We continue our series of outstanding Browns Backers groups by traveling down to Austin, Texas! The Texas Capital Are Browns Backers meet at Buford’s on West 6th Street. Club president John Martinich represents approximately 400 members!
The club’s origins date back to the early 1980’s. John joined with his dad in 1986, but quit watching the NFL altogether when Cleveland lost the Browns.
“I had no interest. When they returned, I found the club again, eventually taking over (as president) in 2001.”
The club has had several players’ families attend watch parties including Longhorns and Aggies. The most prominent player to attend is Browns Hall of Legends inductee Cody Risien. John notes that there has been an increase in Lake Travis members with the fantastic addition of local great, Baker Mayfield.
The Texas Capital Area Browns Backers host watch parties for every game and for the NFL draft. The thing that differentiates them from most clubs is how they handle the bye week. While the Browns players take the week off, this backers club springs into action with their annual bye week flag football game. Members of all ages take part in the game that’s played at Austin’s Zilker Park. John even invites other fan clubs with the same bye week. What a great idea!
What’s the thing you miss most when you watch a Browns game in Texas? Well. I would think it would be Cleveland itself.
“There’s usually a bar in your neighborhood to watch games, if you’re in Austin. Come out to the TCABB watch party to feel like you’re back in Cleveland.”
The ideal for this club is to provide a place for fans to watch the games for free and to grow the club as large as possible.
John’s favorite Browns player ever is Bernie Kosar. He calls him the greatest Browns player of his lifetime and was thrilled to hear him announce during the preseason. He enjoyed the deeper angle of the perspective that only Bernie can bring.
Of Hue Jackson, he feels that the Browns were bound to fail last season and echoes the need for stability in the organization.
When I asked John about his outlook on the season, he mentioned a few weaknesses, but his excitement about the wide receiving corps and defense was apparent.
“I’ll predict 6 wins, but the team is young and on the come up! Let’s Go Browns!”
You can contact the Texas Capital Area Browns Backers President John Martinich and learn more about the club by going to their website:
Thanks to John and his members for taking part in this series!