Beyond winning and losing

> It really amazes me how the world of sports is rapidly changing.

No, not how the sports are being played. While that aspect of sports will always be the same, there is another aspect of sports that is changing, and it’s kind of hard not to take notice of it. The fanbases.

Up until about two years ago, I thought it was routine for all sports fans to be a fan of their city’s team- whether it’s where they grew up, or where they live now. At least that’s what I was taught; no matter how good or bad your team was, you stayed loyal to them.

But, over the past few years, that’s changed quite a bit. I first realized it when my best friend- at the time- claimed he wasn’t a Brewers, Packers, Badgers, or Bucks fan. I thought he was joking at first, but turns out he was dead serious. But I didn’t understand- he, like me, was raised and lived his whole life in Wisconsin.

That was when I was first introduced to the term “bandwagon fan.” I figured out that he was a fan of the Phillies, Vikings, and Cavaliers. How those three teams were related, I had no idea. But, he simply liked them because they were all guaranteed winners. (Note- this was in 2009-2010. The Vikings are crap now, but they were good then.)

To this day, I don’t understand bandwagon fans. Is it truly fun to cheer for a team that you know is automatically going to get to the postseason?

Some say in order to achieve true happiness, you need to have experienced true pain. Same goes for sports. In order to feel the thrill of your team reaching the postseason, you need to have been to low points with your team as well.

I’ll use myself as an example. I was eccentric when the Brewers made the playoffs in 2008, and again in 2011. Why? In 2004, I watched the Brewers sputter to a 67-94 record, same in 2003. But 2002 was the worst- 56-106. Sounds like a modern-day Pirates or Astros record.

Despite the fact I was young then, it’s those seasons that make seasons like 2008 and 2011 feel so much better. I know it sounds weird, but all teams need seasons like that.

But that’s why I don’t understand bandwagon fans. If you’re just going to switch favorite teams depending on who’s good, you’re not a true fan.

And this all brings me to my point. The love for a team in any sport should go beyond winning and losing; not giving up on them when they lose and switching to another team because you know they’re going to win. That completely defeats the purpose of any sport.

> The deadline for signing Norichika Aoki is tomorrow, and, according to the Brewer Nation, Doug Melvin has said that talks haven’t accelerated since the last update. It sounds like a deal is likely to get done, though, even if it goes right down to the 4:00 PM deadline tomorrow.

> The Brewers avoided arbitration with Nyjer Morgan today. So, he and his multiple alter egos will return for at least one more year in center field.

> And that’s about it. Thanks for reading, and feel free to leave your thoughts.

2 Responses to Beyond winning and losing

  1. elmaquino says:

    I’ve been called a bandwagon fan because I live in KC but root for the Cardinals. I didn’t do this to be a homer though. I just refuse to support the Majors’ greediest owner. If he doesn’t care about me the fan, why should I invest in his product?

    So, I chose the next-closest team, and I wouldn’t leave them in hard times. In fact, I’m probably too attatched to leave even if they adopted a crappy owner.

    You’re right though: waiting for a championship is way better than jumping on a bandwagon. Every year I watched my guys, we either didn’t make the cut or got swept painfully in the first round. But when we went on that impossible run and won it all? There’s nothing like it. Totally worth the wait.


    Nyjer Morgan is coming back, Luddy is with the Reds, and Pujols is spending his birthday in LA. Sad day for the Central.

    • breakingwi says:

      I don’t think you’re a bandwagon fan; I think it’s perfectly fine to be a Cards fan in KC (just as long as you weren’t a Royals fan for a long time before that).

      But that’s the point I was getting at, waiting for a championship instead of getting on a bandwagon. It just feels so much better knowing you’ve been with the team through good and bad times.

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