#3 OJ Brigance Speech After AFC Championship Game

O.J. BriganceWhy It Should Win

The story of OJ Brigance is heartbreaking one to hear, and I’m sure more people would feel sorry for him if he took even a second to feel sorry for himself. But despite advanced ALS, Brigance just keeps pushing ahead, an eternal beacon of optimism that the Ravens rally around more than anything. The team reveres him as a sage, and they’re just as invested in his success as he is in theirs.

The post game speech was short but impactful, with OJ calling the Ravens his “mighty men” and proclaiming them the AFC Champions. But the most poignant part of the message was OJ saying “your resiliency has outlasted your adversity”, a credo that you have to imagine that Brigance lives by every day.

#2 O’s First Playoff Game in 15 Years

Orioles, Rangers Wild CardWhy It Should Win

This game wasn’t technically the first Orioles playoff game (that was the Wildcard game versus Texas). It wasn’t even a win. This game was just the results of a dream season and months of hard work finally coming to fruition.

I live two blocks from Camden Yards and got to see the full progression of Orioles fans. From disbelief, to cautious optimism, to fatalism, the Baltimore fan base had several months where they didn’t know what to make of this team. How much to support it without leaving themselves open to getting burned for an 18th consecutive year. Around August, it all started to become real. The crowds began to steadily swell, first it got difficult to buy cheap seats and move up and in a few weeks it was tough to buy seats at all. Doubt evaporated with every September win.

But there was nothing that even approached hearing the roar of the fans in Camden for that first playoff game against New York. Because seeing “ALDS” painted in the on-deck circle, and playing a game in the cold of October made it all real. I’ve never been to a playoff game for any of my teams (they’ve been tough to come by) but just hearing the deafening cheers roaring out of Camden Yards the night of that first Yankees game definitely gives any fan something to look forward to.

Voting is open from 11:00 AM on Monday March 4 to 11:00 AM Tuesday March 5.