Before I understood the concept of football — or team sports in general — I sported the black and gold.
That's not hyperbole. I just turned 5, the Steelers were set to face the Cowboys in Super Bowl XXX, and I was decked out in gear:
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I didn't know who Kevin Greene was, but there I stood, goatee'd up, locks flowing, flexing, and ready to roll. That game marked my first encounter with the entire Steelers experience. From the pregame excitement to the in-game mania to the postgame depression, Super Bowl XXX had it all.
I was sold — and Sundays were never the same.
Of course, my parents didn't stop there. The Steelers seed sprouted early, but the Penguins plant wasn't far behind. For my sixth birthday, my dad took me to the Civic Arena to watch No. 66, No. 68, and No. 11 (my personal favorite) do work. It was Mario Lemieux's final season, and I remember the overwhelming hype in the building when he took the ice.
My little mind was blown again.
Following the game, I did what every 6-year-old does after attending a sporting event: I wrote about it.
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I was barely out of kindergarten, and I already had my first addiction. That's some solid parenting right there.
Through high school and college, I saw the Steelers win plenty, I watched the Penguins hoist a few more Cups, and I tuned in as the Pirates ... well, that Wild Card victory was pretty cool.
And whether in my hometown of McConnellsburg, my college home of Morgantown, W.Va., or my current home in Monroeville, the feeling on gameday is the same. When you throw on the black and gold, you're home. My obsession with Pittsburgh sports started with family, and that camaraderie and love will remain its main appeal to the end.
So when I had the opportunity to talk to Dejan and Dali Kovacevic about contributing to their site, there wasn't much to deliberate. I was working for FloSports, a live digital sports platform, and I was happy. I put my journalism degree to use every day, covering the sport of mixed martial arts (MMA) and the opportunities there were abundant.
I interviewed fighters. I sparred UFC greats (spoiler alert: It didn't end well for me). I traveled coast-to-coast with one of the best humans on Earth — one of my mentors and friends, Duane Finley — as we pushed forward in the world of MMA and brought fighters' stories to life.
But I was never home.
Now, alongside the star-studded cast here at DK Pittsburgh Sports, I get to combine my journalism experience, my marketing background, and my love for the Steel City in an attempt to bring you the most creative, engaging, and honest content on the planet. When you're here, I want you to feel the same sense of family and togetherness I felt in that living room in 1995 or inside the Civic Arena in 1996 — that same feeling when Heinz Field cranks up 'Renegade.'
You know what I mean, because you're a part of it, too. I hope you're ready to break out your Terrible Towel and have some fun with us.
Starting today, I'll deliver content to you where and how you want it. Whether you're on the DK Pittsburgh Sports app, in your email inbox, surfing Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, or just browsing the main site, I want you to easily and readily find what you're looking for.
If you're not already following us on social media, I encourage you to do so ASAP. I'll be providing graphics, videos, insight, live updates, and more on those platforms. I want it to be engaging and fun at all times. I'm a fan too, and I don't want that to get lost—win or lose.
On top of this, I'm going to write, chip in with video content, and constantly brainstorm new, unique content ideas. My singular promise is this: DK Pittsburgh Sports will become the only site you need to visit if you're a diehard Pittsburgh fan. We will cover all the bases, and we will do it in a way that is equal parts entertaining, engaging, insightful, and professional.
It's ambitious, I know.
But I'm a Pittsburgh Kid, and we crave championships. Second place just doesn't make sense.
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