Steeler Sociology - again

January 31, 2009
Posted by Jay Livingston

At the Freakonomics blog, Steven Dubner lists “Ten Reasons to Like the Pittsburgh Steelers.” (He doesn’t say anything about liking them minus the six-and-a-half or seven points.) Reasons like
  • they’re a family team (still owned by the Rooneys)
  • they’re a small-market team (Pittsburgh population – 350,000)
  • they’re named for the work the city does (er, did)
  • they had a nutty, lovable radio guy (Myron Cope)*
and so on.

But here, for sociologists, is one more: Head coach Mike Tomlin, when he was an undergrad at William and Mary, majored in sociology.

(Although Dubner is a Steelers fan, he writes, “The Steelers may not be ‘America’s team’ ”; he doesn’t challenge the Cowboys’ claim to that title. I guess Dubner didn’t read this SocioBlog post from two seasons ago.)

*Dubner says Cope’s voice “sounded like gravel and Yiddish tossed in a blender.” But in fact, Cope had the purest Pittsburgh accent you'd ever want to hear (if you ever wanted to hear a Pittsburgh accent).

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