Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

San Antonio, UTSA football spirit thrives

In the October 4 issue of the Paisano, the article written by Allen Schlesinger seemed originally intended to address the opinion of football fever in San Antonio brought about by the arrival of the New Orleans Saints. It seemed that the article went on somewhat of a tangent, turning into a rant on the highly opinionated Michael Irvin, a former Dallas Cowboys star receiver, and now an ESPN NFL analyst. So, as a sports enthusiast, I thought I’d offer up my opinion on football fever in San Antonio as it still needs to be addressed with football fever still riding high after the Saints’ victory over the Buffalo Bills in week four of the NFL season.

As San Antonio sports fans, we’ve all heard the reasons why we’re not getting an NFL franchise in San Antonio €” we’re a small market, we have a poor economy, San Antonio is “Cowboys Country,” etc, and many view these three games as an audition to show NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue that San Antonio is deserving of an NFL franchise. On a last minute invitation I went to the first game against the Buffalo Bills and saw something downtown that I witnessed this past June €” the spirit of San Antonio fans. From what I saw, the strength of football fever in San Antonio is unquestionable.

As we were headed towards the game, we heard reports over the radio that fans had been tailgating outside the Alamodome since before the crack of dawn. Approaching the dome, the atmosphere around the stadium was almost Fiesta-like. Inside, lines were long at every concession stand as fans decked out in Saints- and in some cases Bills’ apparel waited to purchase their refreshments. Throughout the game, the crowd noise was deafening as fans tried to prevent the opposing team from being able to communicate their plays, and erupted each time the home team made a big play. As I stood and cheered with the crowd, I thought in the back of my mind, as I’m sure many did, “I can definitely get used to this and maybe I will.” Perhaps I’m a bit caught up in the hype of football fever, but why shouldn’t I be?”

Unfortunately, the powers that be may prove too much to overcome in bringing the Saints to San Antonio. Although many may argue that this is because San Antonio is too poor or too small a market, I do not believe that this is what will prevent the Saints from coming to San Antonio. Can you honestly tell me that Kansas City, Jacksonville, Charlotte, San Diego or even the two teams that played the first game in San Antonio €” New Orleans and Buffalo €” are larger markets? What will keep the Saints out of San Antonio is a national public sentiment towards New Orleans and Louisiana. Is the NFL ready to deal with the backlash of taking a franchise away from tens of thousands of people who have lost their homes, jobs, or loved ones?

Is Tom Benson, the owner of the Saints, going to have the nerve to ask a city left in ruins to fund the repair of the Superdome or build a new stadium and threaten to leave if these demands are not met? And lastly, do we want to inherit a team that is perceived as being stolen away as a result of a natural catastrophe?

Don’t get me wrong, I would love to see an NFL franchise in San Antonio, and I believe that under any other circumstance, the Saints would be a viable option that would make sense for San Antonio and the NFL, but it doesn’t look like it is going to happen, at least not anytime soon. Hopefully I am proven wrong, but if I’m not, when the NFL is ready to expand again or considers moving another franchise, I hope the NFL remembers football fever in San Antonio and I hope the NFL remembers the Alamo…dome.

Steven Youv



In a previous issue [of the Paisano], there was an article about UTSA school spirit. I tend to agree with your writer: UTSA students need to appreciate where they are and show some support for the institution we give our hard-earned money to.

I am like many students here at UTSA. I commute every Tuesday and Thursday. I am rarely on campus on any other day due to my busy work schedule. I am also like many students in that I rarely participate in any UTSA-sponsored events. This leaves me feeling disconnected from my social environment, and gives me less reason to feel “school pride.”

More than planning more student social gatherings, more than crazy political on-campus satires that we wind up reading about in the Paisano, more than pushing for larger attendance at current UTSA student athlete games, UTSA needs a football team. Texas is a football state and San Antonio should be a football city. Did you see the support our city showed the New Orleans Saints? Did you hear about the packed Alamodome and the raucous crowd? It should be more apparent than ever that people from Texas, San Antonians in particular, would love to see a new football team in the area.

I am tired of having to drive to College Station in order to see a good collegiate football game and being forced to cheer for my friends’ schools. Of course people wear UT or A&M hats, they have good football teams and schools that are wild with support!

If UTSA were to get an NCAA football team, I would request off every Sunday from work to show my support. If this imagined football team started to emerge, much like our UTSA men’s basketball team, I bet school spirit would find a new all-time high. On campus, other schools’ hats would start to be replaced by our own school’s hats. That would be exciting for me. How about you?

Benjamin Henkes


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