Super Bowl 2012: A Steelers Fan's Guide to Hating the Patriots

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Super Bowl 2012: A Steelers Fan's Guide to Hating the Patriots
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

If you're a Pittsburgh Steelers fan and you're still not sure who to root for in Super Bowl XLVI, let me help you out.

The New England Patriots have kept the Steelers out of the Super Bowl twice in the last decade. It's not a stretch to say the Patriots have denied the Steelers at least one championship.

The Steelers have won two Super Bowls since the last time the Patriots won one in 2004. Wouldn't it be nice if it stayed that way?

Also, if the New York Giants win the Super Bowl, the Lombardi Trophy would sort of be in the Steelers family, as the families that own the Steelers and Giants are related by marriage.

Kathleen Rooney, granddaughter of Steelers founder Art Rooney, married Chris Mara, grandson of Giants founder Tim Mara. One of their daughters is even named Rooney Mara, and she's an Oscar-nominated actress.

Nothing beats a Steelers championship, but the next best thing was watching the Giants foil the Patriots' perfect season in Super Bowl XLII.

I'm a Patriot-hating extremist. I even rooted for the Ravens to beat the Patriots in the AFC Championship Game.

It seemed the majority of Steeler Nation sided with the Patriots in that earache-vs.-toothache matchup. But the majority of Steeler Nation did not grow up in New England, like I did.

That's right. The rise of the Patriots dynasty wasn't just something in some faraway land that I saw on TV. It was right outside my window every day. It was really annoying.

Not until I fled to New York in 2005 did the Steelers finally win One for the Thumb.

Believe it or not, New England wasn't always enemy territory for Steelers fans. The Steelers actually held their training camp at the University of Rhode Island from 1964 to 1966.

Back in a simpler time, Steelers fans could peacefully co-exist with Patriots fans in New England.

Not any more.

Let's take a look at the timeline of Steelers-Patriots relations and examine how it went from a they-don't-bother-us, we-don't-bother-them situation into a bitter rivalry.

As a bonus, you'll get my Super Bowl XLVI prediction.

Follow me @Steel-Tweets on Twitter.

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