I hate West Virginia.
Can't stand the state, can't stand the university, can't stand the fans. In fact, the only thing from West Virginia I can tolerate is Marshall's men's basketball team ... and that's only because former Pitt assistant Tom Herrion is their head coach. Herrion, you may remember, was the target of a thrown coin during a Pitt road game at, you guessed it, West Virginia.
I hate how obnoxiously catchy "Country Roads" is. I hear it come on after the occasional West Virginia game I watch and I immediately need to change the channel, for I will most likely start humming it in my head. And it never goes away...
I can't stand the NBA because, among other reasons, the logo of the NBA was modeled after Jerry West, a West Virginia alum.
I despise Andrew Luck because his father, as you may know, is West Virginia's athletic director.
But I wasn't always this way. In fact when I first applied to Pitt, I also considered applying to West Virginia, as I have a few friends who have gone to or currently go to WVU and heard some good things about it.
I actually went on a visit to the campus to visit my friend in Morgantown and, not truly knowing and understanding the intensity of the Backyard Brawl, I had brought my Pitt sweatshirt with me. This was in January, a month after 13-9. I wasn't a Pitt student yet. Heck, I hadn't even been to the city of Pittsburgh yet. Within six hours of being in Morgantown, I had people attempt to fight me or throw beer at me. Everyone else gave me dirty looks as I walked past them or told me to "Eat Shit". All because my sweatshirt said "Pitt" on it.
I couldn't understand it. So much hate over a simple four-letter name. It made me so angry that people, not just students, were yelling at me and threatening me over a school I didn't attend at the time and the only reason I was even remotely affiliated with Pitt was because of my sweatshirt.
From that point on, I have hated West Virginia. With the Backyard Brawl just a few days away, I go back to my brief visit to Morgantown and remind myself why I hate West Virginia and why I cheer for Pitt to beat the crap out them every year. As both sides prepare to brawl, perhaps for the final time in a while, remind yourselves why you hate West Virginia and whether you're watching on TV or making the trek to Morgantown, cheer for Pitt to score 50 on them. After Pitt wins, make sure you tell every Mountaineer fan to "Go home...". Let it all sink in, especially if this is the last time in a while for the Brawl, that Pitt has ended another historic rivalry with a win.
And if it's not the end, well, at least we have a year of gloating.