Rivalries do not have to go the extra mile in order to have fun

I’ve never done exceptionally well in math classes. Honestly, that’s probably part of the reason I’m a journalist now.

But even I know some of the basics. For example, good things sometimes come in threes.

Take this past weekend for instance. The Florida A&M Rattlers traveled to “Chocolate City” and knocked off the Howard Bison for its first win of the season.

The Michigan Wolverines beat the Notre Dame Fighting Irish on the road for the first time since 1994. And the Detroit Lions? Well that would have completed the triple play – pardon the mixed metaphor – but the Chicago Bears had other ideas.

While we’re on baseball, the Detroit Tigers made light work of the Baltimore Orioles, thus, extending its division lead as the regular season winds down. So I have my first three.

The weekend also offered a series of personal firsts. I covered my first football game. This may have been apparent if you read my recap in Monday’s issue.

I traveled to my first away game. No Atlanta or Florida Classics yet? I know, my Rattler card is about to be revoked. To quote my illustrious friend Wesley, “Sad.”

And this was the first time I attended a FAMU/Howard sporting event devoid of drama. There was no “Hysteria at Halftime” headline this time.

Now granted, all I have to go off is last year’s home football and basketball games against the Bison.

Those that witnessed the utter foolishness at Bragg and Gaither probably feel where I’m coming from.

The orange and green turnout in the District was tremendous. A few hundred people made the trip to D.C. in full force. Even the Howard “Showtime” Marching Band put on a show.

They weren’t exactly the Marching 100, but they weren’t that bad either.

Simply put, there can be such a thing as a healthy rivalry. It doesn’t matter if you’re on the Hill or at the “Mecca.” It’s possible to compete and still show each other love once the game is over.

People showed me love at Howard and I had just talked trash about their school in Friday’s newspaper. Why? Because it’s really not that serious. It’s all in fun.

What’s the point of starting something anyway? Oh, maybe you want to prove your loyalty to your team.

Is coming to the game no longer enough? Just because the word fan is an abridged version of fanatic doesn’t mean you should try to make the evening news.

Continue clapping, cheering and rooting for the home team. But please leave the beef for the concession stand.

Have fun when Winston Salem comes to town this weekend. But just remember to be nice.

John W. Marsh is a junior broadcast journalism student from Detroit. He can be reached at thefamuansports@hotmail.com.