First thing's first.
Well, thank goodness for that, right? After all, we've seen what kind of hellfire and brimstone can come spewing out of the mouth of the winningest starting quarterback in the history of BYU football.
As Hall so eloquently yapped Saturday after he took home his second of three head-to-heads against the devils in red, No. 15 has hate.
And lots of it.
"I don't like Utah," oozed Hall. "In fact, I hate them. I hate everything about them. I hate their program, I hate their fans, I hate everything."
Count em', sports fans.
That's one, two, three, four, five hates.
Hall was happily hateful for those five minutes or so he addressed what seemed to be the most vile and grotesque happening in the history of mankind.
He went on to say that Utah didn't deserve to win.
"It was our time, and it was our time to win. We deserved it," he continued on.
Never mind the fact that of all 134 million years this rivalry has continued on chugging with boiling distastefulness, a player has never really entered what will from now on be known as the "Mad Max" zone.
Sure, Morgan Scalley said he hated the Cougars. Yeah, Lenny Gomes mentioned that in the future those same Ute players he battled with would be "pumping his gas" someday.
But now, as Hall goes, so does the rivalry.
It's reached its boiling point, folks.
This is as good as it gets.
And thankfully it dates back to last year. The same game in which Hall would be ridiculed throughout the state of Utah for the next 12 months.
Hall was seeing red, in every sense of the meaning. His six turnovers allowed the then undefeated Utes to finish their 2008 campaign undefeated en route to blowing out BYU at Rice-Eccles Stadium.
Enter Saturday, again.
Hall's epic disgust with essentially everything Utah came on the heels of 2008. According to "Mad Max," Hall's family had beer thrown at them.
Also mentioned by Hall: "Stuff, and a whole bunch of nasty things."
So, Max couldn't really divulge. Sorry folks. Stuff and nasty things probably coincide with some of that dire hatred he has growing inside of him.
What sets this rivalry rant in a different atmosphere as the rest?
For one, it was by a team captain—a winning team captain, mind you—and it was done with what will become the term of the year in Utah Magazine ...
Classless, or classlessness.
"I think the whole university, and their fans, and the organization is classless."
Ding-dong, the witch is dead.
Or, more appropriately, risen from the grave.
Hall just sent a text message to basically a bazillion people telling them to kiss his bottom.
Hall put himself on a pedestal. Above the University of Utah, and more obviously, his team, which had just pulled off a great overtime win against its, dare I say, hated rival.
It was suddenly all about Max. Max this, and Max that.
Me. Me. Me. I. I. I.
Hall tattooed himself into this rivalry's lore in a matter of a few hate-filled minutes of passion.
Was it worth it, Max?
Sunday evening, Hall released an apology to the University of Utah, its fans, and football program.
You really have to wonder: Did he mean it?
Was he euphoric Saturday and ceremoniously dipped his foot in his mouth due to the previous year filled with anguish, suffering, self-doubt, and revenge?
Hall's apparent revenge was driven not by a game in which he essentially lost for his team, but rather a few incredibly moronic fans that supposedly doused his family in some Bud Light and chucked out a few "bad words."
And whether or not it's true, or you like it or hate it, this is where the separation comes in.
The line, drawn in red and blue sand, pontificating which side you're on. In laymen's terms, where does your allegiance lie?
Hall blatantly called the entire school on the hill "classless." Did he mean it? You bet your ass he did.
Is he sorry? Of course not. A senior quarterback playing in his last game against his "hated" rival does not just whimsically shoot out such pointed and jagged examples of abhorrence.
Hall knew what he was saying all along. He planned it, he went there, he crossed that line into Me-Ville, and he didn't come back.
Most will ask, "Why are Hall's comments offensive, or even a subject of public matter?"
In comes back that pedestal, and an explanation to why so many people so-wrongfully judge a university such as BYU.
Suddenly, every Utah fan is a drunken, cuss-filled, sorry excuse for a human being. Or even, as some have mentioned, members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
I wonder if Hall knows that church prophet Thomas S. Monson is a Ute or even that BYU football coaching legend LaVell Edwards received his master's degree from that place he hates so much?
Hall justified, for everyone fence-sitting on the matter, that we have some true hatred in the rivalry. Fans are once again at one another's throats, arguing the legitimacy of this and that.
And to make things totally Days of Our Lives, after BYU's 26-23 overtime win, Jamie Whittingham, the wife of Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham received an elbow to the face by a BYU fan and some trash-talking ensued.
No, Whittingham will not be commenting on it.
So there's beer supposedly thrown in the direction of a family and some "stuff" and "nasty things," yet a woman gets an elbow to the face?
I mean, if you're going to preach righteousness as your No. 1 cause, Maxy, you best know what you're up against.
Hall buried himself. Now, Utah fans will claim that although they may get a wee-bit out of hands at times, they certainly do not attack a woman.
The debate will rage, the words will fly, fists will be technologically exchanged through social networks, and the merry-go-round will spin full-speed for the next 361 days.
Hall leaves his legacy as the guy that couldn't show in big games, beat a B-list Oklahoma team, and finally got that stamp of vengeance Saturday night.
He defeated those nightmares of flying red cups of tainted brews.
It's just unfortunate that an athlete representing a university whose program preaches things like honor, spirit, and other over-used righteous terms by Bishop Mendenhall, came careening down.
Sometimes things are best left unsaid. Hall won his game, was hoisted upon hundreds of fans, and given the chance at a collegiate football exit kids dream of, and some receive.
Max Hall found it more important to put himself first and discharge the abomination that is the team located 45 minutes north.
Coretta Scott King said, "Hate is too great a burden to bear—it injures the hater more than it injures the hated."
For Hall, he'll forever be remembered as a hater—not as the quarterback that beat Utah two out of three tries.
Photo by: Richard Payson
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