The first thing you have to know about me is I’m a teacher. When the beginning of June comes I’ve got nothing but summer vacation on my mind. That means camping trips with the family, days at the pool with my boys and plenty of trips to Ohio to visit the folks. But even something as wonderful as summer vacation starts getting a little stale after awhile. However, there is something even greater that comes along, near the end of July that changes everything. It’s a feeling that all of us get that fills that void in our soul and stays there till early February. A feeling called…Football Fever.
I know what you’re thinking. That’s a pretty corny name for it. But it doesn’t matter what you call it, we all have it. Make no mistakes…this is a disease. It’s a virus that changes from year to year, from person to person, from team to team. And if you’re a Bengals fan, this year you’ve got it pretty bad.
There are numerous factors that have affected how the Bengals fans have contracted the newest version of the virus and it started January 7th, 2012. The Bengals fell to the Texans that night, 10-31, thus the new virus was born. What are the major symptoms of this virus? Frustration, anger, sadness, and the need for new season.
The next mutation came soon after with the announcement of lower ticket prices for the Bengals 2012 season. Ticket prices were a huge bane for the 2011 Bengals’ home season which produced many games that were blacked out due to low attendance. We had a new team with new leaders; new coaches with new approaches; but old fans with broken hearts. The success of the team raised our hopes, but not our paychecks. Once the season ended, the Bengals’ administration heard our cries for help, and they were answered. But this answer also made our fever worse.
Soon after was the Draft. We all know how that went. I’m sure all of you were nervous, just as I was, wondering how we were going to top the ‘home-run’ picks that we had last year. It was topped. After finishing with what seemed to be one of the best draft classes of all 32 teams, the fever mutated again, which only increased our need of the new season to come even sooner.
The most recent iteration of the fever surfaced only recently with the announcement of the location of training camp. For the first time in Bengals history the camp has been brought to Paul Brown Stadium and has been a huge success in terms of the camp, and the growth of the fever, selling out most of the first couple days. The fever is spiking and there is nothing we can do about it.
If you haven’t caught on to my horrible analogy by now, let me spell it out for you. Everyone involved with the Bengals organization has done everything right this offseason to get us (the fans) excited about the 2012 season. Lowering tickets, bringing in talented youth and bringing the team closer to the fans is just what you need to do the rally the troops behind this very talented, very Super Bowl capable team.
The fever will only get worse my friends, so get out your jerseys and get ready to sweat!