Have you seen this billboard on Damen Avenue, just north of Fullerton? The first time I drove by I almost swerved off the road while doing a spit-take. An official beer? For a college?
Okay, I understand that The Fighting Illini and The University of Illinois are not entirely interchangeable. One is a fine institution of higher learning and the other is a fine institution of corporate profits. But seriously, U of I, (full disclosure: my alma mater) an official beer for collegiate sports? It’s freaking college sports. Half of your undergraduates are not even of legal drinking age.
So you’re trying to make some money to help the bottom line. I get it. Apparently raising your tuition 120% between 2002 and 2012 just isn’t cutting it. Apparently turning down smart talented kids from Illinois so you can enroll more students from China, (a country that clearly needs our help), so you can capitalize on the higher rate of tuition and international student fees that they pay just isn’t enough.
Now this? Now an official beer? Why not an official soft drink, something non alcoholic? No? Hey. Why not keep going! How about an official mustard? (The Cubs do it.) How about an official line of sporting equipment? That makes too much sense, eh. I know. An official deodorant! Because this stinks.
I would have loved to have been at the meeting where they decided an official beer of the Fighting Illini was a good idea:
“You realize associating a beer with a college does not sound like a very educated idea.”
“We know. But look at that pile of cash from Coors!”
Well, I suppose these are the times we live in. As my sons start the college application process as high school seniors this year (I know!), it's just one more question we need to ask ourselves in the decision making process.
“You want to go to Georgia Tech? Hmmm. I dunno. What’s their official beer?”
Get an email notification every time I post! Just type your email address in the box and click the "create subscription" button. My list is completely spam free, and you can opt out at any time.