If you’re anything like me, you’re sitting and blankly staring at a television that no longer broadcasts live college football. The season is over. It’s time to dust the potato chip crumbs out of your beard and put down the remote control.

Fortunately, there are other endeavors to get you through the college football offseason.

Here are 10 ways to stave off insanity between now and the time the SEC returns for the 2016 season.

1. Get a Hobby – This is the obvious one. Now that your Saturdays are free, perhaps it’s time to do something constructive with your time. And, no, power-napping and binge partying aren’t considered viable hobbies. We’re not saying you have to become a philatelist (stamp collector) or learn how to make crochet Alabama Crimson Tide helmets, but it’s time to get off the couch and do something.

2. Charity Work – Why not actually give back to your community? Your favorite SEC team does, after all. Philanthropy is common throughout the league and while we’re not asking you to kiss a pig or rappel down the side of a building like LSU head coach Les Miles, lending a hand in your community is always a wholesome activity to keep you out of trouble.

3. Get Outside – How about instead of sitting indoors and watch other people exercise, you go outside and actually break a sweat of your own? You can still wear your nacho-cheese-stained Auburn jersey when you go outside, but how about you let vigorous physical exercise get your heart rate up, rather than a Jeremy Johnson interception.

4. Find a New Sport – Football isn’t the only sport. OK, it’s the only sport that matters, but that’s not to say there aren’t other options. Rugby is similar and satiates the need to see grown men pummel each other. There’s also MLB and the NBA, as well as the NHL and WNBA for you to pass the time.

5. Learn an Instrument – If you start tuba lessons now, by the time the season starts, you should be able to perform a flawless rendition of Tennessee’s fight song “Down the Field.”

6. 2016 Prep Work – If you simply can’t walk away from the game, perhaps a good use of your time is to pour over every roster so that you’ll know the names of every player in college football next season —more importantly you’ll learn how to pronounce names such as Dakota Cru Birdyshaw of Mississippi State, Handsome Tanielu of Utah or West Virginia’s Zach Sandwisch.

7. Alumni Picnic – Organize an alumni picnic in your hometown. Denver, for example, hosts an annual SEC Picnic, where hundreds of alums from all 14 schools gather the weekend prior to the start of the season. Think of it as a great way to get to know your fellow alums while talking some smack to rivals over libations, barbeque and a game of beanbag toss.


Photo by Christopher Wuensch

8. Gameday Signs – Might as well get ready for the season by practicing your penmanship and urbane sense of humor by beginning work on your ESPN College Football Gameday signs. Don’t lose out to the guy who simple writes “Bo Wallace Uses MySpace.”

9. Learn How to Cook – Flip from the SEC Network to the Food Network and take some notes. That way, those brats you cook this year on the “Grove” won’t make everyone sick again.

10. Go to a Zoo – Instead of sitting on your couch and rooting on the Gators, go to a zoo and see a real alligator or tiger, elephant or Razorback. Just be careful if someone asks you if you want to see a Gamecock in action — unless you want to spend your offseason in jail.