TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) -- Four college students walk into a smoky restaurant, sit at a table under a blaring TV and order up their class work for the day--two slabs of spare ribs dripping with reddish sauce, white bread on the side.
But this isn't lunch. It's writing about barbecue for an A.
The four spent January visiting some of the South's best barbecue restaurants for course credit from Birmingham-Southern College in a self-designed class that combines heaping mounds of meat with academics, all spread across five states.
They've eaten sweet sauces and dry rub, ribs and sandwiches, cole slaw, potato salad and banana …