After decades of waiting, my Gamecocks are finally playing for the SEC East championship, and where will he be during the big event? At a San Antonio Spurs game. The nerve, I tell ya.
Don't get me wrong – I love pro basketball and I think it's really awesome that he lucked into free courtside seats. But Tim Duncan & Co. will have to survive without me, because there's no way I'm skipping out on what could be the precursor to our trip to Atlanta.
In other words, I'm choosing Sir Big Spur over the San Antonio Spurs.
I mean, seriously, as appealing as Bruce's invitation sounds, he's going to have to find another date to the basketball game. I'd never forgive myself if I wasn't watching when the ‘Cocks won their first league title.
By the way, when I say "watching," I mean watching live. I'm shocked by the number of people who've suggested I view the game on DVR delay. Puh-leeze. I want to absorb the joy of the moment (or the weeping and gnashing of teeth) in real time.
So, here's my message to our players and coaches: As fans, we make sacrifices to watch our Gamecocks take the field. We pay for tickets. We travel long distances by car, plane and train. We sit in the rain and the cold and the blazing sun of hot-as-dog's-breath Columbia. We make up excuses to skip weddings and work and family reunions. We give up courtside tickets to pro basketball games.
We show up to watch you play, so we're begging you to return the favor by showing up on the field. Well, actually, not just by showing up, but also by showing up ready to kick some Gator tail.
Because let's face it, if you play Florida like you played Alabama – and you coach like you coached against Alabama – you can expect after-game euphoria of mammoth proportions. I'm talking riotous joy that's shared by Gamecocks fans from Five Points to Fresno, from Huger Street to Houston.
All the crumpled visors, missed tackles, intercepted passes and cursed seasons will be bygones. And fans across the nation won't be smacking themselves on their foreheads, asking: "I gave up (fill in the blank) for this?"
Who says women don't know football? Ronda Templeton's 'Gridiron & Grits' is a sports blog with a distinctly female — and Southern — flavor. She's a die-hard fan of the University of South Carolina Gamecocks who's learned a lot over the years. Example: 'There's a reason the tailgate comes before the game. It keeps a loss from spoiling the party.'
For more of Ronda's work check out the rest of her blog entries here.