Everybody loves a winner and nobody loves a winner more than the folks who follow and support LSU Tiger football. The last time Tiger fans really had that "elite" feeling was when Joe Burrow was the quarterback of the team. That same guy is set to appear in his first Super Bowl this Sunday as quarterback of the Cincinnati Bengals. And while Joe is an Ohio kid, it's pretty evident he's got a little swamp water running in his veins these days too.

It has been interesting to watch the evolution of football fandom in South Louisiana over the past year or so. When Burrow and the LSU Tigers were playing undefeated football it sure seemed as if everyone was on the Burrow Bandwagon. When he was drafted by the Bengals with the overall first pick in the NFL Draft, there was a certain amount of "Louisiana" pride that supported that move.

@joe_burrow10 via Twitter
@joe_burrow10 via Twitter

Last year, when Burrow was injured during the season, you could tell that the concern from people in Louisiana for the Cincinnati signal caller was real and genuine. And now this year, as soon as the New Orleans Saints were eliminated it certainly seems as if Joe Burrow has once against assumed his place among the "most cheered for" in the state.

Besides, his team is playing the Los Angeles Rams and if you've been a Saints fan for more than five minutes you know of the absolute disdain for that team. Saints fans had to endure too many years of sharing a division with the Rams back in the day. We also don't care for the 49ers either so, no matter who the NFC opponent in the Super Bowl was going to be, Saints fans would have leaned into Burrow and the Bengals.

LSU v Alabama
Getty Images

So, we have established how most of the fan base feels about Burrow but how does Joe define his relationship with us? Well, I think you're going to find a young man who is genuinely appreciative of his time with the Tigers and his time in Louisiana.

Burrow was recently asked about that relationship with LSU and the state of Louisiana. His comments were reported in Sports Illustrated. 

LSU means everything to me. They gave me this opportunity to put myself in this position to be talking to everybody today. I wouldn't have had that opportunity if I hadn't gone down there and work really hard for what I got.

Those are the words of a young man who is apparently very grounded in where he is, where he was, and where he is going. You might recall Burrow transferred to LSU from Ohio State. No one was really sure what Burrow would be bringing to the table but it didn't take long for Tiger fans to find out.

College Football Playoff National Championship - Clemson v LSU
(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

In fact, if Burrow and his Bengals are successful on Sunday he will become the first quarterback to win a National Championship in college, be selected number one overall in the NFL draft, and win a Super Bowl. All of those accomplishments are pretty amazing. The fact that Burrow could do all three is even harder to believe. The fact that he could accomplish that feat in a three-year span is mind-blowing.

And while Burrow appreciates the fact that so many fans along the Bayou have made it a point to keep up with the Bengals this year he knows that the support is genuine and it's the same kind of support he found when he first arrived in Baton Rouge.

The fans really embraced me as one of their own and I tried to do the best I could when I was there representing LSU and Louisiana in a very good way. I think the fans really appreciate when somebody from the outside really embraces their culture.

Mr Burrow has stumbled on to the secret of the old adage " bloom where you are planted". I think Joe gave us exactly what we gave him which was a lot of room to grow and a lot of support to keep trying. And as far as embracing the culture of South Louisiana, that was never more apparent than when Joe showed up at Senior Night wearing this jersey. 

LSUSports via YouTube
LSUSports via YouTube

That speaks volumes to a fan base that the only thing they are more passionate about than football is the unique way of life along the bayou. And here's to good guys, like Joey B who know that in order to move forward you must understand from where you came.

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