Meet former Charlotte resident Ryan Whitley. Whitley, 27, is a born-again Panthers fan whose 1.5-year relationship is showing disturbing signs of Bronco fever.
Whitley, who went to Charlotte Catholic High School and then University of Georgia before moving out to Mountain View, Calif., now lives with his girlfriend Hannah Huckaby.
He had known she was a Broncos fan. But it wasn’t until he learned that her parents were Broncos PSL holders that he noticed: His girlfriend has Broncos jerseys in her closet. And she’s a diehard fan.
Whitley admitted he has a history of attending Broncos games with the Huckaby family, but he also has a history of Panthers fandom.
He got jazzed about the Panthers this season when they started making a presence on the NFL scene. He said he had never seen the Panthers and Broncos as having “a huge rivalry.” Until now.
Tensions are rising in the home the couples share.
“We’ve been trash talking on social media and our friends are picking sides,” Whitley said.
It looks like Whitley needs to step up the trash talk.
Especially since he and Huckaby are hosting a Super Bowl party at their house Sunday. They’re planning to deck the halls with half Panthers decorations, half Broncos decorations. Huckaby will wear a Manning jersey and Whitley will sport a Kerry Collins jersey (so vintage). Naturally, the beer pong will be Panthers vs. Broncos themed.
Their relationship does have a redeeming quality, though. “We always hate the same teams,” Whitley said.
In the same predicament for Super Bowl Sunday? You might want to assess your relationship with this love diagnostic test by Psychology Today.
Photos: Ryan Whitley