As bad as your Saturdays have been, Bulls fans, at least your football Sundays aren't as bad as mine.
Being a fan of a 2-5 team at the end of October is tough, especially when you don't have any conference wins. Believe me, I feel the pain too -- only one Big East win since last September and 3-12 in the last 15 games.
Now, I want you all to feel my pain. When I’m not cheering for my beloved Bulls, I’m a devoted Jacksonville Jaguars fan.
You may be thinking to yourself, "Wait, what!? Jacksonville still has fans?!" Unfortunately for me, they do, and I’m one of them. Not only am I a Jaguars fan, I blog about both teams. It gets hard and tiresome week after week finding something to say about your team losing, when all you want to do is write a bunch of expletives.
Oh did I mention I’m also a Jaguars season ticket holder? That’s right; I live just a few miles from Raymond James Stadium, yet every Jaguars home Sunday, I’m making a three-hour road trip (one way) to Everbank Stadium with my brother. Speaking of which – I don’t want to take all the credit here, but my brother is also a Bull, so our road trips are usually filled with us discussing our sorry excuses for teams.
I’m just going to go out on a limb and guess most of you reading this know little about the Jaguars. I don’t blame you, I wish I knew less. Let me just give you a quick synopsis of what they’ve been up to this season:
- In the first seven weeks the Jaguars have had 164 points scored against them, only to score less than half of that on their own… 88 points to be exact.
- At home this season, the Jaguars have been outscored 95-20 and been outgained 1294-518. Really makes those three-hour drives worth it, huh?
- Since December 12, 2010, Jacksonville fans have only been able to celebrate 6 wins. Even the Bulls have 8 wins since then.
The Jaguars have had three home games this season: Houston, Cincinnati, and Chicago. So I’ve driven 18 hours round trip to three home games this season and watched my team win zero times. Even worse, they were all right after USF losses. The first game was September 16 against the Texans; the Jags lost 27-7. That was the same week that Rutgers stomped the Bulls at home, 23-13.
The next home game for the Jaguars was versus the Bengals, the day after USF's loss to FSU. For me personally, this one was harder to watch; the Jaguars traded up for Blaine Gabbert, only to watch Andy Dalton (drafted an entire round later) and the Bengals' offense destroy the Jaguars.
Finally, the Jaguars hosted Chicago on Sunday, October 7 – just twenty-some-odd hours after the Bulls were defeated by Temple.
Jacksonville came out of their bye week with a 1-4 record, and then this past weekend suffered a heartbreaking loss in Oakland. Not only was it a winnable game where the Jaguars blew a 14-point lead and lost in overtime, but they suffered two major injuries - franchise running back Maurice Jones-Drew, and Gabbert.
Up until this point, I was convinced Chad Henne couldn’t be worse than Gabbert. Sunday’s game taught me to be careful what I wish for. Here my team sits 1-5, without its starting running back and debatably the only player on their team that makes a difference, and a future that is in Chad Henne’s hands. Please just end my misery now.
Okay, so this post isn’t intended to be a pity party for me. It’s supposed to be an uplifting number to those of you that get to watch NFL teams on Sunday that actually win games. Who cares that you had to watch the Bulls lose on Sunday, when your NFL team turns around on Sunday and defeats their opponent 52-28? (I’m talking to you, Patriots fans.)
The last time the Jaguars had a winning season was in 2007. You all know what USF did that year -- #2 in the rankings, big wins over Auburn and West Virginia, a 9-4 record... ohhh those were the days!
Both the Jaguars and Bulls have seen dramatic changes to their programs since that 2007 season, and none of them are making a positive impact. The Bulls spent countless dollars on Skip Holtz, while the Jaguars fired Jack Del Rio and have stockpiled many useless first round draft picks. (coughcoughBlaineGabbert)
Bottom line, the next time you are feeling sad about the way football season is going just remember, it might be painful, but it could be worse… much, much worse. For those of you in the same boat as me, I'm thinking we should start a support group. My suggested group names: Bulls Fans With Losing NFL Teams... People Who Love Losing Teams... or Maybe If I Drink More This Football Season Will Hurt Less.
If you have any suggestions on a name or meeting place/time, let me know. I'll bring the booze.