On this day after the Super Bowl, when the cynics among us condemn football as nothing more than a huge payoff for players, coaches and advertisers alike, it’s refreshing to see an athlete with his loyalties in the right place.
Cassanova McKinzy, a linebacker from Birmingham, Alabama, decided last week to attend Auburn rather than Clemson in the fall. Money had nothing to do with McKinzy’s decision, as Auburn gave him no incentives that we know of. The academic program of his chosen school was not a factor, nor was he wooed by the persuasiveness of the coaching staff.
When McKinzy visited Clemson, he did not see a Chick-Fil-A franchise in close proximity to the school. Being an enormous fan of fast food chicken, he decided to make Auburn his alma mater.
“It was kind of the environment and plus they had no Chik-Fil-A on campus,” he was quoted as saying. “You had to go like, probably like 15 minutes off campus to go to like a real restaurant.”
This may seem baffling to many outside the South, but Chik-Fil-A forms a crucial part of many people’s diet in that region. Founded in 1986, the chain has grown to nearly 1,000 locations. They claim to have invented the quick-serve chicken sandwich, using a pressure fryer to obtain maximum tenderness.
The irony of this situation is that there actually is a Chik-Fil-A franchise located on the Clemson campus. Apparently, the people giving McKinzy the guided tour failed to point it out to him, or perhaps they just didn’t take the time to properly get to know him, his interests and his passions.
In a further bit of irony, the annual Chik-Fil-A College Kickoff game, played on the opening weekend of the season in Atlanta’s Georgia Dome, will pit Auburn against Clemson this fall. Cassanova McKinzy should be the man of the hour.