College football has never been under so much scrutiny off the field as it is today, but it continues to grow in popularity with each passing year.
There have been countless major programs that have faced major allegations along with many teams changing conferences at an alarming rate. Despite all of the negatives surrounding the sport, it’s as popular today as it ever was in the past.
The reason? College football will always be a major draw to fans all across the country because America loves the underdogs, the rivalries and the players that come out of nowhere to become household names.
Regardless of what changes come about, there will always be upsets like the five Football Championship Subdivision teams that beat FBS schools in week one. There will always be cinderellas making national noise like Northern Illinois did last year when they crashed the BCS. There will always be players like the 2012 Heisman Trophy Winner Johnny Manziel “Johnny Football” who became the first freshman to ever win the Heisman and went from being a nobody to a household name.
While it’s too early to tell who might crash the BCS this season, Florida State freshman quarterback Jameis Winston has already made himself a household name despite only starting in one game. Winston burst onto the scene with an impressive debut against Pittsburgh when he threw for 356 yards with four touchdowns and only threw two incompletions.
This is why we love college football. Week to week, year to year, it is nearly impossible to know what will happen. The atmosphere surrounding the sport is rivaled by none.
Although historic rivalries are coming to an end, it will not hinder the popularity, only the tradition. From the ashes of all the beloved rivalries that are disappearing, new rivalries are being born everywhere in college football.
Last season, Johnny Football single-handedly gave birth to the Alabama vs. Texas A&M rivalry as he stunned every college football fan in the country en route to beating top-ranked Bama 29-24. His performance in that game was spectacular, amassing 345 total yards and two passing touchdowns.
Due to the upset from a season ago, this Saturday’s matchup between the two schools is perhaps the most anticipated game of the year. Expect nothing less than another nail-biter that will have all college football fans on the edge of their seats.
Conference realignment has also given birth to exciting new rivalries such as Texas vs. TCU, Nebraska vs. Iowa and Texas A&M vs. LSU. As all the conference realignment continues to occur, more new rivalries will be created. It won’t be long before schools like Rutgers and West Virginia create rivalries once they settle into the Big 10 and the Big 12, respectively.
It is sad to see programs crumble after enduring heavy allegations and penalties. It is even sadder to watch rivalries fade away in front of our eyes due to money. However, college football will continue to endure these atrocities and gain popularity.
The sport is without a doubt one of the most popular in the country due to its nature of always creating drama and storylines that America cannot seem to grow tired of. No matter what negative circumstances it may face, college football will always be loved by America.