Now there’s a prize.
For fans of college football longing for some sort of a post-season tournament, the announcement of a four-team playoff was big, the formation of the selection committee made it more serious, and the dates and locations of the three games made it all real. But now there’s something tangible. Now there’s a trophy. Now there's something to go after and grab.
The BCS crystal football was beautiful, but there was always a sense that it wasn’t going to be around forever – there was an inevitability that eventually the playoff would come, and with it, a new object of desire. Of course, it was a big, big deal to hold the BCS championship prize, but the new trophy is going to be different. It symbolizes that it really is Game On – no, the road doesn’t end in Texas; it ends once someone is holding up the trophy.
Fine, so the thing could be made out of pudding and it would still be desperately coveted and revered, but with today’s unveiling, with the new look, college football will have its official Holy Grail. It has its object to play for. Now it has something that will be on everyone’s mind and will be every bit as part of the season as the Heisman Trophy – except more important – as it instantly becomes part of the history of the sport.
With all of the exposure and all of the attention, the trophy is going to matter more than ever in the all-media-all-the-time age. It’s going to be in every end-of-the-season celebration along with the confetti, the swag, the podium, and everything else that goes into becoming a national champion.
Players are going to workout in the offseason dreaming of lifting it up, and coaches are going to use this as the ultimate motivational tool.
It’s going to be part of being a college football fan to pose with it – you’re not going to be a true fan until there’s a trophy selfie residing on your device.
For years, fans of the championship teams will have pictures plastered on their walls, computers, and anything else they can find of their players and their coaches celebrating with the trophy – this symbol is going to be a part of their sports lives forever. It’s going to represent the accomplishment, the journey of a long season, and the hope and nervousness of getting through the two games to earn the right to lift it.
To know college football fans is to know that it’s not going overboard or laying it on too thick in any way to suggest that this trophy is going to symbolize a truly happy moment for the winning school’s fan base.
And, of course, it’ll instantly symbolize the pinnacle of college football achievement.
Some program that hasn’t won a national title in a long time, or at all, will get to display this trophy, and it’ll instantly become a part of the school’s legacy. Some program that has several national titles under its recent belt will win this, and it’ll be a first for them – something shiny and new for the case.
Great teams and players will come and go, but now there’s a link through the life of College Football Playoff, and it’s this newest of icons.
Here it is, college football. Go get it.
College Football Playoff Trophy: Here We Go
Now there’s a prize.