Just as I thought - the Pirates' fair-weather friends are starting to surface.
This is the first year the Pirates have been competitive since 1992. Good for them.
But, until now, most of the Pittsburgh sports fans I've talked to have told me they don't follow the Pirates and don't like baseball.
Yet, I am seeing Pirate hats, shirts, etc., everywhere I go. Why now?
My team, the Oakland Raiders, set an NFL record for consecutive seasons (seven) of losing more than 11 games from 2003 to 2009. This was quite frustrating to watch such a successful franchise slowly evolve into a doormat.
You still can't talk about the Raiders without getting a little chuckle here and there. It was embarrassing. But I still wore my Raiders' gear, and flew my flags, and talked about my team proudly.
If I hadn't, I would be as disingenuous as the Pirate fans are now.
This goes for the Steeler fans who couldn't spell Polamalu prior to 2005, and the Penguin fans, who never knew why other fans were wearing blue Pens' jerseys when the team's colors are black and yellow as well.
Your team is like your spouse - for better or worse. You can't choose when to be a fan. You should be all the time.
Coach missed mark
I enjoyed reading Neil Rudel's well-written article in last Saturday's paper.
When asked by media the other day at the Big Ten Media Days how he has been able to coach for so long, Coach Paterno replied, "The environment in a small town like State College has had something to do with it."
I think Coach Paterno blew it. This would have been a perfect opportunity for him to praise his dedicated staff that has covered for more than once these past few years and made the program what it is today.