You can answer at anytime at the end of this article, but here is a rundown of the teams in contention for the whiniest fan base. It's certainly not an all-inclusive list, but it does capture most of the whining that I (for one) have been subjected to in the recent years. Ordinarily, a list of the various whines of teams across the country would be completely unpleasant to read, so I've arranged the rundown a little more, um, metaphorically. I hope you enjoy as you peruse college football's finest whines:
(adapted by my lovely wife from the original by monkeyc)
The Arkansas Arrière de Rasoir (Porc for short) is a fine vintage whine, with a lovely red blush and a deep historical tradition. To truly appreciate this fine specimen, you have to travel back to 1990, when Arkansas announced their departure from the Southwest Whine Conference to join the Southeast Whine Conference. With the impending death of the SWC (due to nagging scandals and setbacks), the Porc decided to jump ship early and find more fertile grounds. In doing so, they abandoned their well-established markets with the Texas and Texas A&M whineries, and they promptly found themselves playing second-fiddle to the established giants of the SEC. Going from the top of the heap to the middle of the pack hurt, and the hostility was born.
(Courtesy of Hazel Motes)
Some question the whine-making practices in Arkansas, as the regular partakers appear to suffer from chronic hallucinations of grandeur and relevance. These illusions drive Arkansas to clear out their whinemasters on a regular basis - including M. Gisement de Chapeau, who boasted a career 76% success rate, which is generally considered astonishing for such dubious fields. (Perhaps he wasn't the real McCoy, after all...)
Arrière de Rasoir (also Porc) :: Razorback
M. Gisement de Chapeau :: Mr. Hatfield (Ken)
The origin of the Ours D'Or is among the most closely guarded secret in all whineries. Protected by mobs of baba-cools d'arbre-logement , the recipe has remained sheltered from inquisitive eyes since inception. Yet there are a few details that have been leaked of the production of this rather unique whine: following the rigid California policies against the use of any produits animaux, the leading ingredient appears to be a derivative of a five-leaved herb that grows abundantly in the basements of the region. This whine bears an aromatic, mellow palate distinquished by a flavor that is simultaneously fruity, nutty and herbaceaous, and an appearance that is best described as murky. It is best served with tofu or with brownies. Lots and lots of brownies.
Ours D'Or :: Golden Bears
baba-cools d'arbre-logement :: tree-dwelling hippies
produits animaux :: animal products
Michigan enjoys a truly cultured whine. Aged in the subcooled climes of the northern whinery known as der Dick Haus, the subtle hues and earthen tones of der Dick Haus are generally regarded as too proletariat for the commoners from the other 49 states to appreciate. The distinguishing marks of this whine are: insistence on an academic superiority in the 1-A market (usually uttered at the first sign of adversity); instant and unceasing memories of the 1969 through 1989 vintages; a general belief that the Pryor fields were sour grapes after all; and complete incompatibility with gâteaux or with any dish that is infused with au-dessus du recrutement.
This whine is considered a rite of passage for the boys who enter the hallowed halls of Michigan. The ability to handle this whine is considered a requisite to achieve the fabled status of "Homme du Michigan". The effects of this whine are unknown on females, however, as no "Femme du Michigan" has ever been seen outside her natural protective shell - the parka.
der Dick Haus :: the Big (Portly) House (German)
gâteaux :: cupcakes
au-dessus du recrutement :: overrecruiting
Homme du Michigan :: Michigan Man
Femme du Michigan :: Michigan Woman
You have to give credit to the great state of Alabama, for few thought that such a hot, sweaty, unsavory climate could give birth to such an enduring whine. Few whines can trace their roots with such accuracy as well, for the Marée Cramoisie was firmly established as a national whine during the years 1958 through 1982. During this time, Marée won 6 7 9 12 15 24 3,145 national whine championships.
Unfortunately for Marée, the whineyards seemed to have fallen on hard times over the last decade or so. The brand has been rated at an all-time low over the last few years, yet proponents of the Marée just can't seem to get enough. The most recent move has been to hire a new whinemaster for roughly $4 million a year - a price considered absurdly high by the modern world. This new whinemaster, who is best known for his temporary tenure as the keeper of blackened whines and for his futile attempt to draw whine from the marrow of aquatic mammals, appears to be attempting to reinvigorate the brand through the controversial practice of au-dessus du recrutement. Au-dessus du recrutement - a practice that is generally outlawed by unspoken agreement amongst the more gentlemanly whineries - is often cited as a cheap quick-fix (an antifreeze of sorts), and also make the Marée explosively incompatible with Michigan's der Dick Haus. Yet the Marée faithful don't seem to care; domestic sales of Marée are at all-time highs in recent years and no slowdown is in sight.
