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Thread: When did you first become a Steeler fan?

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    When did you first become a Steeler fan?

    The Day You Became A Steelers Fan

    May 7th, 2013 by Scott Sinclair

    I was first going to title this post “When did you Fall in Love with the Steelers”, and perhaps that would be a more apt title, but I went with something a little simpler. Some of us can remember our first kiss, our first date, the day we graduated High School, etc. However, when it comes to identifying the moment we started following a particular sports team, most of us have a crystal clear memory of that day.

    My favorite baseball team has always been the Cardinals, mainly because it was my favorite bird and they wore my favorite color (red). Over the years, I’ve grown apart from those simpler reasons for being a Cardinals fan. In the early 80′s I rooted for the Islanders in the NHL but now I am a Rangers fan but can’t remember why. I have no NBA team I root for, although in college basketball I have rooted for Duke since the mid 80′s, again with no clear reason why. In college football, it’s always been Penn State for me, ever since the 1981 Fiesta Bowl. However, all of those teams take a backseat to my beloved Pittsburgh Steelers.

    I remember very clearly the moment I fell in love with the Steelers and why. It was January 4th, 1975, eight months shy of my 4th birthday. The Steelers were playing their arch rivals, the Oakland Raiders in the AFC Championship game. The game was at Three Rivers and it was cold and a blanket of ice covered the field. Typical of their usual contests, the game was hard-hitting, tense and close for most of the four quarters. The, Steelers WR Lynn Swann went over the middle to catch a pass and was leveled by the Raiders’ George Atkinson. I remember the announcers (Curt Gowdy and Don Meredith) remarking how that was a vicious, even dirty hit. I remember my mom remarking the same thing, saying “that was bad”. Well, being three and never wanting to be bad or have anything to do with being bad, I decided I wasn’t going to root for the bad team, I was going to root for the Steelers, the good team. And simple as that, I was a Steelers fan. And I have never wavered since.

    As my childhood progressed so did my love for the black and gold. I dreamed about lining up next to Mean Joe and Lambert or catching a pass from Terry Bradshaw.For Halloween 1978 there is a picture of me in a Bradshaw uniform, complete with helmet and shoulder pads (designed naturally for kids), and for that brief moment captured in that photo I thought I was Terry. I lived and died with every Steelers game on TV. When the Steelers played the Rams in Superbowl XIV, my mom snuck me downstairs after putting my sister and I to bed so I could watch the rest of the game and then hid me under a blanket when my sister came into the living room (thankfully she went right back to bed or I would’ve missed the game). And then when the Steelers won the game, my mom and I (silently) cheered and jumped around the room. Being a Steelers fan in the 70′s made for some of the happiest days of my life.

    Like all things we love, besides joy there is an element of sadness too. As the 1980′s came things changed that diminished the joys of the previous decade. I cried when Terry hurt his elbow and retired. I cried when the Steelers cut Franco Harris. I began to understand and read how football was a business and cutting Harris was a business move. As Mark Malone, Scott Campbell, Todd Blackledge, and Bubby Brister took turns taking snaps under center I longed for the days of Bradshaw winging bombs to Swann and Stallworth. I just couldn’t find the same enthusiasm for Walter Abercrombie as I could for Franco. Edmund Nelson and Keith Gary were no Mean Joe and L.C. And as the Chuck Noll years came to their dismal close, I felt a chapter in my life came to a close as well. I was graduating high school, uncertain the direction my life was taking, and unsure about the future of my favorite team.

    And like all things we love, something comes along and rekindles it, ignites it and sends it to new and exciting places. For me, it was the Bill Cowher Steelers years. I loved Cowher, he was the perfect person to re-ignite the team and the fans. When Neil O’Donnell’s pass fell short in the end zone in the 1994 AFC Championship, I flung myself off the couch and landed on the floor crying. Yes, at 23 years old I was crying for the Steelers all over again. It was great.

    From that day to today, I’ve broken many TV remotes after hurling them against the TV after a Ben interception, and I nearly had a coronary cheering James Harrison on as he ran back and INT against the Cardinals in Superbowl XLIII(that whole season in particular was a roller coaster for my blood pressure). And through the madness and the joy I realize I will never love, can never love any football team other than the Steelers. It’s like being a kid all over again.

    So, I want to hear from you! When did you become a Steeler fan?


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    Quote Originally Posted by steeler_fan_in_t.o. View Post
    Yesterday I think
    what was your inspiration yesterday?

