Go Jets! Go Panthers! Go USA!

(Jim Butler is a Chronicle correspondent and his column appears regularly.)