A former Oregon Ducks player just had a horrible time watching a game from the stands. His experience was so bad that he decided to rip apart Ducks fans for essentially being awful.
The Oregonian's John Canzano received a letter from a former Ducks football player who, for the first time, traipsed into the stands as a mere fan at the recent Oregon game against UCLA at Autzen Stadium.
Here are some snippets from the lengthy missive, titled "I Love The Ducks. I Hate Duck Fans."
The former player, who reportedly played in a recent BCS game, was taken to the game by a buddy who benefited from so many free games by this anonymous player.
Soon, the man we will refer to as Disgruntled Duck found that the stands can get nasty:
My friend and I took our seats where I soon became acquainted with the most ignorant people in all of college football. Directly behind me were a couple of drunk (expletive) who criticized Marcus' ability to throw the football, DeAnthony's ability to run the football, the lineman's ability block, and the coach's ability to analyze film and call plays. After hearing so much ignorant (expletive), I turned around to tell the "fans" to chill the (expletive) out. Marcus had overthrown a receiver on a tough play and the spectator made comment, "Hey, Marcus! Throw it inbounds, dumbass!" in, which I finally had enough, and turned around and asked if he would like to get down there and take Marcus' place. The man responded, "No". Then I asked if we were all still rooting for Oregon, in which he responded in an aggressive, irrelevant and incoherent manner and so I decided to discontinue the conversation I had started with him.
The shocking part isn't that Disgruntled is witnessing the equivalent of incoherent drunk talk, because that's just what goes down in the student section at football games.
What's surprising is that this random Ducks fan was chiding his beloved team during an eventual rout of then-No. 12 UCLA, 42-14.
Marcus Mariota would go on to complete 21 of 28 passes for 230 yards and a touchdown.
It seems at least one Oregon fan is getting mighty greedy watching the game from the stands. Ah, but it gets worse.
I was then verbally attacked by other spectators saying, "you need to keep your (expletive) mouth shut, because you don't know (expletive) about football." They claimed that I didn't know that they had coached college football, and that I had no idea what I was talking about.
Not too long after, a woman a couple seats down yelled for 10 minutes straight about how the players were playing like "(expletive)". The coaches were being "(expletive)". The refs were being "(expletive)". All during the time I was telling my friend how embarrassing it was to have her on our side. And then I started hearing laughter from the surrounding crowd and encouragement of that behavior.
With that, we have to say that the worst place in the world would have to be Autzen Stadium when the Ducks are losing. If this is the kind of vitriol coming from a big win, we simply have to hear about the atmosphere during losses.
Disgruntled goes on to add thoughts on what it was like as a football player, likening that plight to that of characters from the show Spartacus: "We were slaves. We were paid enough to live, eat, and train... And nothing more. We went out on the field where we were broken down physically and mentally every day, only to wake up and do it again on the next."
He then goes on to relay that players were many times objectified—mere gladiators playing out a game to the amusement of a gambling crowd.
After that, he promises to never enter that stadium as a spectator. So you, the fans who were in his immediate area, pretty much ruined football at Autzen for him.
However, he is careful to say he has nothing but love for the brand, the program, the Ducks: "I will always love the ducks: my coaches, my teammates, my brothers and family. The rest... Go (expletive) yourselves."
Carolina Panthers QB Derek Anderson read the Ducks letter and has called into @750TheGame now… "Some fans don't understand the game."— John Canzano (@JohnCanzanoBFT) October 29, 2013
"If everyone understood, it would help the sport… I hear people scream things at Cam and at other guys…" Derek Anderson, Panthers QB— John Canzano (@JohnCanzanoBFT) October 29, 2013
Not an "anonymous" letter... confirmed ex-Ducks player who sent letter. His identity known by myself and senior editor. Why? See comments.— John Canzano (@JohnCanzanoBFT) October 30, 2013
His over-arching point is being reaffirmed... and some ex-players chiming in are right... fans deserve boos sometimes too.— John Canzano (@JohnCanzanoBFT) October 30, 2013
Second ex-Ducks football player sent me a note re: "spoiled" fans at Autzen. He backs his teammate… signs his name. Will link in AM.— John Canzano (@JohnCanzanoBFT) October 30, 2013
It's clear students and fans will take umbrage with a great deal of what is said in the letter. We only have one side of the story and no other evidence to back up the claims.
Still, the former player was there to watch a game and have some fun, and it seems unlikely he was ready to use it as a stage to admonish those who once cheered him on.
The fact that some other player backed him speaks to the veracity of the letter.
Perhaps this is all one inflammatory way to state something many of us have known for years: Watching games from the comfort of home is really rather wonderful.
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