The Super Bowl Debate

Jan 282004
Authors: Joelle Milholm

So with the Broncos long gone from the Super Bowl picture and no

Raiders to root against, that trivial question once again arises:

who to cheer for, the New England Patriots or the Carolina


The question is not easy to answer, especially since I feel

nothing for either team. So I decided to dissect the issue and come

up with a debate from a Bronco/CSU fan perspective.

Here goes:

First of all, the Patriots roster carries four former University

of Colorado players, including tackle Tom Ashworth and tight ends

Christian Fauria and Daniel Graham. If you were to take a look at

the Panthers players, you would notice that not one is a Colorado


That is one BIG point for Carolina because the last thing I want

to do is see four Buffaloes waving big shinny rings around.

Especially after Henri Childs of the Kansas City Chiefs, who was

the farthest-going Ram in the playoffs, fell victim to Payton

Manning and company.

Secondly, if you were to examine the Panthers’ roster more

closely, you would find four ex-Mountain West Conference players

including starting wide receiver Steve Smith. Smith, a former Utah

Ute, is proving that the MWC can produce quality players, as he has

1,110 yards receiving on the season.

New England’s roster consists of not one Aztec, Cougar, Cowboy,

Falcon, Lobo, Ram, Rebel or Ute. Another point for Carolina.

Turning attention to the Bronco fan’s point of view, the

question becomes even more complicated. Patriot head coach Bill

Belichick was the assistant special teams coach for Denver in 1978.

John Fox, head coach of Carolina, was the defensive coordinator for

the Raiders during the 1994-95 season. That hurts the Panthers

quite a bit.

Although Fox did attend San Diego State University and took over

the head coaching job there in 1978, it does not compensate for

taking part in the Raider organization. Still, the Panthers remain

on top.

Additionally, it is expected to cheer for a fellow AFC team;

that would give the advantage to New England. Then again, how could

anyone forget the painful Monday Night Football experience when the

Patriots beat the Broncos 30-26.

I was at that game and thought victory was inevitable after the

Broncos took a 26-23 lead after getting a safety with 2:15

remaining in the game. Then I realized that the Patriots

deliberately allowed the safety in order to have better field

position and then won the game on Tom Brady’s 18-yard touchdown


That game sucked and I cannot forgive Brady or the rest of his

teammates. The Panthers are looking more and more appealing to root


From an ordinary football fan perspective, one has to admire the

14-game winning streak New England is riding. It even reminds me of

the 13-game winning streak the Broncos had in 1998. It was so much

easier back then – I could just paint my face orange and blue and

forget doing in-depth debates.

One for the Patriots.

On the other hand, Carolina is the 7-point underdog, and it is

only natural to cheer for the underdog.

So that concludes the debate as a Broncos and Rams fan: Carolina

wins it. Go Panthers!

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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