Friday, October 28, 2011

Scorched Earth Football

William Tecumseh Sherman was the first superintendent of LSU (at the time named Louisiana State Seminary of Learning and Military Academy). By all accounts he was the best man for the job and did a tremendous job as head of the University. He was only there for a brief period of time but made a lasting contribution. Less than 5 years after leaving LSU - Sherman's name was hated in the state.

Nick Saban was the head football coach at LSU for about the same period of time as it took to wage the Civil War. He took over the program in November of 1999 and stayed on the job for 5 years. In 2003 he led the school to a BCS Championship. The program has been a top program ever since.

Now Nick Saban is the head coach of the Alabama Crimson Tide a program he led to a National Championship in 2009. I can't help but think that Saban and Sherman are somehow kindred. Both are probably held in similar regard by the people of Louisiana.

As a further Civil War connection - the LSU team name is the Tigers. This comes from the Civil War where Robert E. Lee started calling all soldiers from Louisiana "Tigers" after a New Orleans infantry company called the "Tiger Rifles" fought so well for him and his Army of Northern Virginia.

I can't believe I have to wait another week for this game.

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