Posted: 3:42 pm Tuesday, February 11th, 2014
By Mark Bradley
Speaking of loutish fan behavior — as we just did on myajc.com, our premium site, in a column regarding Marcus Smart of Oklahoma State — Andrew Bone of TideSports.com reports that Alabama signee Rashaan Evans, who’s from Auburn and who’s the son of two Auburn alums, and his family are suffering the kneejerk wrath of Auburn backers. (Esteemed colleague Michael Carvell addressed the issue yesterday.)
In Bone’s story, Evans is quoted as saying:
Someone actually put out an article about my family’s business telling all Auburn fans not to go there. We are eventually going to start losing money. People are telling restaurants in the town not to serve us … People keep coming up to me to tell me I made a bad decision. It’s grown men. They are asking me why I did this to them. I told them I had to do what is best for me.
We note, not for the first time, that the relationship between Auburn and Alabama is unlike any other anywhere. (We start with an Alabama fan poisoning the trees at Toomer’s Corner and work our way deeper into the ooze.) But it is remarkable that the same young man whom one set of fans would have loved had he signed with their school is being vilified — the exact same guy, mind you — because he happened to choose the other school.
Again from Evans, via Bone:
Social media has definitely been the worst. People on Instagram are telling me how they hope I tear my ACL in Game 1. They will laugh when I do. They are saying my family is horrible and how they didn’t raise me right. It’s just crazy.
Well, yes. But we knew that already, didn’t we? Recruiting can get ugly on bad days. Social media gets ugly on its best day. And when you add the hatred intrinsic in Alabama-Auburn to the mix … well, that’s a toxic concoction.