Championship Seasons


Photos by Amy Hall

Alabama made history this January when two different college football teams won back to back national championships and a player from each of those teams won the Heisman Trophy two years in a row. What makes this story even better is that the two football teams are rivals. Not just ordinary run-of-the-mill rivals, mind you, but the type of rivalry that allows for the existence of the great game that is the Iron Bowl. As further evidence of this exemplary rivalry, who in this city has never uttered a “War Eagle” or “Roll Tide?”
And yet, on an uncharacteristically snowy day in Birmingham, the Auburn Tigers were in Phoenix and those who traditionally wear crimson and white were glued to their televisions pulling for “the other team from Alabama.” Certainly there were those die hard Alabama fans who simply could not bring themselves to cheer for their rival but far and away, on Twitter and Facebook and across the city, the overwhelming refrain was “War Eagle.”
Pay attention because there is a business lesson to be learned here. Rivalries can be good. They challenge us and give us a reason to push harder, go faster, keep our competitive edge. This is the reason that regardless how strong (or weak) the teams are in a particular year, the Iron Bowl is guaranteed to be one battle of a game.
But within certain rivalries, especially those where both parties enrich the same community, competitiveness gives way to cooperation and appreciation. Hence the War Eagles tweeted and shouted by traditional Alabama fans. The impact of a local team in the national championship game two years in a row is huge. The Birmingham Shuttlesworth International Airport gets additional traffic and revenue, local merchants sell national championship gear and we all get to bask in the glory of our state housing the best college football team for the second year in a row. Everyone wins.
So if you’re an Alabama fan, congratulate your Auburn friends and enjoy living in the state that is the college football powerhouse:  your team contributed to that too. The teams meet again in the Fall. Until then, War Eagle and Roll Tide!
Owned by Brent Barringer, Krista Conlin and Jenifer Champ Wallis, The Pillars, LLC was created as a positive media outlet to highlight Birmingham’s successful businesses, businesspeople and business spaces. To read each Pillar’s complete article, go to www.thepillarsllc.com

Alabama made history this January when two different college football teams won back to back national championships and a player from each of those teams won the Heisman Trophy two years in a row. What makes this story even better is that the two football teams are rivals. Not just ordinary run-of-the-mill rivals, mind you, but the type of rivalry that allows for the existence of the great game that is the Iron Bowl. As further evidence of this exemplary rivalry, who in this city has never uttered a “War Eagle” or “Roll Tide?”  And yet, on an uncharacteristically snowy day in Birmingham, the Auburn Tigers were in Phoenix and those who traditionally wear crimson and white were glued to their televisions pulling for “the other team from Alabama.” Certainly there were those die hard Alabama fans who simply could not bring themselves to cheer for their rival but far and away, on Twitter and Facebook and across the city, the overwhelming refrain was “War Eagle.”Pay attention because there is a business lesson to be learned here. Rivalries can be good. They challenge us and give us a reason to push harder, go faster, keep our competitive edge. This is the reason that regardless how strong (or weak) the teams are in a particular year, the Iron Bowl is guaranteed to be one battle of a game. But within certain rivalries, especially those where both parties enrich the same community, competitiveness gives way to cooperation and appreciation. Hence the War Eagles tweeted and shouted by traditional Alabama fans. The impact of a local team in the national championship game two years in a row is huge. The Birmingham Shuttlesworth International Airport gets additional traffic and revenue, local merchants sell national championship gear and we all get to bask in the glory of our state housing the best college football team for the second year in a row. Everyone wins. So if you’re an Alabama fan, congratulate your Auburn friends and enjoy living in the state that is the college football powerhouse:  your team contributed to that too. The teams meet again in the Fall. Until then, War Eagle and Roll Tide!

Owned by Brent Barringer, Krista Conlin and Jenifer Champ Wallis, The Pillars, LLC was created as a positive media outlet to highlight Birmingham’s successful businesses, businesspeople and business spaces. To read each Pillar’s complete article, go to www.thepillarsllc.com

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