Students’ spirit brings energy, intimidates opponents

Brian Kimmes

Brian Kimmes

Attending the WNIT basketball game is exciting. Sitting, or standing, in the stands with fellow students is an amazing experience. Cheering loudly, going nuts and making a fool of yourself are essential to creating an amazing atmosphere. I have a few tips to assist in your cheering to make the next contest an event, not a mere game.

First, make sure to wear yellow. Yellow t-shirts stand out better, and a sea of yellow is more intimidating.

Face painting is another good way to show school spirit and to intimidate the other team. As much as I admire the body painters, as a heterosexual male, I cannot encourage it.

The second thing to do is to cheer as loud as you can for as long as you can. It is incredibly important to cheer loud for the Jacks. The players love to hear the noise. It fires them up.

“It’s the cheering, and the yelling, and the waving of the balloons. Everything they (the student fans) do makes an impact and gets us fired up and keeps the other crowd fired up as well,” junior center Courtney Grimsrud said.

Keep the noise pedal to the metal all the time. At no time do the girls want you to be quiet. Grimsrud said at times it is hard to hear on the floor, but “it’s a good problem to have.”

“I’d rather have the crowd be that loud than be quiet,” she said.

Although you should be cheering at all times, junior guard Andrea Verdegan said the crowd should cheer after a big play and when the team is on defense, especially when the team is about to make a big stop. When the Jacks are on defense is the most important time to cheer and when the fans can make the biggest difference.

“It’s definitely exciting when all the crowd is up on their feet cheering for us on the defensive possession,” freshman guard Alison Anderson said. “It just makes it that much more energizing to want to get the stop and play harder.”

Anderson said she thinks the crowd gets the most fired up when the students do the “Cameron Crazies” cheer from Duke University – jumping up and down while yelling out in a monotone fashion.

Crowd noise can help sustain the Jacks’ energy, or raise their energy when they need it the most.

“Crowd-cheering is awesome, especially in the last parts of the game, or last parts of the half, when your legs just feel like they can’t go anymore, the crowd … (gets) you to push much harder,” freshman center Laura Nielsen said.

The third thing to do is follow the SDSU basketball traditions. When a Jackrabbit is at the free-throw line, fans should raise their arms above their heads and wiggle their fingers, bringing them down upon the made free throw. When the opposing team is at the free-throw line, fans should make as much noise as possible. The fans beyond the free-throw line should wave their balloons feverishly in an attempt to distract the opponent.

Another tradition is to stand during the school song. I know most of you probably want to sit down during the timeouts, but standing for the school song is a must.

Fourth, engage in actual cheers. Yelling, screaming and being loud are good, but doing actual cheers is great. My favorite cheer is one that is seldom used. It is the “season’s over” chant. The only time you can use it is during the postseason. When the Jacks are about to win, let the other team know we will advance and they will not.

Another essential chant is “air ball” when a player shoots an air ball. But the key to this chant is dedication. You must remember who shot the air ball, and then chant “air ball” every time she touches the ball until she makes a basket.

Finally, the last cheer I recommend is when an opposing player fouls out. As she walks to the bench, chant “left, right, left, right” until she reaches the bench and sits down.

The Jackrabbits have earned the right to play at home during the postseason. It would be a shame to waste their home-court advantage. To the 6,000 anticipated fans on March 22, consider yourselves lucky. You are privileged enough to be the women’s sixth player at the game.

Cheer for the Jackrabbits with pride, because not everybody in the arena will be able to yell for the yellow and blue. We media people cannot actively cheer while covering the game, so I will be forced to mute my ‘Rabbit roars. I ask you all to cheer in my stead.

#1.883617:4261369552.jpg:fansfreethrow.jn.jpg:As per SDSU tradition, Jacks fans hold up their hands for a Jackrabbit free throw in SDSU’s second-round victory.:#1.883398:2207854054.jpg:ball_talk.jpg:Brian Kimmes, Ball Talk: