In case you haven’t been following, AT&T has been sponsoring one of the most epic college football road trips ever seen, titled “Way to Saturday.”
On the trip, two comedians and college football die-hards named Will and Ravi have followed ESPN’s “College Gameday” to every stop they’ve made this year, and in the process, not only had a front row seat to the show, but also the biggest game that Saturday as well. Along the way they’ve done corresponding challenges all over the country, which have allowed them entry into the games.
Safe to say Will and Ravi are living the life every college football fan could hope to dream of, and that I, like you am incredibly jealous.
Regardless, this week Will and Ravi chatted with Crystal Ball Run about their experiences, including what college campus has the most beautiful women, why South Carolina might have the most underrated stadium in college football and how you can win free tickets to the 2013 BCS title game!
So seriously, you guys have an opportunity that I think just about every college football fan in America is jealous of. I know you’re both comedians by trade, but were you guys college football fans as well before starting this adventure?
Ravi: We’re both huge college football fans. I think our comedy was what AT&T was looking for, but they wanted to make sure that we loved college football too. I know that this is a dream gig for me and for Will as well.
What was the process like leading up to being selected, and what was it like to get the call?
Will: It was a long process, but getting the call was so exciting. I know when we spoke to each other, we were basically jumping for joy.
Ravi: Understand, you’re talking to two grown men who have resisted growing up for a long time, so this job really was perfect for us!
But in all seriousness, this really was a huge campaign too. AT&T is really putting in all their efforts into this thing.
Will: It really is a trip of a lifetime, not to mention that I’m pretty sure that the “awesomeness” factor that we bring only helps as well.
Did you guys know each other before the tour started?
Will: We had met at the final tryout, but that was the start of our friendship. It was kind of like, ‘The Odd Couple hits the road.’ And we could not be more different, which actually leads to great comedy on a great level.
Ravi: Yeah, we’re absolute opposites in every way, yet we’ve been together every single minute this college football season.
How are you guys different?
Will: Ravi is a mess, I’m into logistics…
Ravi: He means I’m way more spontaneous and fun. I like to go out and have fun, I swear there have been entire nights where Will stayed in and packed while I went out.
Will: To be fair, I had the flu.
Ravi: He’s the flu the entire trip! He carries an entire pharmacy with him in his packing system… which by the way, breaks down all the time!
For those who might not know, go ahead and explain exactly what you’re doing for AT&T. Say a game ends on Saturday night, give us the ‘Readers Digest’ version of what happens at that point?
Ravi: Game ends on Saturday, Will and I immediately hit up the hottest part of the town… not because we’re animals, not because we’re beasts, but because we’re cultural enthusiasts. It’s important to understand the landscape…
Sociologists, if you will?
Will: We’re cultural anthropologists.
Ravi: So we’re out there, keeping an eye on the TV’s as well, because in general there are a lot of games on which will impact where College Gameday is going the next Saturday. We find out the same time America finds out. So there will be times where we find out at midnight on a Saturday, Sunday morning, whatever.
Either way we wake up on Sunday and go somewhere. The first thing we plan out the game is going to be. So say we’re in Baton Rouge and we know the coming Saturday we’re headed to San Diego (where Gameday is this week), so we get in a car and make our way to San Diego and make stops along the way to do the challenges.
The challenges are set up by AT&T, but can also be submitted by viewers on Way2Saturday.com.
How many challenges do you do over the course of a week?
Will: We always do at least one challenge, but usually there are 2-3. Basically, the concept is that by winning these challenges, we’re ‘winning’ our way into that week’s Gameday and game. So we have to go to the school and complete the challenge, and if we don’t complete the challenge, we don’t get to go to the game.
Has that happened? Have you guys not completed a challenge yet?
Will: Well, we are amazing, so no. We’ve beaten every challenge.
Ravi: When you go to the website you can see all the challenges, but I guarantee there have been like 30 informal challenges that we have failed miserably. You know, such things as ‘getting places’; punctuality is definitely not our strength.
Will: Nutrition is definitely not our strength our. We’re eating a lot of bad food. As a matter of fact, they’re saying our final challenge is to ‘Beat Diabetes.’
But the other thing to say is that the challenges are based on the traditions of the schools, so that’s been kind of cool. Then the viewers can go to Way2Saturday.com, watch the videos and at the end, there’s a secret word. There they can enter the secret word and automatically be entered to win the grand prize, which is two tickets to the 2013 BCS National Championship Game.
Ravi: Another cool thing you can do to get entered to win tickets is to go the website and enter your own idea for challenges as well.
Let’s talk about the venues for the college football fans reading this, you can share your insights on some of the places you’ve been to.
We’ll do rapid fire, let’s start with what’s the loudest stadium you’ve been to so far?
Ravi: LSU is up there, but I’d also say that Columbia, SC was one that one most people wouldn’t think of. I’ll tell you, in overall stadium energy, I would say that South Carolina was far and away the best. The place was like a nightclub between drives, everyone was standing the entire time, dancing; you could literally feel the stadium shaking.
There is one important variable worth mentioning though, and that’s that every week the stakes are a little higher, and I’ve been noticing that everywhere we go, it just seems a little bit more intense as the weeks wind down.
Will: As far as venues, I’d say South Carolina, but Alabama-LSU, I mean your ears were literally bleeding inside that place. When LSU was on defense, the fans went absolutely crazy.
Alright, what town has the best food? It can either be at the bars and restaurants or at the tailgates if you’ve had the opportunity to spend time there.
