CSF Celebrates Father’s Day

-Chris Schisler
In celebration of father’s day I asked some of Common Sense Football’s loyal readers to share football related moments with their Dad’s and Grandfathers. I am thrilled that the Common Sense Football readers shared such great moments with their fathers and grandfathers. We have a lot of love to share on this Father’s day.

I want to start off by remembering my favorite football memories with my father. Dad took me to my very first Ravens game when I was 10 years old. It was the season opener of the 2001 season and we celebrated our first Super Bowl before the game. The Ravens won and it was one of the best days of my life. I also went to the 2003 matchup against the Seattle Seahawks. Dad wanted to leave when the Ravens trailed 17-0. I almost gave in, but then Ed Reed blocked a punt that sparked a comeback win for the ages. I can’t remember being more excited than I was in that stadium, that day. I have spent a few great Saturdays on the deck with him, watching college football as he smoked cigars. He sarcastically yells Roll Tide, even when Alabama is not playing; because someone gave him an Alabama T-Shirt. As annoying as that can be its always great hanging with the old man. I can say some choice words about Dad at times but I can never accuse him of not caring. That man has love for miles when it comes to me and my brother.

My Pop Pop is always good for some good football conversation. This is as long as you’re willing to hear how field goals should be taken out of the game. Mom and I always joke that when the Ravens kick a field goal, Pop Pop probably turns off the TV. Pop Pop is always good for a Johhny U or Raymond Berry story. He has helped facilitate my appreciation for the old Baltimore Colts.

My Mom wanted to share her football memories with Pop Pop when she was a kid:
“I remember I got bored with my family watching football so I asked my Dad to teach me about the game. I remember sitting on the porch as be explained how football was played. I remember my excitement for going to my first Baltimore Colt game with my dad and his respect for Unitas. I knew the number of every Colt Player at one time. Dad would quiz me. Those years following the Colts was a very fun part of my youth and something fun to share with Dad”

Here is what one of the most Elite guys on Twitter wants to say for Father’s day:
” My name is Rob. I grew up in Baltimore. I bleed Ravens purple, Orioles orange, Caps, Wizards, and Terps red, and JHU Blue Jays Columbia Blue. If you have seen me on Twitter on my handle @SupermanRob2914 you know this. This love for sports is something that has been there my whole life. It was instilled by some amazing men and on this Father’s Day I want to share just how much they have shaped my life.

The first man who brought sports into my life is a man I never even knew. There are a few pictures but he died a little over a month after I was born. My Grandfather Andy. He was a fun-loving happy man who loved sports and especially baseball. I bet he would get kicked out of Camden Yards these days. Loved to drink beers and heckle the umps and players. My mother is convinced to this day that if he had lived longer that I would have become a professional athlete. He would have been playing catch with me from Day One. If he took you to a ballgame when you were walking to the ballpark he would ask “DID YOU BRING THE REFRIGERATOR?”. Of course you’d be like – ummm no. His answer – “DAMN. I LEFT THE TICKETS ON IT”. This was a different time when you didn’t get your phone scanned to get into the ballpark. If there is one thing I could change in my life it is that I wish I knew this man.

My father and I have always have an up and down relationship. He is a tough guy who worked at Bethlehem Steel for over 30 years. My best memories of him as a kid revolve around sports. The first one isn’t really a memory as I don’t remember it but I am proud to say I was there. My Dad and Uncle Joe (not really my uncle – my dad’s best friend at Beth Steel) took me to the Ghost To The Post game. Colts vs. Raiders. Christmas Eve 1977. One of the all-time great NFL playoff games and the last great Colts game in Baltimore. When I met Gerry Sandusky and Stan White at Ravens Beach Bash I told them this and they certainly remember that game. I went to other Colts games that I do remember and will never forget the heartbreak when they left. While my dad loves the Ravens he is still bitter about the Colts and it is not the same for him. My love for the Orioles comes from him taking me to games as a kid. 1982. Orioles down 3 games to the Brewers with 4 to go. Friday night doubleheader when doubleheaders were still scheduled. Sat in the “Club Level” in Memorial Stadium. Won both, won the next night, and lost on Sunday. Of course we won the World Series the next season! Dad took me to a game that I still get made fun of about sometimes. He took me, my cousin, and a few friends. We were all waiting for autographs after. I saw a guy who I thought was a player and got him to sign my baseball. I like to at least think he was part of the grounds crew but he might have just been some random dude. Amos “Killer” Roberts was the name on my baseball. When I came back all excited my friends were like “WHO THE HELL IS THAT?” Got made fun of for that for well over a decade! Baltimore Stars in College Park. Terps games there as well as Memorial Stadium. I also remember getting hooked on Caps hockey watching the “Easter Epic” 4 overtime Capitals/Islanders game. Watched it with Dad and he couldn’t stay up but I was allowed to! All these things have made me the sports nut I am!!!!

