There are three constants in life; death, taxes, and Tennessee and Florida fans hating each other.
With SEC Media Days going on this week, the hate between Tennessee fans and Florida fans is firing up a little sooner than normal. And it all started with Dan Mullen’s ugly pair of Jordans.
SEC Media Days are generally a predictable affair. Coaches and players often give the most generic answers possible that will keep them in the news but out of trouble at the same time. Inevitably though, every year, one or two of the head coaches will wear or do something ridiculous that serve as a way to garner personal attention, try to seem cool, or both.
This year, it was Dan Mullen wearing these monstrosities.
— Dan Mullen (@CoachDanMullen) July 17, 2018
LOOK AT THEM! The people that were asked to design these were probably either shaking their heads the whole time or they were unpaid interns learning how to use Microsoft Paint.
The motivations behind the shoes are clear. They want to show off that Florida football now wears Jordan gear while simultaneously trying to take attention away from the fact that Dan Mullen is currently having trouble recruiting.
Much like Butch Jones did with Nike when he was Tennessee’s head coach.
On a personal note, in a way, I almost feel bad for Florida fans. I wouldn’t wish the Butch Jones charade on anyone. But if the second coming of Butch Jones was going to happen anywhere, I’m glad it’s happening at Florida.
Everyone with a stable brain can see that these shoes are just terrible. To make matters worse, if you scroll through the replies to the above tweet, there are tons of Florida fans that are asking how they can obtain a pair.
As was bound to happen though, someone (Fox Sports Knoxville’s Houston Kress) apparently crossed a line and said the shoes belonged in the bargain bin at Walmart, setting the stage for a third party to get involved in the rivalry.
Replying to Houston’s tweet, the official Walmart account tweeted a video of the ending of the 2017 Tennessee Florida game.
Speaking of pulling things out of a bin: https://t.co/yulLwf418j
— Walmart (@Walmart) July 17, 2018
It is strange that a company would align themselves with any kind of sports rivalry, but Walmart and Florida have an accord where Walmart associates can get a dirt cheap education at the University of Florida.
Never mind that the Walmart Twitter account had to scroll through pages of customers complaining about their stores to find a tweet about themselves. Never mind the fact that the three Walmarts in Gainesville, Florida all have two and a half star yelp reviews. Never mind that Walmart mistreats its employees on an almost epidemic scale. The Florida/Walmart marriage is fitting for both parties.
Walmart can align itself with an SEC team that isn’t Arkansas, and Florida fans now have an excuse to go buy some sick And1 gear and American flag wolf t-shirts.
The conclusion is nothing has changed. The Florida and Tennessee rivalry is as competitive as it has ever been. Especially considering both teams have new head coaches coming off of four win seasons in 2017. College Gameday probably won’t be around for the game this year, but the fans will be going at each other as recklessly as ever. Even if both teams were awful last year.