Sunday Morning Perspective From the Recliner: Championship Saturday and No Clemson

Yesterday seemed so strange. I sat in the recliner for relaxation, knowing there would be no fight for a victory. No matter what channel I flipped to, I couldn’t find Clemson, anywhere.

I watched as Baylor upset Oklahoma State 21-16 in a nail-biter thus ending the playoff hopes of the Big XII Conference. I must admit, Mike Gundy and his mullet and his bluntness with the media would have added a certain flare to this years playoff, but unfortunately, that just won’t happen.

The SEC Championship was a great game but one that presented me with an almost impossible question. Who do I root for to win the SEC title? I split the difference and pulled for neither. It’s so nauseating to want either to win knowing, regardless the outcome, both will be counted in the top four, so I took a nap. As I heard, through my sleepy haze, CBS color-analyst, Gary Danielson’s cackling, I knew his Alabama Crimson Tide were rolling. They did, humbling the Georgia Dawg’s 41-24. The Big Dawgs stayed on the porch, knowing they couldn’t run with an angry elephant.

Then, I sat and watched with a heavy heart, as no orange was seen anywhere in Charlotte. I’m sure, had there been any, it would have easily been noticed as the stadium was littered with empty seats. I’m almost positive the crowd noise had to be piped in to give this game the illusion of a sell out.

Unlike the Georgia/Alabama match-up, I had a clear favorite, anybody playing Pittsburgh. That happened to be the Wake Forest Demon Deacons. I’m a Methodist by faith but last night I was a devout, charismatic, unapologetic Baptist. Unfortunately, the Panthers and tenth year senior Kenny Pickett rolled to defeat Wake 45-21 to claim the ACC Championship. One has to almost be afraid of how good Pickett could be next season, his eleventh at Pitt.

Then, the Ohio State-less, B1G Championship was interesting for about 5 minutes. Of course, I was inclined to align myself with the Iowa Hawkeyes, as most years they are as disrespected as Clemson. Listening to all the pregame media hot air, you’d think Iowa was little more than cannon fodder for Big Blue. In the end, yes, Iowa was just that, fodder. Poof! Just like that, Michigan destroyed the Hawkeyes 42-3 and finally goes dancing.

I listened from a distance, as Cinderella tried to earn her way to the big dance, Cincinnati vs. Houston. It was a tit-for-tat matchup but in the end, the Bearcats defeated Houston 35-20. Yes, Cinderella earned her crystal slippers and might have earned a dance with her Prince Charming. However, the Prince has a pretty full dance card so, who knows?

Nothing, absolutely nothing, gave me much joy yesterday. A Saturday without Clemson is like a day without sunshine. With all the hullabaloo surrounding Clemson this past week, I was exhausted, I needed a rest. Player transfers, coaching change speculation, the Athletic Director’s departures. Geez, it’s enough to dampen any enjoyment. Yes, It was a Tiger-less Saturday spent in the recliner and one I mostly slept through.

As I see it, from now on, when the “Tiger’s ain’t playin’, I ain’t watchin’.” Oh, never fear, I’ll be around, back in my armchair, ready to fight with the Tigers as they go bowling late in December. Let’s hope, it will be a December to remember. I’ll end by extending, you and yours the warmest of Holiday Greetings.

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