Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

FIEGE: Football Atmosphere Needs Boost

Georgetown football came into the 2014-2015 season bearing the dubious distinction of having dropped eight of their last nine games a season prior, with hardly any of those losses being close.

But after a total overhaul of the coaching staff and the recruitment of 32 freshmen to the team, the Hoyas appear to be turning over a new leaf. Following an 0-2 start that was to be expected from the implementation of a new system with so many fresh faces, they stunned many with their 27-7 win at Marist, and followed it with at 17-3 home win over Brown.

Although Brown itself was only ranked sixth in the Ivy League preseason coaches’ poll, it served as a crucial win. Not only was it Georgetown’s first win against an Ivy since its win against Cornell in October 2003, but it also has given the team a rare two-game winning streak.

And yet, the victory was markedly hollow. Was it because the cheerleaders had to improvise and ad-lib for their “Touchdown!” routines? Or, was it because the stands of creatively named MultiSport Facility came nowhere near the already modest 2013 Patriot League average of 5,665 attendees?

Georgetown students have been notoriously callous toward their football-playing peers, as a glance at Twitter or Yik Yak on any given Saturday during the season will show you. (Seriously guys, “We have a football team?” is getting old).

A performer is nothing without an audience. As our Hoyas achieve new heights on the gridiron, it is imperative that the Hoyas in the stands step up their own game.

How do we go about getting more enthusiastic bodies in the stands? Why, with the only thing more American than the game of football: the football tailgate.

For those who don’t know, tailgating is the tradition of showing up hours in advance of kick-off, regardless of the weather, ready to binge on comfort food and beverages of your choice, all in the name of school spirit.

In the Southeastern Conference, it has been perfected to a science and revered as religion. You didn’t think those schools pulled an average attendance rate of 75,000 people per game just because they sport NFL-level talent, did you? While every school features the classic hallmarks of ribs and burgers, each one has its own traditions that make them a little unique.

Ole Miss features the Walk of Champions before every game, parading the team through the crowds and into the stadium. Vanderbilt encourages its fans to dress with southern class in their Sunday finest. LSU makes a point to highlight their Creole spirit by making cajun food as far as the eye can see. While we will not be playing SEC-caliber opponents, we can still learn a thing from their pregame spirit.

First and foremost, school spirit cannot just be the product of student groups such as Hoya Blue and Hoya Hooligans: It has to be embraced by the administration. The university should demarcate specific areas where pregame events can be set up. Areas such as Harbin Plaza, Red Square and Copley and Healy lawns can play host to students and vendors alike.

Obtaining the services of food trucks and tents, like the farmers market, alongside students and their individual grills would create a lively atmosphere and compensate for the campus’s lack of above-ground parking. Furthermore, more can be done to stir up publicity for home games. Email blasts, residence hall posters and pro-Georgetown decorations being put up all in the week building up to the game would better hype the games.

I would suggest we make a strength out of an apparent weakness — because of our smaller size, we have the ability to make the audience experience more interactive. By having themed events run alongside the game and having a student commentator with a good sense of humor getting the crowd involved, we could make Georgetown football an experience people look forward to.

Georgetown football is undergoing a change we ought to embrace, not ignore. As our Hoyas continue through their season, it is important that we elevate our level of support as well. Apathy is not what got us to Georgetown, and it is not the key to success here either.

Our school spirit groups should use this an opportunity to demand more support from the administration, while we as students should do our best to support those who represent our school so vividly. Mark your calendars for when Harvard comes to the Hilltop on Oct. 4 at 12 p.m.

Max Fiege is a freshman in the School of Foreign Service. Out Of Our League appears every other Friday.

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Hoya

Your donation will support the student journalists of Georgetown University. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Hoya

Comments (0)

All The Hoya Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *