If you hurt yourself jumping on the Chargers‘ bandwagon this year, don’t worry, you’re not alone. You’ve got company up in the Los Angeles area.
LA Times NFL reporter Sam Farmer on Sunday took a look at how the Chargers’ sudden rise to the top of professional football has grabbed followers in the Southland. This, despite the region’s relative indifference when the team moved from LA to San Diego in the 1960s and when the team moved its training camp from La Jolla to Carson.
But now, as the victories pile up and the Chargers establish themselves as prime Super Bowl contenders, there are subtle indications the franchise is becoming more popular north of San Diego and gaining traction in a marketplace where it had none before.
The evidence: Amtrak has altered its train service from LA and Orange County for fall Sundays in order to transport fans from the north, about a quarter of the team’s season ticket holders live north of San Diego, the team’s games are getting competitive bids from LA television stations and the team has expanded its regional radio network into all reaches of the Southland – as well as Las Vegas and Tijuana.
And the kicker: The Times lists the following celebrities as having been spotted at Chargers games: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Maria Shriver, Ashton Kutcher, Pamela Anderson, Teri Hatcher, Ricardo Chadira, Kendra Wilkinson, Dennis Haysbert, Phil Mickelson, Sugar Shane Mosley, Wayne Gretzky, Amy Alcott, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Rob Lowe, Christy Swanson, Henry Winkler, Adam Sandler, Ray Romano and Chauncey Billups.
And the LA Times is taking notice, too. Today, they have an article from Farmer covering the Chargers’ victory over the Chiefs, as well as a column from sports columnist J.A. Adande.