- Special Sections
- Public Notices
Something came over me this past weekend while watching the Arizona Cardinals and Pittsburgh Steelers make it to the NFL Super Bowl.
While the games were entertaining, I could not shake the overwhelming feelings of frustration, envy and anger.
Why can’t the teams I root for challenge for a championship any more?
For no other reason than proximity, I am a Cincinnati Bengals fan.
I am not a die hard, paint-your-face-black-and-orange fan, but I try to watch every game with that “Who Dey” spirit.
But, for the last, well forever really, the Ben-“gals” as some call them, have been nothing but a disappointment and embarrassment.
Sure, there was the one playoff year and the hope that quarterback Carson Palmer, Chad “Ocho Cinco” Johnson and company could turn the franchise around.
However, things still are bleak and do not look any brighter in the near future.
In high school, my good friend and I would say the Bengals were going to win the Super Bowl at the start of every season only to be made a fool of by week three of the season.
Now, it is not even worth the time, effort or emotional investment to do anything but turn the game on Sunday and expect to watch a loss.
Anything less is a miracle.
As for my biggest passion, the University of Kentucky basketball team, they may be the most difficult team to be a bleed-blue, feel-like-you-lost-a-family-member-with-each-loss fan.
I understand that part of it is that UK’s success has led to me and millions of others being spoiled.
It did not help that as a freshman at the university, the team won it all and I etched the countless memories of celebrating that victory in my mind forever.
From Tubby Smith leaving and Billy Gillespie being hired, rooting for the Cats has been the ultimate rollercoaster the past few years.
Losing to inferior teams, being branded a washed-up program and seeing ranking after ranking with UK nowhere in sight tests your faith and support.
Entering this season, I had high hopes that were quickly squashed like a bug with losses to lowly VMI, perennial power North Carolina and that other Kentucky team which will remain nameless.
I am happy to say that things are turning around a bit as the Cats enter the heart of their Southeastern Conference schedule.
A home victory against Vanderbilt, a huge win over rival Tennessee and a strong showing against the admittedly horrible Georgia Bulldogs on the road has brought the hope and optimism back.
But as I’ve come to learn in the life of a UK fan, things can quickly go downhill.
I guess I will just enjoy the latest ride while it lasts and hope that another title comes before the next heartbreak.
(Bryan Marshall is the staff writer of the Grant County News. He can be reached at 824-3343 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.)