The ad slogan for the 2019 Saskatchewan Roughriders’ Season is #UNITEinGREEN, something I’m particularly fond of since I’m an admin of the Facebook fan page Rider Fans Unite. Now, whether or not the Roughriders somehow caught wind of our little group page or not, I’m sure I’ll never know. But I like to think that they somehow stumbled upon our page, liked what we stand for decided to make it their own. I mean, it is eerily similar, don’t you agree?

I can’t take credit for the name of our fan page however, as I actually had nothing to do with the naming or creation of the group. Somewhere along the way, through my activity within the group and maybe how many times I made it on TV (special thanks to the TSN camera dude, whoever and wherever you are), the admins of Rider Fans Unite (at the time, DP and JW) approached me to become a fellow admin of the page. How could I not accept such an offer? I was already been a frequent poster, got along well with most folks, and had become friends with a lot of members within the group. It seemed like a great fit for me.

What we want to do at Rider Fans Unite is provide a place for fans and players alike to voice their opinion on all things Saskatchewan Roughriders in a respectful way and in a safe place. We believe that everyone has an opinion and should be able to share it. We also believe that if we are to criticize, we should do so in a constructive way. I love our little page and everything we strive and stand for.

It isn’t always easy though, let me tell you in case you haven’t already heard - us Rider fans can be crazy. I’ll be the first to admit it. For example:

  • Quarterback grounds the ball instead of finding a receiver when we think there was someone who was wide open (but in all reality probably wasn’t)? We are mad.

  • Kicker practically wins games for us in 2016 but in 2017 misses one or two near-the-end-of-game kicks and we’ve lost our minds. People think he sucks.

  • You make a 100 yard kick return? We are just going to find the highest pedestal and perch you on top of it.

  • We create a pick 6? He has just become God. He can do no wrong. But heaven forbid he make a mistake next game because we now believe he is God and expect more of him…

Like I said, cray cray.

Ok, maybe not crazy. I like to think of us instead, as passionate.

Sometimes we think we know everything. In all reality we have no clue and sometimes we fight about it. But, amidst all the conflict we sometimes come across, the one thing we can all agree about is that we love our team. I could probably go so far as to say it’s almost like the team becomes a part of our family, and then if someone is injured/traded/retire we are devastated.

Folks who don’t know any better might say the reason why we love our team so much is because we really have no other professional team. That might be true (although in recent years we now have the Rush [lacrosse] and Rattlers [basketball]), but I think it’s because we are Saskatchewan first. A little province that most folks tend to skip over (maybe there’s not a lot here, but if you haven’t spent any time here you’re missing out on a great view - they don’t call it land of living skies for nothing), we take immense pride in our way of life and our team has become a part of our culture.

We have managed to grow the love for our team not only country-wide, but all over the world as folks have moved out of the province to pursue career opportunities and spread their love for the Saskatchewan Roughriders to everyone they meet. We really can be found almost anywhere. In fact, I have to admit that I have met so many amazing people through my attendance at games and participation in events and online that I am forever grateful. I have come to cherish some of these folks to be able to call them my friends is something special - I never would have known them otherwise.

So here I am, and here we are - possibly the motivation for a whole new ad slogan for our beloved team!

Let’s all remember what it is that we are and why you’re reading this right now. When we get into disagreements with each other, come together to watch a game, or to support a good cause… because no matter our background, geography, or opinion, we all unite as fans and celebrate our love for one thing:

The Saskatchewan Roughriders

Image Courtesy of Saskatchewan Roughriders

Image Courtesy of Saskatchewan Roughriders