Mar 12, 2009

Is it alright to say "We" when talking about your team?

Some guy named Kent made a post on some website about how fans should never, ever, under any circumstances, say "we" when referring to their favorite football team.

Sometimes, the things people say make you WANT to agree with this guy. For example, hearing Tech fans say, "We finally beat you! WE have bragging rights!" I just want to say, "Actually, you didn't. The football team you root for beat the football team I root for. I don't see why I personally should be embarrassed about that." (and I'm not)

But then, on the other hand, everyone knows that no sport exists without the fans, especially college football. College football is built around universities, places where thousands of students pay money to be members, where faculty and staff work to be members. It's a large network of interconnected people, all PART of the school in some way or another, even from the newest freshman to the president of the administration.

And then of course we have the donors, the life-long supporters and fans who, even if they never attended the university in any way, do give their money, time, and cheers to help the school, program, and team carry on, hire/pay coaches, staff, and scholarships for players. And the sports teams, like our Georgia Bulldogs, are a part of the university as well. In other words, anyone associated with the whole thing in any way, can technically refer to it as a collective "WE."

All of these people give SOMETHING to the University in SOME WAY to support it, which in turn helps the sports teams, and thus our football team. Without the students, faculty, staff, and donors, our university wouldn't exist, and clearly that would mean no football. Without money, UGA's athletic association wouldn't be able to hire coaches, provide scholarships for players, build and maintain stadiums, or keep grass on the field.

Finally, being part of the "we" can have a much more direct effect, in my opinion. Everyone knows how much crowd noise can affect the players on the field, and thus the events of the game. If you go out by Sanford Stadium in the fall during the week, you can hear extremely loud cheering and drums coming from the stadium, even when no fans are there. Why? Because our coaches know how important crowd noise is, and they simulate the sounds of a game while the players practice to help them adjust.

Imagine being a quarterback for a college football team, coming out onto a field surrounded by 93,000 people who are screaming at the top of their lungs against you, and you're trying to stay calm and make good decisions.

The fans, especially at their home games, certainly DO make a difference in games.

So in conclusion, if you have never spent a cent on a university or its sports program, if you've never had any official ties to the institution or its sports, and you've never attended a single game, you may look a little stupid calling yourself "we."

But I have a pretty good feeling that those types are few and far between.


1 comment:

  1. I have a slightly different take on this.

    If you are going to say "we" you have to do so in good times and in bad and you always have to give credit to the players even when saying "we" Some of these jort-wearing rednecks in the south think they accomplished something when a game is won. "We" is a privilege of including yourself vicariously in the success of others. Boasting about this is an absurdity. Further, you should be able to say "we" lost...not just crap like the team let us down (which would be separating yourself from the players when the going gets rough). It seems like common sense but far too many people (mostly bandwagoners) violate these simple rules of fandom.