When GoAUpher stepped down from OTE in April, the call went out to find a capable replacement. The requirements were simple enough: Minnesota fandom, over 6'6", and capable of transforming thoughts into written words that are placed in sentences. Unfortunately, they found me instead.
Who are you? I'm WhiteSpeedReceiver. And since you're probably going to ask, it came from the man once known as Orson Swindle penning an article about minority receivers that run crisp routes, have good hands, and are gritty. Yeah, I've been around college football blogs way too long. Before that I hid behind the nom de blog of GopherTutor for a long time, as a tip of the cap to Jan Ganglehoff, while demonstrating the gallows humor one must have to survive as a Gophers fan for a long period of time. And yes, I am aware things like this give away my oldness.
Do you have any other names? Sure. You can find me on twitter hiding behind the clever name of @BenjaminJDawson. Be forewarned, that is an awful amalgamation of football, baseball, soccer, hockey, and anything else that crosses my mind. My teams are everything Minnesota and Manchester United, so consider that a warning that it can get gloomy. I also talk about other exhilarating topics, such as sports finance.
So why Minnesota? Born here, raised here, paid lots of money to the institution here. I grew up suffering through football in Minnesota.
So you went to Gopher football games as a kid? Yup. Most Gopher home games, and many St. John's games when the Gophers were on the road. For the longest time in the mid 80's, I was convinced that the Johnnies were better than the Gophers. The first Gopher game I went to was THAT game against Nebraska in 1983, so the bar was set nice and low early in life.
Why didn't the county step in to put a stop to that? Good question.
So what do you do when you're not watching Minnesota sports: I'm an accountant. That's right, ladies: An accountant that likes Minnesota sports. Form an orderly line.
Do you at least have a dog? Yup. 12 pounds of vicious murderdog, until the next time she gets a haircut.
What are your worst fan experiences? Every time I go to Grand Forks for a college hockey game and every time I've gone to Madison for a college football game since they discovered football in 1993 have been awful. And the last Vikings game I went to was a shitshow. It was the Sunday night game against Green Bay in 2003, and I the drunken buffoon wearing a Culpepper jersey behind me threw up on me during the 2nd quarter. So I did what any semi-drunk 22 year old would do: I broke his nose. They helped clean him up, tossed me out of the game, and that was the last time I went to a Vikings game.
Jesus Christ you are old. I know. I also golf regularly, and have a pair of daughters. It's terrifying that I find time to half-ass my way through things here.
Kids? Have they impacted how you watch sports at all? Not at all. Here's me after my youngest got me ready to watch a Gopher hockey game last winter.
Is there anything else horribly wrong with you? I've got a detente with Iowa fans since 55-0. My buddy and I stayed through the end of the game, making us the only Gopher fans in the Metrodome, and the Iowa fans around us were awesome. They joined us in cheering for first downs when the offense accidentally stumbled over 10 yards in a series, gave us plenty of beer afterwards while tailgating outside, and invited us to tailgate in Iowa City. A good time was had by them because they won 55-0 in the last game ever played in the Metrodome, but I learned that night that Iowa fans have a sense of humor. Which is more than can be said about those things to the east of Minnesota.
Are there any other OTE "writers" you've met? I've met GoAUpher at a game while we were both a little bit beery, and between the two of us there was over 13' of Gopher fan. It had to be disturbing to onlookers. And I've also had burgers and beers with MN Wildcat, where we exchanged horror stories of our teams through the years.
You're horrible. I know. It's just how I am. If you have any other questions, feel free to ask them in the comments and I'll answer them with poor syntax. Go Gophers.