Robert Phillips: I've never thought that in order to be a "REAL fan," you have to go to the game. I'm a UCF grad, a football fan, and a UCF fan. I go to as many games as I can. But you all know as well as I do why many fans would rather stay at home to watch on TV, or even go to a sports bar to watch: stadiums are hot. You'll walk in the sun and stand in line for the privilege. You'll be gouged for drinks and food. It'll take you 30 minutes to get off campus afterwards.
But other reasons to stay away include the other people who go [bullets added]:
- Drunk Fratboy with the tribal armband tattoo who never really realizes how drunk and obnoxious and pathetic he's being.
- College Girl who stands with her back to the field the entire game, obstructing your view while she flirts with Drunk Fratboy.
- Pompous armchair analysts who pretend to know every statistic about every player and make sure you can overhear their constant overanalysis and play-by-play.
- Students who think being a fan means shouting the same slurred rhymes and insults every three minutes.
- Mothers and grandmothers of players who scream hysterically every time her son/grandson does something...well, every time he does anything.
- Dude who can't stay seated and needs to squeeze in and out of the row of seats every ten minutes.
- Dude who takes his seat and part of your area as well.
- Dude who rests his foot on the seat in front of him, not realizing or not caring that that's where you're trying to sit.
Yeah, I just described some of you. So don't think for one moment that "real fans" go to the games. Sometimes real fans are such dedicated fans that they don't want any of the above to get in the way.
Now, maybe I'm slightly biased against this guy (read: I hate him and think he's an uneducated idiot) because I tend to fall under numbers 4, 7, and 8. But I think a true fan is someone who is at the game supporting his team. Sure, that doesn't mean a true fan can't watch from home; maybe he couldn't afford the ticket, or he had to work earlier that day. But I think where Mr. Phillips made a grave error was to confuse the term "real fan" with "fairweather fan."
I don't care how you act at the game. But if you go to the game, you stay to the end. That's the definition of a true fan. A true fan doesn't care about other people in the stands, because he barely even notices them. His entire focus is on the developments of the game. If Mr. Phillips is more concerned with looking around the stadium to find people to spite, then he is far from a true fan.
A true fan doesn't gripe about the weather conditions; he only thinks about how it will affect the game. If it's rainy, will our receivers be able to hang on to the ball? If it's windy, how will this affect our field goal attempts in the 3rd and 4th quarters? If it's blistering hot, will our running back be able to give his normal output, or will we have to play a 2-back system for most of the game to keep him fresh? If Mr. Phillips is complaining about the heat, in FLORIDA, then he is definitely not a true fan.
A true fan doesn't complain about the lines, or the price of food. The only line the true fan worries about is the line for the bathroom at half time, because that's the only time a true fan leaves his seat. A true fan doesn't care about the price of beer, or nachos, or water, because a true fan drinks in the energy of the stadium and feeds off of the excitement of the game. If Mr. Phillips is worried his snacks will cost more than seven dollars, then maybe he should have had his mommy pack him a knapsack. Because he is not a true fan.
A true fan doesn't care about the long waits for leaving the stadium, because a true fan waits for the players to exit the locker room. A true fan supports his team through win or lose, thick and thin, through both Hell and high water. A true fan applauds his team's performance whether they win by four touchdowns or lose by a last second field goal. And a true fan most certainly doesn't leave in the 3rd quarter to "beat the crowd." If Mr. Phillips is worried about getting out of the parking lot fast enough to get home and watch the season finale of Lipstick Jungle, then he is not a true fan.
In closing, a true fan is someone who doesn't question why he is at the game. But if you are not sure if you are a true fan, ask yourself a question: Are you there for the team, or are you there for the people you sit with?
It's obvious that Mr. Phillips is not a true fan. If anyone would like to inform him of this, feel free to send him a message via Facebook. But please, let's be civil. GO KNIGHTS!