Why I like pro football & college basketball but not vice’ versa

Call me a bit peculiar if not eccentric, go ahead, many folks have called me that and I just smile, but I’m a fan of The NFL and of ACC/Atlantic Coast Conference/men’s college basketball but not college football nor The NBA/pro basketball.

I like watching The NFL because it’s a chessmatch for non-nerds (whether I’m a bit of a nerd or not I’ll leave up to others to speculate on), it’s games within gamesmanships within larger forces controlling, it’s a chessmatch for grown-ups where all the pieces can move briefly simultaneously and where the most rank casual of fans can handicap games pretty effeciently if they pay any attention to what the talking heads on pre-game shows say, look at the rise of so-called “Fantasy Football” leagues if you don’t believe that last point.

I don’t like college football, not usually, because it just seems like a totally different game than it is at the pro level, which it is of course but still…there’s just a near-frustration for me at times as I watch mistake after mistake after mistake on repeated plays that usually doesn’t happen at the pro level.

The best college football team right now, say USC or Notre Dame, wouldn’t even be close to competitive with the worst team in the NFL right now, say The Houston Texans, the Texans because they pick the best of the best from a large pool of college players that their salary cap and scouting allows, distilling talent down to a team of 53 guys from a pool of perhaps 10,000 or 15,000 potential players and the sheer speed of a typical NFL team, even a terrible one like Texans, would simply blow the best available college team off of the field.

Not true with men’s college basketball.

The best college team in the land right now, say pre-season to win it all Duke University which is located just 15 miles from my house, could compete with for most a game and maybe even conceivably beat the worst NBA team right now, I don’t know who’s best or worst in the NBA since I don’t care but let’s say for grins it’s the proverbial Loservilles – The Denver Nuggets – Yes, Duke which is loaded with NBA-level talent deep into their bench which is where most will go eventually could give The Nuggets all they could handle in a one-game shootout played with NBA rules.

I don’t know why the talent disparity between the NFL and college and the NBA and college teams is so striking, but it is, and that’s why I watch what I watch, because I, like most 48-year-old crippled old men, still harbor a deep and almost-never-spoken secret desire to be the place kicker or punter ala’ George Blanda-ish who did this in his late 40’s back when for the, no, for my beloved Houston Texans, beloved that is when they sign me up as a rookie free agent.


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