"Jim's a tough guy and you can see his personality is all over this football team," Fitzgerald said.
As we approach the spring game, I've been put in mind of the fact that until I was about 16, I didn't even know there was a spring game. My parents andthe rest of my family were and are Michigan fans, but of a certain variety.
Dad is a "state of Michigan" fan, and will cheer for Sparty in all cases where they are not playing U of M. Michigan is his #1, but anything of the state is his number two. His Michigan fandom is most evident in his intense distaste for ND and OSU. Mom is a Michigan fan because dad is, and my granparents and her siblings were and are, but really, if Dad rooted for OSU, that'd be her team. My sister couldn't give a rat's rear end.
Growing up, I never knew the player's names, because my family didn't go in for big time fandom. I knew Timmy B, because Mom thought his name was hilarious. I didn't really become aware of players till round about Henne's freshman season. Oddly enough, I can now talk about players from earlier eras with my dad, and he knows all who I'm talking about. I guess he was a pretty big fan, but it never occured to him to discuss it.
It's weird that, coming from these rather topical fan origins, I should become such a diehard. I mean, my Dad doesn't even know a guy exists until his third game starting. Meanwhile, I pore over recruitng and watch spring games and hang on every word of practice reports. I study UFR's and game evaluations with rapt attention. I follow our players into their NFL careers should they have them. I'm just trying to figure out how from those origins, I got so craze for the Maize and Blue.
What was your M upbringing like?