An ode to sports

Without sports, what would men do on Thanksgiving afternoon or New Year’s Day?
You may not realize it, but sports affect each and every one of us. Yes, that even includes you, the computer science major who never leaves Wean Hall. Doubtful? I have five words for you — Capture the Flag with Stuff.

Sports shape our identity. They add to our lives in ways we don’t even realize. It might be the bonds formed while watching a game with others, or the excitement you experienced while rooting for your favorite team to win the championship.

Without sports, a broken leg of a horse wouldn’t make front-page news and nobody would care if Ben Roethlisberger didn’t wear a helmet while riding his motorcycle. Without sports, a Hail Mary would just be a prayer and no child would be named Espn (there are at least three).

For most of us, sports are about the competition or the completion. Humans like to compete, and we gain satisfaction from completing races. People like to win, so if there were no more sports for people to win, they’d have to resort to other outlets for winning, like board games or political offices.

Without sports, New Yorkers and Bostonians might actually get along. Without sports you could just say you’re from Chicago and not have someone ask “Northside or Southside?”

When we were young we looked up to and practically worshipped our favorite players. They were our role models, and we wanted to grow up to be just like them. We would be outside dreaming of hitting the game-winning home run in the bottom of the ninth or making the game-winning shot at the buzzer.

Sports bring people together and give them hope. Sports are the only thing some kids have going for them.

In the middle of August, a judge in Kenton, Ohio, delayed the jail sentence of two high school athletes guilty of stealing a decoy deer and causing a car crash by placing it on a country road. He ruled that they could complete their football season this fall before serving time at a juvenile detention center.
Without sports, you wouldn’t be able to get an eagle or a birdie with only a driver and an iron.

Without sports; a strike would only be done by union workers and a spare would just be found in the trunk of a car. A shotgun wouldn’t be a formation; it would just be a weapon.

Without sports, Mark Wahlberg wouldn’t be invincible and nobody would remember the Titans, but we still would have had it with those snakes on that plane! Nobody would pay for a book written by Jose Canseco, and tailgating would only be done while driving a vehicle.

Without sports, a touchdown would only be something planes do, a quarterback is something you’d get from a vending machine, and a shelf would just be a shelf. A turnover would either be apple or cherry and a hat trick would only be done by magicians.

We’d have no Lambeau leaps, no rally monkeys, no terrible towels, no coin flips, no Gatorade showers, no shaving cream pies, no yellow jerseys, no green jackets, no “One Shining Moment,” no helmet decals, no octopus toss, no sideline reporters, no “Sportscenter is next,” no Great Bambino, no Splendid Splinter, no He Hate Me, no Immaculate Reception, no Miracle on Ice, no Cameron Crazies, no “guaransheeds,” no seventh-inning stretches, no Rumble in the Jungle, no Thrilla in Manila, and March wouldn’t be mad!

Andre Agassi would just be bald, Warren Sapp would just be fat, and John Madden wouldn’t have a job, anywhere.

Sports can reach a global scale too. Angola qualifying for the World Cup showed there is more to the African country than oil, war, and poverty. The Olympics are a time for all the countries of the world to come together as one and brush aside their differences.

Without sports, Pittsburgh-ers wouldn’t have anything to riot about, you wouldn’t have a reason to wear body paint on a Sunday afternoon, and lastly, I wouldn’t have anything to write about.
Here’s to sports.