October 13, 2023

3 Sought for Charges in Death of Fan at Patriots Game: If you still need to be persuaded against getting into a fight with other fans at major sporting events, please be aware that fans are often older and in less than prime physical condition. And sometimes one of those fans who gets into an altercation dies.

posted by rcade to football at 12:09 PM - 7 comments

I took my sons once to a Jaguars game when they were young and a loudmouthed Chiefs fan three rows in front of us kept yapping at Jags fans.

Eventually enough had been said and enough beer had been downed for this to become a problem for him. Around four Jags fans started fighting him.

I told my sons, "If you ever in your life get into a fight over something as dumb as a football game, your father will be ashamed."

But inside my head, my lizard brain was telling me "fight! fight! fight!" Adrenaline is a hell of a drug.

posted by rcade at 12:13 PM on October 13, 2023

I've been to well over a hundred combined NBA/MLB/NHL games, including big-time playoff games between rivals, and never once felt as remotely uncomfortable as I did during the entirety of both of the Cowboys games I went to at the stadium in Irving. I'm not averse to a little bit of chaotic energy here and there, but the scale and duration of large-stadium football games is just too damn much for me to relax and enjoy on any level.

I told my sons, "If you ever in your life get into a fight over something as dumb as a football game, your father will be ashamed."

It's true at any age, but dude that passed away (and apparently instigated the fight) could easily have grandchildren attending his funeral, ffs.

posted by Ufez Jones at 01:14 PM on October 13, 2023

My mom had Cowboys season tickets at Texas Stadium for a decade.

Fans were mostly engaged in good-natured taunting of rival fans but during Eagles games it was another matter entirely. One time I saw three different fights taking place in the stands between fans clad for each team.

One time at a Cowboys game a fan a row behind me kept taunting six cheesehead-wearing Packers fans behind him.

He was pushing 40 and wiry like Steve Buscemi. They were shirtless athletic college students.

As they all got drunker, Steve crossed the line with his comments and it looked like he was about to get his ass kicked.

I leaned over to him and said quietly, "Buddy, whatever you do don't start a fight. I am afraid you might hurt them."

posted by rcade at 10:09 PM on October 13, 2023

In over a dozen years of Boston Celtics season tickets membership, I have yet to see the first serious altercation in the stands. At worst there have been some pushing and shoving bouts, but those broke up on their own and security responded quickly. My season tickets are in a section that is mostly populated with other season ticket holders. It's more a group of friends than just attendees. The only problem I ever had was with a young (late teens or early 20s) man, also a Celtics fan, who was somewhat overly excited about being at the game. He insisted on standing directly in front of me most of the time regardless of the action or lack thereof in the game. I finally tapped him on the shoulder and asked him politely if he could please sit down. He went ballistic, started screaming at me, and threatened me. My son, the former offensive tackle, stood up, did not make a move, and quietly said, "are you mad?" The young man's girlfriend immediately grabbed him, pulled him down, and told him to shut up. The rest of the game went well. As large and as strong as my son is, I know he would not have taken a swing and jeopardized our season tickets. I later found out that several of the people around us had their 'phones out ready to call security.

At another game, vs Minnesota if I remember correctly, a few Timberwolves fans were sitting behind us. We were going back and forth all game, but it never got personal or nasty. At the end of the game we stood up and shook hands all around, telling each other how the interchange had added to the experience. Trash talk done right can actually make friends and not enemies.

posted by Howard_T at 04:46 PM on October 14, 2023

Good reasons to fight: (1) someone is threatening your loved ones; (2) someone is threatening you and you are unable to walk away; (3) end of list.

Stupid reasons to fight: (1) someone cheers for a different sports team than you (likely because they grew up in a different area code); (2) any other reason to fight.

posted by tahoemoj at 04:56 PM on October 14, 2023

A few years ago, I attended a college football game with a bunch of old college friends. We were watching our alma mater from the nosebleeds in enemy territory, and our team won relatively convincingly. As we were walking down the stadium steps to exit, a girl in my group exchanged some words with an older woman in opposing colors. Seconds later, the woman grabbed her by the hair and dragged her down. I turned around to head back up the stairs to break it up, and the older woman's presumed partner stood up - a massive Polynesian gentleman gracefully pushing 300 pounds. I'm not a small guy myself... but I was supremely grateful that we came to a swift and silent mutual decision to let the ladies sort out their disagreement without assistance. A few minutes later, all parties exited without further incident and no major damage done.

posted by Goyoucolts at 10:35 PM on October 14, 2023

The good thing about going to football games at the old Orange Bowl in Miami in the 1960's:

- A lot of folks in the stands were recent arrivals from multiple other parts of the country and the chances were good that the teams playing that day (including the then-woeful Dolphins) meant nothing to them, so team allegiance wars were less likely to break out.

- The stadium seats were so hot in the broiling sun that self preservation was a priority. Burn prevention and hydration were paramount.

- The stadium shook and swayed so noticeably during key moments of games that...the concept of self preservation was a priority.

- One problem was that the combination of the heat, the beer and the Zum Zums resulted in a lot of vomiting. I got the impression that the stadium staff was happy to let the next thunderstorm take care of facility maintenance in a natural way.

posted by beaverboard at 10:50 AM on October 15, 2023

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