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Why I stopped being a (casual) Redskins fan

When I was a child the Redskins was more of an event than a team. I remember my dad talking about them as if they were force of nature. I recall my dad’s friends coming over for games and the camaraderie of sharing in the highs and lows. This culminated in the 92 Super Bowl. I was nine and my paternal grandfather had recently died and my dad flew back home to attend the funeral. The game was Jan 26th, my dad’s birthday was the day before. My mom and I went to pick him up from the airport. I remember it was cold and I was bundled up. We had made a sign saying Go Skins Go and Happy Birthday. That Super Bowl, which was also the last the Skins won, will always stay a lasting memory for me.

The very next year Gibbs retired and the Skins had a horrible season. It was just about this time that Michael Jordan and the NBA took over my Fall and Winters. Sure I still watched Skins games but this was the 90s it wasn’t like I had a choice. There wasn’t a local AFC team and everyone was a Skins fan. It was just about watching football. More and more for me it was about seeing the big named players on the other teams. This is was in a time before wall to wall ESPN and the internet. Once I reached high school, Jack Kent Cooke was dead the team had moved out of RFK and I had moved on. I was older and therefore paid more attention. Snyder seemed, on paper, like a good owner. He was a local and really into the team. His first year as owner they went to the playoffs for the first time since their Super Bowl run. This was also the beginning of “who’s the QB?”

It's the QB bunch

It’s the QB bunch

In my 20s, Sunday became a reset day where I’d sleep off my Saturday nights so I only ended up seeing either big games or what ever was the 4pm NFC game. As I got older the Skins fans that I knew became more, obnoxious. I’m for smack talk as  “I’m better than you” not “You suck”. There is a difference. The Skins weren’t great.  So the team wasn’t producing and the fans were insisting that everyone else were crap. Each new fan I met at college parties were people I just couldn’t stand. It wasn’t the regular just root for the home team. I’m speaking about the just will not shut up fan. I’m speaking of the middle of summer asking “Who’s your team” acting offended when I respond with Orioles. If I were to begrudging respond with the Skins they would almost always launch into a ten minute diatribe about the Cowboys, Eagles or Ravens. I try to be polite, and would try to change subjects. I’d say I didn’t care just to get out of the convo. I began just saying I didn’t watch football just to avoid those conversations.

This wasn’t true I still liked football just not the Skins. There was a potential light. The arrival of what many in the DMV called the second coming; Robert Griffin III. I knew of him from my college football viewing, but with the turnstile approach of the team figured he would have a breakout season or two and then end up on another team like so many players in the past.  There were talking heads that brought up his knee and how much the team gave up in picks to get him. For what it’s worth he had a great rookie season going 10–6 and winning the NFC East championship. Off the field the team decided to move further away from DC by choosing Richmond for training camp. The following season what can I say? Worst season in almost 20 years. Just as I began to care again.

What I haven’t addressed to this point is the name controversy. It was definitely a deciding factor in why I’ve broken all ties with the Skins. I was already a casual fan. It wasn’t just the name in and of itself. I’ve known since high school that there was people who took issue. It’s not that the name is offensive, which it is, it’s that the owner has over and over given two middle fingers to the Native American community. It was the “Never Ever” statements. It was the Washington Redskins Original Americans Foundation. This is insulting on a whole new level. People have issue with the name so Snyder attempts to do charity work by naming the organization the politically correct name of original americans but then slaps “Washington Redskins” in front of it. I have to assume he’s doing this on purpose. There’s no way that any publicist would say that was a good idea. He must be surrounded by yes people.

