Winning is the best thing in sports. Not exactly breaking news, but nothing beats beating your opponent. It’s why we play the games, after all.
The side benefit to winning is being totally unimpeachable with your trash talking.
You win, you get to talk all the mess you want, and there’s really nothing the other guy can do about it. It’s great.
Unless you’re Rick Barnes, apparently.
The Tennessee coach was nonplussed that his players mocked Florida fans with The Gator Chomp after the Vols’ 11-point win in Gainesville on Saturday.
“When someone told me that happened, that’s the first thing I addressed after the game,” Barnes said Monday, per The Associated Press. “I don’t like it simply because I want total focus on the main thing. I think when those things happen, it’s going to be talked about.”
In these divisive times in which we live, I hope we can all take a second and unite to give Barnes a Gator Chomp from wherever you’re reading this.
“I also understand that I’m not out there an hour before the game with the student body,” Barnes said. “I’m sure there are some things that are being said, but we tell our guys we need them to control their emotions throughout the game. I think they did that. Sometimes when the game’s over like that, you let it out.
“It happens, but do I like that? When I was a kid, I probably would have, but I’m not a kid anymore. As a coach, I’m older now. I just want to play the game. I want our guys to learn from it.”
I mean, come on. The Vols players sticking it to Florida fans was one of the best things that happened Saturday across the country. You win, you get to talk. Or Chomp. Especially if your target was was talking theirs before the game, as apparently they were in The Swamp, with Tennessee’s Admiral Schofield claiming fans made “disrespectful” and “inhumane” comments directed at the Vols.
“It was one of those things where it just kept building up over the game,” Schofield said. “Their fans were chirping a lot, even behind the bench.”
Chomp on, Vols. Chomp on.