Home Mailbag: What is it with so many UVA fans being such assholes after a loss?

Mailbag: What is it with so many UVA fans being such assholes after a loss?

Chris Graham
cyber bullying
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Could you please tell me why UVA fans are so vitriolic, nasty, and critical in their social media comments? Isn’t it painful enough to have to endure these losses?

I can understand that everybody has some bones of contention with the coach and how our players played. And of course everyone hates Andrew Rohde, wants Elijah Gertrude to play (how’d that go?), and loves Ryan Dunn when times are good, but it seems when we are in the dumpster, the fans just ain’t supportive.

But why are so many UVA fans so nasty, and I mean downright nasty, when we lose?

I’m no psychologist, but I can’t figure out how being that way makes it better for themselves or for anyone.

You write about every other facet of the game; how about writing about fan psychology, and what it does for our winning edge?


football phones
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This one is both a favorite topic of mine, and also one that I don’t like writing about, though of course, I have.

Remember the story about Ahmad Hawkins unleashing his Twitter followers at me last fall?

Yeah, that one was loads of fun.

Things there got so bad that I had to have a chat with the local police after one of the Ball Hawk’s fans texted me my home address and intimated that he was going to kick my ass.

I mean, I get it – I’d committed the cardinal sin of quoting accurately something the football coach had said after the JMU loss about his team being distracted during a weather delay.

I know, how dare I.

Funny that he never apologized for claiming that I’d made the quote up.

Classy guy, that Ball Hawk, a football alum who, incidentally, also works for UVA Athletics.

Most of the folks who litter social media and that one message board with the garbage about the sports teams at The University, as it turns out, aren’t alums like Hawkins; and not surprisingly, as Jim noted to me in a follow-up email on this topic, when you drill down into their public profiles, a lot of them are the same people who spew garbage in other corners of the social-media world about their undying love for Donald Trump.

Go figure, right, that the kind of people who call in bomb threats to libraries over LGBTQ+ books and shoot up pizza places because they think Hillary Clinton is drinking the blood of dead kids in the basement might get their panties in a bunch over their favorite team losing a ballgame.

The way they’re more likely go after their own – Tony Bennett, the players, other fans who aren’t sufficiently loyal to be as pissed off as they are – reminds me of how the MAGA types go after Republicans more than they do Democrats when their side loses an election, which has been often lately.

My solution to dealing with these people is: not dealing with these people.

There’s a reason I disabled the commenting feature on the AFP website, for instance.

That’s where we make money; and advertisers don’t want to spend their money to be associated with endless streams of horsesh-t being flung back and forth by people with CB handles (see: Twitter: Elon Musk, losing money hand over fist after purchasing).

We have a huge (92,000+) following on Facebook. Since my last name isn’t Zuckerberg, I don’t make money from Facebook, so, what goes on there isn’t my concern.

We do have a social-media editor, which is to say, not me; she takes care of cleaning up the stuff that goes over the line there, and I’m told there is plenty to keep her busy.

Comments sections on websites and social media should be good things, but if we’ve learned anything about ourselves as a species in the social-media era, it’s that we don’t deserve, and thus can’t have, good things.

These Mailbag columns are my lifeline to the people that I actually write my columns on UVA sports for.

We get a fair number of quality queries from people who have genuine questions into what’s going on with Virginia Athletics.

Just spitballin’ here, but maybe we could start a private Facebook group for those of us who want a place to discuss UVA sports without the MAGA nonsense.

If that sounds like something you’d want to be a part of, drop me a line.

If not, and you’re now pissed off at me for lumping you in with Trump and the MAGAs, just remember, my social-media editor has an itchy trigger finger.

Chris Graham

Chris Graham

Chris Graham is the founder and editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1994 alum of the University of Virginia, Chris is the author and co-author of seven books, including Poverty of Imagination, a memoir published in 2019, and Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, and The Worst Wrestling Pay-Per-View Ever, published in 2018. For his commentaries on news, sports and politics, go to his YouTube page, or subscribe to his Street Knowledge podcast. Email Chris at [email protected].