It hit me like a ton of bricks last night after watching the 18 point underdog University of Wyoming Cowboys football team magically defeat Missouri in a most improbable 37-31 kind of way. I should have known something weird was going to happen. The signs were definitely there.
Even the land of “Laradise” was encompassed by a rainbow as the game got underway. Surreal.
The Cowboys were down by 14 points in an instant – so that meant all was right with the world… and then some unexplainable to anyone but Bills-fans ‘thingie’ started to happen.
Flukey plays erupted and you couldn’t escape the feeling you were being sucked into an alternate universe. Deja-vu. Whatever you want to call it, IT happened. Wyoming wins the game in spite of themselves.
The Bills fan inside of me responded to this experience like the fire-breathing dragon that I am.
Every time Wyoming’s newbie quarterback Sean Chambers ran up and down the field like a mad man possessed it reminded me of Josh Allen. Chambers even ended up with horrible stats overall but rallied his team despite putrid analytics.
The Cowboys’ defense orchestrated a gut check attack and the team walked out of War Memorial Stadium at Laramie with a big fat smile on their collective face. You know, that same kind of satisfying grin by fans whose favorite team has been mired down by decades of unspeakable mediocrity?
And there it was.
The connection in my head was finally made after growing up in Western New York and spending the last several decades living in Wyoming.
The history of University of Wyoming football is not unlike the Buffalo Bills in terms of performance. Decades of mediocrity – or worse– punctuated by occasional spurts of success.
The emotional highs when the University of Wyoming football team has a game like they did last night are a joy to experience. However, they need to happen on a more consistent basis.
Who can relate to this type of unfortunate football karma more than fans of the Buffalo Bills?
Teams lacking championship pedigrees often end up with a different type of fanbase in terms of “personality” than teams with championship legacies like the New England Patriots.
Not many people are thrilled to be labeled as fans of “lovable losers”, but here we are. After watching how fans of the Wyoming Cowboys dealt with heart wrenching losses and teams bereft of talent over the years, I realized I was uniquely suited to be an adopted UW fan.
For the most part, football fans in Wyoming tend to consider the Denver Broncos the “home” team. But that tradition is getting some serious challenge by Wyoming Cowboy fans who love Josh Allen with his compelling underdog story.
Finally, look no further than the following supporting evidence that there may be a blooming love affair starting between fans of the Wyoming Cowboys and the fabulous people of Western New York:
The love being shown for a Wyoming-based master wing chef at the Buffalo, N.Y. Wing Festival this weekend cements the romance .
Josh Allen brings the ‘Spicy Bleu’ to Buffalo and the Bills win the Super Bowl. My bucket list is complete and I can spend the rest of my days swinging in a hammock and smiling at the clouds. That’s my story and I’m sticking with it.
Editor’s babble: It’s a really fun time to live in Wyoming as a lifelong Bills fan. Win or lose, let the NFL regular season begin! You can find me on Twitter @RobynMundyWYO if you can handle the nausea-inducing optimism.