My Soaked Journey into Becoming a Miami Dolphins Fan

Sean d'OliveiraContributor IMay 28, 2009

While it wasn’t my birthright, growing up in South Florida while Dan Marino was shattering NFL passing records, I always felt a close connection to the Miami Dolphins.

As a local resident who was actually born and raised here, my roots run deep with all South Florida sports teams. But the Dolphins are and will always remain No. 1.

My journey into becoming a Dolfan began at the tender age of six. The very first Miami Dolphins or sporting event I ever attended was in 1989 against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Joe Robbie Stadium. It was a sloppy game as the weather did not cooperate.

As I sat in my seat dripping wet from a horrendous rainstorm, and surrounded by Pittsburgh Steelers fans, I didn’t know much about football, but I knew I was rooting for my hometown team, the Miami Dolphins.

I don’t remember much from the game, but I do recall the Dolphins losing, the monsoon and the fact that I had fun.

And just like that first game I ever attended, most of my memories about the Dolphins haven’t been pleasant, but it has been an enjoyable journey.

There was the 1992-93 AFC championship game I attended, where the Dolphins were beaten mercilessly by the Buffalo Bills. And the annual playoff disappointments during the Marino era were never easy to deal with.

Of course, I would have gladly taken those annual playoff defeats over what I had to suffer through in recent years.

The Dave Wannstedt years provided more head scratching moves than I care to recall. The annual playoff teams that Jimmy Johnson helped build in the late 90s were slowing down; Wannstedt’s dreadful roster moves and brainless coaching finished them off.

The hiring of Wannstedt, Nick Saban and Cam Cameron, and their subsequent roster moves turned the Dolphins into the joke of the league in 2007 with a 1-15 record.

Former owner Wayne Huizenga finally made a wise hiring when he handed the keys to the franchise in late 2007 to Bill Parcells. A year later, the Dolphins were AFC East champions and once again a relevant NFL franchise.

With Parcells and company now running the show, the Dolphins seem poised to turn into annual Super Bowl contenders. While I will always root for the Dolphins no matter what their record is, it’s nice to know that the people making roster decisions are in fact more football savvy than the average fan.

As a Dolfan over the years, there’s been more disappointment than joy, but through it all, I have -- and will always be -- a loyal Miami Dolphins fan.