Sports! It is something that connects people all across America. No matter what the geographical region, people have strong feelings for their teams and their sports. Complete strangers can come together as a family or be at each other's throats just because of team rivalries. There are thousands of heated debts everyday over these topics because fans can be so passionate. One of the biggest topics that sees to come up the most is College sports vs. Professional sports. Are college sports better than pro sports? To answer this question, one has to break them down and look at the individual aspect of each. One has to take in a count the teams, the players, the coaches, the fans, rivalries, etc.
In my opinion even though the sports are the same regardless of college or professional, the games are played completely different. At the professional level, it has become more of an individual sport. They put more focus on the superstars. Coaches make decisions based upon that certain athlete and the owners value the top players more than the coaches; While college still puts their focus on the team aspect. The coaches make choices based on what is better for the team, and the schools have their backs. For example, look at basketball and how different it is between the two. In professional basketball the offense is ran through the best player-That person touches the ball every single play. In fact, most of the time the superstar is the offense, just give them the ball, step back, and watch what happens. For this reason the coach hardly ever calls a play. Those same players are not always giving maximum effort. If the ball is stolen and there is a fast break, no one hurries to get back to stop the ball. They all just stop to watch the show as the ball gets dunked in some spectacular way. Professional athletes have lost something along the way. They just do not have the same passion for the game. The sport has become a 9 to 5 job for them. However, in college basketball the coaches are constantly calling offensive and defensive plays; It's like a chess match between the two coaches. The offense moves the ball around and one person does not end up having to make something happen. Players are going hard the whole time they are out on the court. They give it everything they have on every play. Everyone give it all they have it to get back to stop the ball if it gets stolen. College athletes still have that passion for the game. It's a game that they love, that they want to play. That is why in my opinion it is more enjoyable to watch and sets it apart from the pros.
Another big reason college sports are viewed as better than the pros is the rivalries. Professional rivals have become watered down, so to speak. In the pros there is more importance on this superstar vs. that superstar instead of the two teams playing. Photo rivalries on the other hand are much more intense than those of the pros. What are the first teams that comes to mind when someone starts talking about rivalries? I bet the majority of those teams are colleges. The top of the list usually consist of North Carolina vs. Duke, Michigan vs. Ohio State, Georgia vs. Florida, and South Carolina vs. Clemson for colleges, while for the pros it's the New York Yankees vs. the Boston RedSoxs and the Dallas Cowboys vs. the Washington Redskins. If we compare the factors that drive these rivalries it will begin to come clear why one is better than the other. For example look at North Carolina vs. Duke compared to New York vs. Boston. The Carolina / Duke rivalry is in the same state. In fact, these two schools are actually 8 miles apart. Their fans cross each other's paths daily. They hate each other with a passion. There is such a rich history between schools that drives their rivalries. These schools only play each other two for each sport and nine times out of ten they play the last game of the season where the championship is on the line. Plus the sports media makes it a huge deal every time they play each other. On the other hand, New York and Boston are located in two different states and even though they have history between them it is not as strong as it used to be. These two teams play multiple series, having three games to one series. So their regular season games very rarely have significant importance. The media only makes it a big deal between them when the games are being played in the playoffs. That being said, in my opinion colleges have the best rivalries in sports.
Photo or Professional? Everyone has their own opinion. This debate will continue for years to come, no matter what facts are presented. In the end regardless of how you feel, there is just something special about sports at the college level.