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Tuesday Trenches: Streaking Cincinnati

We’re going streaking! Bring your orange/red/blue hat!

Is there a more exciting sports city than Cincinnati right now?

Sure, there are bigger sports cities. Cincinnati doesn’t have the number of teams that Los Angeles, New York, Boston, or Dallas have. Sure, Cincinnati is a small market city, and, as far as national media goes (cough...ESPN...cough), we’re basically in flyover country. Unless you’re from Cincinnati or you grew up as a fan of one of the city’s sports teams, or you’re a sports fan in general, you probably barely know Cincinnati exists.

The casual sports fan sees Cincinnati the say way I see Bellevue, Nebraska (the third-largest city in the state... yes, I Googled it).

But, is there another city, in flyover country or not, that has a group of more exciting professional sports teams?


There isn’t another city where all three professional sports teams are thriving the way Cincinnati’s are. The Cincinnati Bengals are contenders and finished the last two years as AFÇ North champions and have gone to the AFC Championship game twice, winning one and losing the other by three.

The Cincinnati Reds are as hot as any team in baseball, and they’re currently in first place in the NL Central.

Then there’s FC Cincinnati, who are currently in first place in the MLS Eastern Conference with 43 points, which is also the most points of any team in professional soccer, er futbol (I know next to nothing about soccer, so bear with me).

I used to think that there were three separate professional sports franchises with three separate fan bases in Cincinnati. I have learned otherwise. I’ve learned that Bengals fans are supporting the Reds and FC Cincinnati, and I’ve learned that baseball and soccer fans are also big Bengals fans. Sure, there are some fans who are baseball or football or soccer-only guys, but there aren’t many.

And, it’s not just the professional teams.

The University of Cincinnati Bearcats are entering the Big 12 on July 1 and will be in the power five club for the first time. But, before they were in the club, they weren’t stopped from crashing the party as the first non-Power Five team to get into the NCAA football tournament to cap off the 2021 season. Then you also have the Xavier Musketeers, who have made it to the Sweet 16 nine times since 1990. They may not be grouped in with the blue-blood teams like North Carolina and Duke, but they’re not far off (as painful as that is to admit from a UC grad).

And, I’d be remiss not to mention the Cincinnati Cyclones, who finished first in the ECHL’s central division and were Kelly Cup Champions in 2008 and 2010. In fact, they’re the most recent professional sports franchise in the city to win a championship. Even if they’re a minor league team, it counts.

The size of Cincinnati helps fans in this city. The stadiums are all fairly close to each other. The Reds and Bengals stadiums are within walking distance, and TQL Stadium is only two and a half miles away from Paycor Stadium. When the Bengals and Reds were slumping, and they have a lot in the past, the college sports were there to get us through, whether it be basketball, baseball, or football. Clifton is just a short drive through OTR and up the hill from downtown Cincinnati, and Xavier isn’t much farther down the road.

Just think about it. The Mets play at Citi Field in Queens. The Giants play in MetLife Stadium in New Jersey. I just looked it up, and right now, it’s a 48-minute drive from one stadium to the other. If you started at Paycor Stadium and drove in any direction for 48 minutes, you’d either find yourself in cornfields in Indiana, the holler in Kentucky, cornfields in Eastern Ohio on your way to West Virginia, or cornfields on your way to Columbus. We’re so closely packed together here in Cincinnati that we kinda have to support each other.

Just look at Twitter.

Orlando Brown Jr. was signed just a few months ago to be the Bengals' new left tackle. He tweeted this out on Friday.

Basically, I’m saying we’re very lucky to be where we are. Even if you’re not super into baseball, hockey, futbol, or college sports, you can’t help but feel the energy in the city from the Reds' 12-game win streak (any 12-game streak in the MLB isn’t a fluke) or by the footage of FC Cincinnati fans partying in a sold-out stadium for a futbol team that’s only been in the MLS for a few years.

It’s an exciting time to be in Cincinnati.

And if you’re not from Cincinnati, and you’re reading this as a Bengals fan from afar, like our own Anthony Cosenza, who lives in California..... well, to you, I say September will be here before you know it.

Until then, step out of your football comfort zone and enjoy some other sports. You’ll be happier for it, and it will make Bengals football come back so much quicker. After all, time flies when you’re having fun.

However, if you don’t want to, I have sad boy song lyrics just for you.

Relative song lyrics:

But I miss you in the mornings when I see the sun
Somethin’ in the orange tells me we’re not done
To you, I’m just a man
To me, you’re all I am
Where the hell am I supposed to go?
I poisoned myself again
Something in orange tells me you’re never coming home.