Saturday sees one of the biggest rivalries in college football when the Georgia Bulldogs travel to the Everbank Stadium in Jacksonville to take on the Florida Gators.
I spotted the emblems of the two teams reflected in windows of the Baywater Square Building on East Bay Street.
I can never understand the American interest in college football but a lot of people prefer it to the professional NFL games. College football’s popularity is helped by the games being played on a Saturday, while the most of the NFL games are played on Sunday.
I doubt whether people would flock to watch Manchester University’s soccer team on a Saturday afternoon instead of watching either Manchester United or Manchester City.
I also fail to understand how people who are not alumni of a particular American university can get so enthusiastic about the fortunes of its football team. But it happens. Even people who left school at 18 will have their favourite college team. In Florida, the choice is between the University of Florida, better known as the Gators, and Florida State University, otherwise known as the Seminoles.
From Jacksonville’s point of view, the annual Georgia v Florida game is a big money earner. Downtown Jacksonville will be awash with people instead of its normal ghost-town demeanour and the bars along East Bay Street, pictured below, will be primed for business.
British readers may be confused as to why I wrote Georgia v Florida when the game is being played in Jacksonville, Florida. For reasons best known to itself, American football always gives the away side first. Don’t ask me why. I guess it is just another way in which America has to do things different, or should I say the opposite, from the rest of the world.
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