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Introducing Battle Red Blog’s Newest Writer

Vballretired joins the masthead.

Syndication: Nashville Ricky Rogers / The Tennessean

I go back a bit further than most of the folks around here. My earliest memories of football was the Houston Oilers’ fight song playing over the intercom in elementary school when the Oilers won. I remember Oliver (not Andrew) Luck tripping over the 20-yard line with great regularity. I remember years in the abyss followed by seemingly dozens of creative ways to take the most talented team in the NFL to the brink of greatness.

I suppose the Texans were just a continuation of that tradition. I’m a third generation Houstonian. I’m destined to follow Houston teams and usually end up disappointed. However, that makes success much sweeter when it happens. It will happen some day. It has to, right?

As a kid, I read books about football, baseball, and basketball history. I collected baseball cards. I memorized the statistics on the back of the cards and the information in those books. I could still rattle off an obscure Johnny Unitas fact or recall the details of NFL championship games in the 1940s. Some of that information has likely left the data banks, but I can still recall some of it.

Who knows if any of it has any practicality? The line between crucial knowledge and random facts gets obscured at times. That love drove me to write primarily about baseball over the past two decades and change. It included four books and too many web articles to count. Yet I’ve followed this site for awhile and usually been fairly quiet. I did that because I didn’t know how a deep dive into sabermetrics would apply to football.

I also coached girls volleyball for nearly a decade before retiring to watch my own child play. How do any of these things apply to football and the Texans? I suppose we will find out along the way. I’d like to think there’s something in there that applies. Coaching is coaching and statistics are statistics. There are elements of both that can be applied.

I don’t know if I’m the oldest guy around here, but I have seen the Oilers (and now Texans) win and lose in seemingly new and creative ways. A part of that has made me hardened to the joy that comes with winning and the anguish that comes with defeat. Sometimes you have to laugh to avoid the tears.

I’ve enjoyed this site for awhile. There are so many knowledgeable people around here that know a whole lot more than I do about football. Being a part of this outfit is going to be a humbling experience. I’ve enjoyed the independent thoughts and the sarcasm that has often come with it. Hopefully this old guy can keep up.

You can follow me at @sbarzilla if you want to hear my thoughts on the Texans, Astros, and other things. Of course, that comes with the usual caveats that what is said there doesn’t necessarily reflect the opinions of anyone else or the site.