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Win A Trip to See the Cowboys and Meet Jay Ratliff

Our friends at Jay Ratliff’s Official website have launched an amazing promotion for a chance to win a trip of a lifetime for any Dallas Cowboys fan.

The grand prize includes tickets to see a Cowboys game plus the wonderful opportunity to meet one the greatest guys on the team Jay Ratliff before the game. The deadline to enter is July 20, 2010. Two lucky winners will be announced July 22, 2010.

Please visit JAYRAT.com now for more information and to register for this incredible giveaway.

Be sure to tell ‘em Lone Star Struck sent ya!  Good luck and go Cowboys!

Diary of a Mad Cowboys Fan

I come from a huge family of Dallas natives who are all Cowboys fanatics, but I’d put money on it that if you asked any one of them who the biggest fan in the Horn family is, the majority of them would without hesitation say, “That would be Kelly Nell!” Ask anyone at my place of business and they wouldn’t think for a moment before saying, “Miss Kelly, of course!”

I’ve got Cowboys posters and memorabilia in my bedroom, a closet full of jerseys plus enough Dallas tees to wear a different one every day for weeks, and even a “Cowboys” silver car… not to mention my favorite addiction, this Cowboys website.

In my household, football season means Sundays are booked – no parties, no outings, no shopping, no work. Dinner is planned around the game. From kickoff until the clock reads 0:00, no one better get in front of the tv and I’m not answering questions, taking random phone calls, no cleaning, cooking, laundry… well I’m sure you get the point.

My teenage son, as amazing as he is, says “Go Cowboys” but I’m not sure he means it the way I do. I’ve bought him jerseys, jackets, etc. – but he’s just not that into football. I’ve been known to scream at the television and get a little bit vocal during Cowboys games. I’m pretty sure that’s why he hides in his bedroom at kickoff. But hey, I love him just the same.

Over the last couple of years I’ve gotten to know some amazing people who also love the Cowboys. I know people who hold season tickets year after year and people who travel clear across the country just to witness a Cowboys game. Although some of the biggest and craziest Cowboys fans I know have never even been to a game, but love ‘em just the same.

I have friends whose homes are completely decorated in Blue and Silver, from the shower curtain to the sofa. I have friends who blog about the ‘Boys, and many who “vlog”, some designs graphics, and others spend hours on forums. Some of my Rowdy friends drive vehicles with players painted on them, decorated with star logos, and personalized Cowboys-themed license plates.

I have Cowboy-tattooed friends, and even some who name their children after players and coaches (I think Landry would be a cool boy’s name).

I think each of us has our own way to express our true blue enthusiasm. I’d rather not classify who is more of a fan, or less of a fan. I’m just happy to say I have been lucky enough to get to know some kickass people who I can relate to because of the Dallas Cowboys.

I feel honored to be able to share my love for this team with all of you through Lone Star Struck. I am so proud of the name we have built in the Cowboys online community and our amazing fan base that continues to grow daily.

From the average football fan to the obsessed die hard fanatic, you are important to the Cowboys organization, and the NFL for that matter.

Lil' Baby WittenRegardless of what kind of a fan you are, without all of us, and I mean every single one of us, there would be no team. Its the oldest principle in the book – supply and demand. We the fans demand some Cowboys football.

It may be offseason but being a Cowboys fan isn’t seasonal,  its a year round event. We are counting down the days until the draft, and looking forward to training camp. Some of us are already planning tailgate parties and road trips to visit Arlington or the closest football stadium that will be lucky enough to host the Dallas Cowboys.

Some rivals and opposing fans question why the Cowboys are America’s Team? Well the answer is crystal clear, WE are the reason.

My fellow fans span from California to New York and Illinois to Florida, not to mention the great state of Texas and its neighboring states (a big hello to my fellow Oklahomans). From sea to shining sea, we are loud and we are proud, we are Cowboys fans and I have to say it’s been a pleasure meeting all of you.

Note: We will be adding a fan gallery to the site this offseason and would love all of you to contribute your photos. Keep us in mind, and stay tuned for information on how to submit your Cowboys pictures.

Revenge is Sweet, So Is First Place

Every Cowboys game, no matter the expectations or what is on the line, gets me pumped up. But tonight, oh tonight was unbelievable!

1

2

3

4

OT

T

DALLAS

7

3

0

10

20

PHILADELPHIA

0

6

7

3

16

What a game! I have to say I am so proud of this team. They played with heart and gave everything they had and it paid off. We knew it wasn’t going to be easy, but we also knew it was in our reach all we had to do was fight for it.

Now, all the doubters who kept asking the question if the Dallas Cowboys can win a big game have been silenced.

This was definitely a team effort and everyone got involved. Everyone on the field and on the sidelines did a tremendous job.

All night as Al Michaels and Cris Collingsworth continuously forced us to relive last December 28th, repeating the numbers 44-6 over and over, I never lost faith in this team. We all know what happened last year, we relived it in our minds over and over for months.

