How to be a Better Fan

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This week I have prepared a week of football related posts in anticipation of the return of yet another football season … Football Week 2012! Today’s post comes from a fellow Fighting Irish blogger, The Subway Domer! Brace yourself, you may be in for a wild ride! 

Greetings readers of No Coast Bias! I, of course, am your Warlord and Soverign Emperor of the (Notre Dame) Subway Alumni; The Subway Domer.

OK, that’s enough pomp and circumstance. Lisa asked me to stop by and chat with y’all, and I promised to behave.

What I want to talk with you today may be a bit out of the normal from what you would think about just weeks away from the season, and you may beat your head into a wall even more violently if you have read Subway Domer or have followed me on Twitter. What I want to discuss, is how to be a better fan. Correction: How to be a better fan of The Fighting Irish.

I have to warn you now, this is not a post filled with fanboy rhetoric and a breakdown of Notre Dame traditions. If you want that, there are plenty of other resources available to you. Sorry folks, but I roll a different way.

Where do you live? Chances are, you probably live outside of the state of Indiana and are surrounded by Notre Dame haters at every turn. Yes, they are haters. Notre Dame is the most polarizing school in the country for college football fans. You either love them, or hate them. So, if you wish to talk college football with your neighbor, classmate, friends, coworkers, or whoever you discuss this great sport with, the chances that you, as a fan of Notre Dame, are heard with much respect is most likely nonexistent.

Why is that? The obvious answer is that other fans are jealous of the rich history of Notre Dame. Yet, that is only part of it. Notre Dame fans tend to bring up the storied past a little too often when talking about the Irish. Honestly, you’re not going to find too many people that care about 12 National Titles and 7 Heisman Trophy winners. But I guess, mostly, what they hate is that they think Irish fans are self absorbed and know nothing else of the college football world, and although that statement has a lot of truth to it for Irish fans, the same can be said for a lot of college football fans.

Photo from: http://www.unathleticmag.com/2011/08/31/college-football-starts-this-week-the-5-best-fan-bases/

What can you do? Climb out of the Cave of Ignorance. Be informed, be a college football fan. That may sound simple and very matter of fact, but that is the single greatest thing you can do to earn more respect from peers. Now, no one expects you to spend half of a day reading about the teams we play, but reading just a little about our opponents each week or about that team that 90% of your friends cheer for, will make a huge difference in your perception of them and their perception of you. That makes better conversations, which make better fans. Besides brushing up on your enemy knowledge, here are a few other tips:

  • Do not talk about academics. Seriously, no one cares, and it really makes you seem like a jackass if you are a Subway Alum.
  • Do not try to insult, or talk trash about other team in every conversation. Be complimentary when appropriate.
  • When you make outrageous statements and then are proved wrong, own up to those statements.
  • Stop making outrageous statements with your friends.

So, how do you become a better fan of the Fighting Irish? By becoming a better fan of College Football. If you read Subway Domer and/or follow me on Twitter, you may be still scratching your head. I talk a LOT of trash and make the most outrageous statements, so how can I sit here and tell you otherwise? Well, it’s because of years of doing this blogging thing in jest from a platform that allows it. I like to have fun, and people know it. However, when it comes down to talking about the nuts and bolts of the sport, I always try to maintain a level of respect between myself and others. Respect.

In closing, I hope these thoughts help you enjoy the college football season a little more, regardless of what happens with Notre Dame. I encourage you to read other team blogs, follow other teams media/blogs on Twitter. Be informed. It never hurts to be as knowledgeable about a topic that you are discussing as humanly possible. It doesn’t make you less of a fan, it makes you a better fan.

Thank you,

The Subway Domer

If you like what you read above, read more from The Subway Domer here! Tomorrow I welcome Oscar McBride to the blog for day two of football week! I hope you’ll come back and check it out!

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Lisa Kelly is a multidimensional marketing professional. She has 18 years of marketing experience and earned a bachelor of business administration and marketing from the University of Notre Dame (1993). She does marketing research on a full time basis, but also does freelance work in Social Media. She pens her own blog "Bridget McGuire's Filling Station" and is a contributing writer at NoCoastBias.com and IrishEyes.com. In 2012, Lisa was crowned the "Biggest Fan of the Big East" in a blogging and social media contest, representing Notre Dame.

4 COMMENTS

  1. Very interesting Mr. Subway Domer. It is all abour respect. I totally agree with you. And I’ve always said, “Knowledge is power” So again I agree with you. There’s a right way and a wrong way to talk “trash” with Notre Dame haters. But how about we replace the word haters with disapprovers? Hate is such an awful word.

    Thanks for a great post! And thank you Lisa for all your hard work!!

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