Right from the start, the idea for this piece came from a post over at 11Warriors. It looks like they got the idea from the college football blog Every Day Should be Saturday. We give them full credit for the idea. Everyone happy? Good.
I am not Catholic, so I have more of an ‘outsiders’ understanding of a confessional. I get repentance. Anyway, the idea of getting things off your chest that others might find offensive is appealing to me in the sports genre. So without any more adieu, here are my biggest Cleveland sports confessions.
1. When I was very young I didn’t really like the Indians.
There I said it.
In fact, I rooted for the Orioles for a while. The first World Series I ever watched was the Orioles vs the Phillies in 1983. That was a killer pitching staff. Boddicker, Palmer, Flanagan, McGregor. Throw in Cal Ripken, Eddie Murray and Rick Dempsey and you had an excellent team.
I also rooted for Rickey Henderson. I was 8 and we shared a first name. I loved how he changed the game by stealing bases. But he could also hit- he wasn’t just a sprinter that tried to walk every time up to the plate.
It wasn’t until I started watching Andy Allanson and eventually Sandy Alomar Jr. that I started to really love the Indians.
2. I have purposefully kept myself detached from LeBron James because of his impending free agency. I haven’t purchased LeBron gear or autographs or anything of that nature because of it. I told my wife that if he signs another deal with Cleveland my full-on man crush will begin, but for now I’m keeping my distance.
I was burned bad by the Ramirez/Thome free agent signings. I decided then and there that I wouldn’t let that happen again. Then I bought into Sabathia. And Victor. Sigh.
3. I rooted against the Browns once. It was the Seattle game right after they let Bernie Kosar go. Todd Philcox started at QB for the Browns and quickly fumbled a ball that the Seahawks returned for a touchdown. I went crazy. Probably made myself hoarse cheering.
I don’t cheer or root for my teams to lose games in order to secure better draft picks. I’m like Herm on that front- you play to win the game. That was the one and only time I’ve rooted for the Browns to lose.
4. I once wanted the Buckeyes to lose to Michigan. Yep. I said it. It was the 1992 game. John Cooper’s record against Michigan and in Bowl games was horrible already (and this was only his 5th season) and there were whispers that if he lost again to Michigan he would get fired. That’s all I needed to hear. I didn’t really cheer for Michigan, but in the back of my mind I knew that if we lost it would be alright because Coop would be gone. The result? A tie of course. No satisfaction from a win, and Cooper held onto his job. He would coach 8 more years at OSU. Only won 3 bowl games and just 2 against Michigan.
5. I have said this before, but I don’t watch the playoffs of any sport after Cleveland has been eliminated. If they never made the playoffs I might watch some. I watch the Super Bowl. Well, except once. I went on a date during Super Bowl XXXI when the Packers won. I just can’t stomach watching the Celtics play the Lakers or the Red Sox play the Rockies knowing we could have/should have been there.
Well I feel better. How about you? Got any dark Cleveland sports secrets to share?