Often times, Stampede Blue gets written up in blog publications and, sometimes, in local Indy publications on how it is such a great Colts sports blog, blah, blah, blah. The reason we get written up is because the blog's parent (SB Nation) has worked behind the scenes to tie the blogs to Google News, SI, Yahoo, and other outlets that allow people to search the net and find our content through those searches. SB Nation has also worked to secure funding. What does this mean? I'll let my boss, Tyler, explain:
This funding also ensures that the IT guys who maintain all the features we use on our blog work properly. It also allows them to experiment and make new features, like the new "Hubs" they are making for league playoffs. I'm excited to see the NFL one.
This funding also means that yours truly will be sticking around for a while longer. I'll be honest, I thought a major media company like Yahoo or ESPN was going to buy SB Nation at some point. I wasn't told of any offers or anything like that, but just knowing the landscape of how things work, a blogging network with a totally unique blogging platform like SB Nation's could be gold for an AOL or a Microsoft or a Sports Illustrated. However, selling yourself to such companies usually means handing over your freedom. Media people from those companies step in and tell you how you should blog.
It also likely would have meant I was to get kicked to the curb.
I'm sure ESPN media people would not take kindly to me insulting Tony Kornheiser or calling Bill Simmons a schmuck. And to those who know me in real life, they know that when someone tells me I should not write what I feel, or what I perceive to be the truth, that my reaction is often a giant F U!
With independent funding secured, it allows SB Nation to stay independent and fresh. It allows people like me to call CBS writer Gregg Doyel a douchebag and, in the same breath, call anonymous bloggers like these guys geniuses. It also ensures my boss, Tyler, will have to put up with me for a while longer. God knows I've written and said some stuff that has prompted the quick email from blez often titled "WTF are you doing, BBS?" Yet, despite all the times I've shot my mouth off, Tyler Bleszinski has always stood up for me. I consider each day I get to blog for Stampede Blue a privilege, and should the day come where Tyler must kick me to the curb, I will have no regrets or hard feelings. The fact that he's kept me, a totally unknown blogger before the creation of Stampede Blue, on for this long is a testament to blez's coolness and patience.
Raise it for blez.
So, why am I sounding so sappy and misty eyed this morning? Well, a few reasons. One, I got engaged recently. You'll find it humorous to know that she HATES football, and refers to this time of the year as the "Dead Zone" (meaning she is dead to me and I spent more time with Peyton Manning than her). But, despite her hatred for the great sport, it was she who suggested I start blogging about the Colts. The second reason is Fire Joe Morgan just closed its blog doors. This was a funny, unique blog that could not continue because the guys were just too independent. ESPN or Yahoo was not going to buy a blog that was so outrageously great at telling the truth. So, the boys there closed up shop. When I see things like this, it makes me really appreciate the work Tyler and others have done to secure SB Nation's and Stampede Blue's future. I'll miss FJM. It was original, which is the best compliment any blog can hope for.
The third and final reason I am all gooey this Sunday morning is Stampede Blue was just written up as one of the best team centered blogs on the net. I am always grateful to people who acknowledge what we do and how we do it, but I am especially grateful to people like shake n bake, mgrex30, and JakeTheSnake for taking time to add their own unique content to this blog. Someday soon, another blog or a big company (like ESPN or some junk) will poach these guys away and actually PAY THEM to write. Until then, they are Stampede Blue guys, and if I wasn't the head writer here, I'd be a commenter and FanPoster (like so many of you) on their posts. In addition, my NFL team blog leader (David Halprin) deserves some props as well. Despite David's obvious shortcomings (he is a Cowboys fan) he is always someone who will listen to any dumb, silly, WTF-style idea I have. David is the one who makes sure we rabble of NFL bloggers cross-promote our sites with one another. It is not a glorious job, but a necessary one. And David is a good man to do that job.
As I've always stated, schmucks like me are not what drives sites like this. It is you. The fan. The "average Joe" or whatever they call us, sitting in your chair on Sunday in your Anthony Gonzalez jersey, watching the game with your daughter. You and your love for the Colts drive this site. All I do is focus the discussion and make fun of overpaid media hacks who bash our favorite players.
Without you, this site goes the way of Fire Joe Morgan. Without you, I'm just a schmuck, instead of a schmuck with a blog. Thank you. And Go Colts!