Get it, girls: passion, joy, suspense, drama

I don’t understand why some women don’t like football – especially college football. Think about it: College football has all the elements of great drama. Passion. Joy. Suspense. Excitement. Even tears (although those will be in shorter supply on the field now that Florida‘s Tim Tebow – an unabashed weeper – has gone on to the pros).

Football even has elements of fashion. I was horrified by the atrocity of the Virginia Tech Hokies‘ new uniforms – eye-scalding black ensembles accented by what looked like orange and red tie-die accents. Here’s some advice: Burn those things!

The tasteful touch

I’m truly grateful that my Gamecocks wear tasteful garnet and black. It makes dressing for the game so much more pleasant than if, for example, our colors were orange and purple.

One good thing about living in the Deep South – I divide my time between Georgia and San Antonio – is the passion of SEC fans. The women in Georgia are just as crazy about football as men. They’re knowledgeable about their teams, they attend in the heat and the rain, they love a calorie-laden tailgate and they’re obnoxious as all get-out when they win.

I was in a bookstore last fall wearing my garnet and black Carolina garb when I ran into an Alabama fan who couldn’t have been more the about 8 years old. She looked at my Gamecocks shirt, sniffed derisively and said, “We beat you.” Yep, they start ’em young in the SEC.

Benefit from the unexpected

One good thing about being a female football fan is that it’s a bit unexpected. My husband and I went out to dinner the other night and, between courses, I checked the latest scores on my iPhone. The waiter seemed to think Bruce had hit the jackpot. “Man, a woman that likes football,” he said. “I’m going to find me one of those.” Here’s a tip: Move to Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, Tennessee, Mississippi or Florida. Those states are home base for female football fans.

The endangered Gamecock

So now that I’m living – at least part time – in SEC country, you’d think I’d be in football nirvana. Well, close. The problem isn’t a lack of SEC fans; it’s a lack of Gamecocks fans. Georgia and Auburn fans are about equally divided, Alabama supporters seemed to triple overnight after the Crimson Tide won its national championship, and the Florida Gators are ubiquitous.

Gamecock fans? Scarce as, well, hens’ teeth. I’ve met just one at work – Brooke Backenson – who comes from a long line of Carolina football supporters. We’re hoping to snatch bragging rights Saturday when the Dawgs play us at home in Columbia.

It’s our turn to be gleefully obnoxious.



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