Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Time to Post Again…Let’s Start with Some Personal Introspection on My Fandom

I haven’t posted in a while, but a recent post on rivals asking about this site caught my attention. The exciting news there is rivals poster ACPooley will be authoring some articles and commentaries when the season starts. That’s great news for the site because it’ll give you as readers more content read. It also might be great content because after you read the next paragraphs you might not want to read my posts any longer, but we shall see.

Obviously, I haven’t posted for a while. That’s not because interesting stuff didn’t happen with NU basketball and NU sports in general, but obviously other sites existed to cover that information and aside from my daily job, I was also pretty busy with my own area of athletic responsibilities, which when I considered that brought some thoughts to mind I want to share.

Let’s be honest, one of the things I’ve done on this blog from time to time is criticize coaching decisions. Odds are I might still do that in the heat of the moment, but at the same time as I’ve watched Northwestern football’s last three games and seen coaching decisions I didn’t understand, I decided to evaluate my emotional investment in NU athletics. I’m a big fan. I’m I too big a fan? I’ve spent three basketball seasons writing about every game of the only major conference basketball team NOT to make the NCAA Tournament. That’s an odd choice for a hobby. Now, it’s great to be an NU because NU represents everything right and I kind of take pride in actively supporting a group that doesn’t have a lot of active support. I also enjoy sharing my thoughts with other big fans that are readers of this blog and make up that small, but active support group for NU hoops.

That said, in this introspection I realized that I’m fortunate that as a component of my job (a secondary component, but one nonetheless) I get to be involved in sporting events in which I have at least some measure of control. More credit goes to the players than to me for our 22-5 record last spring (had to get the record in there, though as it never hurts to boost the ego) but nonetheless I have to say I must have done something right. I also made one major mistake that prevented that record from being 23-4. That mistake kept me up at night. I still get pissed off when I think about it, but I think that’s okay because it makes it less likely I’ll make the same mistake again AND I made the decision so I have to learn to live with it. What’s the point of this ramble as it relates to NU? I guess to say that while I’m back and with ACPooley’s help I hope to provide great coverage of what we hope is a history making season for NU basketball in 2011-12, I hope that I’m at a bit where I’m not going to lose sleep over NU basketball because I’ve realized I have no control. That’s Bill Carmody’s job and good luck to him. Hopefully, I can contain my emotional investment from tipoff to the last whistle and not make it such a big part of my life. I think that’ll actually make for a better more reasoned blog that doesn’t include as much nonsense, though, that might mean less rambles. I don’t know if that means I have to change the site’s name.

It’s the same with Northwestern football. I’ve seen friends and family make the same mistake and I understand. To be honest, I can’t stand Iowa. I want to win this weekend badly, but unless you happen to be Pat Fitzgerald or Mike Hankwitz and you’re going to e-mail this blog for suggestions (BLITZ! And NEVER rush three men!) it really isn’t our problem what NU’s staff is doing right now. So let’s get pumped to support our teams, but let’s also at least try to remember that the expert coaches who know more than us are going to be spending a lot of time trying to find answers and we should make sure we show up at game time ready to support them and then trust them the rest of the time.

3 comments: said...

You're certainly not alone in questioning whether you're too emotionally invested. I'm still struggling a bit to not let the losses affect me too much. I'm getting better, but it's hard. I don't really put the focus on coaching decisions that you do, but I look at it as the growth of being a fan. There has to be a happy middle ground and hopefully we can find it soon.

Alan Casey said...

Glad to hear that you will be posting this year. Missed you in the off season.

Ryan said...

Thanks, Alan.