Rooting Interests: Who are D.C. fans? – The Post
The Post did a survey on Washington D.C. sports fans attitudes, favorite teams/owners, etc. recently. It mostly confirms what we already know about D.C. area fans:
“Washington fans are really a wonderful blend of the best parts of Northern tier fans and Sun Belt fans,” former Washington Nationals president Stan Kasten said. “They’re really in the middle.”
Kasten is right on the money here which makes things like his marketing to Phillies fans all the stranger.
Washington is a Redskins town (less and less as the losses pile up and the owner is an embarrassment) and then a winners town. The Capitals are hot because they are winning, but I think that fanbase has reached critical mass in the sense that in the down years that will someday come, they will not be the afterthought they were during the dark years. I (and seemingly everyone else) expect the Nats fanbase to grow as the young, elite talent matures and the team continues to improve. The Wizards could become a really big deal if they can become a contender like the Caps. I think Ted Leonsis is correct that a strong Wizards team could awaken a sleeping giant of a basketball fanbase. Or at least a insomniac with a pituitary problem. As for D.C. United, the future does not look good as they have one foot out the door on the way to Baltimore for a new stadium they have not been able to get built around here. That saddens me, because I like having the option of a pro soccer team nearby. Who knows, my son may love soccer and want to go. I’m not planning on paying any attention to them if they leave BeltwayLand.
As for my own preferences, here is how I rank the D.C. teams in terms of attention paid-to, merchandise owned and a hope for a championship parade (although any would do at this point)
1.) Nats – on board since day 1, I attend Opening Day every year, go to more of their games than anybody else. I have caps, a jersey, t-shirts, mugs, other stuff.
2.) Caps – went to a game a year in the 1990s, got back into them early 2000s and went to a lot of games during the dark years, now one annually since tickets are hard to get. I have caps, jerseys, a giveaway t-shirt
3.) Skins – went from liking a different team to NFL apathy (Penn State does that to a man) to “if I am going to be a Washingtonian, I need to root for them despite Dan Snyder.” I bought a circa 1991 jersey off of ebay.
4.) Wiz/United – I enjoy going to each of their games and may turn them on TV from time to time. I owned a Bullets cap once but want a “clc” logo shirt now. If DCU stays, I’ll get a t-shirt.
There was some controversy over this article that dared to suggest that a demographic group who have are more likely to have lived in the area longer are most likely to support the most established local team. People were looking for stuff that wasn’t there.
Oh and about D.C.’s Greatest Fan, someone is missing. It’s just not right!
In the end though, I almost find the timing of this coverage — in the middle of the NFL season instead of say, the dead of winter or August, the most curious part of the whole endeavor.