The Southeastern Conference is finally allowing alcohol sales in its member schools’ stadiums. Although the drinks will include only beer and wine under very strict conditions, some people think the conference has gone too far. I don’t think it has gone far enough.
Alcohol is already consumed before, after, on the way to, on the way from and all around the outside of stadiums legally as is; why are the-powers-that-be still pretending as if legally drinking at your seats is any worse? Especially when illegal drinking is a worst-kept secret than a diary found by Julian Assange?
Alcohol and SEC football have a long, rich relationship. But social pressure has made that relationship remain mostly clandestine. For decades, students have taped flasks to their thighs and grown men have hidden whisky miniatures in their cowboy boots to avoid security checks.
Don’t lie. You did it. I did it. We all did it. And probably most of us continue to do it.
There are certainly warranted fears that already overly zealous fans will become even more overzealous with access to copious amounts of legal booze, but bear with me while I list places that already allow drinking: Pro sports games, college bowl games, restaurants, concerts, plays, bowling alleys, select movie theaters, planes (excluding pilots…hopefully), festivals, theme parks, your friend’s cool dad’s house, the grocery store (I might not be right about this one, but no one has stopped me yet), Renaissance Fairs, weddings, funerals, gender reveals, etc.
Undoubtedly there will definitely be some folks who will drink more than they should with beer sales conveniently located at concession stands. However, even with recent improvements to security country-wide, fans still find ways to get liquid courage into games every Saturday. Therefore, I see no reason schools shouldn’t profit from it. I just wish the new rules weren’t confined to beer and wine only.
Think about all of the cool marketing opportunities — each SEC team can have its own signature drink.
Alabama could have a “Saban-gria.” It’ll be just like a regular sangria, but the wine will be more expensive, the fruit will be all prunes (because ’Bama likes to run right through ya) and it comes with a shot of Jagermeister so your face crinkles like Saban’s after a missed block when the Tide is winning 45-3 in the fourth quarter.
Auburn can sell the “Malzahn-tini.” That’s a gin-based martini mixed with a mystery ingredient because when it comes to Gus Malzahn, you never know what you’ll get. Arkansas will peddle the famous “mind eraser” shot because their fans would most likely love to forget the last five or so years. The Florida Gators will, of course, have the “Tim Tebow” (which will just be a virgin banana daiquiri so you may want to continue to sneak your miniatures in for this one).
And at LSU…. Well, LSU will sell any and all drinks because those guys just are professional partiers. I mean, that place is just fun every week.
Back to the point, if the SEC will allow alcohol sales, why did they limit consumption to only beer and wine and only in select spots away from stadium seats? If people are old enough to drink, they are old enough to take a drink back into the games without having to shotgun a Budweiser during a timeout. As crazy as SEC fans can be, I believe they deserve to be treated as respected adults.
If a drunken fan does get too rowdy, I assume the penalties for violating that trust would be understandably much harsher than they are now.
Legal alcohol — regardless of its limited form — is a step in the right direction, though. We can all raise a glass to that, even if we have to raise that glass while standing in the portal.