My great-uncle Bill was THE baseball man. He loved to do nothing more than sit in his chair, smoke a cigar, drink a cold beer, and watch the ballgame. Countless nights I remember watching with him. He took me to Game 1 of the 1983 ALCS vs. White Sox. Gave my teacher a note the day before. Never forget her reading it and looking up at with me with a smile on her pretty face “TO GO TO THE ORIOLE GAME” 🙂 Took the bus from Highlandtown. We lost that day but anyone who was around then remembers just how amazing that season was. I went to other games with him as well. When I think of an old school baseball man who would sit on his porch on a summer night with the game on the radio and a cold beer this is the man I think about. I miss him so.

I would not trade these memories for anything in the world. Made my own in the meantime (such as sneaking into Camden Yards when it was being built – as well as sneaking into 2131 – another story) but these men put a passion in me for sports that I love and will have until my heart stops beating. I hope these stories brought back some memories for you and if you are a dad – take your kids to the ballgame because I promise you they will not ever have any better memories of you! They don’t make men like Grandpa Andy, Uncle Bill, and my old man anymore. Happy Father’s Day!!!!!!”

Here is what Dave S (@BmoreDaveS) wants to say for father’s Day:
“I’ll never forget going to an Auburn-Alabama game with my grandfather 1 month before he died. Last time I ever saw him. He is the reason I love football”

Here is what Brian M wanted to say for father’s day:
“My Dad was a huge Bmore Colts fan. I was too young for him to take me to the Colts games. He took my older bros instead. But I loved hearing his old stories about the old players and games. I have since become a huge reader of anything related especially to the Old Colts. In my man cave their is a wall with nothing but Colts stuff, got Unitas, Berry, Mackey, Donavon and Gino Marchetti auto photos. My old man died in 88 but it’s kind o f his wall if you know what I mean. The rest of the room is Ravens …of course. Just sent a pic thru twit of an Auto Unitas pic personaized to me and a Berry auto photo. My wife had it all framed a few years ago for Father’s Day:”
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Here is what Bobby Manning (@RealBobManning) wanted to say was his best football memory with his Dad:
“Definitely watching Pittsburgh-Arizona 08. Me and my dad will both always say it was the best football game we’ve ever watched. Great time.We watched at a restaurant full of Pitt fans in Boston. Out of control atmosphere. Incredible night.”

Here is what Victor Hensley IV (@Frezeal33) wanted to say for Father’s Day:
“Alright, well, there have been many Sundays, usually back a few years ago, when my dad & I would sit around watching the NFL and following our fantasy football teams, especially when we were playing each other that week. He’d also tell me about his days as a high school football player, and it always made us closer, even though he’s a Dolphins’ fan & I’m a Ravens’ fan. ”

Andrew Bauer (@Sz0ACiiDRaiN) had a good memory with his grandfather at the Ravens Super Bowl parade in Baltimore.

Here is what William Carroll (@elevenbravo138) wanted to share this Father’s Day:
“My dad was a huge Colts fan despite the fact that in those days Washington ran VA & NC. He hated G.P Marshall. But he cried when Doug Williams Led Washington to a SB win also the Colts, like his beloved Dodgers, left him. So he forgave Washington towards the end of his life. Still-It was his knowledge of the “White-Skins” history and Marshall’s history that led to my burning desire to study the game’s racial history.”

Happy Father’s Day to all the Dads and Granddads out there. Thanks to everyone who shared such nice memories.

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