Miami University teams need student support
Not Your Average Joe
Published: Friday, September 20, 2013
Updated: Monday, September 23, 2013 23:09
It’s tough supporting teams that don’t win. Faithful fans suffer year in and year out in every sport imaginable (think Browns and Cubs fans for many of our readers from those respective cities). The term “fair-weather fan” is a common insult in the sports world, and it’s really sad this term can be applied to many of the students here on Miami’s campus.
I’m not rushing to call Miami students bad fans, because that’s simply not true. If you’ve ever been to a hockey game, you’ve seen the energy and passion that those dressed in the red and white can bring. During the 2010-11 season, the football team had its best year since going 13-1 in 2003 with two-time Super Bowl champion Ben Roethlisberger under center. Fans flooded to see the RedHawks win the MAC Championship and GoDaddy.com Bowl in thrilling fashion to finish the season 10-4.
Sadly, the current state of athletic support doesn’t reflect the pride and tradition of Miami fans from yesteryear. With the exception of hockey, attendance is at sporting events has become something of a joke. If you went to any football games last year, you probably noticed all of the empty seats dominating the Yager landscape – which, by the way, is one of the more beautiful stadiums in the country. With a capacity of over 24,000, I’ve only seen it maybe halfway full during my time here at Miami.
The same goes for basketball. Tarps cover the upper echelons of the arena, giving the appearance of an intimate atmosphere when in reality, Miami just can’t get people to come. The floor is lit up for weeknight games just a two minute walk from North Quad, yet even matchups like the one against rival Xavier University hardly draw any RedHawk fans – often, close-by schools bring cheering sections to rival our own.
Don’t even get me started on the lesser-attended sports like softball, tennis or field hockey (which is actually incredibly fun to watch). These sports are lucky to see 100 people in attendance, and deserve much more for all of their hard work. Fraternities and sororities have started adopting teams in a move to help increase attendance, and I think that’s admirable, but it’s just a start.
It comes down to the general student body, and I’m not exempt from scorn. I’ve been to four total football games in my four plus years here. Seriously, four. That’s awful and I want to do better. So sports fans, join with me. If you go to just one game of any sport that you wouldn’t have otherwise, you’re supporting that program and it means a lot to them. These young men and women are busting their tails and dedicating their time for something they believe in, and it means a lot for them to be able to share that with cheering fans. So next time you’re debating whether or not go to a Miami game, take the plunge. Be it football, basketball, soccer or volleyball, the team is glad you’re there.