This has been a great year to be me, sportswise. Of course, I’m going to curse it all now, but it may be that everyone needs a little humbling, right? (Nevertheless, I’m knocking on all the wood I can find.)
I’m not what you would call a sports fan. I like the competition, I like rooting for a team and seeing them win. I grew up overseas, and I remember a Mundial between Argentina and Germany. As it became increasingly clear that the Germans were handing it to the Argentines, I got so upset I took my bike out and rode around the neighborhood. It was crushing, and I was… twelve, probably. [And on doing research, I can’t find a game I would have watched between Argentina and Germany that Argentina lost… so, so much for memory. Ed.] I used to watch some soccer, some basketball, but I was never a stats-tracking, game-going, fan.
Then i came to the US, and went to college in Rhode Island (a state that calls Boston teams home), and was steeped in New England sports. So I have been (and most certainly am today) a Boston sports fan. Watching the Patriots play undefeated football has been fun all season. Not that I get many of the games here, but some make it through. It is doubly fun because we were in Minnesota for the year of Randy Moss’ breakout, and it is good to see him back. Watching the Red Sox last night was lots of fun, too, especially when it looked like the Rockies were going to spoil it. I used to watch a lot of baseball (and even attended some Pawsox game during college), and I have enjoyed the playoffs this year.
But I live in Kansas now, and watching the undefeated Kansas Jayhawks (KU’s college football team) play football has been a blast. They played a powder-puff non-conference schedule, but in the last three weeks have played tough road games and still won. Last year, our first college football season in Kansas, the team lost a large number of games in the last quarter. This year, they are putting those games away. It actually reminds me a lot of the years we spent in Iowa, when Kirk Ferentz was just getting the Iowa football program back on its feet. Watching this little team that could was great. The wife and I have fond memories of weekends spent working on the house, or in the yard, with the game on the radio. And we’re building that here, too.
[A note of condolence for the Iowa football fans this year… sorry about your season.]
And, of course, we have college basketball to look forward to, starting this next week! Would it be greedy to hope for their success, too?