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Passing time when your team’s past its prime

Jeff CaspersenGlenwood Springs Colorado CO

Broncos fans, I feel your pain.Theres nothing worse in a world saddled with Super-Bowl-or-bust expectations than January without football.Nothing at all.Somewhere, Jay Cutler is cursing John Elway for setting the bar so darn high.So how, as fans, do you approach the meaningless final weeks of the regular season and the no-Bronco playoffs?Well, with my 49ers sitting out the postseason for a fifth straight season, Im somewhat of an expert on this. With a glorious run through the 1980s and 1990s breeding five Super Bowl titles, the San Francisco franchise has absolutely crumbled, leaving a starving, rabid fan base writhing in frustration.If only, as a child, I had known what was coming. I would have appreciated that fifth record Super Bowl a little more. You never know when the glory days may crumble to an end.Live and learn!So, Broncos fans, heres a list of things to keep you busy during a Denver-less postseason.1. Launch a campaign to fire your coachNow on the second miserable coaching tenure since the inexplicable release of Steve Mariucci in 2003, 49ers fans have thrust their angst upon current frontman Mike Nolan. I frequent a team blog or two and the man is getting absolutely skewered by the spoiled San Francisco faithful. Check out the website www. firenolan.org for proof. The man can do no right. Forget that hes built this team from absolutely nothing.So, Broncos fans, its time to make Mike Shanahan your scapegoat.Forgot about the two Super Bowl titles hes won or that success in the NFL is, by nature, cyclical. Forget that, though short on seasoning, theres a lot of talent on this Denver team.Ive heard a fickle fan or two call for Shanahans head. Forget that just about every other NFL team would love to see Shanahan roaming their sideline.2. Start a Travis Henry babys papa poolRunning back Travis Henry, known infamously for fathering nine children by nine different women, is about to have a lot of free time on his hands.Well, my gambling friends, why not hold a contest to predict when No. 10 might find his/her way into the world?3. How about some hoops?The Denver Nuggets, loaded with star power, are playing some decent basketball. And college basketball will hit full swing in January once teams hit their conference slates.I know Im enjoying the run-and-gun Golden State Warriors early-season success.4. Hot-stove funWith the Internet redefining the culture of media, the offseason doesnt mean the end of football news. With news sites and blogs to scour religiously, youll be the first to know when that big free-agent signing goes official, or even when the Broncos ink an all-important practice teamer.5. Count the days to baseball seasonWhod have thought this day would have come? The Rockies will, gulp, enter the 2008 season as a favorite in the National League West. Take solace in the fact that, in just a few months, pitchers and catcher will be reporting to Tucson for spring training.So, there you have it, a few ideas to pass the time and ease the pain of January without Broncos football. It really isnt that bad once you get used to the idea you cant always be good. Just be sure to fully appreciate your team the next time it does reach the big game. You never know if/when the glory days will return.Contact Jeff Caspersen:384-9123jcaspersen@postindependent.com


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