Big 12 and Blooming Onions, Part OnePosted by cwilliams on December 2nd, 2011
Society loves comparisons. A strange statement, yes, but one that is undoubtedly true. Whenever we see a dominating center, we say, “oh wow, that guy’s dominance in the paint reminds me of Cole Aldrich.” And it’s not just in sports. It’s in everyday life, too. “Oh, Steve from IT? That guy gives me the creeps, he reminds me of Norman Bates.” We are lost without comparisons. We need them, especially when something new comes along. Today, I thought it would be fun to compare each of the Big 12 basketball programs to something. I needed these comparisons to be something easily recognized, but not related to basketball. So, what did I come up with? Chain restaurants, of course.
- Baylor -> Chick-fil-A: Chick-fil-A is considered to be the Christian fast food restaurant. The owners make their faith well-known, and this chicken eatery is closed on Sundays. Baylor is both the only private and only Christian school in the Big 12, and it has a curriculum that includes faith-based studies. Chick-Fil-A has great chicken sandwiches, and OK waffle fries. That’s it. There’s no variety, it’s a one-trick pony. Baylor basketball has recently been the same. Yes, they’ve had their one Elite Eight run and some great players, but it lacks the impressive spread that many Big 12 basketball schools possess. Its arena attendance is weak, the student section is even weaker, and their women’s team is still on ESPN more than their men’s. Also, people don’t know Chick-Fil-A exists in some parts of the country. The same can be said about Baylor hoops.
- Iowa State-> Krystal’s: What can be said in terms of similarity between Iowa State basketball and Krystal’s? They’ve been doing their thing for a long time. Krystal’s has been selling square burgers since 1932, while Iowa State has been shooting orange balls since 1908. Since then, not much has happened for either. One Final Four appearance for the Cyclones, and it was in 1944. Krystal’s has been outdone in terms of hamburgers for seven decades. Also, Cyclone basketball uniforms and Krystal employee uniforms are both covered in ketchup and mustard.
- Kansas-> Chili’s: Just as Chili’s is the quintessential chain restaurant, Kansas is the quintessential basketball program. Both have a long history, and have been consistent with their winning ways. Kansas had Danny Manning and Mario Chalmers. Chili’s has the Awesome Blossom, and that damn baby back ribs commercial. However, neither are healthy choices. Kansas always has a bulls-eye on its back, and gets every team’s best shot, leading to many heartbreaking upsets for the Jayhawk faithful (see: Northern Iowa, Bucknell, VCU). The amount of fat and calories on the Chili’s menu will not lead to heartbreak, but heart failure.
- Kansas State-> Chipotle: Chipotle is spicy. Frank Martin is fiery. I needn’t say more.
- Missouri-> Outback Steakhouse: Outback Steakhouse is best known for their “full-flavor” steaks, a steak with a suffocating amount of spices. In recent years, Missouri has run a suffocating full-court press. Outback Steakhouse has always been a big player in the world of chain restaurants, but it has never reached the top. Missouri has 24 NCAA tournament appearances, yet has never made a single Final Four. Most importantly, Outback Steakhouse hates Chili’s because they stole their Awesome Blossom (Called the Blooming Onion at Outback) appetizer. Missouri hates Kansas because… well, I don’t have enough room to explain that.
Check back tomorrow for the remaining Big 12’s schools chain-restaurant comparisons.