Greetings and welcome to the Thanksgiving / Rivalry Week Edition of Swami the Magazine! This week rarely disappoints and there are sure to be some surprises. As the Swami prepared for this week he just stopped and read off the matchups and it landed him in the land of nostalgia. Some things never seem to change. Texas v. Texas A&M. Oh, wait that’s changing. The Border War, Kansas v. Missouri. Oh, that’s changing too. Nebraska v. Iowa. Wait, that one’s new. Ok, so some things do change, but others still don’t. Alabama v. Auburn. This one is so good ESPN Films had to do a documentary on it (still on the Swami’s TiVo To Do list). Ohio State v. Michigan. It doesn’t get any bigger in the Big Ten. And the granddaddy of them all… Georgia Tech v. Georgia. When the rivalry name is Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate, you know it just brings a little extra something to the table. Thanksgiving has always been a time for Thankfulness, NFL Football, Food, College Football, Family, Backyard Football…and in our house, a showdown with the Red & Black. The Evil Empire. The place where you get a diploma for driving through town vs. the place where our athletes actually have to be students too. I love this week. But, in a departure from typical UGA/GT banter this week, I do have to say that the passing of long-time voice of the Bulldogs Larry Munson this week is saddening. Even as the voice of the enemy he was still one of the voices of my childhood and I always thought he represented them well. There were times I would flip radio stations to get the opposing views of Larry Munson and Al Ciraldo on the same play. Good times. STM sends condolences to the UGA family on this one.
Tangent: I know this is a football column, but did anyone even notice what happened in Major League Baseball? In a year where the NFL had a work-stoppage and the NBA is in what appears to be a very long work-stoppage, Major League Baseball (apparently having learned their lesson from 1994) just signed yet another CBA extension. At the end of the new deal it will have been over 20 years since the last stoppage. Not only that, this CBA probably has more changes than any other recent deal other than the NHL’s post-lockout deal. The first sport in North America to add HGH blood testing… yeah, apparently even the players learned their lesson on PED’s. Two more playoff teams. Year-round interleague play. Moving a team from one league to the other. Expanded instant replay. And those are just some of the changes. I have bashed Bud Selig for years, but he deserves credit when it’s due. In the last 10 years I believe he has done a really good job (All-Star game = Home Field not withstanding). For more details, check out a summary of the deal here http://assets.espn.go.com/pdf/2011/1122/2011_MLB_CBA.pdf.
Ok, enough about that, it’s time to get back to football. This week’s theme takes us back to the greatness that is the Thanksgiving dinner table in all of its glory! So without further ado, get your appetite ready for The Picks!!
Until Next Time… THE SWAMI!!
(Remember if you want the Swami’s thoughts on these games below, you can always check here on game day or check him out at http://www.twitter.com/torncartledge)