Well, I’ll tell ya’ Eee-Lah…

After a game, I huff as fast as I can up Bragg Ave. to get to my car — I park at the end of Sanders Street. I open the door and jam the key in and crank it up and find the station — I do that even before the cigar. I mean, I’ll get the Auburn stats and the locker room “you know, I mean, we just came out to play” quotes later. What I won’t get later is the comically mouth-dropping, love-to-hate-it drivel of Eee-Lah and Snake. You can’t relive that stuff on the internet, that’s in the moment, and it’s my second favorite part of football Saturdays, seriously.

And it’s art! I mean, I’ve heard Kenny Stabler say, in that full-tilt crazy-haired twang, and in all seriousness, that everyone knows that rain always helps the visiting team. It was like, fifteen years ago or something, I was in the car as a kid listening, hoping they’d lose, and they were on their way early in the first quarter, to Mississippi State I think. It was a home game and it was barely sprinkling and that’s what ol’ Snake Stabler said to explain it — rain helps the visiting team, everyone knows that! And oh man, did anyone hear when Joe Namath popped in the booth for a few hours during last year’s Tennessee broadcast? A-R-T.

So while I feel for the citizenry of south Alabama, I’m thankful that keeping Snake as co-pilot is now the fashionable thing. Early on though, it wasn’t. When it was hot off the press, Finebaum was pouring it on like nothing I’ve ever heard from him. It was actually really funny, but it was harsh. For reasons both of ego and it’s-the-right-thing decency, he was trying to set the tone for what Bama administrators would have to respond to. He was gone, fired, finished! And he probably would have been had Paul not suddenly changed his tune. Ah, but thank goodness Paul’s leg tingleth still for Saban, who’s resounding endorsement of Stabler – “he’s a great ambassador for the University” – he quoted in his latest column, a column unbelievingly, flip-floppingly headlined “Crimson Tide should stand by Stabler.”

…’cause three DUI’s be damned — I don’t want to lose my tradition and it’s looking like Bama doesn’t want to lose theirs. Finebaum obviously doesn’t want to lose his, either.


1 Comment

Filed under Diversions / Investigations, Iron Bowl 365

One response to “Well, I’ll tell ya’ Eee-Lah…

  1. Kenny Stabler, to my mind, is clearly one of the ten best QBs in NFL history. His many awards and passing records speak for themselves. However, to get to the heart of “The Snake’s” mystique you would need to see how time and again he would lead the Raiders to miraculous victories in the final pressure-packed minutes and waining seconds of important regular season, AFC Divisional and Championship Playoff games.
    He was the undisputed master of the two-minute drill. His teamates and the Oakland faithful believed in him unreservedly. The opposing defenses were helpless as Stabler cooly marched his team down the field utilizing his uncanny play calling and precision passing. Aware of the seconds passing, managing every detail of the offense, indifferent to the harrowing pass rush, Stabler was a maestro, his receiving corps the orchastra. He threw precision darts to sure-handed Fred Biletinokoff on the sidelines and across the middle. He stretched the field with soaring spirals to world-class speedster Cliff Branch. The helpless defenses were further confounded when Ken hit tight-end extrordinare Dave Casper here there and everywhere. No time outs? No problem. Eighty yards against the wind? No problem. In front of a noisy, hostile crowd in bad weather? No problem. The more extreme and precarious the situation, the cooler “The Snake” became. In moments such as these, the game sped up for most players; for him, things slowed down and he thrived.
    Some speak of Elway, others of Montana, Staubach and even Manning. With a couple of minutes left in an important game against a tough rival, I’ll take Alabama-bred Kenny Stabler, wearing the Silver and Black, anyday against anyone, anywhere. No timeouts are needed, just give him the ball and get outta the way. The “Snake” knows what to do…

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