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2013 San Diego Chargers Review: Fans

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John Gennaro looks back at the 2013-14 San Diego Chargers season and sees real growth in the fanbase. Could this be the beginning of a groundswell of support for the team to stay in San Diego?

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODA

If I'm giving reviews on everything else, I might as well review the fanbase this season, right? Right.

I honestly can't remember a year where I've had more fun being a fan of the San Diego Chargers. There were so many good/silly things for us to talk about!

The fans seriously had fun this year. The bolo tie thing was nuts. The crowd waiting for the team when they returned from Cincinnati and Denver was even crazier.

I kept waiting for a time where fans were allowed to run the stadium steps with Mike McCoy before a game, because this was the first year since I started following the team (16 years ago) that the fans seemed to a part of the franchise instead of just an afterthought. Part of the credit for that should go to the Spanos family, Tom Telesco, and Mike McCoy, but I'm also going to reserve a large bit of credit to the fanbase itself.

For years, Chargers fans have spent their time being bitter ("Fire Norv", "Cut Kaeding", "Get rid of MartyBall", "These players are more concerned with partying than doing their jobs", etc.) instead of having fun. This year, even when Thomas Keiser was arrested prior to the Bengals playoff game, and even when Mike McCoy went ultra-conservative, and even when the team was losing games they should have won, the fans had fun.

Good job, Chargers fans. This is how we build our identity. This is how we fill the stadium (there was only 1 blackout this season, right?). This is how we prove to the team, and its owners, that they should stay in San Diego instead of trying to build a new fanbase elsewhere.