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We Shouldn't, but ... We Do


Nutriaitch

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This past Saturday night showed all of the reasons why games like LSU vs Southern should never even get scheduled.

By the midway point of the first quarter, the game was realistically decided and completely out of reach for the visitors.  
In all honesty though, it was over as soon as Southern fumbled the opening kickoff.  
Games like these add almost no value to the schedule.  The talent level is typically so lopsided that you don't even truly get a chance to learn anything about your own team.  Was this O-Line shuffle really that much of an improvement from week 1? We have no clue, because these guys just overmatched Southern.  We can still only guess what they'll look like against a team from the upper half of FBS.
Were the special teams issues from FSU fixed?  Maybe. But we don't know if Jack Mashburn was that much better on the wing for kicks than Mason Taylor. Maybe Mason Taylor also handles Southern's rush effortlessly. 
And while "keeping the money in state" is a noble gesture, and one i do agree with, let's be honest here. These games bring a very minimal amount of money IN to the state or more specifically the Baton Rouge economy.   And it can be argued that Southern likely brought as close to a net zero increase to Baton Rouge area businesses as possible without being a negative number.
SU is also located in Baton Rouge. 
Had LSU been playing McNeese (LSU's 2021 week 2 opponent) and Southern playing Miles College (SU's 2021 week 2 opponent), it can be argued that 99% of the people in Baton Rouge would have been the exact same human beings as were there this past Saturday when they played each other.  The game still would have sold 100K + tickets. The game still would have been on SEC Network. 

So what was there to gain?
Why do we play these games?
Why don't we just donate that money to these schools and play a larger team that will actually benefit LSU?

Honestly? Because of what we saw outside of those white lines on Saturday night. 
You saw a community coming together for a weekend. 

These two teams' football stadiums are a 10.7 mile drive from each other.
But while the fanbases have always played in same city, ate at same restaurants, lived in same neighborhoods, and worked at same companies, you know what they rarely do?
Tailgate together. Watch the football game together. Eat together. Drink together, etc.

Inside the stadium, it was LSU vs a little brother school.
Outside? You could have been fooled into believing this was a bigtime SEC game.

All of those fans from 10 miles north, were now among the Stately Oaks and Broad Magnolias.

Was the game worth it? to LSU as a football team, probably not.
To Baton Rouge from a financial standpoint? Unlikely.

To those fans from 10 miles north who can almost hear Death Valley from their campus, but never been inside? I bet they think it was.
To the hoards and hoards of people outside meeting their own neighbors they've never spoken to before, trying out new local recipes, having a beer with some stranger who likely has at least few shared acquaintances?  I would think so.

To those kids who typically play in AW Mumford Stadium in front of less than 20,000 for an average home game? Who don't even have to get on a bus to play in one of the largest most legendary Stadiums in country? Whose parents don't have to buy plane tickets, rent a car, spend multiple nights in a hotel, etc, etc. to watch their son play against an upper tier FBS school in from of 100K and on National TV?  Abso-freaking-lutely.

 

And that's why we do.

I still wish we wouldn't.

But I get it. I understand why.

Somethings are more important than football.....(allegedly)

 

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