The fall season offers so much to get excited about. As I get older I have come to appreciate the milder weather, for one thing. The real difference, though, for a sports fan is the number of big sporting events there are to choose from.
In my opinion the greatest sporting event is the NCAA Basketball Tournament. Of course, that is in the spring, but it is basically a stand-alone event.
The greatest single day in sports for me is the Sunday before Memorial Day. The Indianapolis 500 and the Coca-Cola 600 are two of my favorite events. But again, they stand alone in their time of year.
Fall, however, offers so much and there is usually something going on just about every day of the week.
For me, the fall season starts with the NASCAR weekend in Bristol. Living in east Tennessee this is an event that is looked forward to for the entire summer. No matter how the NASCAR season is going there is a virtual guarantee that something exciting will happen on the high-banked track.
Bristol is a great event by itself, but it is made even more special by the fact that NASCAR is approaching its Chase for the Championship and drivers are vying for those top 12 spots that will give them a chance to win the Sprint Cup title.
The Chase for the Championship adds that little bit of extra intensity to the NASCAR season in the fall. The reset of the points renews the interest that may have waned during the summer months.
Also, baseball is reaching its stretch run in autumn. It can be difficult even for a baseball fan like myself to keep up with the sport through the summer months, especially when my team, the Cincinnati Reds, have usually fallen out of contention by mid summer.
However, September means it is time for the pennant races to be settled. My interest level tends to rise no matter what teams are in contention.
And last, but certainly not least, is the sport most associated with fall. That, of course, is football.
Living in Knoxville, the heart of SEC country, means that college football is at the forefront of my pigskin thinking. Few things can match the thrill of a game day Saturday in the South.
Whether it be in Knoxville, Athens, Gainesville, or any other locale, the heat of competition more than makes up for any warmth the weather may have lost.
All in all, the spring, summer, and winter all offer reasons for sports fans to get excited. But for me, nothing can match the coolness of fall—and I'm not referring to the weather.