It can no longer be denied that the state of Alabama has a lot to be proud of these days, at least in terms of college football. In the last two seasons† Alabama has produced two different national championship teams, both of which made it out of the hardest conference in college football with undefeated records.
The Auburn University Tigers finished off this season by defeating the University of Oregon Ducks 22-19 in the Tostitos National Championship Game. That victory marked a remarkable ending to a season filled with controversy.
Quarterback Cameron Newton was accused of asking for payment while being recruited by universities. These accusations, however, did not stop Newton from having a spectacular season resulting in him winning not only a national championship but also in a Heisman Trophy.
Despite both Auburn and Oregon having impressive offenses throughout their respective seasons, the final score of the National Championship was relatively low.
This was due in large part to the impressive performance of Auburn defensive lineman Nick Fairley. With three sacks, Fairley dominated the Oregon offensive line and managed to hold the Oregon offense to only 19 points.
This performance, however, surprised few fans of the Southeastern Conference. The SEC has always been noted for the defensive intensity of its teams. It also came as little surprise that Auburn walked away with the championship due to the fact that the last five national championship teams in Division I Bowl Subdivision football have all been members of the SEC.
As someone who grew up in the state of Alabama, I can honestly say that these victories have been a wonderful addition to the resume of my home state. Although I am sure that somewhere in society there are long lists of why college football recruits should come to the state of Alabama, I honestly cannot think of a single item to put on the list.
I would say we have hundreds of miles of sandy beaches, but we do not; that’s Florida and California. I would say that our major universities are in cities with massive amounts of culture and entertainment, but they aren’t.
But, we can now brag about something which I believe all college football recruits value; both coaches at both of our major universities have won national championships in the last two seasons and quite frankly, that is something which every Alabamian can be proud of.
We may not have the most impressive political or social history, and winning a national championship certainly doesn’t change that, but it does bring a level of positive energy to a state which is not known for positive national attention.
This year I have had almost 20 people ask me where Auburn University is located, but after the national championship, I am pretty sure everybody knows where the Tigers come from.