Let me start by saying I am in no way a Bengals fan. In fact I grew up a Saints fan during the time when they were fondly known as the "Aint’s" and all we hoped for each year was wins over those Dirty Birds from the ATL. Now I add the Titans to my list of teams because we currently live closest to them and are fortunate enough to see a couple of games each year and because I am seriously impressed with Jeff Fisher as a coach and role model.
BUT here and now I want to publically declare my love for Chad Ocho Cinco Johnson. If you are not following him on Twitter @OGOchoCinco you are missing out. Reading his tweets always put a smile on my face. I think he realizes that while football is his profession, it is called the GAME of football for a reason. Through his media network, he is putting the fun back in football and more actively involving the fans. His fan interactions aren't orchestrated by some yuppy PR firm. They are unfilted straight from him. If he thinks it, he's going to say it whether on the air, on the field, or online. He respects and understands the average fan because he is one himself. Strangely enough, he's a great example of living as a Christian should. He publically quotes Bible verses and I love reading his comments about his Grandmamma and church, but most importantly he's doing what Jesus asked from all of us by constantly giving to those in need and even those not in need. He just gives for the sake of doing so. He defines being a "giver" and for that I respect him oh so much more than just as a pro football player. (Hey Tank Johnson, Matt Jones, and Pacman are you paying attention here?!?)
Coming from someone who played college tennis (yes, I'm well aware not the most respected sport out there!) I can vouched for the level of hard work and dedication it takes to play any sport at more than a general recreational level. I know how many hours I spent on the court during school (again not knocking it but keeping it real that tennis does not involve the same level of physical demands football does) and I cannot imagine the hours one would have to give to take football skills to the pro level. To add to this, that Ocho has the time, drive, commitment, and energy to spend on his family, friends, and finally fans is amazing.
This is not meant to be a "Make Ocho Out to be a Saint" post but rather a pat on the back to say "Thanks for getting it." Thanks for understanding that fans want to like players. Thanks for understanding that the fans help pay your paycheck. Thanks for being a fan yourself. Thanks for realizing that you are richly blessed in many areas and for feeling a responsibility to contribute to the greater good of society. Thanks for being your unique quirky self. And from a communications major, thanks for giving the collective media giants the middle finger and for pushing back at the mainstream media and reminding them that their agendas do not dictate what the average fan wants to know/see!