Thomas Jefferson has famously been quoted as saying “the tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants”. While we have no illusions of being a ‘tree of liberty’ here at FKWG, we do ascribe to the theory that everyone should be reminded now and then that other teams do indeed suck eggs.

For no particular reason at all, we have decided to theme this week. It’s easy to hate on Fresno State as an OG Bronco fan, but to really dig deep into your soul for that burning anger to fuel false starts on Saturday takes some artistry. Some panache. Some jazz hands.

With that preamble behind us, behold the unholy and mortal evils of Fresno State! This week’s Hater’s Guide will be in the form of The Seven Deadly Sins, as sourced from Dante Alighieri’s Inferno. Hate on!

i – Lust

The desire to beat Boise State is deeply ingrained into Fresno State’s psyche. Often, the object of their desire is less of yearning and more of freedom from a burden, but it is a form of lust nonetheless. David Carr famously saddled his younger brother Derek with a Boise State flag in his apartment that could not come down until he had completed the nearly Sisyphean task of beating the Broncos.

If they can experience a true hate deep enough to lust after the removal of a BSU flag, it’s safe to say they can be hated back safely. Maybe go easy on Derek, as he now has to suffer the indignity of quarterbacking the Las Vegas Raiders on a weekly basis.

ii – Gluttony

Once upon a time, the Humanitarian, er, MPC Computers, uh, Humanitarian? FAMOUS IDAHO POTATO Bowl featured a steak eating contest between the teams. This long-running tradition was in place for Fresno State’s 2007 appearance in the game but was mysteriously ended before they could return for the 2010 edition.

Logically, we can only presume that Fresno State’s unspeakable gluttony contributed to the demise of a dearly beloved eating competition. The unquenchable hunger of the Bulldogs deserves the burning hatred of a thousand suns.

iii – Greed

After the 2017 Mountain West Championship game was played in Boise due to the technicalities of computer rankings determining the host, Fresno’s greedy administration lobbied hard for the determining tiebreaker to be the head-head results of MWCG participants. This formula would have made them the hosts in 2017 and would have allowed them to stock up their coffers with ill-gotten championship game ticket sales.

Likely as punishment for their greed, the rematch in 2018 was also played in Albertson’s Stadium, due to Boise State owning the head-to-head victory over Fresno State’s higher ranking. That alone should secure their hater rating, to say nothing of the game’s outcome.

iv – Sloth

There was a time in history were Pat “The Moustache” Hill made the offer to play “Anyone, Anywhere, Anytime”. While Fresno definitely followed through with the playing part of the promise, their sloth kept them from consistently paying off that moxie with wins. Thanks to the transitive nature of football pollster evaluations, even the occasional victory over a PAC-12 opponent could have helped Boise State when they gave FSU the annual run-around. Alas, Fresno’s prideful desires were outweighed by their crushing slothfulness.

As per usual, the Bulldogs went out and rolled over for both USC and Oregon State this season, once again demonstrating the sinful sloth that we hate them for.

v – Wrath

As a sin, wrath is defined as a “strong, vengeful hatred or resentment”. As ironic as it is to feature this on a Hater’s Guide, anyone who has been to Bulldog Stadium knows this sin well. The sea of drunken fans adorned in red exhibit wrath towards fans of opposing teams, both before and after the game, regardless of result. While their may be anecdotal cases of Good Fresno Fans, it is important to remember that “one bad apple spoils the whole bunch”, and their hatred should be returned in kind.

If you ever doubt that this is an intrinsic value for Bulldog fans, I would strongly encourage you to observe a Fresno State-Hawaii football game from a safe distance.

vi – Envy

Once the favored Cinderella pick to be a BCS buster, Fresno State had to watch from the sidelines, year after year, as Boise State took their place atop the G5 pack for nearly two decades. The envy emanating from Fresno State was palpable, with their tired insults recycled from the Idaho Vandal message boards of yore.

“Buck Foise” isn’t clever by half and Fresno isn’t a state either, you dinks.

vii – Pride

The root of this not-rivalry hatred goes back to 2001, a defining moment in both programs. Fresno State had finally overcome their sloth and beaten some big names, and seemed poised to make a darling run into the BCS rankings. Pride cometh before a fall, however, and a small program with a gimmicky blue field stepped up to provide just the fall Fresno’s pride deserved.

Et Finis

I would be remiss if I did not finish off this list with a friendly reminder that while we like to hate on the opponents, supposedly there are some redeeming qualities to both their persons and their locales. I am told the San Joaquin Valley has some stupendous beer and delicious tacos, despite being the Armpit of America™ (as awarded by me). So, take this list with a grain of salt. Perhaps even buy some pepper spray and a danger whistle, then head down to Fresno next season to check it out. Just don’t say we didn’t warn you.