I’m not be the first person to speak of the correlation between football and the holidays. Football means fall; fall means the holidays. As the great Forrest Gump would say, “They go together like peas and carrots.”
This weekend presents what I believe to be the best football weekend of the year. C’mon, today ESPN has the Cotton Bowl at 4:00pm, featuring a great matchup between #2 Clemson and #3 Notre Dame. Immediately following that game on ESPN is the matchup between #1 Alabama and #4 Oklahoma in the Orange Bowl. Saturday is ACES! Then, just about twelve (12) hours later, after I have properly digested who will be playing for the national championship, I will be sitting in Raymond James Stadium watching my favorite team in the entire world take on division rivals Atlanta. Not to mention the fact that it is the last week of the NFL season and not one AFC team has locked a division up. The race on the NFC side is a bit thinner, but it will take Sunday to decide the final wild card berth, and that’s exciting. I’m pretty much in football heaven. But I stress the term “pretty much.”
For starters, there are no Florida colleges in either of the playoff games. It would have been great to see the Gators, Seminoles, Hurricanes, Golden Knights, or even the Bulls up there in one of those positions. That, and I find myself in the ABB club, Anybody But Bama. Now, I am Irish Catholic, so there is literally an ancient scroll somewhere that says I am supposed to root for the Irish, and I always have, but a guy’s got to go in-state first. That said, go IRISH!
Secondly, the Buccaneers play for the last time, not just in 2018, but until next season. As I have gotten older and have had children, acquired a mortgage, and then a second mortgage, I have found that the time between the end of one season and the beginning of the next has shortened. And yes, I am thoroughly disappointed that the good guys won’t be playing in the postseason. Heck, I am still trying to digest beating New Orleans in week one and how we got from there to here. But I still want to see the Bucs gain a game in the series record versus the Falcons. We are 24-26 all-time against our divisional step-brother, and a win this week will put us one down. Go Bucs!
Anyway, as 2018 turns into 2019, I am wishing a safe and happy new year to you and yours. Let us not forget to make a resolution so that we all have a resolution to break. And to all our BucsReport readers, let us enjoy the rest of this fall/football/holiday season. Peace.