Marée Cramoisie :: Crimson Tide
au-dessus du recrutement :: overrecruiting
der Dick Haus :: the Big (Portly) House (German)
LSU is most famous for their creation of the world's only blackened (i.e. burnt) whine - the Chapeau Très Haut des Miles. Details of its production are rather sketchy, though it appears to involve Tabasceaux sauce, deep frying, cheap beaded necklaces, and lots of corn batter. Whatever the recipe, the vats never seem to run dry at the LSU whinery, and the base stock always appears to be at peak form. This wine is known for its murky appearance and robust, musty nose. Experiences with the palate vary; some report a hearty, robust flavor while others have noted an unbalanced, chaotic entrance with a most exhilarating and long finish. However, all agree that this is the least complex of the national whines.
(Do you even want to know the rest of the ingredients? Courtesy of Orangutan Bert 23*32)
Those who are new to the Chapeau should be warned: this whine is most definitely not for the faint of heart. Many first-time partakers underestimated their ability to "heauxld their eauxwn" with this whine, only to wake up walletless and, um, soaked in an alley, or to wake up in a bathtub of ice water, sans kidneys. Encounters with the Chapeau often trend toward the psychedelic, with visions of "purple, wannabepimpish middle-aged men" haunting the afflicted. But for those brave (or foolish) enough to partake, a recent translation of advice on drinking the Chapeau has been released. Much of the indigenous language is still untranslatable, but the gist can be gleaned from the following excerpt. The closest guess is included in brackets where pertinent:
The Chapeau should never be sipped, swirled, or sniffed. It is strictly for GUZZAGUZZAGUZZADOW'THATPIEHEAUXLE!! ["drinking"?] Nothing is better for an evening of CELABRASHON, LOSTA-INHIBISHON, PUB-ALICK INTOXICASHON, INCARCERASHON, AND FORNI[deleted -- ed.] Of course, it can never truly be enjoyed without an ample supply of CORNNNNDEAUXGGIESSSAH TO WASHASDOW' YEAH!!! [unknown] After a bottle or two, you'll be ready to chase that TEBEAUX BACKA TO DO THATA CIRCUMCISHON OFTHE PHILIPINEAUX WITHAMUCH EYE PRECIPITASHON ANDA RED FACIAL COLORASHON AFTATHATALOSS TO THE TIGAHS GEAUXTIGAHGEAUXTIGAHYAHH!!! [We don't even want to know. -- ed.]
Chapeau Très Haut des Miles :: High Hat of Miles
sans :: without
The Notre Dame whine can be neatly summarized in one sentence: the Irlandais de Lutte epitomizes the belief that a good whine improves with age. Older vintages of this whine are esteemed by many to be among the finest whines ever produced - both good for the finest of whine tastings and acceptable for guzzling by the bucketload. Owing to its longstanding association with whine fields across the country, Lutte has produced many individual years which have earned their own titles. Indeed, no whine connoisseur has not heard of such vintages as the 1924 Quatre Cavaliers, the 1928 Victoire une pour le Gipper, the ten-year run of the Années de Parsegienne, and the ever-popular Blésez du Holth (still among the most talked-about brands ever produced).
The initial success of the Notre Dame whineries is usually attributed to their incorporation of the passage vers l'avant into the whinemaking process in 1913. However, the brand has fallen on hard times as of late, having failed to produce a respectable finish at the annual whine showings since 1994. Many suggest that the brand has become passé, as is best summarized by the following quote (source unknown):
The Irlandais de Lutte was once considered the premier vintage to be had in any whine collection, but recent vintages would barely pass as cut-rate mouthwash. The overuse of sucre sentimental, and l'Amour D'espn et de Lemming de Tom in the wine has produced an oversweet, unsatisfying concoction that only the most ardent of Kool-Aid drinkers could suffer.
Irlandais de Lutte :: Struggling Irish
Quatre Cavaliers :: Four Horsemen
Victoire une pour le Gipper :: Win one for the Gipper
Années de Parsegienne :: Years of Parseghian
Blésez du Holth :: Lisp of Holth
passé :: passed by
sucre sentimental :: sugary sentiment
l'Amour D'espn et de Lemming de Tom :: the love of ESPN and Tom Lemming
This whine is the most problematic whine to classify, and some claim that it isn't even a whine at all. Rather, they say, the Tennessee Vol-un-Taire is really more of a backwoods mash produced by locals who still fear the imminent return of "those $#@% revenuers". The argument is difficult to deny when one looks at the production method, which primarily involves corn, mason jars, and a complete lack of regulatory control. Yet the final product bears all the earmarks of a potent whine. The Tennessee Vol-un-Taire evokes strong memories of earlier years, of an era of l'aile simple. It has a robust, smoky palate and leaves a distinct and repetitive rocky notes atop the nose. Many believe that the Vol-un-Taire also bears strong anesthetic qualities; over the last decade, partakers of this brand have become increasingly morose and despondent. But despite a perceived lack of national attention, this brand continues to be one of the strongest-selling brands in the nation. The Vol-un-Taire sells so strongly, in fact, that the the Nee Lande whinery is one of the last in the nation to operate without any government subsidies.
Despite its reputation as one of the most obstinantly traditional whineries in the nation, Tennessee has made significant moves to modernize their facilities. With the addition of M. Fils de Griffe, Tennessee aficionados believe that the Barrière de Griffe will reinvigorate the brand and perhaps even bring approval from the Chef Mondial, whom the locals believe has been adamantly against the brand for years.
