A little while after I wrote about Texas A&M and how I didn’t really feel that much contempt for the Aggies anymore, a new controversy was brought to my attention.
Sort of ironically, my friends and I were waiting in line on Saturday evening at Freebirds World Burrito, a chain restaurant that originated in College Station, Texas. They told me that Texas A&M decided to add two conference championships and two national championships to the side of its stadium. This apparently caused a big Twitter stir on Friday, which I somehow missed.
The “new” championships made me roll my eyes.
It also made me wonder what logical stretch the Aggies used to justify adding these numbers to the side of the stadium.
But mostly it made me think about why commemorative banners and retired numbers and A&M’s national and conference championships on the side of its stadium matter. Or perhaps more accurately, why they don’t matter.
As far as I can tell, the best thing a championship banner does most of the time it spends hanging from the rafters is that when a fan looks up at the rafters in the idle moments of a halftime or timeout or between innings, he or she sees it and thinks “I remember that team. ______ was amazing that season.”
Championship banners are the physical manifestation of nostalgia.
But they’re not like a museum exhibit, because no one really learns anything from them.
And that’s why Texas A&M’s decision to add those numbers to the side of its stadium was stupid. Who is going to feel nostalgic about a championship that at best only kind of happened a long, long time ago, or at worst didn’t really happen at all?
Photo via Rant Sports.
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