Let’s just start off by saying I bleed blue and I was very happy with the results of this past Saturday’s game. A win is always nice, but it’s especially nice when it comes against a rival.
But I was disappointed in the comments of the BYU quarterback, Max Hall, who after the game blasted the University of Utah. It was a sad display of what this rivalry has come to mean for many, and while I hate to say it, I think it’s time to step away.
I’ve noticed over the last eight or nine years of truly caring about BYU football that the annual Holy War has steadily disintegrated into a truly hateful and spiteful time of the year. I worked many years in SLC, and I was often the lone Cougar fan in the office. I saw first-hand much of the vehemence of Rivalry Week. And that’s not to say that only the U of U is guilty; I’m sure that there are an equal number of instances of BYU fans exhibiting the same behavior. And I just have to ask where all the fun went in the game? Where does the mutual respect and admiration exist?
I have trouble understanding how Max Hall could say that he hates everything about the U. To be fair, I have trouble understanding how a U fan could hate everything about the Y. I have heard numerous people state exactly that, and when I worked in SLC, I even saw some very negative effects of it. I remember one coworker who, when he found out I had attended and graduated from the Y, instantly labeled me and refused to recognize anything related to me in the work environment. And I do mean anything. And every time he saw me, he felt a great need to insult and attack me. I mean… really? My entire value in your eyes is based on my school of choice?
While it’s not going to happen, I really do wish both schools would step away from it for five years. Let the tempers cool down. Let the genuine anger dissipate. It’s just a football game, both universities are credits to their cities and the state, and both produce qualified and responsible people.
Unfortunately, it’s the few true neanderthals produced by both schools who have soured me. It’s just not fun anymore.