Almost every weekend in the winter, I find myself heading off to the Recreation Center, boarding a shuttle and heading up to the TD Banknorth Sports Center to take in a Quinnipiac athletic event. I’m not here to talk about the sporting events, rather I’d like to gripe (and for you to read) about my problems with the fans and the environment at these games.
It all starts at the beginning, which seems pretty redundant. “The Star Spangled Banner,” our national anthem, gets butchered every time I hear it. You would think I’m talking about the singers, but I’m not. The fans ruin this song each and every time.
When the line “Over the land of the free” ends, the crowd has the dim-witted idea that the song is somehow over. A raucous cheer emanates, mainly from the student section, and the last line of the song is lost to yelling and screaming by inebriated and/or ignorant students. I’m all for QU pride, cheering and screaming, but can’t it wait another five seconds until the last line is sung?
The next problem is after exploding into cheers moments too soon, the crowd then mistakes Quinnipiac hockey for a funeral for the entirety of the game. Save for a few die-hard fans and drunk students, the crowd sits and watches as if the game going on is somehow painful to watch (though sometimes it is). Stand up! Clap! Yell at the refs! Do something other than sit and chat about your classes and where you plan on going once you get back to campus.
If you go to the game, go to watch, go to cheer, but please don’t go to socialize. If I see one more group of people take MySpace-esque photos of themselves making that horrendous kissy face or throwing up some misconstrued peace sign, I don’t know what I’ll do. Pay attention to the game or at least pretend to care what goes on.
My first two years at QU I can remember great fans and “Crazy Bobcats.” Now all I see is sitting and talking with no actual idea what is going on in the game.
Mind you, this is if the stands are even full to begin with.
We, as students, are lucky enough to have a spectacular arena to enjoy the games in, but most of the time the stands are barely 75 percent full at the most, and that’s for men’s ice hockey. Basketball, both men’s and women’s, struggle to get 100 students in the stands for a game. Most of the time, the workers, pep band, and assorted cheerleaders and dance teams outnumber the fans that are there to take it all in. (Women’s ice hockey is a completely different story.)
I don’t have a spotless attendance record, but I try to make it out to as many games as possible. With over 5,000 undergrads, one would think that QU would be able to pack three measly sections of a hockey arena that holds 3,386 or the basketball side that has a capacity of 3,570.
Leaving the arena isn’t free of frustration either. Do people know how to board a bus? If you’re first on board, go to the back! It makes it so much easier for everyone else to get on. We’re all cold while waiting for the buses and boarding a few seconds sooner may be the best thing for everyone. And this is after a majority of the fans left with plenty of time still left in the game.
I’m a believer of staying to the bitter end of a game, no matter if the team I’m rooting for is up by 20 or down by 50. Here though, if the remaining fans are ever lucky enough to celebrate a win, it’s with only half of the original crowd. Most of the students get bored with Division 1 caliber athletic play, and hit the exits way too early.
I enjoy attending games, but there are a few bumps in the road, ones that can easily be rectified with a little common sense and a tiny bit of effort.