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  1. #1
    drdiags's Avatar
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    How does team relocations affect the fanbase?

    If the following has already been discussed here, do you have a link? I am
    just curious. Anyway, here you go .....

    I was wondering how did the relocation of the following teams affect their
    fanbase:

    Cleveland - [OLD] Lost Browns
    [NEW] New Browns team

    St.Louis - [OLD] Lost Cardinals
    [NEW] Now have Rams

    Baltimore - [OLD] Lost Colts
    [NEW] Now have Ravens

    Houston - [OLD] Lost Oilers
    [NEW] New Texans team

    Indy - [OLD] N/A
    [NEW] Now have the Colts

    Los Angeles - [OLD] Had Rams/Raiders
    [NEW] N/A

    Oakland - [OLD] Lost Raiders
    [NEW] Have Raiders

    Arizona - [OLD] N/A
    [NEW] Have Cardinals

    Since this is a Rams board, do most current fans come from the Rams fanbase
    pre-St. Louis or is it more 50/50 converted Cardinals fans? This would be more for those who live in St.Louis but any comment is appreciated.

    I was just imagining that it would have to been wierd getting used to
    switching to the new team after following the old team. Relocations are a
    part of Sports, but most times the fans seem to never have much say even
    though they have just as much invested as the players, coaches and owners.

    And all due apologies for anyone who considers being called a Cardinals fan
    a slap. Er, me, I am just some trolling Seahawks fan. I did follow my home
    town team the Bears from 65-79, so switching loyalties isn't new to me.
    Any comments?

    BTW, AvengerRam, sorry to see you got banned from .NET. I didn't think the song was over the top.


  2. #2
    cowboyhater's Avatar
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    Re: How does team relocations affect the fanbase?

    I believe that many NFL teams, including the Rams, draw as many fans from outside of the home base area as inside. I grew up in Connecticut, now live in Packer/Bear/Viking country (Northern IL), and would never dream of supporting any team other than the Rams, even if they moved to Havana.

    The Raiders, Packers, Bears, Broncos, Cowboys and more also have national followings.

    Also, these days, people are moved around a lot more for jobs and school. To many of them, the team they identified with does not change because of the move. For such fans, why should it be any different if the team moves?

    One exception to all this was Cleveland. Those local fans were as good as it got, but the owner got quite greedy. Also, some teams are so identified with their location, that a move would ruin them (Packers, Bears, Cowboys, Steelers) But, except for those types of teams, who would be crazy to countenance a move, it is not a huge deal for the many fans who are not local. (For the Rams and the Cardinals, moves have been a fact of existence from near the beginning).

  3. #3
    HUbison's Avatar
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    Re: How does team relocations affect the fanbase?

    Quote Originally Posted by drdiags
    Since this is a Rams board, do most current fans come from the Rams fanbase
    pre-St. Louis or is it more 50/50 converted Cardinals fans? This would be more for those who live in St.Louis but any comment is appreciated.
    That's a good question. Opinions will vary, but here's mine. I grew up in Missouri and was in elementary school for the last years of the Cards stay in St. Louis. And while I don't remember a lot, I do know this: St. Louis is a baseball town. The baseball Cardinals were always THE St. Louis sports franchise, and the football Cardinals were just something to watch on Sunday after baseball season. And of course Bidwell didn't go out of his way to endear the team to St. Louis either, IMHO. So when they left to the desert, there wasn't that great a hole left behind. In fact, a few years later when the Rams showed up, we were excited to have our own football team again, but still not overly enthused. Then of course, 1999 came around and so did the rest of the town. Since then the Rams have established their place in the hearts and minds of St. Louis. They still do not hold the place that the baseball Cardinals do, but their only a full century behind the redbirds in terms of community existence.

    Now as far as SoCal Ram fans that made the journey east to the shores of the Great River....well, this board is filled with them, and in my opinion they are better fans than most (but not all) of us post-move fans. These guys have all the emotions of the close-but-no-cigar 70s, the up-and-down 80s, and the holy-crap-we-suck early 90s. And they brings a whole new perspective that the Missouri fans have not yet attained. Missouri fans don't love the team any less or any more, we just don't have all the experience behind that love that the Cal fans do.
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

  4. #4
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    Re: How does team relocations affect the fanbase?

