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Gridiron snacks definitely cannot be beat

Published 6:17pm Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Football season is here.

To me, no other sports season provokes the desire for snacking more than football. Baseball does come in at a close second.

At the high-school level, the best snacking during football season is accomplished at concession stands. Popcorn abounds. Popcorn is a great snack. Hot dogs abound. The more condiments on a hot dog, the better. Nachos abound. Salty tortilla chips covered with chili and cheese? Just the thing to eat during gridiron contest.

Let’s move on to the college level, where the snacks are more plentiful — and more expensive.

When I used to cover East Carolina University football, those of us in the press box could count on fried chicken and barbecue being served. Fried chicken and barbecue as snacks? That’s right. During a college football game those two items are snacks. Just ask any sports writer for a newspaper or a sports director for a TV station and they will tell you fried chicken and barbecue served in a press box are snacks.

On the few occasions I was fortunate enough to cover North Carolina State University Wolfpack football games in Raleigh, I knew that I would be able to customize hamburgers. The Wolfpack press box offered hamburgers and an array of condiments with which to dress those hamburgers. Most of the time, I would make the “Carolina” burger: cheese, chili, slaw and onions. I would change things on occasion. Sometimes I would go with cheese, mayo, lettuce and tomato. Other times I would opt for cheese, mustard, ketchup, onions and pickles.

The press box at the University of Notre Dame — yes, I have been there — offers chili. Considering that it gets cold — I’ve been there when it snowed during a game — at many late-season games at Notre Dame Stadium, chili is an appropriate choice to serve those slaving away in the press box.

As for the professional level, I’ve only been to Washington Redskins home games and one Carolina Panthers home game. I remember liking the hot wings at Redskins games. I tried the barbecue at a Panthers game. It wasn’t barbecue from eastern North Carolina. To me, it was a mutation of Lexington-style ’cue and South Carolina-style barbecue. Nothing wrong with it, but I prefer barbecue made the right way.

When it comes to NFL games, the best way to snack is at home while watching games on TV. By doing that, you won’t have to pay $8 for a plain hot dog or $10 for nachos.

It’s about time I returned the press box at Carter-Findley Stadium and treat myself to a customized hamburger. Ooops! I should have written treat myself to covering a football game between the Wolfpack and Tar Heels.

Mike Voss is the senior member of the newsroom at the Washington Daily News.

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