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The “we” in sports

March 10, 2009

Watching Mike and Mike in the morning earlier today, an interesting debate stemmed.  Fans of different college and professional sports often refer to their favorite teams as “we”.  A perfect example of this, was when the Giants beat the Patriots in Super Bowl 42, I immediately turned to my brother, and screamed, “WE DID IT”!  I didn’t play a down for the Giants that season, and I never received a super bowl ring either.  However, since I was three years old, I have been attending most of the Giants home games, and throwing fits every single time they lost.  There was a period of time, when I would definitely be more upset than the players, after a Giants loss.  Taking down the undefeated Patriots felt like a weight had lifted off my back.  The Giants organization thinks of fans as part of the team.  Where do you think the 12th man came from?  

         Fathoming the thought of fans in professional sports not being included in “we”, is frustrating.  There are no professional sports without the fans.  Fans support organizations through their purchasing of team memorabilia, tickets to games, expensive parking, etc.  Players entertain the fans on the playing field.  Through a mutual relationship, fans and players form their own community.

       Looking at this in college sports, using “we” is even more acceptable.  Indiana University is my alma mater.  If they were to win the national championship next season, I would use “we” or “us” with pride.  A team at a university or college, is part of the culture on campus.  Many schools are prolific football schools, basketball schools, and in some situations, are fortunate to have success across the board.  Saying this, I am not a college, or professional athlete.  Many of these athletes might have a different perspective on the “we” factor.  However, I find it hard to believe that they don’t consider their fan base as part of their teams.  This morning, Mike Golic took the side of splitting his opinion between professional and college sports.  He feels that there is a fine line between using “we” in college, and “we” at the professional level.  If an individual went to a university, and that school won a title, it is completely acceptable from Golic’s perspective, to use “us” as a fan.  When speaking of a professional team, he asks the question, “Where is the ring”?  If us fans are part of our team, why don’t we get a championship ring”?  This is a hypothetical question, obviously it would be way too expensive for every single fan to get some championship bling.  Regardless, it would be a selfish act for any athlete to have a rebuttal for fans claiming they are part of the team.

 

By Mikeyrolls

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