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    I'm an indoctrinated Pittsburgh sports fan since I came into this world so I guess I would have to say that being a Steelers fan has been my birthright.

  5. #5

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    34 years ago, the first Game my Pop took too was the Raiders and Steelers.. we lost but I have never cheered for another team.

  6. #6
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    Grew up in Pittsburgh so my earliest memories are of Pittsburgh sports. Don't remember the first 2 SBs, but do the second two (XIII, XIV). City of Champions and Sister Sledge, "We are a Family".

    Back in the day; we NEVER got to eat meals in front of the TV. The only exception was Steelers games. That's how I knew it as a really big deal.

  7. #7

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    Grew up about 15 miles east of the city out the Parkway, so I've been a fan from day one by birthright for anything related to Pittsburgh sports, Pirates, Penguins and Steelers. My earliest recollection of the Steelers is the day they hired Chuck Noll and I remember my dad asking, "Who in the Hell is this Chuck Noll guy? Just more of the same."

    Then the Steelers proceeded to win the first game Noll coached (against Detroit I believe), but lost the rest of the games, drafted Joe Greene and the rest is history.


    The referee said that you hit Brian Sipe too hard. Did you hit him too hard?
    I hit him as hard as I could - Jack Lambert

    1.28 Edmunds, Terrell, S, VA Tech (Jackson, Lamar QB, Louisville)
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    3.92 Okorafor, Chukwuma, OT, W.Mich (Blanding, Quin, FS, Virginia)
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    7.246 Frazier, Joshua, DT, Alabama

  8. #8

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    Good question, but that article annoyed me. He started talking about the St Louis Cardinals. Then the Islanders. Then switching allegiance to the Rangers. WTF is next, will he switch over to the Ravens in the future? Yuck.

    Back to the question, I believe I was a Steelers fan back immaculate conception. God interceded and put this young child in the womb of a woman in Pittsburgh. I could have easily been a Nazi or a Russian or from Pakistan. But God blessed me by putting me in Pittsburgh. If you look at Pittsburgh sports, it may actually be the best case that there is for a God who is good. He gave us Roberto, Mario, Franco. Heck, I should probably change my name to Flippo.

    We got to eat in front of the tv on Steelers Sunday too. Good call Ghost. And I remember church service which was usually over an hour was done in under 30 minutes during football season.

    Ahh, the nostalgia of being from Pittsburgh.

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    I grew up in the South Hills of Pittsburgh (Bethel Park) and was an avid Pirate fan. I knew about the Steelers and some of the players but didn't really follow them until my Dad took me to a game in 1967 when I was 9 years old. It was at Pitt Stadium and we played the St. Louis Cardinals. I remember there was a lot of excitement in the air because the Steelers had just won a game and it was still early in the season. Evidently that didn't happen very often.

    Well, it didn't happen the afternoon I was there either. The Cardinals took it too us pretty good even though the score wasn't horrible. The crowd jumping up and down at the game was infectious. It wasn't often you would see all these men, many in suits, jumping out of their seats to either cheer or boo. I thought the Pirate games I had gone to were exciting but they were nothing compared to this football game. The thrill of watching Bill Nelson drop back and launch a long ball to Roy Jefferson or Cannonball Butler bounce off tacklers for a short 2 or 3 yard gain was incomparable.

    Just going to that game turned me into a football fan. When we were leaving the stadium I remember telling my Dad that we got beat pretty bad and didn't seem to have a good team. I'll never forget his response. He said, "Son, if you are going to be a Steeler fan you will have to learn not to look at the scoreboard. You keep score by the number of players knocked out of the game. By my count we won this game 6 to 2 and we played pretty well."

    It was at that moment I became a Steeler fan and have never looked back.

  10. #10
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    My older brother was a hard core cowboys fan.
    I rooted for "the other guys" just to spite him and was rewarded by Swanns AMAZING performance.

    My love for the Steelers was enhanced when high school (Castle High in Kaneohe, HawaiianSteel) coach, John Kapele, was a former Steeler.

    Before Joe Greene....John Kapele

    Look at his AMAZING stats as a Steeler:

    [URL][/URL] (well tackle stats werent compiled at the time)

    First NFL player I had ever known, at an impressionable age, I remain a Steeler fan to this day.
    Last edited by Captain Lemming; 05-08-2013 at 12:31 PM.


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