After watching two very good college football teams go at it last night, I felt compelled to express my thoughts regarding the seemingly prevailing culture of sports fans. Even though the final score was in favor of Stanford, I found it quite disturbing regarding two items: the TV commentators and the home team’s fans. Until it was evident that Stanford had thoroughly trounced ASU, the TV men could not talk enough about ASU, its seven straight home wins, its fabulous coach, Todd Graham, his PAC-12 Coach of the Year honors, while panning the ASU faithful while not once showing any of the Stanford fans in the stadium. I might add full disclosure: I am an former ASU varsity letter winner in baseball and I have a grandson playing for Stanford.
More disturbing was with 12 minutes remaining in the 4th quarter, again the TV producers panned the ASU crowd and revealed the stands emptying! ASU faithful; really? This game was to decide the PAC-12 champion. What about staying to the end of the game to applaud their team’s season’s efforts? Here’s a program that has been embarrassing below par for years under incompetent head coaches and (athletic directors), and finally they now have a head coach who appears to be doing a wonderful job turning around a program and bringing recognition, discipline and respect again. These young men bust their humps 10 months out of the year in order to walk onto the field 11-13 times per year and fans walk out on them? Win or lose they deserve respect, praise and unequivocal support while practicing to perfect their chosen sport. I know this happens through our sports but I submit it is time to quit thinking about post-game traffic, the commute home, the post-game tailgate party, the weather, and start thinking about those young athletes who give it their all — win or lose — every week for our viewing enjoyment. Remember: College football is played for 60 minutes, college basketball is played for 40 minutes and college baseball is played for nine innings. Sit back and enjoy the venue.
Bodega Bay, Calif.