“Wouldn’t it be fun to watch sports and not be able to think about covid-19?”

So, how many of you identify with having sports withdrawal?

For the first 48 hours, back in March, Gary Politzer could barely move off his couch. A feeling he could not quite understand paralyzed him, even if he knew the reason behind it was frivolous: He couldn’t watch sports anymore.

Politzer describes himself as a “24/7 sports fanatic,” a single guy who plays in multiple fantasy baseball leagues and even more fantasy football leagues. When the Players Championship golf tournament was canceled because of the novel coronavirus pandemic, Politzer realized his life-shaping hobby would be erased. There would be no Las Vegas trip for March Madness, no Baltimore Orioles Opening Day to “suffer” through and no binge-watching the Masters at his Arlington, Va., home over his 40th birthday weekend.

“I don’t know if it was grief or what,” Politzer said. “I feel like withdrawal is not a bad way to characterize it.”

At least he’s fairly honest about his predicament.

Politzer, like other fans interviewed for this story, recognizes and supports why sports have stopped. He has not discussed his longing for sports with friends because he worries it will sound callous and stupid. A certain level of privilege is a prerequisite for feeling sports withdrawal. And yet it is undeniably there.

“Am I being a jerk because I want to see Opening Day baseball?” Politzer said. “I haven’t talked to people about not seeing Opening Day, fantasy baseball, Capitals games, Wizards games. But it feels like this big, empty sort of hole. We all have these holes in our lives now, one of which is missing sports.”

I’ve seen plenty of examples of folks who are less self-aware than he is.  Where do you see yourself?



Filed under College Football

31 responses to ““Wouldn’t it be fun to watch sports and not be able to think about covid-19?”

  1. psyopdawg

    I can understand but that sounds like clinical depression. I’m not a Nascar fan but found myself switching back and forth last week between that and the Rory/Ricky Skins Game.


  2. Gary needs to get laid…

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Mark

    I love UGA football. But I have the feeling that if somehow sports never come back, I’ll be successively bummed, then wistful, then grateful for the memories. And after not too, too much time, I won’t miss it all that much.


    • Sports are coming back. Just like Disney World is going to come back. I don’t like what they may look like in the short term. No fans or everyone mandated to wear something over their face to attend. Wearing a mask to make a 15 minute run to the grocery store is one thing. 3 1/2 hours in the sun in September is a completely different thing. That’s the primary reason I’m probably going to sit 2020 out when the requirements come out.


  4. I missed watching the Masters and have the TaylorMade match recorded only to see Seminole. I may watch the Tiger/Phil match just to see the Medalist. I don’t watch much baseball, hockey or basketball, so I haven’t missed it. Given the start the Diamond Dawgs had, I’m going to miss the College World Series. As a family, we’re going to miss the Olympics this summer.

    Frankly, our family has enjoyed time together. We’ve watched movies and played some games. I’ll be ready for the PGA Tour … many of the early events have a lot of the best players committed to play.


  5. Russ

    I missed the Masters, for sure. I did watch some of the replay from last year. And early in all this mess, I did watch the entire 1978 Georgia-Georgia Tech game on Youtube (“I feel like Buck Belue, Buck Belue. Gimme the ball now!” sung to the tune of “Bustin’ Loose” by Chuck Brown and the Soul Searchers).

    But now, if I’m watching TV, I’m watching a documentary on something. Sometimes a sports documentary. Since we’re not going out to eat now, we order take out and watch movies. Otherwise, I’ve gotten back into running which is a good thing.

    Whenever sports come back, I’m sure I’ll watch. However, sports without fans will be strange and not sure if I’ll watch that longer term.


  6. Starbreaker

    The same feeling I have after our annual head scratching loss…happy I have other things in my life that are more important and meaningful in the long run. I totally get his perspective though and I’m sure there are tons of people who feel this way. I have to be honest, it was really fun (although weird with no fans) to watch the Bundesliga matches last weekend…took the TV out on the patio, grilled out, drank some beers, and enjoyed sport.


  7. I feel the guy’s pain. Watching golf last weekend was fun for awhile, but it got weird with no fans. I’m a big baseball fan, and I’ve really missed Braves baseball; might watch a little Nascar this weekend, even though I’m not a fan normally.

    These replays on TV of events in years past–last nite I watched the 2017 football Natty game–are just methadone treatments. I need a fix!


