BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - I see that fellow journalist Joseph Goodman has penned a well-written piece on how some fans in the world of high school basketball seem to dislike the Mountain Brook boys basketball team. I'd like to add a few thoughts of my own.
Why dislike of the Spartans?
The most obvious reason would be that in some people's minds, Mountain Brook's players represent the predominantly white, ritzy suburb that happens to be the most affluent suburb in our state. Some might think, "Why give these players more in life when they already have enough? How about seeing an underdog team reach the mountain top?"
For those people, I say hogwash. Money can't buy drive, money can't buy desire and money can't buy championships.
Why bar some of the hardest-working kids in our state a chance to win a championship simply because they may come from an affluent family (and remember, not everyone who lives in Mountain Brook is breaking the bank).
Another reason for some snubbing their noses at the Spartans? They win too much. You know, it's the old New York Yankees, the New England Patriots, Alabama Crimson Tide thing. But you know something? These teams win because of commitment, perseverance, athleticism and great coaching. They should not be hated for that, but rather admired.
Another reason some fans root against the Spartans? The proverbial underdog syndrome. America's sports fans love the underdog. They love the upset, they love rooting against the favorites. I have few problems with that, as I also loved watching Rocky beat Apollo Creed. Then again, I still admired Creed's talents.
And my last reason for the dislike by some of the Spartans? Jealousy.
You see, the Spartans have one of the best players in the state in Trendon Watford, one of the best coaches in the state and a group of players who go full throttle, ready to take a physical beating for a coach and a program they love. Why be jealous of that? Why not just enjoy watching this team in action?
The Mountain Brook Spartans are in the state championship game for the fifth time in six years as the team will face McGill-Toolen Saturday at 5:45 pm at Legacy Arena in Birmingham.
Think about that: A team from Mountain Brook, Ala. is considered the best in the state and the envy of opposing coaches and players.
One of my favorite weekends of the year is when the Mountain Brook Spartans play in the state championship game. It's a must-see event. If you enjoy a great product, a group of young men who play their hearts out with a style that is unlike any other, you must make it a point to watch this team. It's enjoyable, it's different and it's a product that sports some of the hungriest, toughest players in our state, regardless of their family's income.