I still like watching football. MLB season is over in October and the NBA really doesn’t pick up until around Christmas day. So what was I to do? I’m not going to root for the Ravens. First, I don’t do purple. Secondly, I’m not rooting for a team that has a history like the Ravens.  Finally, NFC > AFC. Then there was the process of elimination. I couldn’t choose another team in the NFC east.  The South can do whatever it is they do. What remained was NFC North and West. A big factor was the division rivals. If you follow a team you gotta know their division. Right now The west is the most talked about. Super Bowl champion Seahawks and their rivalry with the 49er is big. The amount of coverage the Rams will get with the drafting of Michael Sam. All solid. Yet no individual team stood out. I was however pulled toward the Lions. The NFC North has a history as the Black and Blue division. The Lions also don’t have a cheerleading squad.. After reading the lawsuits against teams and the NFL, it was a factor. The Lions president Tom Lewand  said that they are very comfortable being a team that doesn’t have cheerleaders.  I also have a long love for Detroit. Many of my favorite films begin, are set in or end in Detroit.  I was already used to the disappointment of the Skins so this seems liked a good fit. They put up good plays. They just hired a new coach Jim Caldwell who worked under John Harbaugh and Tony Dungy. It doesn’t hurt that they have a top  20 QB and running back and one of the best wide receivers currently playing.

In closing I’m sure by making this official,  the Skins will have a breakout season or at least do better than the Lions. That’s just my luck. I’ll still feel good in my choice and can’t wait to see how my new adopted team does this season.

 
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Posted by on July 27, 2014 in Sports, Viewpoints

 

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The Decision 2 : Coming back to you.

The Return of the King

I’ve never been a fan of LeBron. I respect his skills and he’s one of the best player currently in the game. He seems to be a good guy. I was and still am turned off by him due to the over saturation of the coverage he gets especially on ESPN (so thankful for Fox Sports 1). I wasn’t up in arms when he made “The Decision”. Didn’t watch didn’t care. I was a terrible way to make the announcement and I did begin to root against him a little.  It didn’t help that many of his new teammates in Miami I didn’t care for. They did become a team to “hate”.

I get moving to further your career and chase the ring. I’m more of a team fan loyalist. Some of my favorite players;  Stockton, Isiah Thomas, Reggie Miller and David Robinson all played for one team. The Heat won games. They did under some suspect flops and favorable calls by the refs. I never liked to join in on the piling on of the personal attacks and insults about hairlines or if the Heat had a dinosaur playing for them.I will admit some of those memes were funny as hell.

That being said I’m happy that he’s going back to Cleveland. It’s not just his hometown but the city needs it. They have been a running joke for years. Don’t have much luck with sports but they at least aren’t Detroit  They picked up Johnny Football and while he hasn’t played a single game he’s a draw for the city and will put bodies in the stadium and will help the transition to the NBA season. They might make it insufferable to watch ESPN but only time will tell.

As of this writing I don’t know if the #1 over all pick Andrew Wiggins will remain with the Cavs but he may be used in a trade to get Kevin Love. Love is one of the best Power Forwards who’s already expressed an interest in playing with Lebron.

Beyond the on court possibilities, LeBron’s wife is pregnant with their third child. I truly do believe that he wanted to take his family back home and win at home. In other words the “King”…..

 

 
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Posted by on July 12, 2014 in Sports, Viewpoints

 

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Orioles’ Matt Wieters headed for visit with Dr. James Andrews

 
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Posted by on May 7, 2014 in News, Sports

 

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Watch: Rare footage of 1919 ‘Black Sox’ World Series surfaces

With very little MLB footage for free to the public, its nice to see something a rare and historic available by all.

 
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Posted by on May 4, 2014 in Sports

 

NCAA Pay for Play

Great read about the NCAA and play for pay

Feit Can Write

If you follow college sports – especially football or men’s basketball – there is one topic that continues to come up:  The notion of somehow compensating the athletes for the revenue they are bringing into their schools, their conferences, the NCAA, and all of the other entities who make a profit off of amateur athletics.

This compensation, be it in the form of stipends, income from the sale of their name/likeness, an actual “salary” from the schools, or anything else, would be in addition to the items student-athletes already receive (namely, a free education, room, board, and a healthy collection of athletic apparel).

I’ll be the first to admit there is a lot of hypocrisy in the current system.  I recently bought my daughter a replica Nebraska jersey with the number 80 on it.  Why number 80?  Let’s be honest:  it’s not because of Billy Haafke, Jamie Williams, Santino Panico…

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Posted by on May 4, 2014 in Sports, Viewpoints

 

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