When my lowly cow-town basketball team went up against Kareem and his brother Jaron, it was like watching a natural disaster in slow motion... or Puerto Rico in regular motion. Our small town boys looked like they were running through molasses as the Rush brothers dunked, blocked, and swished everything in their path. It was horrific and it was ugly. And Saturday, I will re-live that pain.
But what if that didn't happen?
Imagine for a moment, Barry Odom makes some secret Faustian Bargain and beats Alabama. What would that look like? What would the ripple effects from that be? How much would we all drink?
What's the harm of daydreaming?
Here's what we might be able to expect. First of all, at ground zero, in Tuscaloosa, there would be shock and silence. The fans in Alabama would head for the exits early which would only fuel Nick Saban's ever-smoldering rage. The national sports shows would start cutting in and announcing upset alerts and score updates. Paul Finebaum would begin loading the revolver he secretly keeps under his SEC Nation desk. What I'm describing is the prelude to chaos.
It's kind of like when a category-5 hurricane is approaching the shore. The Weather Channel crew battle throbbing erections, and everyone in the storm's projected path begins going nuts, buying plywood, water jugs, and more gasoline than they could possibly ever need. That's what we'd experience in the moments leading up to a Mizzou win in Tuscaloosa.
Once the clock struck 0:00, the storm would hit. On the field, Mizzou players would erupt into a euphoric hysteria. ESPN would attempt to interview Barry Odom while players jumped on him, poured sugary drinks on him, and lifted him above the fray. Ol' Barry himself would utter the usual "I'm just happy for my guys," and "We worked really hard for this," and the obligatory "All respect to Coach Saban and his team. They're a hell of a team." But I'd like to think he'd also work in a Kim Anderson-style rebuke to nay-sayers (like those jerks at the Mizzodcast) in the form of "Shove it up their fucking ass!" He'd deserve to do it.
Back in Columbia, ho boy. Watch the fuck out. It... would... be... a... party. I mean it would be chaos. The bars downtown would start to swell with humanity as the game draws to a close. Social media would be a damn zoo. The Mizzodcast crew would be so so drunk. Also the voicemail line would be an absolute shit show. You will start to get text messages from people you haven't spoken to in years, congratulating you on Mizzou's win. You would pleasure your wife/girlfriend like big bull elk.
Barry Odom would be absolutely clear of any and all "hot seat" talk. You would hear the words "signature win" a lot... I mean a lot.
Drew Lock would begin to get actual real-life Heisman votes. You'll also hear a lot of talk about how he showed he can win the big game on the big stage. You'd hear that a lot.
Drew Lock would impregnate half of Boone County... including your wife/girlfriend, because let's face it. You're not the biggest bull elk around here. It would be a damned honor to have Drew Lock impregnate your wife/girlfriend, were he to beat Alabama. You should be proud.
Mizzou would be ranked suddenly... like #12th in the country or something absurd like that. Oh, and long-shot recruits would start taking Barry Odom's calls.
Paul Finebaum would declare not only the SEC, but all of college football "down" this year.
Flowers would start smelling better. The leaves would be brighter shades of orange and gold. There would be a pep in your step. And then it would happen.
The skies would open up and horsemen would reign terror down on Boone County, as the apocalypse begins.