Vol-un-Taire :: do you really need a translation? But technically, "flight one to conceal"
l'aile simple :: single wing
Nee Lande :: technically, "Born Moor"
M. Fils de Griffe :: Mr. Claw Son
Barrière de Griffe :: Claw Fence
Chef Mondial :: Worldwide Leader
Megalophilia. One word neatly summarizes the entire marketing campaign of the Fonolocalizador de Bocinas Grandes label. The Texas whinery's obsession with all things large appears to be the result of a birth defect in the region - most likely caused by an unknown contaminant in the Colorado River. Texas is known for seeking only the largest grapes, the largest vats, the largest fields, and the largest bottles. Unfortunately for the consumers, the bottles hold no more than the bottles of any other whinery, but this hasn't stopped the locals from buying the brand at record levels; the mere appearance of bulk seems to satisfy the fétiche de la grandeur that inundates the region. Visitors in the region need not fear; though the whine is served in huge bottles with an incredibly stout palate and an overpowering nose, the de Bocinas Grandes is no more potent than any other whine.
Fonolocalizador de Bocinas Grandes :: Longhorn (Spanish)
fétiche de la grandeur :: love of big things
UCLA, unfortunately, had to be removed from the whine list due to a lack of availability. It seems that they have a problem with the bottles shattering while in storage. With luck, the Ours Bruns d'Eurasie will return next year. Shame, too; they're a perennial favorite of the national whines.
(UCLA 2008: courtesy of Duchamp)
Ours Bruns d'Eurasie :: Bruins
The popularity of the Florida Caimán has been a relatively recent trend, though sporadic years have produced successful vintages. However, they have enjoyed unusual success under some of their recent whinemasters, particularly M. Vieil Autocar de Boule and M. Écartez l'Option. (Be advised not to mention M. Nom Édité to those who partake of Caimán; it is poor form for an outsider to get involved in the mauvais sentiments of his vintages.) The whines of M. de Boule grew an enormous following due to their lofty noses and flighty palate, though the vintages appeared to become rather flat and erratic once leaving the whinery. The jury is still out on the produces of M. l'Option; he has also enjoyed tremendous success at the initial stages, but his whines have not been appreciably tested by the Ligue Nationale de Football Américain since his tenure began. Hope remains high, though, for the limited edition run of the Cru d'Arc de T. This edition of the Caimán, known for its unusually strong legs, its near-perfect sparkle and coloration, and its seemingly flawless palate, will likely be introduced to the Ligue sometime in 2009.
Travelers to the Florida whinery will be surprised to note the existence of many Établissements de Boisson Alcoolisée in the immediate vicinity. While most whineries discourage such businesses adjacent to their factory, Florida appears to encourage these indulgences. This often produces effets d'ivresse in the locals, and has been known to make them rather méchant et brut in their dealings with visitors. Any visitors who do not wish to get involved in such incidents are advised to avoid standing out; cladding oneself in the locally popular culottes bouffantes de treillis (also known as j'orts) is recommended.
Caimán :: Alligators (Spanish)
M. Vieil Autocar de Boule :: Mr. Ole Ball Coach
M. Écartez l'Option :: Mr. Spread Option
M. Nom Édité :: Mr. Name Redacted
mauvais sentiments :: bad feelings
Ligue Nationale de Football Américain :: NFL, but you knew that
Cru d'Arc de T :: T Bow (Tebow)
Établissements de Boisson Alcoolisée :: Bars
effets d'ivresse :: intoxicating effects
méchant et brut :: brutish and nasty
culottes bouffantes de treillis :: jean shorts (jorts)
As is well-documented, competition between whineries is stiff. This competition is not limited to whinery-to-whinery disputes, but often creates regional anomisities. Perhaps the greatest such envy is seen by the whineries outside the Souteastern region of the country. The mere mention of RAPIDITÉ D'ESS-EEE-ÇEE evokes cries of "Surestimé!" and "Sous instruit!". The source of contention appears to be based on climate; D'ESS-EEE-ÇEE whineries enjoy the unusual luxury of year-round growing seasons in their whineyards, while the whineries in cooler climates -such as the Grands Dix (et Un) - must be content to let the fields lie fallow during the winter months. As a result, the northern whines tend to set longer, while the southern whines are legendary for their production speed. Some evidence suggests that the northern whineries are beginning to invest in southern fields to take advantage of the extended growing season, though most northerners scoff at the suggestion that the southern field produce a superior stock. It seems that this debate has no end in sight, even though the north's best whine has routinely turned in abysmal performances at the Mythical National Whine Tasting Championships (BCS, for short), losing by record margins to various southern whineries.
RAPIDITÉ D'ESS-EEE-ÇEE :: SEC SPEEEEEEED!!!!1
Surestimé :: Overrated
Sous instruit :: Undereducated
Grands Dix (et Un) :: Big Ten