Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Notre Dame: A Cautionary Tale

AD Jim Weaver has been solid as a businessman during his tenure with Virginia Tech. He's kept the department in the black, built wonderful new facilities and was on the job when Tech moved to the ACC.

However, Weaver has been deficient at dealing with the common fan. Every week, I see stories posted on TSL Message Boards about fans being harassed for various offenses while tailgating. These offenses range from the mild, such as having a tent set up on asphalt, to the absolutely unforgivable, such as throwing a football prior to a football game.

The Weaver Administration has banned cornhole, footballs and tents on paved areas, probably because big-money donors with Weaver's ear had their car slightly damaged as the pulled up to the stadium 15 minutes before gametime.

The Weaver Administration banned the Stick-It-In cheer, probably because a big-money donor with Weaver's ear was offended by it. Weaver claims the cheer has nothing to do with the team scoring touchdowns. I frankly don't care. It added to my enjoyment and to the enjoyment of most of the fans in attendance at VT games. It's just like any other tradition or superstition. If you think it works, then it works. It's the reason I don't shave when the Sabres are in the playoffs.

The question becomes how much further is Weaver willing to go to control tailgating at Virginia Tech. Is he willing to go as far as Notre Dame?

Irish fans have been brow-beaten by campus police and stadium officials who are adamant to control drinking, standing and having a good time before, during or after games in South Bend.

Any kind of tripping, wobbling, or looking confused is just cause to be considered for a public intox violation before the game. Outside of the student section, standing is close to prohibited during the game. Go through solid Notre Dame blog The Rock Report and you'll find numerous posts on how bad things have gotten at Notre Dame.

We can only hope that this doesn't come to Virginia Tech. We have shown through and through that we are good fans who treat visitors with respect. However, we also like to have a good time before, during and after the game. If that's a problem for Weaver, then he needs to get out of college athletics. College sports are supposed to be fun.

We don't need VT police and VT officials turning into the Notre Dame Gestapo. We respect the moment, the opponent, the game, ourselves and the competition. So it's high time the athletics department and administration respected us.

1 comment:

I Still Stick It In said...

The Stick It In thing is fascinating to me. We'll ban the cheer, likely because someone got in our ear and they give a lot of money, but we trot out the HighTechs (I had to Google them to actually figure out how to spell that) to shake their *ahems*, gyrate and thrust. Not that I'm against ANY of that, but why's it okay for that and not the Stick It In cheer? Are they not the same thing, just in different forms?

Everyone's likely seen the "veteran" alumni doing the Stick It In cheer just as vigorously as the students, I just don't get why the cheer is an issue while the HighTechs are not. Hypocritical, in my book.