    • This…have caught a few minutes of games from the 80’s and 90’s on various cable outlets, found them to be entertaining, championship tennis matches from the early 2000’s are worth paying attention to (like golf, boxing you get to remember when those sports were dominated by 1/2 individuals)….next too margarita’s, women and song haven’t missed certain sporting events too much……tight lines


  8. Sports have been an instrumental part of my life since I was born. My dad was a high school coach back when they coached everything and he ran the special services at Great Lakes Naval Training center and I was the bat boy for their baseball team including a train trip of the East Coast Navy bases in the summer of 56. I had about a 5 year gap when I was in the Army and when I got out but then ended up running sports programs for a living for 20+ years. I’ve been to two Olympics, two Rose Bowls and two Sugar Bowls. I’ve had season tickets for Illinois or Georgia football for 47 years. I guess I rely on that 5 year gap to feel that sports will come back and I’m going to do what I can to be here when it does.


  9. 4boysbrew

    I miss watching sports on TV but what really got me was not being able to watch my son play baseball this spring. At least he wasn’t a senior this year, I feel really bad for those kids.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Argondawg

    Honestly guys this thing has a silver lining for me. Obviously I am a rabid Dawg fan and live right outside Athens and with my family was always going to some sporting event. Football, Softball, gymnastics, basketball etc. I have three daughters and they love the atmosphere. since Covid I instead have gone fishing on our pond with my 80 year old dad. We have fished together probably 20 or 25 times since this thing started. We have always had a good relationship but it has really been a great thing. His health is not what it used to be and he takes care of my mom pretty much 24/7 as she has had 4 strokes so just getting him out and into the boat for a few hours every couple of days has really lifted both of our spirits. I quarrantined him pretty early but he is getting restless. His statement to me last week was “I grew up in poverty, did two tours in Vietnam and I am not prepared to live my final years hiding on my property from this virus. Life is not just about staying alive it is about living and I have no idea how many decent years I have left.”

    I didn’t have much to add to that. Anyway we have to find the things that have real meaning. We have been a distracted, decadent society arguing over shit that doesn’t really matter in the larger picture. I had hoped that something as life alter as Covid would stop the insesant squabbling and refocus us on the important things. I don’t have as much optimism about that as I had a month or so ago.


    • Man I get your dad’s feelings completely. I feel fortunate that I’m only 70 and hopefully have a few more years. My Korea and Nam tours were when I was 18-19 so I’m not in the same situation as he is. I’m looking at the webcam on the beach where I fish on 30a and think, “goddamn, am I going to get to do that again”. I hope so but the way people are jamming in down there makes me wonder.


      • Argondawg

        Yes I can see the depression creeping in on him. Already a hard life taking care of my mom but now he doesn’t get to hug anybody. Especially his grand daughters. He literally has no physical contact of any kind with anyone. We just aren’t built for that. I told him I just can’t risk one of them posibly infecting him. It could kill him and it would certainly crush my daughters if one of them gave him the virus. It seems like every day there are numerous confusing and unclear decisions to be made. He wants to bring back in help for him and mom and he needs the help but at what risk? Serious decisions with no good answers.

        I hope you get to hit your fishing spot for decades to come.


        • illini84

          I’m just so sorry to hear this, my sister is totally isolated and staying away from her grandkids that she has been caring for for the last five years.


        • Gurkha Dawg

          Argon, from your point of view you are doing the right thing and from a strictly disease prevention standpoint, you are. But I think your dad would benefit greatly from hugging his granddaughters. If he wants to, let him. I take care of coved + patients everyday performing very high risk procedures. I go home everyday and hug my kids. (After changing clothes and showering). Like we used to say back in the day: you can’t duck a bullet with your name on it. I’m not criticizing your decision, just giving my opinion.


    • Macallanlover

      Thanks so much for sharing that very meaningful perspective from your Dad, just perfectly said. That exact quote expresses so much of what I feel, as it does for many other elders in our society.


  11. mddawg

    Outside of college football, I’m not a die hard sports fan. And even then I feel like I’ve watched fewer and fewer non-UGA games in the past few seasons. So I’m not feeling the withdrawal as much as others might.

    I’ll just be happy when my kid can play with other kids again in a group setting. We used to take her to this gymnastics class for toddlers once or twice a week. It was a good opportunity for her to run and jump around and interact with some other kids on a regular basis. And we were hoping to enroll her in some toddler swimming lessons this summer, but obviously that may not happen now.


