2012: The Almost Greatest Year in Sports

1014-derek-jeter.jpg_full_600by Josh Wilson

The back window of my 2007 Saturn Ion has never been watched so closely as it was in 2012. The window has 4 stickers across the top, each a logo for my favorite sports team: University of Kentucky Wildcats, New York Giants, Miami Heat, and New York Yankees. The stares I gave that window as the year went by were the hardest, deepest stares I had ever given to a window (besides the ones I give while sitting in class). You see 2012, had the possibility of being the greatest year in sports, a year that definitely would have been the end of my sports world. It all started in February.

Thanks to our very own Ryan Potter I have been a Giants fan since about 2003. I would always go to his house and watch games with his die-hard family (same for the Yankees) and learned to cheer for the Giants or leave. The fandom soon paid off in 2007 when the Giants won their first Super Bowl since following the team. 2012 was different, I had now become a die-hard supporter, and was watching the Super Bowl with another Giants fan my friend Kyle. The Giants had followed their typical pattern, coasting to the playoffs, then kicking it up and killing it when the time came. After the eventual Giants win, I ran to call Potter (in Giants tradition) and we screamed over the phone. The next day when Eli came to Disney World, I was there, and got to personally congratulate him.

Now for most fans, one team winning a championship would be nice, but this also happened to be the year of the unibrow. The University of Kentucky Wildcats found their way back to prominence under John Calipari and a class of future All-Stars. The whole season the question was who would play Kentucky in the big dance. A last second, popcorn bucket worthy, shot put an L in UK’s column as did a pressured filled SEC tourney game. However, it was in March that Kentucky would meet Louisville in the Final Four and Josh Wilson would quit his job and drive 900 miles to watch the game in Lexington. Rivals clashing in the Final Four led to the biggest of pressures in the Bluegrass State, but the Cats prevailed. Two nights later in April, Kentucky was back to playing for championships. The moment Big Blue Nation had waited for finally happened. I lay crying in Tyler Hobbs’ floor as the final seconds ticked and then went to Project Lex with my best friends. That night was indeed my greatest moment of 2012.

Next in June, my boy LeBron finally got his ring. It was a bit controversial when I decided to take my fan talents to South Beach, but I love LeBron, liked D.Wade, and Dan Gilbert ruined the Cavs for me at all costs. Miami was ridiculed after failing to win in the Big 3’s first season. After an outstanding NBA finals featuring another group of favorite players in OKC, the Heat won the NBA finals, while I was in Florida, hopes of attending their celebration however, was dashed by work schedules. LeBron finally silenced his critics and doubters becoming a champion and winning a gold medal in the same year.

So there it is was, all my hopes of the greatest sports year in history, were on the shoulders of Derek Jeter and the New York Yankees. Once again my Yankee fandom is attributed to growing up with Potter and being friends with Hobbs and Nick. In a dorm room in 2009 Nick, Hobbs, and I watched the Yankees win the World Series and celebrated accordingly. As the MLB postseason closed in, things began to unravel. The Yankees play became lack luster, A-Rod continued to disappoint, and then finally in postseason play the captain, the leader, Derek Jeter got hurt. With Derek getting clipped (shoulda shot A-Rod) the Yankees lost to the Tigers and my perfect year of sports turned into my almost perfect year of sports.

I had said frequently throughout the year, “If this happens, if my favorite teams all win a championship, I’m writing a book.” That never happened, instead, I am writing an article on our new website, that launched in 2012, making 2012 the best sports year. We here at 4FanSports love sports, and I personally love everything that comes with the site. We get to do what we love everyday because of almost perfect years and because of people like you. Thank you for a year that saw the culmination of the 4 of our dreams and thoughts into this. 2013 will be the year of 4FanSports, many bright things are on the horizon and we thank you for your support on the site, Twitter, Facebook, and the podcasts. The year may be coming to a close but that just means it’s time to keep moving forward.

Josh Wilson can be followed on Twitter @TheJo5hWil5on and 4FanSports @4FanSports4FS

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