COLUMN: The victory bells lie dormant in Dallas


Rob Le Cates

Nicholas Bays is a fifth year sports media relations major and can be reached at 217-581-2812.

Nick Bays, Sports Columnist

And just like that, another season of Dallas Cowboys football comes to what ultimately feels like a disappointing and heart-breaking end.

On Sunday night, the San Francisco 49ers beat the Dallas Cowboys in the divisional round of the NFL Playoffs 19-12 knocking the Cowboys out of any championship contention.

Why do I care at this point?

I’ve grown up a Dallas Cowboys fan my whole life. My parents, my grandparents, for better or for worse, my family roots for this team with fiery, passionate hearts. And yet, every year, that fire becomes dimmer and dimmer as tears of disappointment and frustration slowly put that fire out (at least for me).

We are such huge Dallas Cowboys fans that we even named our dog Cowboy. And he’s a great dog. He’s a 14-year-old Havanese and cute as can be.

The point is: we care so much about this franchise that it has seeped into almost every fabric of our family’s life. With that, the frustration that comes with rooting for this team has now become deeply embedded into the foundations of who I am as a person.

My parents tell tales of seeing Troy Aikman lift the Lombardy Trophy high into the sky, proud of the efforts it took to win not one, not two, but three championships. But sadly, these are distant memories for them, and only a fantasy for me.

I’ve lived on this Earth for 23 years. 23 amazing years full of happiness and joy, love and fulfillment. And yet, in all my years of rotating on this rock, the Dallas Cowboys haven’t:

Won an NFL championship.

Been to an NFL championship.

Been to a conference championship.

And according to, they have only won four playoff games since 1997.

This, folks, is my team. A team with a historic legacy reduced to mediocrity. A team that lies still in the shadow of the decaying and crumbling rubble of its past.

This team is the Roman Empire near the end. Once proud and thriving, the beacon of excellence, now receding and spiraling as any reference of its glory becomes more history than reality.

My fear is that I will live and die without the Dallas Cowboys winning an NFL championship.

A full life, hopefully littered with happy memories, personal growth, and eventually a quiet exit into the eternal.

A full life that will, tragically, probably see the big stars in Dallas never win it all.

Well, hey, at least my dog is cute. And I love him very much.