49ers fans attend training camp in Santa Clara on August 9, 2010.

The 49er Faithful often refers to fans of the San Francisco 49ers. There are numerous names in conjunction with the 49ers fanbase such as The Niner Gang or the Niner Empire in regards to their success during the 1980s and early 1990s.[1][2] Due to the large success experienced by the team in winning five Super Bowl titles in the 1980s and 1990s, the 49ers fanbase extends across the state of California, even into parts of southern Oregon and Northwestern Nevada.[3][4][5]

Fan Support

In response to the team's return to playoff contention during the 2019 Season, rapper E-40 popularized a crowd call, with fans chanting "Bang! Bang! Niner Gang!", the chant is still currently used among fans and at most 49er home games.[6][7] The fanbase has been known to attempt large takeovers of numerous away games ranging from division rivals Arizona Cardinals, Los Angeles Rams, and the Seattle Seahawks[8][9][10] to long-time playoff rivals such as the Dallas Cowboys and New York Giants.[11] Fans have also been known to overtake numerous road games of the team's opponents at random, such as the Miami Dolphins, Philadelphia Eagles, Carolina Panthers, and more.[12][13][14][15][16][17]

Controversy

Despite the widespread support of fans, there have been numerous incidents of obnoxious conduct and fan fights recorded during their attempted takeovers, leading to some instances of opposing teams barring ticket sales in Northern California on several occasions.[18][19]

The away destination of 49ers fans that has garnered the most controversy is SoFi Stadium, the home of the rival Los Angeles Rams. Many of the 49er fans that attend Rams game are locals of the Los Angeles area who also root for other LA based teams, though some are actual Bay Area residents visiting. Regardless, both groups often dub the stadium "Levi's South" during these games because of the large amount of red jerseys that fill the stands. The problem has even gotten to the point where the silent count has to be used at home by the Rams. This phenomenon has been attributed to the lack of an NFL team in the city from 1994 to 2016, LA's large transplant population, the 49ers success during the 1980s and 1990s, apathy and civic disinterest in attending NFL games compared to other activities, and the fact that Rams home games against the 49ers are often the most expensive in the regular season.[20][21][22]

References

  1. ^ "The Niner Empire Organization: Bringing 49er fans together from around the globe".
  2. ^ "49ers: Faithful Appreciation Week".
  3. ^ "Portland 49er Faithful: OFFICIAL BOOSTER OF THE SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS".
  4. ^ "49ers Faithful Fan Chapters".
  5. ^ "For 49er Fans, earning the title of Faithful isn't easy".
  6. ^ "E-40 - Niner Gang (Lyrics)".
  7. ^ "E40's official Niner Gang song drops before Rams game". 18 December 2019.
  8. ^ "49ers Invasions are real and coming to an NFL stadium near you". 22 November 2022.
  9. ^ "Vivid Seats: 49ers fans set for another SoFi Stadium takeover". 29 October 2022.
  10. ^ "49ers Fans Take Over Seattle Street Before NFC Championship Game". Bleacher Report.
  11. ^ "Sea of red? 49ers fans hoping to invade AT&T Stadium for Sunday's playoff showdown". 11 January 2022.
  12. ^ "49ers Faithful Flock to Hard Rock Stadium".
  13. ^ "Faithful 49er fans travel to Philadelphia Ahead of NFC Championship".
  14. ^ "49ers fans taking over Bank of America Stadium in Week 5". 9 October 2022.
  15. ^ "Traveling 49ers Faithful hope to turn Pittsburgh into sea of red for season opener".
  16. ^ "49ers Invasion Presented by Zenni Eyewear in Jacksonville".
  17. ^ "49ers Superfan 'Eye of the Niner' Up for NFL Fan of the Year".
  18. ^ "Seahawks block title game ticket sales to California". NFL.com.
  19. ^ "Rams alter Ticket policy to block 49ers fans". USA Today.
  20. ^ https://www.sfgate.com/49ers-column/article/angeleno-discusses-49ers-rams-enthusiasm-gap-16809477.php
  21. ^ https://www.sfgate.com/49ers/article/49ers-fans-takeover-sofi-stadium-los-angeles-rams-18372414.php
  22. ^ https://www.latimes.com/sports/rams/story/2022-01-25/rams-fans-49ers-sofi-stadium-nfc-championship-nfl-playoffs