SEC for Dummies: a southern Mom’s cliff notes version

The old Colonel Reb Ole Miss logo

Image via Wikipedia

If you’re lookin’ for info about the Security and Exchanges commission, this article isn’t for you.

This Saturday, Georgia plays LSU in Hot-lanta for the SEC championship.  SEC means we’re talkin’ real, live football.  Football as religion, not sport.  Last weekend, there was the Iron Bowl.  Sound tough?  It is.  No wine and cheese crowd here; they get  And, as for tailgatin’– the Deeper South you go, the thicker the eyeliner, skimpier the sundresses, louder the voices and more likker in the hipflask.

Forget about game rules; we’re talkin’ pure pageantry here.  First, let’s talk about the ‘outfits.’  There’s a plethora of orange, red, purple, garnet, orange, white and black.  Why not wear aqua (pronounced ak-wa in these parts) uniforms for example?  You do love the mardi gras theme that LSU has goin’ on, but to complete the look, they need strands of beads thrown around their necks.

Mascots n’ such:  they got ’em–from hawgs to dawgs.  There are also a whole lotta wild tigers and wildcats, then you got your gamecocks, a bluetick dog named Smoky, some creature that looks like a mad armadillo or wild boar, some fiesty bulldawgs, some fierce snappin’ gators…and then you got your red elephant.   There’s also a Commodore and a Colonel who looks like Colonel Sanders’ son.    You hear tell that the Colonel is being retired and replaced with a Star Wars’ figure named Admiral Akbar… (shouldn’t mascots be at least a little intimidating?)

OK–back to the game.  There’s all manner of neck and spine wrenching, collisions and bodily harm.   You pure-tee cringe as players are thrown up into outer space like stuffed dolls, or trampled by a stampede.  Bulls running in Pamplona must be easier to watch. 

“Is that allowed?” you gasp.

Mom, it’s football,” your son sighs for the zillonth time, “What do you expect?”

Well, you have absolutely no idea; you grew up in deep basketball country.

 “Can their mothers at least be allowed to run out screaming onto the field when their sons are laying crumpled in a heap?” you demand.
Your son shakes his head, “Mom, Mom, Mom.  Whatta we going to do with you?”
Your son played football for two years.  After his last game, held in–not east, but west jesus-– you stood up in the bleachers and declared, “Hallelujah!”  He was spared his life, limbs and spine, to boot.  That spring, he went back to his beloved soccer, scored header goals n’ such, and then, a player ‘headed’ your son’s skull, instead of the ball, and broke his nose.  Go frickin’ figure.
All told, ‘best dressed’ goes to…Vanderbilt (the gold is a nice touch).  Best live mascot?  Can’t beat the War eagle.  Best song?  Rocky Top.  And who doesn’t get teary when they hear, My Old Kentucky Home.  Best cheer?  Woof, woof, woof, woof.  Let’s go Dawgs.


A freelance writer who revels in the 1970's...and today. Thoughts on being a baby baby boomer and empty nester. Welcome to the Saturday evening porch.
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14 Responses to SEC for Dummies: a southern Mom’s cliff notes version

  1. winsomebella says:

    My boys both played football and there was a collective woop from the moms in attendance after the final game–so I so get it. I have heard SEC games are like no others and your post shows why. Great fun!

  2. ashleyolsonrosen says:

    Love it! And proud that my alma mater won best dressed and my home state’s song brings tears to the eyes non-Kentuckians! Was always glad I didn’t have to watch a son play football (no sons), but seeing a daughter slam into a vault during a gymnastics meet and splay out, unmoving, for 5 min. is plenty unnerving …

  3. Ashley–Just realized that you live in a basketball and football state! Whoa! I’m just used ta one or the other…:)

    • ashleyolsonrosen says:

      I have to admit, it is a LOT of work following both sports. Since we have season tickets to Louisville football, and my husband is a huge fan (even though he’s from Connecticut and a Vandy and SMU grad, go figure) and U of L basketball is so good, I follow U of L. But since I was raised in a UK house (again, even though not one soul in my family went to college even in the STATE of Kentucky), I am — much to my husband’s chagrin — a UK fan too. And I have to watch the Vandy games. I think it’d be less exhausting and stressful to be a player.

  4. Yup, I get it –college football is serious business! Great post, Reeling! Thanks for explaining SEC for this dummy too. On our trips to the south to visit oldest daughter, all the football regalia made me realize how much people are INTO their teams. Should have known though, we have family members who are die hard Oklahoma Boomer Sooners and friends of ours who are Razorback fans extraordinaire still call the ‘hawgs…..SOOOOOEEEEEYY!” Always cracked me up. 😀 We’re not big college football fans, but there’s been some terrible towel waving in this household for one particular NFL team.

  5. Monica says:

    Great post, giving great insight into how football is played in the south. My favorite line is, “Bulls running in Pamplona must be easier to watch.” Very visual, indeed. Thanks for sharing!

  6. chlost says:

    Yeah, your mascots sure beat the heck out of a Gopher. Golden or not.
    Visiting here for the first time. I’ll check you out some more. I do notice that your 72 driver’s license photo just below this post looks suspiciously like mine.

  7. Coming East says:

    Really funny! Having spent nearly 30 years in Texas, we know about football as religion. Our boys both went to UT, and that’s NOT the University of Tennessee! One thing you forgot, though: The deeper south you go, the bigger the hair. 😉

  8. Reeling, you had me at: “If you’re lookin’ for info about the Security and Exchanges commission, this article isn’t for you.” Thank God! So I read on. 🙂 I love your sense of humor, and I am in complete agreement with you when you say, ” Can their mothers at least be allowed to run out screaming onto the field when their sons are laying crumpled in a heap?” Um, yes.

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