Thursday, September 3, 2009

A Crispy, Cultural Chant for Gridiron Glory

Hey Listers,

It’s that time of the year. The crisp, cold scent of Saturday morning dew. The growing sound of familiar chants from passersby. A fluttering of angst in your gut. It must be college football season. It must be gameday.

For those of you unaware, college football in the United States is quickly becoming the new American pastime. As baseball ratings, ticket sales, and general fandom decline around the nation on the back of steroid allegations and lack of American stars; football is holding strong, despite the turbulent economy. Though baseball throughout history has been a backbone of American culture, in recent decades its fan base has diminished greatly – particularly within the younger demographic. Recently, pre-season NFL football, UFC and even golf (starring Tiger Woods) has topped baseball TV ratings (including Yankee games). And little league baseball coaches around the county continue to struggle to field teams of interested youngsters. Football interest, on the other hand, is growing exponentially.

Football may very well be the new cultural backbone in Americacollege football in particular (despite anti-BCS rumblings). Hardworking Americans around the country spend 40+ hours a week devoted to a dedicated occupation. In the Fall, many of those blue- and white-collars spend what free time they have on the weekend devoted to football fanaticism. And what used to be a weekend only (Saturday/Sunday) Autumn affair, is taking over weekdays as well (Monday Night Football, Thursday night NCAA games, and this Friday, September 4th is actually College Colors Day (aka National-Wear-Your-Jersey-to-Work-Day) in support of college football’s opening weekend games).

The first game of intercollegiate football in America was between Tufts University and Harvard on June 4, 1875 at Jarvis Field in Cambridge, Mass. In comparison, the first officially recorded baseball game in U.S. history took place on June 19, 1846, in Hoboken, New Jersey between the NY Nine and the NY Knickerbockers. That 30 year head start held strong for over a century, but football has recently closed the gap and by all accounts surpassed baseball as the #1 sport in America.

This Saturday you can see for yourself. College campuses everywhere will be flooded by people of all ages wearing one of two conflicting colors. For one of the most intense experiences, you can taste the crisp Saturday morning air and hear the growing chants of “O.H. … I.O!” in Columbus, Ohio on September 12th. But if you can’t venture to central Ohio, you can catch big games and rivalries almost every Saturday for the next 4 months. Participation is highly encouraged – especially for any gameday virgins out there.

Lists Hidden in This Newsletter

ESPN College Football GameDay Segments/Schedule

Only Schools to Host ESPN College GameDay for Both Basketball and Football

Best College Football Teams Ever

ESPN College GameDay Personalities (Past and Present)

Most ESPN College GameDay (Football) Appearances by School

Schools that Hosted Most ESPN College GameDay (Football) TV Shows

NCAA College Football Split Champions

5 Coaches Who Didn't Play College Football

Top 10 Biggest College Football Games in 2009

College Football Jersey Number Codes

College Football Team Nicknames That DON'T End with the Letter "S"

Top 25 Greatest Players In College Football History

ListAfterList Updates and Reminders

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Your Fellow Lister,

Ryan Pratt