Stop shaming ‘casual football fans’

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Stop shaming ‘casual football fans’

Emma Royal, Staff Columnist

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Another week has passed along with another Alabama football victory, as is the standard in the era of Nick Saban. The Tide’s season has thus far been unmatched. We have a new starting quarterback, and we have not even come close to losing a game. As a student body, we love football.

For some of us, it is our Saturday ritual, our reason for moving across the country to attend a public university and major in general business. For many of us, however, football is a casual pastime, and though we enjoy the games and the atmosphere, we do not see the necessity in attending every single home game for the entire duration. On behalf of all casual football fans: please stop shaming us for enjoying our Saturdays the way we please.

First, The University of Alabama is not only for people who like football. We have other sports, some of which we are quite good at, but no one attendance-shames for any of those. “Supporting our boys” is not a good enough reason to shame other students for not attending every game and staying for four quarters unless you are supporting all of our student athletes, including those in other sports. Shirk all other responsibilities and attend every basketball game, soccer match and equestrian meet, and then you are allowed to tell other people that they aren’t doing enough to support the University.

Secondly, I will remind all of you that in Alabama there is no such thing as fall – only blistering summer and four months of 60-degree overcast days with one snow day wedged in between. It is hot, and it will not stop being hot until the Iron Bowl is over. Personally, I do not enjoy getting sunburned and dehydrated just so I can watch the football team score 50 points on an unranked opponent.

Winning is the norm for us these days, and I can admit that we are a little spoiled. I have a deep-seated childhood memory of watching Alabama lose to Louisiana-Monroe in 2007. I remember what it was like when the fan base was not absolutely amped every weekend. We are beyond blessed to have the facilities and team we have these days, but I prefer to be aware of that as I’m watching the game from an air-conditioned Cookout. There is nothing wrong with that.

Students who tell other students that they are not “good football fans” are not people with whom I want to spend football weekends. Fandom is not a competition; it is a celebration of the things that we love and enjoy.

We love football, but we also love our friends, buffalo chicken dip and 5 p.m. naps. Not everyone came to Alabama to watch football games, and some of us just want to go back to the Strip. Being the gameday police isn’t cool, and you are not better for being more dedicated to a football game than everyone else. You are just annoying. Enjoy the fourth quarter from the stands and let the rest of us enjoy our weekend.