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Rethinking The Big Game

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Stanford alums, it is the Big Game. The Big Game, of course, brings with it plenty of trash talking from Cal alums. While it would be easy to get frustrated with a school whose football team has the worst graduation rate in the country, I think it is time we rethink the rivalry.

Bob Stanton-USA TODAY Sports

It used to be so annoying when Cal fans would talk trash about anything. It was enraging to hear them say anything about Stanford. I would rage and lash out. Why on Earth would they crack jokes about Stanford? Don't they know that Stanford is vastly superior to Cal in every conceivable way? I mean seriously, I thought Cal had reasonably intelligent students and alums, couldn't they see the plethora of evidence right in front of their faces? I know they occasionally rank in the top 20 universities, sure they are not a perennial top 5 school like Stanford, but an occasional top 20 appearance should yield at least a few logical fans, right?

Certainly Cal fans could see that Stanford dominates Cal in just about every way. Stanford dominates the all-time rivalry record, they have almost twice as many Rose Bowl appearances and 3 times as many Rose Bowl victoriesThe list goes on and on yet, Cal alums still attempt to mock Stanford.

Cal fans idiotically talking trash used to really bother me, it really did. Then earlier this week I realized that Cal alums mock the Cardinal because they have to. Stanford fans, just try and imagine for a moment what it must feel like to apply to a dream school like Stanford only to be rejected. And we know they were rejected otherwise they would have attended Stanford. Imagine what it must feel like to have your dreams crushed and relegated to the Bay Area's premier safety school. It must be really difficult for them to handle. I honestly feel bad. Now imagine having to spend your entire college career, the best years of your life, looking out across the Bay wondering how great it would have been to attend Stanford. I cannot imagine the bitter feelings of hopelessness they must feel when they think about what might have been. Sure, some of them tell themselves that maybe if they work very hard and catch a few breaks they might get into a Stanford graduate program. Deep down though, they know it isn't true.

Try to imagine, Stanford fans, what it must be like to live in the shadows of greatness. I cannot blame them for needing to attack Stanford. It really might be the only thing they have left. Just try to imagine what it must feel like to support a team that has not even made a Rose Bowl appearance since the Eisenhower administration. Besides, most of their trash talk is rather simple and benign. "Hey look everybody we changed Stanford to Stanfurd, SICK BURN!!!!!" Keep in mind that whenever they use the term "Stanfurd" they are really screaming "I wish I could have attended Stanford." So this week, when the night time assistant manager at your local Starbucks starts ranting about how Cal is "totally the best school ever, bro" don't get frustrated, just remember that those who talk the most tend to think the least.

Cal alums, I'm sorry for engaging in trash talk. I'm sorry for assuming that your trash talk was a form of disrespect from an equal. I just never thought about how hard it must be to settle for Cal.

Ahhhh, who am I kidding,

Have fun losing by 3 scores