Hatred is a part of sports fandom, just like violent, alcohol-induced quarrels; novelty foam fingers; and sports games.
I am a fan of UConn athletics. Therefore, I inherently feel at least moderate disdain toward most things colored orange. It's in the blood, you see.
So I understand, for example, why some rival fanbases got all nanner-nanner when the men's basketball program took a few lumps after the whole Nate Miles fiasco. What's the point of being a fan if you can't taunt people you've never met before?
But when it comes to UConn in particular, the chastisers come from all over, salivating at the chance to get their licks in.
And for the most part, I get it: Our fans, in large part, are pretty bad when it comes to the whole fan decorum thing, and are largely unapologetic in doing so. Jim Calhoun is a bit of an egotistical asshole. And UConn wins quite often, at least in the sports that matter. And while these are also the main reasons why I love UConn sports, I can see why that might rub people the wrong way.
Which is why I wasn't too angered by today's post on Grantland.com entitled "Why UConn Will Not Repeat as National Champion," written by the preeminent Friend of Bill Simmons, JackO. Lots of people hate UConn. Even some native Connecticutians, like JackO here, recoil rather embrace the Calhounisms force fed to them over the past two decades and choose to flee to out-of-state institutions at soon as possible. And besides, they really wanted to experience the city and find themselves without, like, the safety net of home, because that's really what college is about, y'know?
So I can't ratchet up the rage too much here, mainly because my initial response is an all-too-familiar one. (Although I will say this: I can't believe that anyone is still pointing their nose up these days at any school with major college athletics about poor academics or shady recruiting. Can we all just agree that none of these programs gives a fuck about anything but winning games and making money and be done with it already?)
Or maybe it was because the "piece" wasn't so much a "piece" as much as it one of Bill Simmons' friend listing grievances, rather indolently, like any half-witted schlub on a message board. Which, to be fair, was sort of the intent here. JackO is not, like Simmons, a trained journalist. So while the interwebs often take great pleasure in ripping to shred any and all articles penned by the Sports Guy, doing so here, to an article that presents itself as nothing more than a list of grievances written by a half-witted schlub wouldn't really be fair. (And, in all honestly, despite his irrational hatred toward the university we dedicate this here blog to, I rather enjoy JackO's appearances on the B.S. Report.)
But fair is fair, Johnny.
So for the official rebuttal of TheUConnBlog, I present to you the best responses from the Huskies' own band of message-board-trolling schlubs (and I say that lovingly, fellas), lifted from the thread entitled "Grantland trolling UCONN":
DogMania: Who's the author of that crap? Jacko or is it Jerk0?
Deepster: Let's sock that one away in the "Evidence of Grantland.com's suckitude" file.
DogMania: He took cheapshots at the State, University, JC and even Kemba Walker.
Silk City: Geez, that was terrible. He has a right to say that stuff, but to put it on a website that's supposed to be a glorified place for sports journalism--that's just awful. It's called journalism for a reason.
Enigma64: Jacko's lost...He couldn't find his way through a maze even if the rats helped him.
Yonick: One thing/person Jacko isn't, is Grantland Rice!!!!!!
TopDog18: This article should be called "Why I Hate UConn" instead of "Why UConn Will Not Repeat as NAtional Champion" because he failed to provide one fact stating why they will not win. Instead he just goes on how much he hates UConn, well thats fine, no one gives a rats ass what you think.
chris: website sucks anyways
Progrocks: He is a tool. He wrote the piece that allowed him to further come off as a tool. He has trashed UConn and we win, I can care less what he thinks because it does not matter. If someone wrote why we would win the national championship I would not care much because it does not matter. I think last season proves that you never know what the hell can happen, and preseason prognostications mean jack-o.
DogMania: Whoever is the admin for that .com should take that off their site.
(Author's. note: While The Dog's earlier comment sure is hard to top, this is perhaps my favorite, because it assumes that the entire Internet is just a sea of Scout.com message boards.)
geohusky: I heard this guy on the radio last year before our NC run. I believe it was ESPN radio. I think it was either Cowherd or Gottlieb, or someone else. He is a friend of whomever the host was.
tykurez: They let that chubstick fattydance out of his cage again?