Beware: they roam our campus.
You will not see them at any home football game because, let’s face it, everyone goes there. Who wouldn’t? And yet, we have other teams that never (well, hardly ever) see us at their games… unless they are winning.
Four weeks ago, I went to my first home game for the women’s soccer team. As I walked toward the bleachers, I heard people banging on pots and pans and I felt the adrenaline rush through my limbs. I was sure all the ruckus was coming from our side—our army.
However, I was embarrassed to learn that not only were we not the ones making the noise, but we were not cheering on our team at all. There were people in the stands, but no one said a word. How do you go to a soccer game and not say anything? And there I was, sitting with a muted audience, watching our women’s team get hammered by Willamette.
Why go to a game if you are not going to vocalize your support? Isn’t this behavior fair-weathered also? If the women were up by 4 goals, the GFU crowd would have been going nuts.
So how do you spot these fair-weather fans? First, be on the lookout for someone who asks you about the team only when they are winning. Second, look out for someone who stays for the first half of the game and then disappears when the team is down by three goals. Third, listen to the silence that erupts from the complacent crowd. And finally, keep an ear out for individuals who profess their love of the Dallas Cowboys; those fickle fans blame players’ girlfriends for their losses.
I am not the only one who notices how fickle the support for GFU teams are. Football is a different beast, I know this. But even football attendance fluctuates on the probability of a win.
What is the point of supporting a team when you walk away at the first sight of a rut?
Imagine what would happen if we were to all show up to each game and stay. There is something transformative about a loud crowd; it not only affects the players but affects the memory of the game.
GFU encourages us to Be Known. So let’s rid ourselves of our fair weather tendencies and become a wall of sound and support for each of our sports teams. Let’s take time out of our week to celebrate the hard work of our athletes on campus. Let’s make sure to shift focus from the “W” to the way the game is played.