Scooter Hobbs column: Entitled Tide feel left out

Published 6:49 am Monday, January 9, 2023

Those scintillating semifinal come-back wins by Georgia over Ohio State and little old TCU over Michigan set the bar high.

It might have produced the most exciting back-to-back games in college football history.

Good luck to the CFP championship game matching that.

Still, that glorious college football day has already paid dividends to society that are impossible to measure on the playing field or TV ratings.

Mainly, the next day, it had fans of all stripes and colors in awe. It had everybody talking nonstop about the glory of college football, the pageantry, the excitement, the excellence and … and Alabama wasn’t in the discussion, not even a passing mention.

Oh, it was hilarious.

The Tide were on the outside looking in.

By the time social media cranked up the next day, the Bama precincts, desperately trying to get a foot in the click-bait door, had somehow twisted the story line to where the great games were just more undisputed proof that Alabama should have been the playoff.

Most of the threads started something like …

“The. Committee. Got. It. Wrong!”

“This is a farce without Alabama.”

“Tide beats both these teams by 3 TDs”

(And later …)

“Tide beats any of these 4 teams by 3 TDs.”

“The CFP misses Alabama.”

“Still think Bama didn’t belong in playoff?”

“CFP don’t count if you don’t beat Bama.”

Oh, it was hilarious and a sight to behold.

Nobody seemed to complain that Tennessee and LSU weren’t involved despite being the reasons the Tide had to send regrets.

Anyway, we’ve somehow arrived at the national championship game without any Alabama input.

Having the dominant defending champion, Georgia, against an upstart, rags-to-riches underdog TCU team that America will surely get behind seems to be a pretty good outcome, Bama or not.

Even the Southeastern Conference loyalists — SEC! SEC! SEC! — are having a hard time holding the ranks in support of their Georgia brethren.

TCU, on the other hand, makes a horned lizard seem warm and cuddly.

Yet there are problems.

Mainly, it’s in Los Angeles, which really doesn’t know anything about college football except the Rose Bowl — and that’s not where the game is.

It’s in the gorgeous, if a little too Star Trekky for my taste, SoFi Stadium.

That’s OK … I guess.

But somebody didn’t read the fine print. It has now come to light that SoFi Stadium will allow no tailgating in its parking lots before the game.

No who?

Yes, you read that right.

No tailgating for the college football national championship.

You can park. You can even loiter a bit before the game. But no tents and no grills. I would assume 500-gallon boiling rigs are frowned upon, too.

Have those La-La folks never tasted Georgia or Fort Worth barbecue?

But SoFi Stadium is begging off. It is not the stadium, it has told angry mobs from both schools, but the CFP itself that has come down against any honest tailgating.

They offered no options as to how self-respecting Dawg and Horned Toad fans are supposed to prepare for the game.

And that’s not the worst news.

Georgia will play for the national championship, and yet mascot Uga X will not be there. This is blasphemy.

This is not any dawg we’re talking about here. Uga is royalty, the nation’s only mascot debonair enough to wear a tuxedo tastefully. He’s equally at home on the football field, the neighborhood kennel or the red carpet.

But not to Los Angeles, apparently due to the length of the trip.

OK. But I know for a fact that Lake Charles’ most famous canine, Jeanie the Three-Legged Dog, has made multiple trips to Los Angeles.

Not sure what effect it will have on the game.

But Uga’s absence could just be more proof that Alabama should have been in the playoff.

Scooter Hobbs covers LSU athletics. Email him at scooter.hobbs@americanpress.com