Hater’s guide to the Dallas Cowboys (and why you should never date a Cowboys fan)

Hater’s guide to the Dallas Cowboys (and why you should never date a Cowboys fan)

With first place on the line this weekend, I thought it would be a good opportunity to revisit our dear ‘ol divisional rivals from Texas. Now, the Cowboys haven’t really been on our radar these past two years; we’ve focused most of our energy on hating our own team. To truly hate another, as they say, you must first hate yourself.

But Nmandi is gone, and Jason Babin is gator hunting somewhere in the Everglades. And if you remove Riley Cooper from the equation, this Birds team is suddenly much more likeable. Finally, we can once again channel our efforts to what really matters:

Hating the Cowboys.

And in case you have forgotten – and if you have, silly you – I’m here to offer a helping hand. A gentle nudge in the right direction.

“Pardon me, can you tell me how to hate the Cowboys again?”

Right this way, good sir.

Chris Boniol

Never forget.

Boniol, who didn’t miss a field goal in like seventeen years with the Cowboys, infiltrated the Eagles organization by way of free agency and torpedoed the entire kicking game. It was an egregious example of sabotage that would have made even Benedict Arnold blush. Boniol missed kicks wide left. Boniol missed kicked wide right. Boniol missed kicks short – an especially cruel form of deception for those watching at home.

“At a boot, Chris. Right down the middle. Now let’s get a three and out, defense. Hey, Wendy, can you pass the Tostitos?”

The kick is no good.

“Come again?”

The Other Cowboys

If you take a close look at the advanced statistics, Emmitt Smith is really just a poor man’s Heath Sherman.

Dan Bailey has been Giant Gonzales for Halloween every year since 1993.

Michael Irvin couldn’t get open without pushing off.

Deion Sanders buys his suits from Lane Bryant.

Tom Landry’s hat didn’t fit his head properly.

Tony Romo’s birth name is Topanga.

Dez Bryant pre-ordered Grown Ups 2 on Blu-ray.

The only “TO” I can think of is Tim Ohlbrecht.

Bill Bates doesn’t support the troops.

Charles Haley is still lined up in the neutral zone.

Jason Whitten puts ketchup on his filet mignon. Troy Aikmen does, too.

Alvin Harper wears socks with sandals.

I don’t call Daryl Johnston, “Moose,” because I think it’s insulting to all other moose.

The Fans 

A little known fact about Cowboys fans is that they are unfaithful. All of ‘em. Every Cowboys fan I’ve ever met has been a cheater. Remember that girl who slept with your roommate back in college? She has a Jay Novacek shirsey that she wears to Pilates. And remember your former best friend, the one who slept with your high school sweetheart while you were volunteering at the animal shelter? Well, he ‘supposedly’ has family in Texas, but you and I both know better than that, don’t we?

There’s no loyalty with Cowboys fans. They’ll chase after any girl at the bar as long as they recently won something – a trophy, a ribbon, a game of Words with Friends, a chili cook-off, it doesn’t matter. While we were slogging through the Bubby Brister Era, admirably, and to little fanfare, Dallas fans were shopping at Marshalls; getting fitted for their Cowboys Starter jackets.

“I don’t know … what do you think, mom? Should I go up a size?”

Nobody cares about your Starter jacket, Todd.

Consider this a public service announcement, ladies. Sure, we Eagles fans have lousy facial hair, and, yeah, you have to look past the neck beards, but we’re loyal to a fault. We’re like dating a golden retriever. Besides, what’s a little neck hair between lovers? According to Match.com, 98% of marriages that involve a Cowboys fan end in divorce. The other 2% just haven’t found their spouse’s Ashley Madison profile yet. You’re better off dating a Penguins fan you met on Craigslist.

So how do Cowboys fans join the dark side? Let’s myth bust a few common reasons.

  1. “I have family in Texas.”

No, you don’t. You have family in Altoona. There’s a difference.

  1. “I like the star.”

Then become an astronomer.

  1. “They’re America’s Team.”

America has thirty-two teams.

  1. “My dad was a Cowboys fan.”

Your dad was a bandwagoner. And probably a lousy father, too.

  1. “My mom worked with a guy whose second cousin grew up in the same neighborhood as Roger Staubach.”

Makes sense.

Now, who would you rather bring home to mom and dad?

“Hi, Dad. I want you to meet Todd. He works for Big Oil and never calls his grandma. He is a huge Cowboys fan. He fell in love with the Cowboys star growing up. Here, Todd, let me take your Starter jacket.”

Or …

“Hi, Mom. I want you to meet Frank. He’s a veterinarian, and works with the Big Brother Program on weekends. He is a huge Eagles fan. Here, Frank, let me take your sweet Jerome Brown road jersey.”

Oh, I don’t know. Call me old-fashioned, but this seems like an easy choice.

Someone I follow recently retweeted a Cowboys fan on twitter. The Cowboys fan asked, “Since when do people have to like the teams in the city where they grew up?” This gentleman is from Bucks County.

But, you know, he’s right. People can cheer for whatever team they’d like. Our friend from Bucks County is certainly welcome to head to The Linc on Sunday and wear his Dez Bryant jersey with pride. And then he’s more than welcome to head back to the sports complex two weeks later, when his Heat play the Sixers.

He has an aunt in Boca Raton, so it’s cool.

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In long-awaited NBA debut, Joel Embiid treats Sixers fans to a show

In long-awaited NBA debut, Joel Embiid treats Sixers fans to a show

The crowd erupted as Joel Embiid stepped to the free throw line. They chanted a phrase Embiid has been repeating for the past two years, a fitting welcome to his NBA debut.

