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News » Are you a Panthers convert?

Are you a Panthers convert?

Are you a Panthers convert?
Jan. 7--Watched some playoff Football last weekend with some Charlotte neighbor friends. All are longtime NFL fans. None are from here. But in that room, you'd likely have found at least one fan you recognize.

We had a lifelong Giants fan from upstate New York. Moved to Charlotte about a decade ago. Became interested in the Panthers, oddly, at their lowest point -- the 1-15 season in 2001. Now he's a Panthers fan first, fully converted to a new Football faith.

Next to him was a Steelers fan from Baltimore. He likes the Panthers, too, but it's a tiered arrangement. Team 1 and Team 1A. If the Panthers play the Steelers, there's no question that new loyalty steps aside for old.

We asked readers on Charlotte.com Tuesday: What kind of Panthers fan are you? Native, converted, Team 1/Team 1A, or not at all?

Among dozens of responses:

The day I moved here from Pittsburgh I got a Panthers sweatshirt ...and cheered them on for 13 years, but the Steelers are still my #1. -- Anonymous.

I was a team 1/1A fan for a while. I started watching the Raiders when Bo Jackson signed with them. So when the Panthers came to town, I had two teams. My friends (Cowboys and Dolphins fans) said I couldn't have two teams, but who are they to say that? Eventually I had to become a full Panther. Al Davis made it an easy decision! -- Scott

I have a Team 1/1A arrangement, but the Panthers are team #1 since they arrived in the Carolinas the same year I did. I grew up in San Diego, but the Chargers are just my AFC team. So, I'm hoping for a Chargers
I've been a Vikings fan since '74. When you live and die and cry for a team, it's hard to let them go just because you moved to a city with an NFL franchise. I equate it to a marriage. You meet someone and you grow together through ups and downs. You support them through good and bad times. Then all of a sudden, an attractive neighbor moves across the street. Do you leave the one that you love? Some would say yes ... I guess that's why the divorce rate is so high. -- Anonymous

Parents were born and raised in Buffalo, N.Y. Me, I was born and raised in Charlotte. So by default (and this is important because the Panthers didn't exist then) I was the biggest Bills fan you'll find down here for 12 years ... but the day we got the franchise my money and loyalty has been with Carolina (13 years now). However, I've still got a Panthers sticker and Bills sticker on my truck ... that's allowed, right? -- Anonymous

Charlotte native, Panthers fan and PSL holder since the beginning. Grew up a Steelers fan, but I don't consider myself a 1/1A fan. Someone from my family is at every game, and I'm encouraged with the growing fan base. -- Anonymous

Moved to Charlotte in 1990. Happily adopted the Panthers immediately after they came into existence. My former team? I prefer the witless protection plan on that info. -- Steve

Native. Thank goodness for the Panthers, before their arrival we had to watch the Redskins every Sunday. -- Mark from Huntersville

Born and raised in Pittsburgh, I've lived in Charlotte almost 6 years now. The Steelers are my AFC team, Panthers are my NFC team. Besides hating the growl towel or any other rip-off of the great Terrible Towel, I cheer as hard for my new home as I do for my old. If my two teams meet in the Big Game this year, I feel myself leaning South. -- Meck

Panther Tracks is a blog by Peter St. Onge and Jefferson George this week on CharlotteObserver.com.

To see more of The Charlotte Observer, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.charlotteobserver.com. Copyright (c) 2009, The Charlotte Observer, N.C. Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services. For reprints, email tmsreprints@permissionsgroup.com, call 800-374-7985 or 847-635-6550, send a fax to 847-635-6968, or write to The Permissions Group Inc., 1247 Milwaukee Ave., Suite 303, Glenview, IL 60025, USA.

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: January 7, 2009

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