I will keep this short and sweet because we have all week to ride this winning streak – but I’d just like to repeat what I said yesterday – PAYBACK IS A BITCH PHILLY!

Coach Phillips

A Win Is A Win…Right?

Dallas Cowboys 26 – Kansas City Chiefs 20, in OVERTIME. Yes I did say overtime, a place Dallas really should of never been in this game. I will give credit to the Chiefs for their hard fought part of the game, they came to play. But the lack-luster performance of the Cowboys still has me very concerned for any legitimate run at the Super Bowl. This turned out to be a classic example of how the Dallas Cowboys now play their games, ugly. By the end I had handfuls of hair on the floor to pickup, and heard inappropriate words coming out of my mouth I didnt even know I knew (sorry kids). But they did get the win which in the big picture is the most important thing and we will take it.

However it does bring up the fact that they still have a lot of work to do, and there are changes that need to be made. If you look at just the stats of this game, 498 total yards (348 passing, 150 yards rushing) you would think this team was a model of efficiency. But 119 of those passing yards came on two receptions to Miles Austin, one being a 60 yard touchdown and the other being a 59 yard touchdown and both mainly because of the yards after the catch Austin was able to get after breaking tackles. Miles did a great job filling in for the ailing Roy Williams who didnt even make the trip to Kansas City. Tashard Choice taking the extra carries that would of gone to Felix Jones (knee) also did a nice job when called upon. Choice had 92 yards and a touchdown on only 8 carries.

One statistic that really gets under my skin, and seems to be a staple in every Cowboys game and season is the amount of penalties they have. 13 penalties for 90 yards, 13 for 90?! How can you expect to win with that many penalties and that many yards? If this game was against a team even slightly better than the Chiefs the Cowboys would of lost this game, that is unacceptable and shows a huge lack of discipline. As I continue to watch Dallas games I am starting to see a few things that add to my concern for this team.

Wade Phillips is one of the concerns. I have no ill will towards Wade Phillips, seems like a nice guy, probably easy to get a long with, but he may be too nice. He doesn’t seem like the Head Coach type. Obviously I dont know him, I am not at team meetings or practices but I get the feeling he doesn’t know how to yell, or especially motivate. It seems that his personality actually carries over to the team which could be hurting them. Eventually owner Jerry Jones will make a change at Head Coach for his team, not sure when but it will happen, it has to. Another observation I really noticed in this game was lack of composure in Tony Romo. He seems to over throw, or throw behind players at even the slightest feeling of pressure. He is a quarterback and needs to be able to throw accurately while under pressure and then take a hit.

Like I said earlier, the Dallas Cowboys have a lot of work still to do. The good thing is the season is still young, and there is plenty of time to make the changes necessary to become a dominate team. But it seems to me that these issues are the same issues we have been talking about for the past few seasons with no better results. Stop the penalties, Romo stand and deliver, Wade Phillips grow a back bone and motivate or move on, and I think the rest will fall into place. We have a bye week next week so lets get healthy, then we come back and take it to the Atlanta Falcons in Dallas. This will be a good test for the Boys to see how far they have come, lets get another win, and this time make it an unquestionable one.

The Bandwagon Could Get Crowded This Year

Since the success of the ’90’s Cowboys Dynasty I’ve found myself when asked what team I support explaining that I’ve been a Cowboys fan since I was 7 years old. Why do I feel the need to explain how long I’ve been a fan? One word. Bandwagon.

Now I admit I did jump on the Cowboys Bandwagon when they were being successful in the ’70’s and I feel bandwagon jumping is totally acceptable between the ages of 5 and 12. Any older than that and you’ll be a bandwagon jumper forever. You were probably a Patriots fan for a few years. Maybe a Rams fan. Obviously never an Eagles fan because, well, you know. They’ve never won anything significant enough to warrant said "jump".

Loyalty. Perseverance. Fanaticism. These are three of the big things a true fan brings. I read Shelby’s post and she epitomizes what a true Cowboys fan is. At the end of a Cowboys game your emotions should parallel that of the team.

I’m sure this year we’ll have plenty of people jumping aboard The Blue Star Super Bowl Express and that’s cool. The more the merrier. And after the 6th trophy is hoisted high in the air and we all go out and buy new t-shirts I’ll still be explaining that I was a fan way back when just in case I’m mistaken for the newbies.

What was it that first drew me to America’s Team in 1975? The cool uniforms? The great teams? The awesome stadium? I think initially it was the cheerleaders.

Cowboys and Theology

You know, when you are a True Blue, Die Hard Cowboy Fan, most of the people around you just don’t seem to get it.  Those folks may support their own team, or they may even be a nominal supporter of the Cowboys, but they think your love for the team is so fanatical that it borders on being some type of mental disorder.

