All My Excess Lives in Texas

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So I'm watching the Channel 8 news Monday night at 6:29 and after a sparkling fill-in sportscast by Ted Madden he alerts viewers that:

" ... in the game, Texas already trails, 1-0."

To which anchor Gloria Campos valiantly responds, "Aw, but they'll come back."

Adds John McCaa, "Let's hope so."

At this point I should remind you that they were talking not about your Texas Rangers, but rather the Texas Longhorns in the College World Series.

The word that floated up to my thought bubble: Why?!

I wrote a column about this a couple years back and it still fascinates me. That is, Dallas' convenient obsession with the University of Texas.

Don't get me wrong, the CWS is an intriguing event. Baseball players not yet good enough for the majors (or minors) scrapping for the love of the game. I went to Omaha in '91 and I get it. I really do. But after Texas' 5-1 victory over LSU last night that evened the series 1-1 and set up tonight's championship game I half expected the Bank of America building's green lights to turn burnt orange.

Trust me, the unaffiliated folks in Orlando - like Dallas, a big city without a big-time college sports program - don't mindlessly hitch their bandwagons to Florida. Some like Florida State. Some Miami. Some Central Florida. There isn't a convenient "our team."

Would Madden and Campos and McCaa give a damn if it was Texas A&M in the CWS? Or Baylor? Or even TCU? Doubtful. Went to a sports bar last night and the game was on. One of my buddies greeted another, "Who's winning?" Answer: "We're up 2-0."

None of us attended UT.

There has to be a logical explanation:

A. Bandwagonism.

B. Unprecedented state pride.

C. Desperation born from not winning shit in this town since 1999.

D. Unfathomably extensive alumni base.

E. Boredom.

F. Okay, then you tell me.

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