This Week In Southern History: The Georgia Bulldogs Won The National Championship!
This week in southern history, we go all the way back to Monday, January 10th, 2022, and here’s what the world looked like then:
Amid deadly protests, Abdalla Hamdock steps down as Prime Minister of Sudan.
All five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, including Russia, France, China, The United States, and The UK, declared that because a nuclear war can never be won, one must never be fought….. well, that was good of them. I don’t know bout y’all, but I was starting to worry!
But let’s forget about all that childish stuff and get to the real serious news that happened in 2022… because it was this week, in southern history, that The University of Georgia Bulldogs beat The Alabama Crimson Tide to win their first National Championship in 41 years GO DAWGS SIC EM WOOF WOOF WOOF WOOF!!!
That’s right, friends and neighbors, the wait is over. We have climbed the mountain top, and unlike many times in the past, we were not tossed off to our deaths by the pesky Southeastern-Conference-Thanos that is Nickalous Lou Saban Jr., A name that has struck fear in the hearts of college football fans for years. But not anymore baby, no no no…. it is now The Georgia Bulldogs led by our fearless General, Sir Kirby Paul Smart, First of His Name that will terrorize the masses on Saturdays in The South. Long may he reign!
Ok, I have to be honest with you, not even I believe that. Don’t get me wrong; I’m proud that we finally got it done, and I have faith that we are going to be a powerhouse for years to come, but if you think that Nick Saban is anywhere close to being done winning championships, then you don’t know a thing about football, and if you believe that The University Of Georgia is done choking in big games then you don’t know a thing about the football that I love specifically.
None of that matters to me at the moment, though, because as a football fan, I subscribe to the now. When you’re a team that’s not Alabama or The Patriots, you have to. Most teams don’t get the luxury of reliving past championships and catching some sort of acid flashback buzz off of them whenever things didn’t go their way one night. When a team like The University of Tennessee beats a team like The University of Georgia on an absolute miracle of a Hail Mary, it doesn’t matter how many times Georgia beat them in the past. It doesn’t matter the likelihood of them beating them again the following year… you have 365 days to enjoy that, and the other team can’t say a dadgum thing about it. As a Georgia Bulldog, our clock started Monday night, and I plan to enjoy every tick.
My family wasn’t always a Dawgs family. It’s complicated. My Papaw Sonny was a Tennessee Vols Fan, but in 1992 they forced Johnny Majors to resign, and my Papaw couldn’t abide that. As the story goes, he took every bit of that gaudy orange memorabilia and merchandise out in the yard, covered it in kerosene, and lit the sumbitch on fire, exclaiming to his first and only boy, my dad, “Never again, son… never again.”
Hating the Vols as he now did, there was only one move he could make to prove his disloyalty, and that was to swear allegiance to their rivals, the Georgia Bulldogs. I was five years old when this happened, so I have never known any different. My fandom grew out of spite, and in spite, it shall remain.
My Papaw also hated Auburn on account of he was a contractor and claimed, “Every sorry, no good architect it ever was went to damn Auburn!” I don’t know if that’s true, but I don’t much care for ‘em anyway.
I’ve tried to be better about all that now that I am as grown up as I’ll allow myself to be. College football is entertaining but should not be taken as serious as some of us take it. I’ve got buddies who will damn near tear their house apart if a game doesn’t go their way. I don’t know that I was ever that bad, but regardless, at a certain point, you have to realize that you are relying on 18-year-old boys to determine your mental well-being and friends; that ain’t ever a safe bet!
Many people out there find all of this to be silly. I call them the “Sportsball Crowd”… you know who I am talking about. Those people on the internet who hide in the digital bushes of social media sites waiting for someone to post the result of a game so that they can very cleverly respond with something such as “Oh yes! A sports team beat another sports team! Yay, Sports team!” or “Go Sportsball!” which, being the most common one, is why I gave them that name. I called their responses clever, and because you cannot always infer sarcasm in print, I’d like to point out that I do not find them clever. As a matter of fact, I find them stupid. You cannot convince me that those types of comments aren’t thinly veiled attempts to project some sort of moral or intellectual superiority. “Look at me; I don’t like sports! I read hardback books and run a nonprofit out of my garage to help feed homeless dogs who have suffered gunshot wounds”. That’s what you sound like. Of course, I write a blog, so who am I to crap on people who project moral and intellectual superiority. I apologize. Carry on.
Hell, maybe liking sports and being so damn loyal to the Georgia Bulldogs does make me a stupid ole meathead. If that’s the case, I guess I’ll have to accept it cause I don’t see it changing anytime soon. They just mean so much to me. When I see those Red and Back jerseys and silver britches, I don’t just see a uniform; I see a time and place. It ain’t always the same memory, but it is always a good one.
Sometimes it’s riding in the passenger seat of my buddy…. Well maybe I should leave his name out of this since we were snorting drugs off of a Zaxby’s tray that we’d stole a few exits back. Of course we shouldn’t be doing that, but by god we didn’t sleep much the night before and The Dawgs need us to make it by game time! We heard they were wearing some new Black jerseys and if we ain’t there to scream how badass they are at em then who will?
Sometimes my mind wanders to the first night I ever spent in Athens. Freshman year of college. No, I did not go to The University of Georgia, or any university for that matter, but my best good buddy did and what kind of friend would I have been if I didn’t spend the night with him on his first night away from home and drink 30 keystone lights and piss in the hallway of his dorm? A piece of shit friend is what! Plus we would’ve never met our new buddy Joe, who saw a cow in person for the first time because of us. We changed lives that night, man!!
That’s really what I think about though, when I see them red and black jerseys and silver britches; the friends we’ve made along the way. It’s cliche but that’s what it’s all about ain’t it? There are people out there with whom I have not a thing in common except a shared love for the team that plays between the hedges in Athens, Georgia. That’s not always enough, but for 12 or so Saturday’s a year it damn sure is.
On Monday night, in bars across America, grown men hugged each other and cried. They have no idea what the other one does for a job. They have no idea if they are married or not. They don’t know their politics. They have no idea what denomination they are, because in that moment, the only church that mattered was The Church of Dooley… of Munson…of the BY GOD SILVER BRITCHES BOYS from Athens, Georgia. They had just beaten Alabama, and in that moment, fleeting as it may be… they were America’s team.
I don’t know y’all… if you ask me, this ole “Sportsball” can be a beautiful thing.
This Vols/Bullldog has been the most divisive moment in my family since the Civil War. I have seen family members nearly come to blows over it. That is why I became an Alabama fan! (kidding, I am in the sportsball bushes! :) )