Here We Go Again, Tiger Fans

Well, here we go again Mizzou fans. I’m forgetting about last week’s fiasco against Indiana. Typical ole’ Mizzou. Unfortunately, the SEC football season kicks off this weekend. Let’s get this out of the way. I’m still a bit jaded with how last season ended up. I know, I should be happy. Mizzou did get to the Championship game. I should just let it go. The aftermath of the SEC Championship Saturday came and went almost a year ago. But it still lingers. The pain remains.

Damn, I actually thought we would pull it off. I think we were all starting to believe. Oh, the pain of being a Mizzou fan. And yes, it will continue like some curse cast by a crazed witch doctor. Remembering 2007, I knew Oklahoma had our number coming into the Big 12 Championship game. It was there for the taking then, too. A year ago, I thought we would prove the doubters wrong. I had high expectations.

And I so wanted the CBS team to get what they deserved. Between wishing Mizzou back to the Big 12 and not saying much about pushing Posey into a golf cart, I felt it was the most one-sided game call in the history of sports. Yeah, we get it. CBS wanted Auburn to win. At least they felt the unsportsmanlike conduct flag should have been kept in the referees pocket in the first half.

I could go on and on about how losing Posey potentially changed the outcome of the game. Mizzou didn’t score in the 4th quarter. If you don’t want to relive the game again, skip ahead a few paragraphs. But if you do, I could argue you’re not a true Mizzou fan. Mizzou alumni love pain and suffering. It’s what we live for. So, here we go. The fact of the matter is that if you give up 500 yards on the ground you deserve to lose. I know CBS cited the offensive mastermind of a high school football coach. However, Auburn essentially ran the same three plays over and over. I know it’s more complex than that. The great camera work of CBS couldn’t follow the ball half the time. I’m guessing Verne Lundquist and Gary Danielson were behind the camera too. Hopefully, they will be next year after that game call.

Still, why Mizzou put three people on the defensive line remains baffling to me. Sure, it might have looked good on paper but looked lacking in execution. If they would have overloaded the line and guessed right or left tackle on each snap, statistically they would have probably fared better. They probably would have only given up 400 yards on the ground. They used the same game plan last week against Indiana. To top it off, I all but guaranteed that Ohio State would blow it last year. Karma had finally come calling. Years of being the first loser and getting to the Big game finally bit the Buckeyes. Oh, how the mighty have fallen in the Big 10 conference.

Yet, Mizzou, like always, had to live up to expectations. Not the high ones I had wanted. Karma isn’t real for Mizzou fans. Unfortunately, all Tiger fans are used to this. I actually felt sorry for the Mizzou students who had the forlorn looks on their faces at game’s end. It looked as if someone had run over their new beagle puppy. Like young love, these students just don’t understand, not yet anyway.

The kids should have tipped their Big Styrofoam cups, half filled with Coke and the other with cheap whiskey, and simply smiled. These kids are spoiled. Being a Mizzou fan is similar to a prosperous marriage. Sure, there are the ups and downs but you still come home and say I love you anyway. This is how it works. One day kids, you will understand. I promise you.

So, lament Tiger fans. We were so close. At the beginning of last season, I would have taken runner-up in the SEC Championship Game and a trip to the Cotton Bowl. I would have taken it all day long. I’ll get over this, like always. It was a great season. Still, I can’t help but think Dick Dastardly said it best, “Curses! Foiled again.” There is always next year. At least that is what Cub fans tell me.

Well, next year has finally arrived. The SEC season begins.

As the greatest movie of the 80s said, “It’s our time now.” You know, The Goonies really isn’t as good as I remembered it being. I told my kid how great it was and watched on in pain. Sometimes, the memories are better. This makes me sad, but that’s besides the point.

We’re Tiger fans for a reason. We truly love pain and suffering. We would put our life’s savings on black, watch the ball bounce and then land on red, and still come back and do it again. This is what we do. Let’s get it going again. Put Indiana behind us, the Tigers are going to get it done. This year, the Tigers are the Ohio State Buckeyes. Lose early and still make it. When we win, true Tiger fans can put in for a six month sabbatical. Decades of pain gone in an instant. I can see the party now. Oh, it will last for days and truly be glorious. At least, a guy can dream. Go Tigers.