  12. PTC DAWG

    When you stop and think…you realize how much of our economy revolves around sports and entertainment..he’ll yeah, we need them back. Big time.


  13. Paul

    I love college football. But we gave up our season tickets a few years ago. We gave up our Braves tickets a long time ago. In short, we’ve been gradually stepping back for years. Honestly, I cannot remember one single time over the past few months when I thought to myself ‘I wish I could watch some sports.’ It’s entertainment. It will be back eventually. At least I haven’t had to watch any commercials about erectile dysfunction


  14. We’re a sports-crazed society. The mention of “multiple fantasy leagues” is sad to me. Barf.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Bob

    If you are a fan, hard not to miss it. Since I was career Army, spent tons of time in Germany. I was skiing in Soelden, Austria in 1982-83. Trying to get the Penn State-Georgia Sugar Bowl at 3 am in the morning AFN Frankfurt kept fading out. I got in my car and drove back and forth thru the street (singular) in Soelden catching as much of the game as possible. Polizei stopped me once and when they heard what I was doing, thought they might want to commit me.

    The week before the lockdown started I was visiting my Notre Dame buddy up in Pittsburgh. I am a huge NHL fan and of course the Penguins. Made it up to see them get whupped by the Caps and Canes and flew back to Atlanta that Sunday. Kind of felt we were seeing our last sports for a while. They played one more game (thankfully won) and then it stopped.

    I too found myself watching NASCAR last weekend even though going around making left hand turns hasn’t traditionally gotten my blood flowing. Hope we can get back to some semblance of normality soon. The Bundesliga games this weekend were odd with no fans, but it was live and it was real.


  16. Otto

    I only watch college football, sports car racing, and F1 with any regularity. I have watched less of all 3 over the past few years due to rules changes, or state of competition. Disclaimer: If Ga State or UGA make it to March Madness or Omaha I will watch if I am not in the office. Further the coverage of the overly long NBA playoffs and never ending baseball season are annoying. I would gladly endure both to have college football but thus far no withdrawals from anything. I have actually liked NBC sports airing games from the 80s and 90s as well as SEC rewind. College football was a much better more physical style of play then. The announcers were better as well.


  17. We are comparing apples and oranges in a college football blog, discussing professional sports and when they are coming back. Especially baseball. The labor in that context has all the power – or at least more of it than they do in the NFL, NBA and certainly college football. I just wonder if you asked the kids, what would the majority of them want? Because of their lack of an ability to truly organize, we don’t know. So mostly we speak for them, which is insult to injury if you ask me. I’d say, if the kids – who are all old enough to be drafted into war – want to play, and they are willing to accept the risk, then I would be fully in the camp of wanting them to play. But we don’t know that, do we? So my stance, after much deliberation, is: “it depends.”

    (I talked in a circle, I contributed nothing meaningful to this dialogue; everyone on this forum is dumber for having read my comment; I award myself no points, and may God have mercy on my soul.)


    • Like you’re the first one to ever do that here. Listen to 4 Munsons, post one #FTMF, say “How ‘Bout Them Dawgs” then go forth and sin no more, child.


  18. Macallanlover

    UGA and CFB is my favorite sport, and The Masters if my favorite week of the year. So I missed spring training reports on all the teams, and 7 days of the Masters telecasts. That wasn’t fun, but I don’t miss the other sports, college or professional; sorry for those of you that do but baseball, basketball, soccer, Nascar, etc., not being available didn’t impact my viewing at all this spring. I have to say the new situational crisis, including what the “new American landscape”will look like, and how I should help position my family for the future is very interesting and fills much more of my time than anything I might have missed.


  19. Raphael Lewis

    In what other off-season would i have not seen or heard mention of Scott Cochran for two months?


  20. Classic City Canine

    Honestly I haven’t noticed the lack of sports as much as I thought I would. I’m bummed about UGA baseball, but it’s nice to not soak up all my time with sports. Being a sports junkie is not something to aspire to.


  21. I’m blissfully unaware about anything and everything…..play fucking ball. Additionally, I don’t know who said it above, it may have been Todd Rundgren, but Gary needs to find himself a woman.


  22. Check out this shot of a Tech game during the Spanish Flu outbreak.

    The Pandemic And College Football: A Look Back At The 1918 Season