Sunday, January 11, 2009

Football God(s)

As this year's playoff performances demonstrate, apparently God does care about football. Here's a teaser:
As someone who has intensely followed sports for all of my life, I am convinced that there is often some greater force at work that transcends the people involved, and these chiastic patterns are evidence of it. Call it karma, call it football gods, call it fate, call it destiny, call it whatever you want: there's something there.


Katie said...

My very religious Freshman year roommate told me once that the Rams would never win a Super Bowl because Jesus would never allow a team with horns to be victorious.

True story. And for the record: She was a Vikings fan.

Drew said...

Hahaha, great story. But the Rams did win a Superbowl against the Tennessee Titans in 1999, I think.

Darren Staley said...

I think that this post is much deeper than it seems on the surface.

There is a tendency in this country to automatically assume that the unexplainable or inexplicable is attributed to a higher power by default.

Let me give an example:

The Panthers were favored by virtually every analyst to beat the Cardinals. Vegas had them 10-point favorites. Did God (or a god) decide to intervene, or is there a simpler explanation?

One semester I had four classes, three that were tough and one pretty easy, so I focused on the three and took the fourth for granted. On my first exam on the easy course, I bombed (by my standards). Why? Because I was looking ahead.

Pile this on with it being the Panther's QB's birthday and a team owner awaiting a heart transplant, and things become even clearer. You ignore the fundamentals and try to do more than you are capable.

Did God make me bomb that exam to teach me a lesson? No. I still paid less attention to that course because I needed to focus on the others.

Did God make Delhomme throw a half-dozen picks because he did too many Bojangles commercials? Of course not.

Both Delhomme and myself were distracted and prioritizing. Sometimes it's just that simple.

And if God is really spending his time messing around with football games and undergrad exams, maybe He needs to prioritize Himself.

Anonymous said...

As an atheist, I believe that God does not exist. As a football fan, I know that the football Gods exist. They live high on Mount Lombardi, giving me hope, but only until they can snatch it away at the last moment. They are evil and capricious beings, akin to the Greek gods. Wide right, the Music City Miracle, the last two Monday night games, a home game in Toronto. To a Buffalo Bills fan, the football Gods are very real, and very evil.

Matt F.

P.S. Damnitt, buffalos have horns. I now agree with Katie's roommate.

Pat Carr said...

My brother, Bob Ferguson, would call it the "Ferg" factor. When he moved to Southern California the Angels won the World Series. Upon his arrival in Boston, the Patriots and the Red Sox began their winning streaks in the Superbowl and the World Series. He was then transferred to Philadelphia and low and behold the Eagles emerge from no where and seem to be on their way for a run to the Superbowl. Now I know my brother well and he is no "god" but you must admit he has something going for him.

Katie said...

Tell your brother about all the wonderful job opportunities in Wisconsin. We Packer fans would love to have him!

Anonymous said...

If God listened to the prayers of men, all men would quickly perish: for they are forever praying for evil against one another.

+ Epicurus +

Drew said...

I now know that Dem Bones has the best readership ever....when quotes of ancient Stoic philosophers grace a post on football and the divine. sweet.

Pat, any chance your brother is going to move to Dallas anytime soon?

Anonymous said...

Thanks Drew, it is a quote I remember from Philosophy Class at UVA.

Keep up the good work. Check your blog later