Will: We went to a tailgate at Florida State that had some INCREDIBLE barbeque; brisket, ribs. I feel like everywhere we’ve gone we’ve eaten great barbeque. If you chopped up my heart, barbeque sauce would come out.
The “Tusk Challenge” was incredible too. This guy cooked these incredible (baked) beans, where the guy was roasting a pig, and he literally just dripped the fat and grease onto the beans. I mean, I ate like six plates of these beans, and honestly I wish the guy just hadn’t told me what he’d done.
The Texas State Fair was also interesting because they literally fry everything. They even had fried butter there.
Did you try any?
Will: No butter, but we got a platter of just about everything else; fried jambalaya; fried coke; fried girl scout cookies.
Fried peanut butter and jelly may have been my favorite thing.
Ravi: You know, we may have already overcome diabetes the more that I think about it.
What was the best tailgating scene that you guys have seen?
Ravi: Oh, Gainesville. I mean, have you been there?
I have not! I need to go so bad.
Ravi: The nicest looking girls you’ve ever seen…
Will: I think Ravi is actually going to buy a vacation home out in Gainesville.
Ravi: Oh, that is happening.
By the way, that was a really cool situation. The Gameday set was so small that they actually had to park the RV at a frat house, so the frat is having a party and we’re just like celebrities at this thing. And on top of that, the Gameday truck is there and there’s a surplus of beautiful women that shouldn’t exist anywhere in the world, and beautiful weather… and really, I’m just getting sad talking about it.
So Florida had the best looking women? That’s safe to say?
Ravi: Florida had the best looking women, but Baton Rouge was right up there.
Alright, this question may be more directed toward Ravi, but how about the best postgame, after party type environment?
Will: Oh, so now I’m the old boring guy all of a sudden?
Ravi: Oh, it’s not just now!
Ravi: Best postgame, huh? That’s tough because I’m pooling from a lot of research.
South Carolina was pretty wild. I grew up in Charlotte and had a lot of friends in Columbia that night. Gainesville was fun.
Will: You know what was a lot of fun was Michigan State, East Lansing.
Ravi: Oh, that was a great night!
Will: That was one of those serendipitous nights where everything came together.
Ravi: We had some friends visiting, it did end with me, Will and two of my friends--- well, this is actually pretty embarrassing…
Will: Oh man, don’t tell people this…
Ravi: Actually, grown men should be punished for this--- the four of us had a pillow fight.
Will: It was a VIOLENT pillow fight. It involved 16 pillows and two rooms.
Oh man, I’m not even going to ask. What was the best challenge you guys did so far?
Will: I really liked the ‘Tusk Challenge’ where we got to bathe the Razorback down at Arkansas. I really felt a connection with him; he was just like a big, smelly, adorable, loveable dog. I liked him a lot.
Ravi: We did one a couple weeks ago with Barry Switzer. Barry was just awesome and we were talking smack. It was just cool to hang out with someone so accomplished. We’ve actually hung out with a lot of big football names; Barry Switzer, Samantha Steele, Billy Sims when we were in Texas, Garrison Hearst.
That was another dope task, we trained with Garrison Hearst and ended up in an ice bath.
What have you learned about the show College Gameday itself? Any insider trading you’re allowed to share with the public here?
Ravi: The one thing you just know is how impressive these guys are. I think a lot of people think their conversations are scripted, but it’s really all off the cuff, they’re just college football nerds who love the sport.
And they’re like that off camera. We went to dinner with (Chris) Fowler and (Scott) Van Pelt on Saturday night, and I’m sure you can tell, I’m a talkative guy, but that was the least I’ve ever talked. They were just talking football, no one paid them to do it, they just love it that much.
Will: That’s another important thing too, how cool everybody is at Gameday. They’re just awesome people you’d want to hang out with even outside the show.
Ravi: It’s also incredible to see just how revered they are. You know, Will’s from New York, I’m from L.A., you see how people act around celebrities, but the football celebrity is entirely different all together. I mean this is the height of the culture in these places on their biggest day which is pretty cool when you think about it.
Will: Yeah, and we’re always lucky enough to be at the biggest matchup of that day. So to be in the center of it, is just so cool.
Finally, talk about what you’re doing this weekend. You’re going to be on an aircraft carrier in San Diego, and it’s all in honor of Veteran’s Day. You guys must be pretty excited for that.
Will: It’s a very special week for us. It’s for all the veterans and active duty personnel, and it’s a big thank you for them. They all really deserve it. We go back and got a few thank you’s and wishes from the people that we’ve met all along the trip, which is a lot of different places. It’s going to be a really special, really cool video, where we get some cool words from people all over.
Ravi: And also we’re going to be on the U.S.S. San Diego for Gameday which is going to be pretty awesome that ESPN is going to do that. There’s (obviously) no game there, but it’s really just a salute to the troops.
Anything else I missed?
Will: The only thing I’d add is that people can stay connected with us a whole bunch of different ways. We have a Facebook page where they can see crazy videos, all that stuff. Same with the Twitter feed, which posts exclusive videos you can’t find anywhere else. And the website, Way2Saturday.com, where they can do the challenges and win tickets to the biggest game of the year and can submit challenges as well.
Ravi: And if people actually follow where we’re going, we’re always doing giveaways whenever we stop anywhere. We give away food, we give away tickets and so people just need to tweet at us, and let us know they’re around us.
Be sure to check out the guys at Way2Saturday.com and enter for your chance to win free prizes including a trip to the 2013 BCS National Championship Game!!