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Helmets Off

May 22, 2018

The interaction between fans and players as the players leave the field or court is under a lot of scrutiny. Sometimes the moments are cool. Players will gift wristbands or other things to fans. But it gets nasty too and some players are willing to fight back. There is a much closer relationship between the fans and the players in the NBA. The arenas are smaller and the players and fans are closer together. Baseball players can go to the dugout. Football players are far away from fans. Players are encouraged to interact with fans because the fans are the paycheck. But when you hit superstar status, when do you draw the line? Look at Tiger Woods. He walks through the crowds with a very stony determination. No waves, high fives, or any interactions whatever.  Phil Mickelsen on the other hand is all about the high fives, the photos, and the gifting. That's made him a fan favorite. Maybe the NBA should take note. Scott has had some experiences with this. Going into and coming out of player tunnels is often a vulnerable moment depending on the venue. The stadium in Laramie Wyoming is one such place. They have chicken wire over the top of the entrance onto the field. The fans throw so much garbage at the opposing players that the chicken wire is necessary. Another ugly experience was Ralph Wilson Stadium in Buffalo New York. When Scott played for the Miami Dolphins, the Buffalo Bills were big rivals. One Miami player, Brian Cox, walked onto the field before the game and with both fingers flipped off the entire crowd. At the time, the Bills went to four straight Super Bowls at the expense of the Miami Dolphins. But this game, the Dolphins wrecked the Bills.  Brian Cox set a tone that rallied the players. One game at the Bills, police officers on horses surrounded the entire field especially behind the team benches. When the game ended, the fans rushed the field and the mounted police were powerless. The Dolphins barely got off the field but the fans surrounded the bus and wouldn't let them go. They started rocking the bus. Scott Mitchell takes his helmet off to show you the inside scoop on all kinds of sports from football to even golf. Scott Mitchell is a former NFL quarterback who was a star quarterback at the University of Utah before going on to have a professional career playing with the Miami Dolphins, the Orlando Thunder, the Detroit Lions, the Baltimore Ravens, and the Cincinnati Bengals. Scott also hosts the podcast Rivals with former NFL player Jason Buck. You can find Helmets Off on Facebook at, on Twitter at, and YouTube at