LETTER TO THE EDITOR: You can’t force traditions

The QU Chronicle

When I talk about college sports experiences with friends who went to schools much bigger than Quinnipiac, I never have much to add to the conversation.

“Forget not having a football team, we don’t even have a fight song,” is normally the extent of my contribution.

But you know what? That’s OK.

After reading “Quinnipiac spirit to soar with new fight song” in the Sept. 28 issue of the Chronicle and viewing the embedded YouTube video, I felt embarrassed to be a Bobcat.

My point isn’t to disparage the work of Vincent Bond. It takes a lot of courage to attempt something like this, something that could potentially be a part of the fabric of this university and its athletic department for decades. I am certainly not creative enough to write such a thing and I applaud the efforts of Mr. Bond and any other entrant.

My biggest issue was with Mr. Bond citing the University of Michigan as his inspiration. Quinnipiac, on its best day, does not compare with Michigan or any other school of that size. These schools have been around for so long, and Quinnipiac, let alone its teams, is still relatively new on the scene.

You can’t force traditions. Because Quinnipiac is so young, everything it tries to do to compete with the more established schools is inherently contrived. The worst example of this is “The Legend of the Bobcat,” which this song cites. When I went through orientation way back in 2006, there was not one mention of this so-called legend. It was a poor attempt to drum up school spirit. Seriously. A story published on the Quinnipiac website about the opening of the then-TD Banknorth Sports Center describes the legend as “a fantastical story devised by students.”

People won’t attend the games to live legends or sing along to some song that doesn’t mean anything. If people actually attend games more regularly, traditions will start to come together organically.

One of my best memories of my senior year was when the basketball team would run over to the student section to celebrate victories with us. That was a great example of something spontaneous and exciting. The basketball team was so grateful for our support and it wanted to give back to us, and I’m glad to see it was still going on last year as well.

That unbridled enthusiasm cannot compete with anything forced upon us by people who think they know what we like. Not having something doesn’t mean we need it. Let’s work on filling the arena for each game first. That’s a legend we should all live. – Andrew Fletcher, Chronicle Editor-in-Chief, 2009-10