Different sport, same result.
Last winter, the pride of SEC football had the inside track to a national title until they were tripped up by the Big Ten’s entry into the first-ever playoff.
Remember the doubters who thought Ohio State didn’t belong in football’s version of the Final Four? The Buckeyes proceeded to silence the naysayers by reminding everyone of why we play these games in the first place. And the SEC was left to grumble about the one that got away.
It’s now three months later, and another SEC team sees its dream of a national championship in smoldering ruins. The overmatched, plodding, too-slow Big Ten has once again delivered a knockout punch to their highly-vaunted Southern rivals. It’s a joyless Easter for those in Kentucky, and wherever else any SEC loyalties exist.
It gives me no great joy to see either Ohio State or Wisconsin triumph on this level. I have no emotional attachment to either school, and during the regular season I want to see them get their brains beat in whenever possible. But I have to enjoy their success when it comes at the expense of any other sports conference, and the SEC is the primary source of my schadenfreude impulses.
Southern schools will continue to believe they are better than everybody else, no matter the results on the field or the hardwood. But those who would knock the Big Ten–in this or any other year–are hereby invited to keep their delusions to themselves.