Football or NASCAR

Football takes fans from NASCAR

Nearly half way thru the NFL football season, NASCAR has only two races left for the season. Funny, NASCAR is nearly crowning a champion for the year and it seem that most of my friends, who used to be big Cup fans, don't really care. There is only three points separating the top two drivers, Carl Edwards and Tony Stewart going into today's race, years ago, the stands would be packed and everybody I know would be watching. Today all my friends are watching the Falcons and Saints football game.

The reasons are a little different than you may think. It's not that we all became huge football fans overnight or that we all of sudden quit watching NASCAR. The change has been gradual. Over time NASCAR just became boring and predictable. The cars became less stock racing and more like giant go karts with bodies mounted to them. They have become more and more less and less about racing and the fans, and more and more about rules and keeping the cars equal. The cars are not even close to being cars anymore, and the competetion suffers from being called to the NASCAR trailer syndrom. The boy's are sweet little corporate image makers and the bad boys, Kyle Bush and Kevin Harvick to name a couple, get sat down for loosing tempers. The car owners are so indedebted to the sponsors and NASCAR that they just play along, keeping public sentiment in tact for the sake of sponsor dollars.

Football however, is still football. They are still hitting each other, though some safty measures have been taken, they still have their helmets on. NASCAR has virtually taken off the helments of the drivers and made the sport boring. Football is still unpredictable, any given Sunday any team can make a comeback in the fourth quarter, if the score is close, to cause excitement and a possible win.

With NASCAR, the season is virtually over for a lot of fans when the chase starts. If your driver isn't in the chase for the championship, hope for a final push for a championship is over. In the past five years seeing Jimmy Johnson and Chevrolet win the championship made most people I know think the whole thing was rigged anyway, why watch. I hear the same thing this year, Chevrolet and Tony will win because thats what NASCAR wants. The caution flag get's throw just in time to change things up for the leaders and allows chase contenders to be back in the thick of things, funny how that works.

With the NFL, at the very least everyplay is different and the outcome is never the same. With NASCAR, it just one circle after another until there is ten laps to go, then a caution, then a race for the win.

Oh well, nothing will save NASCAR now, there will never be stock car racing again, corporate sponsors may keep it alive for awhile, but when there are not enough fans at the track to open the gates, then what. Look at what happened to the Indy series, no fans, no TV driver leave for NASCAR. Where do they go from NASCAR? They dang sure ain't going to the NFL.

Russ Cochran writer and contributor

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