Your freshman year is filled with a whole lot of things that are new to you: new friends, new room, new classes and a new sports team to root for. So for those of you who are new to college football, here are some tips on how to be a good fan at your school’s games.
Learn the cheers
When you are at your school’s games, you should learn how to do the cheers and chants. Unless you’ve been rooting for the team since you were a kid or you actually paid attention at your freshman orientation, you probably won’t know every cheer at the first game.
Just watch what the people around you are doing and try to clap in rhythm. If you go to a big school, the first game is probably against Welosebyfifty State, so you’ll probably have mastered the cheers by the end of the first quarter.
Learn your quarterback’s name
When you root for a team, it’s a pretty good idea to know the names of the players. Start out with learning your quarterback’s name. The quarterback is generally the most well-known player, so even the person who is most oblivious to sports would know it.
Knowing at least one player’s name is a good way to hold a conversation with people you just met the week before. In addition to the standard get-to-know-you stuff you usually talk about, you can say something like, “Boy, [Quarterback's name] had a great game this week” because people bond over sports.
Don’t show up drunk to the games
Story time! The first game I went to my freshman year, a guy in the next section over showed up drunk to the game. How could I tell he was drunk, you ask? Well the projectile vomit was a pretty good indication. Want to know how quickly a section of people can clear out? Pretty quick if there is vomit involved. You may think you are cool that you that you decided to pre-game and got wasted, but the cute girl you threw up on probably doesn’t share the same opinion. Show up sober and don’t throw up on anyone.
Leave the commentary to the announcers
Unless you are going to be calling the games for your school’s radio station, you don’t need to give the play-by-play — everyone around you is watching the same game. You may have exceptional knowledge of the sport, but there is no need to go on a huge rant about the read-option to the people around you, because most likely, they don’t care. If you’re in the stands and hear something like that, just ignore it.
Don’t steal people’s seats
This should go without saying, but it does happen; please don’t steal someone else’s seat. Seats at my school are general admission and seating goes like this: You arrive to your seat on a bench, when the game starts you stand up and stand on the bench in front of you. Once in awhile, people show up a little late and try to sneak in behind you standing between the benches. This gets awkward when you try to sit down during breaks. Just politely ask them to move and they most likely will.
If all else fails, just try to have a good time at the games. Even if you don’t know every player on the team, getting outside and enjoying the game with your friends is a lot more fun than staying cooped up in your dorm.
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