“That was great,” Embiid said after the Sixers' 103-97 loss to the Thunder on Wednesday in the season opener (see Instant Replay). “That’s my motto, 'Trust the process.'”

After two years of rehabbing foot injuries, Embiid has his first regular-season game behind him. Embiid scored a team-high 20 points, shooting 6 for 16 from the field, 1 for 3 from long range and 7 for 8 from the line. He also recorded seven rebounds, two blocks, four turnovers and four fouls in over 22 minutes. 

“The beginning I was nervous, but once you make that first shot, it just goes away,” he said. “The fans were so into the game that it was fun. I love having fun.”

Sixers head coach Brett Brown enjoyed watching Embiid on the court as much as the big man liked being on it. Brown has seen the 7-foot-2 center grow and develop during his rehab. Finally, he was able to utilize his versatile skills in a real game setting.

“I can't say this loud enough,” Brown said. “For the city to be rewarded with a player that we all understand has unique gifts, special gifts, for him to go through all the things he has been through and play like he did on opening night, the city deserves it. Most importantly, he deserves it.”

Now that Embiid has been cleared to play, he would like to do so for longer periods of time. He began the preseason at 12 minutes and was increased to 20 in segmented spurts for opening night. Even though he exceeded that limit by over two minutes, Embiid is itching to be cleared to play more extensively. 

“It sucks,” Embiid said. “I feel like I could have played more but you know you’ve got to trust the process, got to trust those guys. If I have my minute restriction at 20 minutes, I guess I’m going to go with that. But obviously I want to play more and more and I think it can help the team better. But they have a plan for me and I’ve got to follow it.”

Embiid has maintained he wants to be a clutch player. Brown looked to him toward the end of the game as the Thunder pulled ahead late in the final quarter. He drained a fadeaway jumper to tie the game at 97 apiece with 50.7 to go. 

Later trailing by four with 10 seconds left, the Sixers went to Embiid. While he was whistled for an offensive foul, Brown was glad to have a go-to unlike in years past. 

“You have a target,” Brown said. “We tried to get the ball to him a lot. … By and large, to have somebody like Joel, where the mystery is solved like, 'What do you do?' You get him the ball as much as you can.”

The more the Sixers found Embiid, the more the Thunder had to try to defend him. Thunder head coach Billy Donovan knew what his team was going up against. He watched Embiid as a high schooler and coached against him during his tenure at Florida. 

“He’s gifted and skilled,” Donovan said. “It was probably our guys' first time seeing him … I knew the talent, the gifts. The one thing with him is, he’s got great footwork. He’s hard to guard because he’s herky-jerky. He moves. He’s got a lot of [Hakeem] Olajuwon to him.”

Opening night had been two years in the making. Even though the Sixers didn't win, the significance of the evening didn't disappoint. 

"I thought this moment was going to be special," Embiid said, "and it was just great."

Best of NBA: Davis' 50 points not enough in Pelicans' loss to Nuggets

Best of NBA: Davis' 50 points not enough in Pelicans' loss to Nuggets

NEW ORLEANS -- Jusuf Nurkic scored 23 points, Will Barton added 22, and the Denver Nuggets survived a dominant performance by Anthony Davis to defeat the New Orleans Pelicans 107-102 in both teams' regular season opener Wednesday night.

Davis had 50 points, 16 rebounds, seven steals, five assists and four blocks. His production helped New Orleans trim a deficit as large as 14 late in the second quarter down to two points in the waning minutes. He simply didn't have enough help.

The rest of the Pelicans combined to shoot 21 of 58. Tim Frazier scored 15 for the Pelicans. E'Twaun Moore added 10 points, but missed a 3-point attempt that could have tied it with 24 seconds left.

Danilo Gallinari scored 15 for Denver and Wilson Chandler added 12 points (see full recap).

Celtics top Nets in Horford's home debut
BOSTON -- Isaiah Thomas had 25 points and nine assists, Jae Crowder added 21 points and Al Horford pitched in 11 in his Boston debut on Wednesday night as the Celtics survived a late scare to beat the Brooklyn Nets 122-117 in their season opener.

Bojan Bogdanovic scored 21 for Brooklyn, including a 3-pointer to make it 120-117 with 47 seconds left after the Nets erased most of a 23-point deficit against the Boston bench. But he missed one with a chance to tie it after Joe Harris intercepted Thomas' cross-court pass, and the Celtics were able to hold on.

Justin Hamilton came off the bench to score 19 points and grab 10 rebounds for the Nets in coach Kenny Atkinson's debut (see full recap).

Turner's opening act leads Pacers past Mavs in OT
INDIANAPOLIS -- Myles Turner scored 30 points, tied his career high with 16 rebounds and made a 3-pointer with 1:18 left in overtime to start an 8-0 run that allowed the Indiana Pacers to close out a 130-121 victory Wednesday night over the Dallas Mavericks.

Three-time All-Star Paul George added 25 points, including another 3 with 55 seconds left to seal Indiana's fifth season-opening win in six years.

Deron Williams scored 25 points, while J.J. Barea and Dirk Nowitzki each added 22 as the Mavs lost their fifth straight in the series. They still haven't won in Indianapolis since February 2014.

Dallas didn't tie the score or take a lead until the fourth quarter, yet still forced overtime when Harrison Barnes' open 3-pointer made it 115-all with 2.3 seconds left.

Turner could have won it with a long buzzer-beating 3, but it bounced off the back of the rim (see full recap).