    Where ever the Rams go,I go.Its not something I can just turn off and then grab another team,It just doesnt work that way for me.I wasnt real happy that they moved to STL.But there wasnt anthing I could do so I went along.I think the move was good for them,because in L.A. most fans are fairweather.The real fans are still with us today here in clannieland,And clannieland is worldwide.
    My heart beats crazy and my blood runs wild

  5. #5
    WisRamsFan is offline Awaiting Email Conformation
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    Re: How does team relocations affect the fanbase?

    I think it depends on the team and the fans. I grew up in SoCal and through my father fell in love with the RAMS. We moved away in the early eighties to New Mexico and my love for the RAMS only grew as I did. I know there are many L.A. RAMS that treated the RAMS badly when they were in L.A. and probably don't follow them now but as this board shows, there are still 1000's upon 1000's of L.A. RAMS fans that followed the team. To me, I think the move to St. Louis was a good move and has reaped it's rewards. Of course I'm sure those who still live in SoCal would disagree but only because the team is not as close and available to see. Thank God for NFL Ticket. As for the original question, where does the fanbase come from. Simple...

    We are RAMS fans from all over the world!!! There are a few on these boards that have never lived in either L.A. or St. Louis or their surrounding areas.

    Now for the Baltimore Colts, before they got the Ravens, I'm sure that most didn't follow Indy after the way the team snuck out of town.

    Same goes for the original Browns, they can't stand the Ravens.

    I can't speak for Oilers fan maybe TX would have a better view on how that teams fans reacted.

    Cardinals will continue to have a hard time building a fanbase until they begin winning on a regular basis. When they get the new stadium it will sell out the first year and then things will go back to normal. They need a winner.

    As for the Raiders, well just like the RAMS they have their die-hards that stuck with them and the team eventually returned to Oakland. I don't hink anyone in L.A. was hurt much when they Raiders returned. Plus they were still in the same state.

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    HUbison's Avatar
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    Re: How does team relocations affect the fanbase?

    I don't hink anyone in L.A. was hurt much when they Raiders returned. Plus they were still in the same state
    Not to mention the Raiders have a national following due to the fact that there are local, county, state, & federal penitentiaries all over the country.
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

  7. #7
    drdiags's Avatar
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    Re: How does team relocations affect the fanbase?

    Quote Originally Posted by HUbison
    Not to mention the Raiders have a national following due to the fact that there are local, county, state, & federal penitentiaries all over the country.
    Good one.... Also, nice expansion on the history there in St. Louis. That is what I was trying to get at, not so much how teams followings are global but what happens when the team in your local area is replaced. The built in inertia to accepting the new team if you were say Baltimore with generations of following the Colts only to have them taken away and to then get the old Browns.

  8. #8
    HUbison's Avatar
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    Re: How does team relocations affect the fanbase?

    Quote Originally Posted by drdiags
    Good one.... Also, nice expansion on the history there in St. Louis. That is what I was trying to get at, not so much how teams followings are global but what happens when the team in your local area is replaced. The built in inertia to accepting the new team if you were say Baltimore with generations of following the Colts only to have them taken away and to then get the old Browns.
    I've often wondered about the Rams leaving St. Louis and another team being brought in. I have to admit I would probably cheer for the new team, unless their success conflicted with the Rams, and then it's Rams all the way. I'd still be Rams first, and new team 2nd.
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

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    sbramfan is offline Registered User
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    Re: How does team relocations affect the fanbase?

    I think different people are affected differently.

    When the Rams left L.A., I was devastated. For the first couple years after they left, it was hard to watch. I knew all along that I could NEVER become a fan of another team, but I also didn't think I could still follow the Rams after they left. So I basically figured I was done with football....

    But with the advent of NFL Sunday Ticket, there was my team on TV again. (in fact, a lot more then they used to be in L.A., because they rarely sold out at home!).

    So I reluctantly watched and eventually got over it...

    But it still sucks. I try to go to the Arizona game, or the whiners, but it's hard to get good seats in SF, whereas in AZ, you can have your pick of the litter for cheap. (Probably not for much longer once they open the new stadium and presumably field a better product).

    I bet we see a lot more teams moving over the next few years.

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