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We all know that football fans are a rowdy and outspoken bunch of people, and they’ll be the first ones to admit it. And that’s whenever they don’t have anything particularly inflaming to talk about. I can’t imagine the amount of outrage and insult-spewing that occurred after a recent Jeopardy! contestant managed to mix up the two Alabama two college football teams at the center of one of the NCAA’s biggest rivalries. Get your forehead-smacking hand oiled up and ready to go.
Poor Terry. It’s bad enough when a contestant gets the easy-as-pie $200 question in Single Jeopardy wrong, but that kind of thing does happen. But getting the name of a flower wrong, or mistaking the capital of a foreign country probably won’t earn someone Internet rage. However, thinking that Auburn University goes by the team name Crimson Tide is tantamount to getting the name of one’s child wrong, and would likely cause fans of the University of Alabama to roll tide all over someone. (Auburn is the Tigers, for those wondering.) I’m waiting on Alabama coach Nick Saban to hold a press conference about it.
We have definitely seen Jeopardy! contestants embarrass themselves by having truly terrible games all around, as well as contestants that inadvertently insulted people with their answers. But Terry’s botched answer ranks pretty high up there, if mainly because he buzzed in when he clearly had no clue what the answer was, and then uttered the exact opposite of anything correct and sane.
It may sound like I’m being particularly harsh to Terry, who probably didn’t wake up that morning with dreams of becoming a posterboy for sports fans to laugh at with derision. But the Alabama and Auburn rivalry is legitimately one of the most notable examples in sports history, going all the way back to the 1890s. (At least as far as football is concerned, though the schools’ feud goes back a little further.) Each year’s game between the two teams is dubbed the Iron Bowl, and is often one of the most intense games of the season. Alabama is currently in the lead as far as Iron Bowl victories go, which is no surprise since they’ve been such a powerhouse team in the modern era, so getting their team name attributed to their nemesis is worthy of a scarlet letter punishment.
Not that Auburn fans would be any happier having their Tigers placed under the Alabama name.
Jeopardy! fans have also proven themselves to be a judgmental crowd even when incorrect answers aren’t a part of it. So combining that with the ire of a college football fanbase is damning indeed. Here’s hoping Terry is able to put this incident behind him.