In the south, football, particularly of the college variety, is a way of life. Children are raised to say “Go Dawgs!," “Roll Tide!," and “War Eagle!” before they can walk, and although it usually sounds like baby jibberish, parents shriek with joy when their little one utters those battle cries.
Saturdays are Football Days, complete with football shaped serving trays, official team napkins and licensed plastic Solo cups. Every living object, be it adult, child, or canine, is decked out in full-on team apparel from the moment they wake up on a Football Day until long after the official time has run out in the late West Coast game.
Everyone here loves football, even the women. This is a fact that most southern men very much enjoy—he can watch all the games he wants on Saturdays in the fall without catching flack from his girlfriend or wife, because she is likely right there watching the games with him.
However, most women I know will nod and smile as you chatter on about coverage and points spreads, all the while wondering if the mini pizza rolls they're cramming down their throats have mini calories as well.
We all want our men to believe that we are equally as into the games as they are, because it’s fun to be included and we enjoy the general atmosphere and excitement as the games are played.
Let me take a few minutes to let you in on a few little secrets…but don’t tell your wife I told you.
Secret One: She doesn’t care jack-squat about the Cal-UCLA game.
Every single one of the girls I asked said that they really love and get behind ONE team, and that team’s game is the one they really want to watch. Will they watch the highlights on SportsCenter and cheer like mad if the evil USC empire falls victim to Washington? Absolutely. We all want to see the Trojans go down, don’t we? But as far as sitting on the couch watching the game and getting excited about a school we don’t really follow…yeah…that's not gonna happen.
Secret Two: She’s more concerned with looking cute in her new houndstooth dress than discussing types of defenses.
Women always want to look attractive, and Game Day is no exception. Showing our support for the team goes far beyond holding a shaker and yelling at the game. Your woman likely has an outfit planned for the game long before you’ve filled out your Pick ‘Em sheets, and these outfits include everything from shoes and bags to earrings, bracelets and even hairbands or sunglasses. For example, my standard football outfit is a crimson shirt, jeans, Alabama flip-flops, red sunglasses, ”A” logo earrings, a houndstooth bracelet, and a crimson seatbelt purse. (Don’t know what that is? Sigh. You’re such a man. Google it). Women can talk all day about clothes and shoes…but discussing Monty Kiffin’s Tampa defense and whether or not it will be able to stop Alabama’s offense in third and long situations?
I wouldn’t bet on it.
(Oh—and it won’t, by the way. The Tide is gonna roll over the Vols the third Saturday in October…mark my words).
Secret Three: She thinks you look like a dumbass in your full game day gear.
Those bright red pants you wore around The Hill in Athens back in your fraternity days at UGA just don’t cut it anymore. The orange and blue horizontally-striped sweater that matches those God-awful Auburn cheerleader outfits only manages to showcase your beer belly and not your love of the Tigers. And those bright purple and gold beads you wear around your neck while hanging out in Death Valley should be taken from you and given to a five year old. Please gentlemen, I beg of you: stick to polos or t-shirts, with regular jeans or khakis or something equally as socially acceptable. If you wouldn’t wear it out to the mall on a normal day, don’t think that you can get away with it just because it happens to be a game day...because you can’t.
Secret Four: Why She REALLY Likes College GameDay.
Does your woman get up early on Saturdays to make you a great breakfast and then sit with you in front of the TV to watch GameDayLive on ESPN?
My guess is no.
But if she does enjoy watching GameDay, I can tell you that she’s probably not really interested in hearing about the player from Indiana who’s overcome adversity to be the starting defensive back… She is totally checking out how hot Kirk Herbstreit looks in those tailor-made suits.
We like to give you a lot of crap about drooling over Erin Andrews as she does the sideline reports, but we’re equally as piggish when it comes to our love of Kirk. He may be a stuck up jerk in real life, but we don’t care; he always looks so pretty on TV.
Secret Five: We Want to Be Included.
Your girl may act like she doesn’t care much for football, or as though she’s perfectly okay with you disappearing for several hours to your closest Buffalo Wild Wings to check out the game with your buddies. Who knows-she might REALLY be okay with it. But I know from experience that even though I can’t go toe-to-toe with your walking Stat-Quoting buddy, I’d sure like to feel like you want me there with you. (And yes, you all have at least one of those annoying friends. If you can’t think of who it is in your group, it’s probably you).
It’s always nice to feel included and wanted, so the next time you are planning something you think she might want to go to, ASK her. Even if she doesn’t end up going, I guarantee she’ll appreciate the invite.
Now that you have a little bit of insight into the mind of a woman regarding this football season, hopefully you can spend more time in front of the TV watching the game and a little less time in the doghouse.