August 31, 2012 — Tomorrow marks a new beginning for Gene Chizik and the 2012 Auburn football team.  Thankfully it also marks an end.

When the Auburn Tigers take the field against the Clemson Tigers in the Chick Fil A Kickoff Classic Saturday night hopefully we can finally just talk about football. Another rancorous offseason in the most bitter rivalry in the history of organized sports; another year of accusation, bile, hatred, rumor and innuendo is finally behind us.

Are you ready for some football?  We absolutely are.

We hope that for the next five months we can all focus on what happens on the field. We hope that our fans and those who support our rivals will pay more attention to our own teams than we do the failures — perceived and real — of the other side.

We’ve heard enough about commitment flips and the shadowy old man army that allegedly powers the recruiting machine.

We’ve endured enough radio vampires and lie detector claims. We’ve tired of the empty voices of the barking dogs that populate the sports radio airwaves.

On a side note is it any wonder that the nation considers this state a pack of backwood rubes with nothing better to do than worship gridiron idols when even the national satellite radio talk shows feature caller after caller from this state? Does anyone in Alabama have a job or is half the state just sitting in the den, holding on to be the next caller?

We’ve seen enough speculation about who pulls Mark Emmert’s strings and who plays puppeteer to the brass at the Alabama High School Athletic Associations.

We’ve had more than our fill of now-exiled beatwriters, even when those writers proved our case by continuing their singular negative obsession even when cloaked in orange of another hue.

We’ve grown tired of cussing and discussing the clear and present bias that permeates the state media.

We’re sick of delayed justice for our beloved trees and news of teabagger trials.

We’ve become numb to erroneous reports, accusatory message board banter and a flurry of fraudulent claims that seep into even allegedly legitimate media outlets.

We no longer have time to worry why one admitted grade change in Hoover was fine, but another in Memphis was not.

We’re ready to move past transfers, suspensions and all the other personal trials and tribulations that are a sad reality not just in Auburn but at campuses across the country.

We’re ready to tune out the TMZ-style of reporting that roars from the world wide leaders and all the rest who are trying to out do them in sensationalism.

We’re fed up with the entire ridiculous offseason circus.

Starting Saturday it’s time to return our focus where it belongs and savor the magnificence of the college football season.

Win or lose, it’s finally time.


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