Why Everyone Should Add The Iron Bowl To Their Bucket Lists

Why Everyone Should Add The Iron Bowl To Their Bucket Lists

Even those of you that don't know what the Iron Bowl is, or anything else about football.

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About two months ago, my dad called me while I was away at school and asked if I would want to go to the Iron Bowl over Thanksgiving break. After living with two brothers for 19 years I had enough knowledge to know that the Iron Bowl was the crazy rival football game between the University of Alabama and Auburn University. I agreed thinking that it was going to somehow fall through and I would not actually have to go. Then, two weeks before Thanksgiving, my dad called to tell me that he confirmed the flight.

In all honesty, it is hard to have a bad attitude about something when other people around you are so excited. My brothers have been waiting for this their entire lives and my dad had mentioned that the Iron Bowl has always been on his Bucket List. So, essentially, I was going for them. I really believed that this trip had nothing to do with me, other than just being something to do with my family.

To avoid such an expensive flight, we landed in Nashville, Tennessee and spent the night. Having been there before, I was really excited and even got to see a Grand Ole Opry performance at the Ryman Auditorium. Without really knowing anyone there, it was still an amazing experience because of the relaxed and traditional atmosphere.

The next morning, we woke up super early in order to drive about three hours to the University of Alabama. I was hungry and tired and honestly annoyed that I was wasting my time going somewhere I didn't even care about. But, once we arrived, I quickly realized how wrong I was.

Once you get close to the stadium, the crowds are insane. There are people from all walks of life there to experience the magic of the day. Everyone waits outside the stadium for the team to arrive on buses. People are tailgating and partying on "frat row" before the game starts.

In the stadium, the energy is exhilarating. Everyone is excited and constantly cheering. Whenever the announcer says "Alabama", the crowd screams back "ROLL TIDE!" The craziest thing for me was that everyone participated, it wasn't just the student section. Attending the University of Alabama games are a tradition for the people that live there and that was really evident by old and young people alike chanting. Everyone was singing the University of Alabama rendition of "Dixieland Delight" by the band called Alabama so passionately that I actually got the chills. Everyone was so nice too, even the rival fans were tolerant and respectful.

Alabama's football team was so insanely talented. They easily beat Auburn, leaving everyone even more excited than before. By the end of the day, I was so happy that I went. The Iron Bowl was an experience that I will never forget and always treasure.

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To The Coach Who Ruined The Game For Me

We can't blame you completely, but no one has ever stood up to you before.
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I know you never gave it a second thought, the idea that you're the reason I and many others, never went any farther in our athletic careers.

I know you didn't sincerely care about our mental health, as long as we were physically healthy and our bodies were working enough to play. It's obvious your calling wasn't coaching and you weren't meant to work with young adults, some who look to you as a parent figure or a confidant.

I also know that if we were to express our concerns about the empty feeling we began to feel when we stepped onto the court, you wouldn't have taken the conversation seriously because it wasn't your problem.

I know we can't blame you completely, no one has ever stood up to you before. No one said anything when girls would spend their time in the locker room crying because of something that was said or when half the team considered quitting because it was just too much.

We can't get mad at the obvious favoritism because that's how sports are played.

Politics plays a huge role and if you want playing time, you have to know who to befriend. We CAN get mad at the obvious mistreatment, the empty threats, the verbal abuse, “It's not what you say, its how you say it."

We can get mad because a sport that we loved so deeply and had such passion for, was taken away from us single-handedly by an adult who does not care. I know a paycheck meant more to you than our wellbeing, and I know in a few years you probably won't even remember who we are, but we will always remember.

We will remember how excited we used to get on game days and how passionate we were when we played. How we wanted to continue on with our athletic careers to the next level when playing was actually fun. We will also always remember the sly remarks, the obvious dislike from the one person who was supposed to support and encourage us.

We will always remember the day things began to change and our love for the game started to fade.

I hope that one day, for the sake of the young athletes who still have a passion for what they do, you change.

I hope those same athletes walk into practice excited for the day, to get better and improve, instead of walking in with anxiety and worrying about how much trouble they would get into that day. I hope those athletes play their game and don't hold back when doing it, instead of playing safe, too afraid to get pulled and benched the rest of the season.

I hope they form an incredible bond with you, the kind of bond they tell their future children about, “That's the coach who made a difference for me when I was growing up, she's the reason I continued to play."

I don't blame you for everything that happened, we all made choices. I just hope that one day, you realize that what you're doing isn't working. I hope you realize that before any more athletes get to the point of hating the game they once loved.

To the coach that ruined the game for me, I hope you change.

Cover Image Credit: Author's photo

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10 NFL Football Players Who Give Everyone A Reason To Watch Football

If these men don't convince you, nothing will.

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Most girls aren't crazy about football which makes sense, I guess. However, I'm not one of those girls, and I don't think anyone should be. Besides football being an amazing and exciting sport, for those who aren't huge sports fanatics, there are players who make it enjoyable to watch. These players are not only amazing athletes and enjoyable for skill but are pretty gifted in the looks department as well. It gives everyone a reason to watch football games, no matter if it's for the sport of just the guys, there's a valid reason to watch. It can highlight both aspects of the game.

1. JJ Watt

I mean, look at those arms!

2. Luke Kuechly

I mean, look at that hair!

3. Randall Cobb

He's good with kids!

4. Julian Edelman

Again with the hair!

5. Corey Clement

He's got style!

6. Saquon Barkley

The arms!

7. Christian McCaffrey

Again with the arms!

8. Clay Matthews

The hair is everything!

9.  Aaron Rodger

Look at those eyes!

10. Danny Amendola

Again with the eyes!

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