Football Friday

My wife and I recently started a business in which we sell prepared hot meals that are ready to take home and eat. I am talking about this a. to shamelessly plug our business (Provision Kitchen! Check it out!) and b. to let you know that I have learned something since we opened our doors.

Our storefront has a cracked window. I need to get rid of a small ant bed that has cropped up on our front steps. The floor inside is this idiotic mashup of random faux-wood laminate sections that the building's previous occupant threw together whether they fit or not.

We've spruced the place up and made it look as cozy and welcoming as we can, but it has its flaws.

Despite all that business has been booming. We have a thriving clientele that has had almost nothing but good things to say about what we do.

Do you want to know why? It's very simple.

Because the food is good, and we treat our customers well.

We've served over 50 different entrees, salads, sandwiches, soups and desserts over the past month and a half, and not one of them has been a miss. Almost without exception our customers have raved about the food. And in the brief moments that we get to interact with them we do our very best to make them feel good about being around us and eating our food. Because of that they keep coming back.

The product is good, so the people who frequent our establishment overlook some of our other blemishes.

This is what Nick Saban and the administrators at Alabama just don't get. And it's why they look like complete buffoons when they gripe about game times hurting attendance.

First of all, YOU ARE ALABAMA, the alpha king of college football for the past decade and a half. Act like it.

This whining about noon game times against non-conference home opponents is so petty and insecure and beneath someone of your station. It's the sports equivalent of Donald Trump's name-dropping and griping about the media. Every time it happens I have one thought. YOU'RE THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES. What more validation do you need?

I have news for Saban and the complainers in chief of the University of Alabama. It doesn't matter if your games are played in 72 degree weather with 28 percent humidity and you have servants fanning your attendees with palm fronds. When you're beating Southern Miss 38-3 at halftime next week those people are going to leave the game and go find better things to do. Blowouts against clearly inferior opponents are not entertaining.

In other words the product sucks, so people leave.

I guarantee you if you were playing LSU at noon in 100-degree September heat not a single seat would be empty. Your problem has nothing to do with when you are playing and everything to do with who you are playing. And until that changes, griping about your game times is going to always come off as the petty tantrums of a spoiled brat.

Now onto this week's games.

Handley at Booker T. Washington

For the second straight week Handley will play on the road against a team that it has never lost to in football. And for the second straight week the Tigers will come home with a blowout victory.

Handley 43, Booker T. Washington 6

Springville at Clay Central

For the second straight week, Central will play against a team that it has never lost to in football. And for the second straight week the Volunteers will finish with a blowout victory.

Central 42, Springville 6

Loachapoka at Wadley

This will be another one-sided affair as Wadley recovers from its oh-so-close loss to Lanett last week. The Bulldogs get back on track.

Wadley 40, Loachapoka 0

Ranburne at Woodland

The Bulldogs invade Woodland for the first time since the Bobcats nearly pulled off one of the biggest upsets in the history of this rivalry two years ago. Ranburne, which went on to play in the second round of the playoffs, needed a last-minute touchdown to come from behind and beat Woodland 13-12 in 2017. This year the talent once again favors Ranburne, especially on the defensive side, and I'm guessing the Bulldogs won't be caught napping again.

Ranburne 34, Woodland 0

RCHS at Piedmont

Over the last two years these two teams have played four of the most entertaining, memorable, nail-biting, high-stakes football games in recent memory. It doesn't have the long history that some of the other rivalries in the area have, but for two years RCHS vs. Piedmont has been hands-down the best rivalry in the area.

This year there's a little added juice in this game as former RCHS starter Trey McFarland transferred over the summer and now suits up for the Bulldogs.

For as closely matched as these two teams have been, RCHS hasn't beaten Piedmont in the regular season since 2005. Add in the fact that realignment following this season may once again take these two teams out of the same region, and tonight could be the Tigers' last shot to end that streak for a while.

In years past talent hasn't been the issue in RCHS's inability to beat Piedmont in September. Depth has. Piedmont's ability to play more guys has kept them stronger late in games during the warmer early-season temperatures.

I think that pattern holds true tonight. The talent will be mostly equal again, and there will certainly be plenty of motivation for both teams, but Piedmont's depth will once again wear RCHS down.

Piedmont 28, RCHS 21

College

It's another cupcake week for Georgia (vs. Arkansas St.) and Auburn (Kent St.), while Alabama has to go to South Carolina for the first time since losing there in 2010. So there's little intrigue to those games. All three college teams win big, after which Alabama and its fans will continue to gripe about inconsequential nonsense like the CBS announcers.

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