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Closer to home options bring back joy of sports

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It’s that time of year where baseball fans whose team made it to the post-season watch in anticipation for the World Series, football fans scream and yell as the season kicks into high gear and basketball fans wait eagerly for the regular season to begin.

It’s a sports time of year.

Yet, the cloud that hangs over professional sports, mostly the NFL at the moment, can stand in the way of some of the fun of sports.

The NFL has been in damage control mode for months now trying to patch up the issues they have been facing, as well as new dirt being unearthed.

The Redskins are refusing to stop using a racist name. Baseball had their own issues in recent years with drugs in the game, and the NBA has had issues with players committing crimes as much as the NFL.

At times, it almost makes a sports fan want to turn away in disgust, feeling dirty for contributing in any way, watching or paying for a game, to organizations that have allowed these issues to continue to this breaking point.

Let me submit for your consideration another option: community college and local sports.

While the professional level sports and many four-year college level organizations battle public perception to their numerous problems, there are plenty of entertaining options closer to home.

Right here at Cosumnes, the men’s and women’s soccer teams and the women’s volleyball team are in the middle of their seasons. Men’s and women’s basketball is right around the corner from starting.

The games are hardly attended, which is a crime in and of itself. Our teams are really great to watch, and the competitive spirit that arises when watching any of the community college teams compete is just as gripping as pro sports.

Just last year, the women’s soccer team went into the playoffs and was one game away from playing in the championship series. The playoffs were hard fought and had fans on the edge of their seat in agony and joy.

Sacramento’s minor league soccer and baseball teams, the Sac Republic and River Cats respectively, are cheap and amazingly fun options right here in town.

The River Cats  bring in packed crowds every season and most seasons make it to the playoffs or beyond. The Sac Republic debuted in the 2014 season for the United Soccer League, and won the USL Pro Championship in September.

Quite a feat for a brand new team.

Sure community college level sports or minor league sports might not have the superstar players, big endorsement deals and all the money being thrown around for flashy media coverage, but what they do have is entertainment without all the drama.

That’s not to say that pro sports don’t have their place. I quite enjoy them, sitting on the edge of my seat watching the Giants or 49ers do their thing.

Paying for a ticket to the 49ers new stadium or tickets to a Giants game is not in the picture for myself or most, not without checking into selling some kidneys or blood at the least.

Local sports provide a cheaper drama-free alternative.

If you’re just looking to enjoy sports without all the bad press, give local sports a shot.

It’s more than worth it.

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Closer to home options bring back joy of sports