First, I would like to welcome you to Cardboard, Sports, and Television Oh My! CSTOM. This is a place where I will mostly talk about things related to collecting sports cards, the sports themselves, and whatever is going on in television that I want to talk about. Pretty self explanatory title, don't you think?
Now that the short introduction is out of the way, onto the first post. I guess I should start with defining what a hybrid fan is. While basketball and hockey are big in this area and soccer gaining ground over the past few years, I will only be discussing baseball and football. Both sports have two teams. For roughly 90% (don't look it up) of fans of both sports, you fall as either into either the Yankees/Giants or Mets/Jets camps. For my purposes, I define a hybrid fan as someone who doesn't fall into either camp. The rare Giants/Mets or Yankees/Jets fan. I am the latter.
As a fan of the Yankees, there are certain expectations that define how successful the season is. If they win the World Series, the season is considered a success and lived up to appropriate expectations. If they lose in the World Series, you realize that even a seven game series is a crapshoot and sometimes the worse team wins, such as when the Yankees lose in the World Series. If they make it to the ALCS and lose, things aren't good. There might be a need to bring in a top tier free agent who can change team chemistry because if they didn't make it to the WS, there are problems. If they are defeated in the Division Series, we need to debate on whether or not there needs to be a managerial change. If, however, the Yankees don't even make the playoffs the proper fan reaction is to want the following: The manager must be fired. The GM must be replaced. The owner should sell the team. All the players should be designated for assignment. The world needs to be cleansed because nothing is right. You get the picture. To sum it up: they've got to win it all.
Jets fans, however, have different expectations. While you do want them to win the Superbowl, you understand that it hasn't happened since the late 1960s. The team has never been really good. Since I've been watching, the team has ranged from mediocre to losing back to back AFC title games to circus. The way I see it, never expect the playoffs. New England has been dominant ever since Tom Brady started throwing the ball and will continue to do so at least until he's gone. That leaves competing for a Wild Card bid, and with the way the AFC has been, that's rather tough. Just be happy any time that the Jets make it into the first round. If they manage to make it to the divisional round, awesome. If they make it to the AFC championship, well then we've seen one of the best Jets teams in some time. If they somehow overcome the odds and get to the Superbowl, every Jets fan on the planet should be ecstatic. If they actually win the whole enchilada the proper fan reaction is: the coaching staff should be given a parade just for them. The GM should be rewarded with a mansion, tax free. The owner should just get free money. All the players should be given guaranteed contracts. The world will be clean and everything would be grand.
Why do I draw a picture on what to expect for both teams? I want everyone to understand that as both a fan of the Yankees and the Jets, I have learned to deal with anything a team can throw my way. Will I be upset if the Yankees collapse? Of course. Will I want to skip to next year once the Jets seem to be a non-playoff team with anywhere from 5-8 wins? Let's just say I wish draft night would come sooner. This is a healthier fandom then if I was a regular NY fan. Either I would find it harder to cope with losing or I would find winning to be a rare case. In the end though, it's all about who you want to cheer for. That's what's great about sports.