Rams. Bengals. Who will win today? The better question: Is it going to be a good game? Not many Super Bowls are, you know. But our “home” team is playing in the Big Game, so we should all be united around them, right? Wrong. This is SoCal, land of many opinions. And, if you are an Angeleno, there is a sordid history with that Ram franchise.
As a kid, I would listen to the radio on a Sunday afternoon rooting for Roman Gabriel to save the game in the last minute, again. For a while late in the 1960s, Jack Pardee lived down the street from us and just as I was getting to know his son, they were gone. Off to Washington DC, I suppose, but I don’t really remember. Prior to the 1979 season, owner Carroll Rosenbloom died in a drowning accident, and his widow, Georgia Frontiere inherited 70 percent of the ownership of the club. She then fired her stepson, Steve Rosenbloom, and took control of the franchise.
The Coliseum was too big to sell out, so we didn’t see many home games televised in those days, so she moved the club to Anaheim. A dagger in the back. Then she wanted to take them to DC but ended up in St. Louis. Traitorous. We fans were already weary of the drama (and the losing) and that move was the straw that broke the camel’s back.
Now they are back. They will probably garner more support if they win today. But SoCal fans are unique. The beach and sun are powerful magnets. So, we will see. But they are the “home” team. The local team. We should all be decked in blue and gold today. I doubt many will. That’s not the nature of fandom in LA.
There is a new owner these days. And a new stadium (in case you missed that). Old things have passed away. New things have come. Do we give them a second chance? I’m up for it. I used to be invested as a fan. They’ve disappointed, but I guess I give them another chance. Besides, their story mimics our story: the old is gone and the new has come. In fact, that’s one of the of the pillars of our faith.
So, I will be rooting for my childhood club today. The lure of a young, upstart QB is not enough of a draw to pull me away from my Rams. Will they disappoint? They have only won one championship, and it was for St. Louis. Maybe. But after all this trauma, it does seem they owe us one.
Go Rams! Sordid past. Hopeful future. We aren’t much different. Thank you, Jesus!