My folks texted me and had me come over this morning (a walk of about 35 steps) to watch the morning sports cast about the Texas A&M-Alabama game on for this afternoon. The sportscaster doing the story has dubbed the game, “The Game of the Century!”
At the point, my Dad started telling me the real game of the century took place in the Astrodome between UCLA and his Houston Cougars, was a basketball game, and featured Lou Alcindor and Elvin Hayes in one of the most watched broadcasts of all time. He is right, that is considered the GotC, and says so on Wikipedia!
I’m sure as you are reading this, you are thinking for yourself what the game of the century is. My response when the broadcaster made it was, “Don’t worry, the next big game that comes along will be the Game of the Century.”
Exactly what does that mean? How can you dub something “The Game of the Century” when it hasn’t been played? We don’t know the outcome. What if the winner of the game goes on and loses four games in the season, is it still the GotC? What if the loser goes on to win the National Championship like what happened last year when these two teams met, does that qualify for the GotC? What if the game is a blowout, does it still qualify?
I just think we need to use the term more cautiously. In a year or two, we will be able to declare whether or not the game is truly “The Game of the Century.”
There are several games listed at Wikipedia for the GotC. This should clue us in that the term really has no meaning. It should be, “the Really, Really Big Game!” But sportscasters don’t get noticed when they say things like that. I’m sure the sportscaster in question wants to be credited with calling today’s game, “The Game of the Century.” If he is right, he can boast about his call to his grandchildren.
Here is a listing of the GotC for LAST century.
1935 Notre Dame vs. Ohio State — Notre Dame Won
1945 Army vs. Navy — ended in a 0-0 tie.
1966 Notre Dame vs. Michigan State — ended in a 10-10 tie
1967 USC vs. UCLA – Trojans won 21-20
1969 Texas vs. Arkansas — Longhorns won 15-14
1971 Nebraska vs. Oklahoma — Nebraska won 35-31
1987 Miami vs. Penn State — Penn State won 14-10
1991 Florida State vs. Miami — Miami won 17-16
1993 Florida State vs. Notre Dame — Notre Dame won 31-24
Those were the games for last century. Here are the games for THIS century:
2006 Texas vs. USC — Texas won 41-38
2006 Ohio State vs. Michigan — Ohio State won 42-39
2011 LSU vs. Alabama — LSu won 9-6
So here you have it, all the games that are considered “The Game of the Century.” I hope today’s game does rise to this level and I hope my Aggies prevail! But I’m just not ready to dub this game with the cliche. There are far too many sports cliches floating around as it is. In fact, most of what any coach or player can say before the game, during the game and after the game is a cliche.