ESPN, in a display that is sure to have me and the rest of B’More vomiting in our Labor Day weekend steamed crabs, named the Pissburgh Squealers Fans as the best in the NFL.
The first problem is that the Squealers didn’t even really win the competition; they were instead pushed over the edge by some biased officiating. Sounds familiar, yes?
They were tied with the Green Bay Packers fans in whatever goofy-ass statistical formula the crack (head) staff used to rank the fans. How did they break the tie? I’ll let them tell you:
“When all was said and done, the Pittsburgh Steelers and Green Bay Packers ended up tied for first. But much like the International Gymnastics Federation, we came up with an elaborate tiebreaking process in which Hall of Fame writer John Clayton of ESPN was called upon to keep things above board. Clayton, who grew up in the East Braddock section of Pittsburgh, picked the Steelers, which seems totally fair.”
I’m sure if Clayton had of gone with Green Bay, ESPN would have went with their next “impartial” judge to break the tie.
So, what reasons do they give for the Squealers inexplicably large fan base? Well, basically the same ones we’ve covered here before. Their fans all lost their jobs at a time when the team was dominating.
“The decline of the steel industry in the 1970s coincided with the rise of the Steelers dynasty. At a time when the city’s collective psyche was taking a major blow, the local football team offered a weekly respite. A generation of young people left the city to find work elsewhere, but they remained passionate about their hometown team. And that’s why your local stadiums are often invaded by a black-and-gold army.”
Now, what does all this have to do with me rooting for the Lions in 2008?
Simple, really. Apparently, the equation looks something like this:
Win football games + Lose Jobs + couple decades = artificially inflated fan base
The auto industry in Detroit has lost something like, I dunno, 10 million jobs* over the past few years. If not for Matt Millen’s comical ineptitude, Lions fans would be poised to be the next Steelers fans.
Its unacceptable that those rag-waving, pierogi-breathed, inbred mountain folk are the NFL’s “best fans.”
Detroit, you have the power to end this. So lets all jump on the Jon Kitna bandwagon in 2008, and hopefully the Lions can bring a Lombardi Trophy to Motor City.
Alternatively, the Patriots could have already been well on their way to having a “fan monopoly” over the country. If only the great Northeast had experienced a huge economic downturn in the moron industry over the past decade….