Classy, passionate and faithful. Those are three words that come to mind when I think of the San Francisco 49ers fan base. Being a season ticket-holder since 1991, I have grown accustomed to the Niners culture at a very young age. People have always been polite, friendly, and nice. However, despite their laid-back demeanor, they tend to get “loud and proud” once the game starts. And that’s what makes them so special.
Everyone at Candlestick understands the importance of home-field advantage, and the playoffs are no exception. I’ve been to 11 playoff games in my life, and one thing that will always stand out, is the piercing noise level.
Fans of all ages will do anything they can to make noise. It’s like a kid throwing a tantrum in a candy store, only this time, it’s acceptable. And by anything, I mean anything! Aside from the normal yelling, whistling, and clapping, the “Forever Faithful” will stomp the ground, bang signs, or even pound the back of seats, creating an earthquake effect. It is truly a game-day experience, and one that gets the players pumped.
Hearing the roar of 70,000 fans all in harmony is truly amazing. You can emotionally sense the players feeding off Candlestick’s energy, as the fans continue to “rock the stick,” creating a tremendous home-field advantage, while draining the other team’s momentum. Just ask inside linebacker Patrick Willis, as he had this to say after last year’s Divisional Playoff win against the New Orleans Saints,
“Man it was loud. It was the loudest I’ve ever heard our stadium. I’m thankful for the fans that came out on our behalf…I thank all of the fans out there tonight cheering the way they did.”
Whether or not the 49ers win next Sunday, one thing is for sure, you can’t deny the “Forever Faithful” as they continue to “rock the stick.”