Northwestern’s Pat Fitzgerald Believes His White Sox Will Win ALDS

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Northwestern head coach Pat Fitzgerald hails from Orland Park, Illinois, a southwestern Chicago suburb that is hard core White Sox country. While he has donned a Cubs jersey in public (when he sang the 7th inning stretch at Wrigley Field), Fitzgerald makes no secret of his preference for black and white.

He has said in the past that he truly believes an all Chicago World Series is coming, and when it happens, he’ll be openly rooting for the Southside. His weekly Zoom presser today, ahead of the Homecoming game against Rutgers on Saturday, saw Q&A commence with White Sox playoff discussion.

Fitz was asked if he stayed up to see the end of ALDS game three and if he believes the White Sox can turn the series around. Chicago entered the game facing elimination, but won 12-6. The game began at 7:07pm local, but didn’t end until close to midnight.

“I felt pretty confident when we went up 9-6,” Pat Fitzgerald responded, after noting that his program started their workday today very early.

“Put that on my two oldest boys, who had today off (from school for Columbus Day) to come wake me up if something catastrophic happened, so I got a good night sleep.”

Game 4 was scheduled for 2:37 today, but due to rain storms got moved to 1pm tomorrow.

The Sox must win again tomorrow, and then, potentially, in Houston for a decisive game five. Otherwise the Astros will advance to the ALCS.

“Absolutely we’re going to win today,” he said a couple hours before the game postponed/rescheduled.

“I think we got great momentum, and I think it was a great showcase of the great Southside fans last night, it was rocking, and it was fun to watch.”

At the end of this specific Q&A, with this individual reporter, Fitz said “Go Sox,” to which the journalist responded “Go White Sox.”

The Northwestern coach then said “there is only one Sox,” so take that Boston Red Sox! Perhaps we’ll bring this up again if we get the All-Sox ALCS that we’re all rooting for.

There was a “Go White Sox” in addition to Fitz’s usual “Go ‘Cats” sendoff at the end of this virtual press conference too.

After the White Sox claimed victory in game three, many, if not most, of the fans in attendance were chanting “Sox in 5.” It was the franchise’s first ALDS victory since 2008. They have not won a playoff series since the 2005 World Series.

Pat Fitzgerald is absolutely correct about how great the atmosphere was at the ballpark last night. White Sox fans, all dressed in black for the “blackout game,” created a raucous environment for the visiting ‘Stros.

They chanted “Cheater! Cheater!” whenever Jose Altuve, Carlos Correa and Alex Bregman came to the plate.

As you recall, the Astros were disciplined by Major League Baseball, albeit lightly, when it was found the team used electronic devices to steal signs during their run to their 2017 World Series title, and then did it again during the 2018 season.

Houston used a video feed from a center-field camera to decode the opposing catcher’s signs during home games at Minute Maid Park.

Astros players would then bang on a trash can in order to signal to their teammates who were batting about what type of pitch was coming. In other words, they cheated like crazy, and America’s team is basically, right now, anyone who is playing the Astros.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank, partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America” and “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” has regularly appeared in WGNSports Illustrated and the Chicago Tribune.

He co-hosts the After Extra Time podcast. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.

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