It's official — for the first time in more than 30 years, the Cincinnati Bengals are on their way to the Super Bowl. After overcoming an 18-point deficit in the second half of the AFC Championship, rookie kicker Evan McPherson secured the Bengals a spot in the biggest game of the year with a game-winning field goal in overtime.
In typical Bengals-fan fashion, they cried out the "Who Dey!" chant from the stands and proceeded to spread the expression all over social media.
We figure you might be confused right now, so we're here to help! Keep reading to discover why Bengals fans say "Who Dey" and what it means to the fanbase.
Why do Cincinnati Bengals fans say 'Who Dey'?
Like any other sports fanbase, the Bengals fanatics, dubbed "Who Dey Nation," say the catchphrase to rile up opponents and support their team. By chanting "Who Dey" in the stands, the team will feel more motivated than ever to perform their very best.
"Who Dey" also represents the entire city of Cincinnati — it's a victory mantra that brings thousands together and gives Bengals fans a sense of community and unity.
With the Bengals heading to the 56th annual Super Bowl, we figure it's time you start brushing up on your "Who Dey" chant — we can't have anyone messing it up! So, if you're willing to learn the entire chant before the big game, here it is:
"Who dey, who dey, who dey think gonna beat dem Bengals?” "Nobody!"
When did "Who Dey" originate?
Per Fox 19 News, "Who Dey" can be traced back to the Bengals' first time at the Super Bowl against the San Francisco 49ers in January 1982.
And while some believe the chant is a direct variation of the "Who Dat" chant from the New Orleans Saints, former Bengals player Dave Lapham — who played for the team from 1974 to 1983 — isn't so sure about a connection between the two chants.
"A lot of people are taking credit for the origin of ['Who Dey?'], but I just remember that, you know, in the stands, I remember hearing people chanting 'Who Dey?'" he recalled to the outlet. "I don’t know what the origin is, but man, it caught on like wildfire."
The outlet also points out that some locals say "Who Dey?" came about from a "call-and-response" between Hudepohl beer salesmen and spectators, as the salesmen called out "Hudy!" while walking the stands.
Former Q102 disc jockey Chris O'Brien also spoke with the outlet regarding the "Who Dey" chant, saying it's "captured the heart of the city" and became the most enthusiastic mantra for the team.
"It kind of took off from there, and everybody picked up on it, the teams and fans alike, and made a big thing out of it," Chris stated.
Fox 19 News also chatted with WLW host Lance McAlister, who added, "'Who Dey?' came with such a sense of pride in the Super Bowl days. You said that with your chest puffed out."
Oh, Who Dey Nation is sure to bring back this type of energy for Super Bowl LVI — each fan, whether physically at the game or watching from home, is going to do all they can to support their team and bring home the title.