We’ve got the Gators in the Swamp this weekend, but there’s one story that will almost certainly fly under the radar. Vanderbilt has a chance this weekend to win back the Butch Jones Life Championship from current reigning Life Champion, Florida. Sportswriters have somehow missed chronicling the path of the illustrious award this season. Perhaps they were just mesmerized by the Butch Jones Big Play Trashcan. Fortunately, I your intrepid AoG writer, have been following the journey of the greatest participation trophy in college football. The belt has now been in the hands of six separate teams, five of them SEC teams (S-E-C, S-E-C). Let’s follow the path the belt has taken since the Volunteers gave it up to us at the end of last season.
- Vanderbilt lost the belt to the NC State Wolfpack in a crushing defeat in the Independence Bowl (48-17).
- NC State valiantly fought to hold onto the title, but ultimately handed the championship over the Gamecocks of South Carolina in a 28-35 loss Week 1.
- USC became the only team to date to win a game while holding the life championship, beating Missouri in Week 2.
- The “Chicken Curse” would not be denied, however, and USC relinquished the life championship to the Kentucky Wildcats in a 23-13 loss the following week.
- The Wildcats should have held onto the title in their game against Florida, but they enjoy snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. Florida took the Championship with a 28-27 win.
So there you have it folks. Florida are the current “Champions of Life” and Vanderbilt has a chance to reclaim the title in the Swamp this Saturday. Given how badly Florida is playing, I think we have a great chance to rebound from last Saturday and win. Now we have just another reason to pull off the upset!