2024 – Orwell would be proud

Staff Written Sports

Thank goodness it’s 2024 and all this other stuff is finally behind us. Remember 2020?  It was horrific, wasn’t it?  The pandemic and the election almost killed us all.  The year of the vaccine and a new President. Boy, it’s great to be alive and well at 67.  I’m just thankful for all the changes I’ve seen since that fateful year.

Ahhh…2020. That was the year that high school football was cancelled.  Yep, completely and totally cancelled.  Can you imagine?  My, how things have changed. That was also the year of the most talked-about presidential election ever.  Thank goodness we all came to our senses after that.  The whole world came to their senses.

It’s hard to revisit that year at times.  Before that football season we actually thought we enjoyed high school, college, and professional football.  How laughable is that when you think back?  But that was before all our politicians convinced us that we never really liked football anyway.  No, no, no.  How could we?  It’s a barbaric sport with grown men and even teenagers beating each other up, sweating and even bleeding all over their opponents, and even trying to win.  Boy, am I glad that these people in charge helped us all see the light.  

Today’s game is so much more civilized.  It’s all touch.  There’s very little, if any, touching really.  Why did we enjoy that “other” game called football?  I mean, who would actually want to watch our favorite teams like Georgia, Alabama, or Florida trying to win the game by advancing the ball with such brute force and the most elite athletes to be found?  Who in their right mind would enjoy heckling the referees, tailgating with our friends, and screaming till we were horse as we rooted our alma maters onto victory over a hated rival?  

But, thanks to our reeducation on things by Big Brother, we have come to realize the new rules of the game and for society are simply for our betterment.  Of course, they are.  And of course, the government officials are always right, aren’t they? 

Think about all these rules changes we have.  The game is now for the masses.  The first major change was so obvious.  The game was a male-dominated sport.  We can’t have that.  It’s sexist.  Nowadays teams must have a female starting at quarterback, at least one of the running back and receiver positions, and every other line position.  However, females can only touch females on the other team and males can only touch males when making a “stop.”  

Flag football was tried, but flags were too political, so the touch game came into being.  Like flags, uniforms with team colors and mascots were also outlawed after some fans complained that they wanted to wear different colors at every game and that some teams had nicer colors and uniforms as well as a cooler mascot that was politically correct. No more Dogs or Cats these days. It might make their owners feel bad.

Referees, who were obviously biased against every team that was losing, were banned and later defunded as was the Georgia High School Association (GHSA) and Georgia Athletic Coaches’ Association (GACA).  When schools complained that all teachers should be allowed to join these organizations, not just coaches who legitimately coached a team, the Governor stepped in and disbanded the groups.  He instead set up Teachers and Parents Against Coaches so that every one of them would have a say-so and vote on who the starters were.  That way all these individuals could then pencil in their own child as a starter to help the coaches see the error of their ways.

Winning? Who cares about winning anymore thanks to the Federal Government?  Thankfully, they have helped us grow concerning this ludicrous idea.  It is now against the rules to celebrate in any form or fashion when a team scores a touchdown.  To cut down on this ridiculous behavior, both teams are now awarded points when either team scores.  Seems fair to me.  It is also a requirement to celebrate when a player fumbles or makes a mistake like dropping a pass that hits him right in the numbers. This only helps to bring up their self-esteem.  After all, we would never want a player to feel like they had to try or work harder to make up for their mistake. That’s just not right.

How about this great new rule?  All players must participate in every game at the high school level and every player gets an award at the banquet.  It doesn’t matter if he can’t walk and chew gum at the same time.  It doesn’t matter if he can’t bench press half his body weight.  Why should it?  What’s more important; a young lady’s athleticism or that she learns that she will always be accepted as the best no matter whether she is or not?  We know that when they get a job later in life that this lesson will have to be thrown out the window, but who cares?  Let’s not worry about that until later.

One particularly intriguing thing is the waving of any coaches to have an opinion.  It’s in their contract now.  They have to wave their right to freedom of speech and freedom of religion.  Why should a coach have any opinions anyway?  While they are coaching other people’s children, they should never have the right to speak their mind on politics or talk about God.  It doesn’t matter that they are off work and want to talk about their political or religious beliefs.  Unless it goes along with the majority of those in political office, of course.  Then, and only then, are they allowed to expound on those in office or policies they agree with.  Heck, if they don’t agree, they should be fired at all costs.  Agreed?

I also particularly appreciate the mandates that universities, at the urging of Big Brother, have put in to help out our maligned college scholarship athletes.  We all know that these players don’t get enough perks for playing at the college level.  So, here’s some new info on what the PAC-12 is doing.  Who would ever think that a free college education culminating in a degree that many borrow money on and will never, ever pay off, individual tutors for each class, the best food money can buy plus an open cafeteria for snacks, the best free health care they will ever have in their lifetime, the highest-paid doctors and specialists to see during an illness or injury, free housing, a fitness facility like none of us regular folks will ever afford to see the inside of, an individual fitness trainer, free tickets to all home games, and a possible multi-million dollar contract to play professionally would ever be enough?

Now, they can differ with the head coach, assistant coaches, and anyone on the staff when it comes to playing time, political affiliations, religious beliefs, and any other bevy of ideas.  If they desire, they can call for that person’s firing or lowering of pay, their removal to another department, and most importantly, a personal letter of apology for their lack of “wokeness” to this person’s individual situation.  Also, the athletes will receive full compensation and their choice of a new Mercedes, BMW, or Lexus for their time spent in this atrocious environment. I personally believe and hope that in the near future the players will be able to call all the plays so that their “number” is called up to be in line with their “abilities.”  It’s about time, don’t you think? 

Well, this new game of football and this new society we live in sure are great, aren’t they?  I’m just glad that in 2020 neither party could decide on who should be our President.  That’s when they opted for Richard Pryor and Robin Williams post-mortem as co-presidents.  It’s OK.  If dead people can vote in 2024, why can’t they serve too?  

George Orwell would be proud…wouldn’t he?  Sports will never be the same.  I don’t miss the good old days at all.

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