I have been a Cowboy fan for 35 years.  I picked the Boys as my team when I was around 5 years old.  Admittedly, I didn’t know much about football at the time but something about the Cowboys grabbed my attention.  This is made all the more interesting by the fact that no one in my family really cared about football.  I got into watching the Cowboys, and being an only child, I got my way on Sundays and was able to turn the dial to the Cowboys game.

So, I really don’t know why I became a Cowboy fan here in my home state so far away.  We didn’t have the Panthers then.  The only way I can explain my love for the Cowboys is by good old Calvinistic theology.  I think I was predestined to be a Cowboy fan.  You know – many are called, but few are chosen.  I guess I am blessed to be one of the elect.  If you’re not one of the chosen, you just won’t get it.

It was so exciting to watch them play and win.  It was devastating to see them lose. I can’t tell you how many times I cried over a Cowboy loss as a small child.  My father would look at me, shake his head, and remind me that it was only a game, but to me it seemed like so much more than that.

Over the years, as the family watched one Dallas game after another, I began to notice my father getting into it more and more. He was pretty calm during Superbowl XII when we beat the Broncos.  He was reserved during Superbowl XIII when we lost a close one to the Steelers. Me? I cried of course. But as the years went on, his interest in each game seemed to grow until in 1992, we watched Superbowl XXVII together. The Boys were awesome as they destroyed the Bills that day.  The outcome was really never in doubt. I was tearing the house down in excitement. There were great moments during that game when I looked over at my dad and, I swear to you, I could see a tear or two gleaming in his eyes. I knew at that point – he gets it. 

My dad saw the Cowboys repeat in 1993 as the Cowboys once again beat the Bills in Superbowl XXVIII.  In May of 1994, he left us due to a heart attack.  I still miss watching the games with him. 

I think it was D.D. Lewis who first said that they left a hole in the roof of Texas Stadium so God could look down and watch His team play football.  That statement by Lewis puts a thought in my head.  I know you never met my dad but see if you can picture this scene with me…….

It’s a Sunday afternoon, and my dad’s up there in heaven looking down through that hole in Texas Stadium. He’s got a comfortable chair, he’s wearing a jersey with number 81 on it, and there’s a bowl of fresh buttered popcorn beside him. To the other side of the popcorn, there’s another person watching the game as well – but you can’t make out who it is just yet.  The Cowboys are doing well this day and they just score another touchdown.  A vaguely familiar voice says to my dad, “I’m glad we had our popcorn ready.”  Dad smiles and turns his head toward the unknown man with the familiar voice.  For the first time I catch a glimpse of Dad’s companion.  He’s wearing a smartly tailored suit with a fedora on his head to top off the look.

As dad faces his friend he says, “You know Tom, I think they’re about to do it again.”

Now, if you’re not a die hard fan, you might think that’s a crazy idea I have. It’s ok if you don’t get it.  It’s a Cowboy thing.  Only the elect will understand.  The Cowboy fans who are among the chosen, agree with D.D. Lewis – there is football in heaven, and the heavenly fans are all decked out in blue and silver – with one exception.  There’s always that one guy watching the game in his smartly tailored suit and fedora.  Most of the time he looks quite stoic, but every now and then, if you look close, you will see just the slightest grin….
 

Contributed by Richard Isaacs

 

Legends of the Star – Mel Renfro

 

This week’s Legend of the Star is the longtime, outstanding Cowboys safety, Mel Renfro. Mel Renfro was an All-American running back at the University of Oregon, where he not only set many team and college records, but was eventually enshrined in the College Football Hall of Fame.

In 1964, Renfro was drafted by the Cowboys in the second round of the NFL Draft. However, the Cowboys immediately started him at safety that season rather than at running back and used him extensively on special teams. Although the move baffled many, he ended up leading the Cowboys with seven interceptions, while leading the NFL in kickoff and punt returns in his rookie season.

Although he spent his first few years as a safety, it wasn’t until he was switched to cornerback that his career would skyrocket. Renfro used his speed to intimidate opposing wide receivers and was absolutely dominating in the secondary. He was selected to the Pro Bowl for 10 straight seasons. In his 14-season career, Renfro intercepted 52 passes that he returned for 626 yards. He returned 109 punts for 842 yards and 85 kickoffs for 2,246 yards and a sparkling 26.4-yard average, and led the NFL with 10 interceptions in 1969. Renfro always knew how to turn it up in big games too, and one of his most memorable plays was a key interception that led to the Cowboys’ game-winning touchdown over the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Title game in 1970. He helped the Cowboys win nine division titles, four NFC Championships, and Super Bowls, VI and XII.

Mel Renfro was added to the Texas Stadium Ring of Honor in 1981, and was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1996.
 

Legends of the Star is an exclusive weekly feature found only on StarStruck. Each week we will profile one of the many interesting personalities that have played for the Dallas Cowboys.