Inside the SEC: Love and Hate

Paige SosebeeCorrespondent IApril 9, 2009

On any given fall Saturday in the south, there’s a battle brewing. Its outcome more important than winning or losing. It's about bragging rights, respect, and self worth. It's almost like a religion.

What is this phenomena we call the South Eastern Conference? It's something that is ingrained at birth and taken to the grave. It's a deep rooted love for the team that is yours and respect, but little love for your opponents. Something in your bloodstream that fuels your emotions.

The SEC is east pitted against west and bitter rivalries that go as far back as football itself. There is something to be said about the level of competition within the conference as it is arguably the best conference in college football.

Stacked with talent at every school and every position, week in and week out teams are met with a grueling challenge. Every team, even those considered the weaker team in the conference, can on any given day deliver a victory.

Maybe the thing that baffles most in the college football world is the hate turned love of the SEC. We ridicule each other, we despise fans of our opponents and always find time to fit in some good ole trash talking.

Yet, in the midst of our hate we have a need to stand together when someone steps up against our conference. It’s the natural instinct to protect that which is yours.

I'm not sure there is any other conference in college football that can fuel a flame in someone like the good ole SEC. Its fans, admittedly over zealous, are not highly thought of in the college football world, and its teams amongst the most hated.

It's a story of step-siblings. You don't have a blood deep connection and you feel a shortage of love for them, but let someone else stand up against them, and you feel your adrenaline rise.

After all they are family. After all it’s something you've earned, meeting up on the battle field year after year, Saturday after Saturday, but the outsiders, they don't know, they haven't earned the right.

So, I may not like orange, as a matter of fact, it makes my skin crawl. The Gators, well they are amid my least favorite creatures in the world, and Tigers, what is their purpose?

I may be extreme in my dislike for my fellow SEC teams, but around January, if the Dawgs aren't in the championship game, and one of my self proclaimed enemies find their way there, I'll root for the SEC. It's part of me after all.