FanPost

Connecting with Your Team (Historically)?

As a Florida fan, the most common trash talk I hear from other people is that Florida has no history in football until the 90s. It's partially true. Except for a couple of years in the early 80s and mid 60s, Florida doesn't have much of a winning history we can hang our hats on. We only have 33 winning seasons in the SEC out of the 77 years we've been in it with only reaching bowl eligibility 19 times before 1990. Compared to Ohio State, Michigan, USC, Alabama and others, we really haven't accomplished much before our redacted SEC championships in the early 80s.

I was 9 when Florida won its first title. Even if I had grown up a Gators fan (which I didn't, I watched the NFL because we lived in the San Francisco Bay Area where everyone watched the 49ers) I would have been at an age where the game wasn't something I could fully grasp and the importance of the event I couldn't have truly understood. Because of this, I have no emotional attachment to that national championship, and I was alive for it.

As a result, I commonly find it ridiculous when rival students/recent alumni are telling me all about Bear Bryant, Robert Neyland, Barry Switzer, Bob Devaney, Darrell Royal, any Michigan coach before Lloyd Carr, or Woody Hayes. How could you possibly feel connected to the emotions of those wins in any real or visceral way? What does that history mean to you? Did you feel that shit in the womb? I suppose if your mom was a fan, you felt some of that alcohol drip on down but otherwise...?

So when people tell me Florida football didn't start until 1990, I either respond that I didn't start until 1987 or that the impact of Florida football winning or losing didn't start for me until I started caring about it, namely my admittance to the University circa winter 2004. Obviously, I didn't grow up with college football, and I could very well just not get it. It's kind of an intriguing topic to me though.


So how far back does your connection with your team go? Before you were born? Growing up as a fan? Starting school at the actual university? When you see or use the phrase "Good Football History" when referring to a team, what importance do you put into it?

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