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Parents Australian but grew up in a small country town in western US where high school football was the pride of the town. Every home game the bleachers would be packed (2~3K supporters) not just with students but families and old timers and the local radio station broadcast the game for those that couldn’t attend. Games played under lights on a Friday night - great atmosphere, great memories.That's because you don't understand American institutions and Americans.
The overwhelming majority of Americans who go to college/uni, go away from home - then college becomes an important institution in their coming of age years - as they don't live with their folks, those 4 years become special as does the institution and people they become friends with.
A significant percentage of Americans grow up in 1/3rd of the country, go to college in another 1/3rd and then start their career and spend a big chunk of their life if not the rest of it in the other 1/3rd of the country. The Australian experience is at the other end of the spectrum, stay in your home city, live with the folks, go to a uni down the road or across town, not in a country town or another state and find work in the same city/state.
The US don't have a strong history of amateur sports, even semi-professional sports. High school football and basketball in particular is huge because they don't have a local team down the road to go play for in the u/12, then u/14, u/16 like you do in Oz sports once you hit high school. That playing/following your high school only, gets transferred when they travel across the country to attend college.
Plus their Alumni's become important institutions especially for careers. The annual home coming games, for the different sports, become a big thing and an opportunity to catch up with people who have moved all over the country, once a year.
A lot of Americans can't get interested in a team that is owned by an individual or family, who is there to make money, takes money out of the club, is happy to have a "500" winning season and not win the lot. And they can't buy season tickets in many instances.
My Canadian mate used to be an ice hockey nut. He said once he left college moved to Toronto from Thunder Bay, and saw it was a just business, he just lost interest as a passionate fan. He stopped going to Maple Leaf games. His late brother was a well known high school hockey coach in Toronto, so he used to spend a lot of time watching his teams play. Canada has a lot stronger history of amateur sports, similar to Oz, than the USA.
Do you like Koch and the way he has guided Port? Imagine if Koch 100% owned Port Adelaide. Would you have the same attachment if for 20 years he ran Port like the way he has guided us and the last 5 years have turned out, or would you go and watch your amateur club that you knew the people and knew their kids playing thru the grades? College teams becomes the local club down the road for many Americans.
Trewth has Mike Ashley, David Koch, and James Dolan. RIP Trewth.How does Steve Bruce s**t the bed at Villa despite resources that were basically unparalleled in the history of 2nd tier football, and THEN get another Premier League gig.
Imagine Mike Ashley and David Koch helming your two favourite football clubs.
People in Oz don't understand how big high school football is in the US, especially in smaller towns.Parents Australian but grew up in a small country town in western US where high school football was the pride of the town. Every home game the bleachers would be packed (2~3K supporters) not just with students but families and old timers and the local radio station broadcast the game for those that couldn’t attend. Games played under lights on a Friday night - great atmosphere, great memories.
Graduated High School back in 1980 and moved to Australia several years later - still follow my HS football team and take great pride when they do well.