A colleague of mine sent an email saying he had, in the last week, seen three references to the BYU vs. Mississippi State game as “critical.”
Which got both of us thinking. Didn’t the Cougars pass critical weeks ago? We also mentioned “crucial” being involved in similar circumstances.
If you’re in sports media, let’s be careful on the hyperbole. Actually, be careful if you’re in any type of media. Enough events are critical on their own merit, without concocted drama. A game upon which a conference championship lies could be called crucial, but a game that might keep you from having a losing season isn’t .
A win might be “important” but it’s usually not “massive.” Massive is, oh, a World Cup championship, the size of Michigan’s stadium or Nick Saban’s salary. It’s seldom a regular-season game with regular-season stakes. Same goes for other overheated adjectives. Losing a football game is not “tragic.” A win is seldom “glorious.” An upset might be “surprising” but seldom rises to the level of “astonishing,” since upsets happen all the time. Seven top-25 teams lost this week.
That’s not astonishing. It’s mildly interesting.