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Why I Love Football

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I love watching football. I love waking up Sunday morning knowing that my favorite team, the Pittsburgh Steelers, are on in a matter of minutes. I love coming home from school Monday knowing that football will be on in a couple of hours. (Although Monday Night Football has lost most of its flair.) I love when my tickets to Pittsburgh come in the mail, because I know that means I’m going to spend the whole weekend with my dad and away from school and boys.

For some reason, I really messed up on choosing my friends. I love them all to death and would do anything for them, but my goodness, they really don’t understand football. My friends are the kind of people who like to do schoolwork. So, when I ask if they saw the game, they reply, “What’s the point of overweight guys running into each other?”

I don’t know about anyone else, but there’s a reason I love watching football. Actually, it was an accident. I was in sixth grade — so it was five years ago — and the Steelers were in the playoffs. They were heading to Tennessee. My dad grew up loving the Steelers and my Mom encouraged him to buy tickets, and head to Nashville for the weekend.

My father was pessimistic. He didn’t want to go alone and he didn’t have any friends that liked football. My mom was out of the picture — she couldn’t leave us alone for the weekend. So, it was either me or my twin sister, Amanda. They asked Amanda and she didn’t want to go. Who knows why. My parents told me that I would miss one day of school. I shrugged and agreed. We were on our way to Tennessee.

I went to Tennessee and froze my butt off. I thought I could get away wearing what I wore in California in the winter — flip flops and shorts, of course. We paid a visit to the local department store before the game.

Arriving at the stadium, we found our seats. I had absolutely no idea what was going on. I couldn’t tell who had the ball. I kept cheering for the Titans. After all, everyone else was cheering, so I would to. Then I realized the Steelers were the away team. The Steelers lost that game, but I didn’t care.

Why? Because, I realized, it wasn’t about football. It was about being with my Dad. So, every year, I go to a Steelers game. Seventh grade – Cardinals @ Steelers (Win). Eighth grade – Playoff game Jets @ Steelers (Win). Ninth grade – SUPERBOWL Seahawks and Steelers (Win). Tenth grade – Steelers @ Chargers (Lost). Eleventh grade – Browns @ Steelers (Win).

But it didn’t matter if the Steelers won or lost. It wasn’t about the “overweight men hitting each other.” Or at least it wasn’t to me. Now, I love football, I can carry on intelligent conversations about football, (imagine all these teenage boys' faces when they realize they finally found a girl who likes football), I know who has the ball, and I can name most of our roster. I learned to love football so I could get closer to my Dad. My friends still don’t understand. That’s fine. All I know is that football changed my life, because now, I know I can go to my Dad for anything. All because of football.

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About Maddy

  • RJ

    “My father was pessimistic. He didn’t want to go alone and he didn’t have any friends that liked football.”

    Your father doesn’t have any friends who like football? Well…I guess your father needs some new friends!

  • RJ

    By the way, nice article. (And you’re very lucky to have actually been to a Super Bowl, rooting for your favorite team. As a Lions fan, I expect to have that opportunity sometime around 2035…)

  • SteelerDude

    Touching blog that makes me hope that my two sons, ages 2 and 4, will grow up to be Steelers fans like me and write nice things like this.

  • Chain Chomp

    Even though i am a Bengals fan i really relate to your story. My friends only like football because of fantasy football now they will root for whomever wil give them the most points. I love it how you there is something special you and your dad have together. Save all your ticket stubbs.

  • I understand the premise of football. Hell, I even marginally understand the rules.

    I guess it is just a matter of taste not understanding why it makes people so damn excited.

    It is probably best related to going to a concert or a music show. You’re really into the band (team), watching them perform live (Super Bowl?) and do they best they can (or even screw up and have a good laugh) has to be the bridge of understanding I can apply it to.

    The only thing that is different is that most people who really enjoy music, almost to an obsessive degree, also attempt at making it. With football, most of the people I know that are obsessed with it would get winded with a few passes.

    What they can do is verbally unleash a tidal wave of information about score history, player names and statistics that would make anyone’s heads spin. I figure, if they’re that good at numbers, averages and all that, why don’t they play the stock market? *laughs*

    Sports in general just seem to be a real decadent form of entertainment. Some people take it too far.

    Then again, if you’re a loyal fan and you’re really into it, better that than mediocrity.

    I’ll just never understand, I guess.

    The best part of it for most that I can see is the friend and family bond that occurs, because it is largely a social event. I’ve never been huge on the socializing, so that must be the daylight between me and sports.

    To each his/her own, as long as it makes you happy.


  • I, as a Pittsburgh native (living in Dayton amidst an annoying storm of Bengals fans) thoroughly enjoyed this article. I think football is the most amazing game ever… when played well.

    No, I don’t play myself (I do martial arts), but I love to see the dedication, skill and raw ferocity of those folks on the field. Being a fan of a championship team doesn’t hurt either.

    I guess I always liked football, but didn’t start to love it until I went with my family to a Bengals game to see the Steelers play earlier this season. We didn’t win, but it was so enjoyable to see the noise and the excitement of the crowd, to represent my team amidst friends and foes alike. To see the intensity of the game on the field.

    From that day on, I have harbored a warm fuzzy affection for football, and a deep disdain for Bengals FANS. Those guys are some sore WINNERS. But whatever. I’d hate the Steelers too… if I didn’t love them. 🙂 That’s what happens when you succeed… people generally hate you for having what they don’t.

  • yankeez

    Though you said about real football (soccer), dissapointed…