I saw my first UT football game on TV in 1969, the Gator Bowl. The Vols lost to the Gators 14-13 and the rumors running rampant said Doug Dickey was leaving to go to this same Florida team. Man, to lose that game, then the coach, to the same team gave me an early hatred of the gators.
I had listened to the Vols with family on the Radio that year, Bobby Majors could have given Superman a wedgie in my eyes. There were to many heroes to list here. One of these days I will give a run down on UT memories thru my time.
38 years of UT football. Tradition, Shoot, my 86 year old grandmother has followed the Vols, how's that for tradition? I dont think the gators know what Tradition is.
Lately I have been thinking about Tradition in Major College Football. What Tradition? you ask as College Football time is fast approaching? The Bands! Playing at halftime, and all the coverage that went along with a TV game at your school.
One of the things I enjoyed in the stone age, before ESPN, and massive coverage, was each game on TV was treated as something special, many teams were lucky to be on TV each season at all. There was good feeling to see your band perform, and both bands were shown during halftime. I really miss that tradition.
This is also where I know I am getting old... I would 100 percent rather see the bands at the half as to listen to anymore talking heads spout off about some wonder team or player somewhere.
Every year I send a note to ESPN and CBS begging them to show the bands at halftime, even if its in the background. Never any luck there. They have too many folks with to much to say in their 15 minutes to bother with the bands. No, I'm not even thinking of the TV glimpse of the "thrill" of the Ohio St band dotting the I. Spelling must be a chore in Ohio. or the battle of the bands every year. I am talking about big time SEC Bands in action.
I think College Football has lost something special in its growth to a 3 night a week ESPN college gameday talkfest. I think it is now only something that we and our kids can experience by being at the game. The atmosphere used to jump out of the TV in the old days Its a shame we have lost this tradition. Now the networks want to make the game fit in a neat little three hour box. Really enjoyed that time rule last year networks. Something special is missing not to have the bands, and sometimes I think a network positions their sound stuff as far away from the bands as they can get.
Just for the record I like being able to see UT play as many times a year as they can on TV, so part of the change was good. Either way, I feel unbelievably old wanting to see the bands and not the sports politicians. Just wanted to vent a little bit.