Rocky Balboa has just survived a 15-round encounter with the heavyweight champ, Apollo Creed. Remember: Rocky had already made up his mind before the fight that he had no chance of actually beat the champ. "I just wanna go the distance. If I can go that distance, and hear that bell ring, and me still standin there ... then I'll know I wasn't just another bum from the neighborhood." He accomplished that goal, maybe even won the fight (depending on who you ask).
Anyway, after roughly 90 minutes of wasted time, Apollo goads him into a rematch, and right around the time Rocky agrees to the fight, his wife Adrian goes into a coma after birthing their first child. There's another 15-20 minutes where very little happens, as Rocky refuses to train and stays by Adrian's bed day and night.
And then this happens:
As an Alabama fan, this is how I feel going into the SEC Championship Game, 2009. In 2008, I felt like Rocky must have when someone told him he could have a shot at the world heavyweight title — all I wanted was for us to go the distance, prove we belonged. I think our boys did that — maybe we lost the game, but we fought Florida harder than anyone else had all season and missed winning the game by a handful of plays down the stretch (some 'Bama fans have disagreed with me, but Florida won that game much more than Alabama lost it).
This version isn't like that. This time around, we still look like underdogs — Vegas even installed Florida as a 6-point favorite coming in. Going the distance, obviously, will be an accomplishment.
But it's not what we should want. Alabama hasn't come this far for a moral victory. The goal should be nothing more than to win the game, to win the championship.
So, to echo Adrian, do something for me.