auburn vs florida state, bcs, bowl, football, college football

As Destiny and Dominance clash when the Auburn Tigers take on the Florida State Seminoles in the final BCS title game, each team will be looking for any edge possible in hopes of bringing the crystal football home with them. That got us thinking, which of these two fine institutions boasts the most awesome alumni? So we pit them head to head in four categories. Football, Other Sports, Entertainment, and Wild Card. Let’s see how things played out

Round 1: Football

Bo Jackson vs. Deion Sanders

Right out of the gate, this is the closest matchup to call between two of sports’ most iconic figures ever. Tiger alum Bo Jackson, the man whose dual skills at football and baseball caused the “Bo Knows” ad campaign, takes on FSU Alum Deion Sanders, the man they call “Primetime”, also known for his skill on the gridiron and on the diamond, being the only man to hit a home run and score a touchdown in the same week, in addition to being the only man to date to compete both in a World Series and Superbowl. During their college careers, both men were about as decorated as an athlete could be, taking home trophies and awards in each sport. Jackson gained an early edge as his college career saw him joining the elite fraternity of men who have had their name chiseled into the Heisman Trophy. Unfortunately, this matchup ultimately comes down not to talent, as each man is arguably among the most gifted player to ever play in the NFL, but instead to longevity. Jackson’s hip injury is one of the all-time “what-ifs” in American sports since it cut his career in the NFL short. Sanders was busy racking up all world honors and impacting football culture forever with his flashy style, touchdown dances, and of course Hall of Fame skill backing it all up. Winner: Deion Sanders

Round 2: Other Sports

Charles Barkley vs. Charlie Ward

In a Charles-on-Charles battle, we see Sir Charles, formerly of the Auburn Tigers, take on the only man who ever won the Heisman Trophy and decided to instead parlay his skills into an NBA career, Charlie Ward. By all accounts, Ward was the model citizen other model citizens strive to be during his time at FSU, getting it done on the field, in the court, in church, in the classroom and doing everything for the community short of starting a home for abused puppies and orphans. On the other hand, contrary to his current teddy-bear persona, Barkley was vilified in the media for being one of the most opinionated, outspoken and controversial athletes of his time, famously declaring, “I am not a role model.” As in our Round 1 matchup, Ward having the Heisman carries a lot of cache, but one can’t argue with Barkley’s lengthy Hall of Fame career, in addition to two gold medals, multiple all-pro awards, and generally being considered the best undersized power forward of all time. Shut up and Jam, indeed. Winner: Charles Barkley

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Round 3: Entertainment

Lionel Richie vs. Burt Reynolds

In a clash of styles, musical revelry meets Hollywood glitz with Lionel Richie, who attended graduate school at Auburn, facing off against Burt Reynolds. This contest pits the creator of legendary ballads such as “Hello” and “Three Times a Lady” against such the star of such film classics as Smokey and the Bandit and Boogie Nights. Both men can also lay claim to being amongst the preeminent sex symbols of their generation though the edge clearly goes to Reynolds in that category. Each man also dabbled in the other’s forte, with Reynolds crooning alongside Dolly Parton, but Richie gaining ground by winning an Oscar for his work. In a tight matchup between mustachioed marvels, it seems only fair that for two men who have managed to stay relevant for so many decades — not to mention that both were known for being able to go “All Night Long”– that we call it a draw. Winner: Push

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Round 4: Wild Card

Jimmy Buffet vs. Richard Simmons

After a brief stint at Auburn, Jimmy Buffet went on to a successful career in music shaping subsequent generations with his tropical soft rock. Richard Simmons, on the other hand, can never be accused of taking the easy route with his fitness first mantra shaping those same generations physically instead of spiritually. Jimmy Buffet’s style of “gulf and western” takes listeners on audible journeys to “Margaritaville” and welcomes them to have a “Cheeseburger in Paradise”, while Simmons implores them to sweat to the oldies and boogie down the pounds. This is another seemingly too close to call contest as it truly comes down personal preference, because in the end both seem to espouse the virtues of a healthy lifestyle — Simmons being on the physical end, and Buffet employing the more spiritual approach. The deciding factor however has to be Simmons signature look. Pound for pound, he has to be in the “Never Going to Give it Up” Hall of Fame for his signature perm/fro and glittery tanktop/daisy duke combo. Any man confident enough to wear that for decades has to have an indomitable will to win. Winner: Simmons

Florida State emerges ultimately victorious, just as I predict they will in the title game, 42-28, though one can only hope that affair will be as closely contested as this and provide the farewell that the BCS era deserves.

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