Featured Posts

Jan 9, 2007

I wrote this post in Phoenix, therefore it must be important to Phoenicians

On January 8th, the Tostitos BCS Championship Game, brought to you by gads of other sponsors (I'm sure), took place in the Phoenix suburb of Glendale at University of Phoenix Stadium. In the game, the Florida Gators shocked the world (so to speak) by whupping on THE Ohio State Buckeyes, with a final score of 41-14.

No doubt, it was a large sports story, easily the largest of the night, and a shocking capper to the college football season (the game itself was wildly boring, but that's neither here nor there). However, what happened in the game is really immaterial to me. The thing that bothers me is that the story dominated the sports coverage in the Phoenix media.

The sports section of the Arizona Republic? A special full-color front page today, with eight (or so) pages devoted to telling the story and the stats of the game. Local television news? Stories left and right. Sports talk radio? The hot topic of the day, naturally.

Some of this does not bother me and some of it does. Obviously, the game, and news of the game, was the biggest story in sports before and after the game. That said, the coverage of the game (locally) went far, far beyond the amount of coverage you would expect for a sports story not involving one of the local teams. Why - just because it happened to take place here?

I don't get this.

If the convention center suddenly had a spike in stories about the Phoenix area due to the influx of visitors coming to watch and/or cover the game, I would understand that. But what I don't understand is why the game becomes infinitely more important than it would have been otherwise solely due to the fact that it happened 20 miles away from downtown as opposed to 300 miles away. Isn't it the same game regardless?? Coverage of the World Series just but a fraction of the copy devoted to the BCS game. The Stanley Cup Finals? Probably received nary a mention. One could argue that either of those championships are as big as the college football championship games.

I shouldn't be (and am not) all that surprised at all the hullabaloo. Another thing that irks me with great regularity is the sudden interest that we, the general public, are supposed to take with anyone even remotely related to the city we live in. If a soldier in Iraq gets injured, and he or she so happened to pass through Arizona on a driving trip when they were 12, you can bet that the news of their broken leg will make the ten o'clock news. When the US Open is played, Phil Mickelson and every other golfer who ever lived or went to school in Arizona gets their name bolded in the newspaper. Why should I care more about some random golfer just because he played a semester at Northern Arizona University or because he lives in Eloy during the summer?

That's right - I shouldn't.

0 people have chosen wisely: on "I wrote this post in Phoenix, therefore it must be important to Phoenicians"