These depressing non conference games had me thinking back to the good old days when the Coliseum atmosphere wasn’t similar to a funeral. I think the new renovations look great and it is time to reignite some life into the old barn. So here is a little run down of things that I would like to bring back, get rid of, and add to the Coliseum to make it great again.
Things that need to be brought back:
Student section floor to ceiling. Remember when we used to have a sea of gold? And then the stupid president of the Mountaineer Maniacs got with the Athletic Department and cut the heart out of the student section, and shoved the upper students into a corner? Yeah, what a great idea. Now it looks like shit for every game, big or small. I understand for lesser games, the student section never filled up, but for big games (Pitt and such) nobody can argue about how majestic the sea of gold from floor to ceiling was. There were a lot of games that were just ridiculous atmospheres.
Which leads to…
An actual student section. When is the last time we have had an actual student section that can help dictate the outcome of the game? Definitely not in the Big 12. That is a fact. It has been so long ago that the students created a crazy environment that I can’t even remember. Maybe Louisville? Georgetown? Pitt? I honestly don’t know. They are non existent. Hey students, we are good, our coach is awesome, and you can make a difference. Show up damn it.
Students being able to just swipe their ID card to get in. Making them print out tickets weeks in advance is so dumb. It prevents kids from showing up because it is such a hassle to have to request a ticket, claim the ticket, load it on the computer, print it out, fold it up, take it with you, get it scanned. And we all know how kids are these days. Lazy as possible. Plus some people get stuck with an “Upper” ticket while their friends have “Lower” tickets. So they can’t even sit together. So stupid. Get rid of this immediately. Swipe the card. Find a seat. End of story.
The old responses to the visiting team introductions. So What?! Who Cares?! Big Deal! Suck Eggs! Go Home! These were great. Then the students didn’t even try to pass them down. Then we resorted to holding up signs so the students didn’t even have to think. And now they turn their backs and read newspapers like we are a Single-A high school student section. It is so pathetic and lame.
Rifle sound level meter behind the basket. Some people probably don’t remember this but in the A-10 days, that rifle meter was above the stands behind the basket and would reflect how loud it was in the building. And loud it was. Bring that back 1000%.
Papa Johns Pizza Final Second Shootout where FIVE kids get to dribble the length of the floor for ONE HUNDRED DOLLARS…
How did it change to three kids getting to try it for a coupon for like free breadsticks or something. How cheap can we, or perhaps Papa Johns, possibly be? It’s five kids. 5 seconds each. $100. “Twenty. Forty. Sixty. Eighty. ONNNNNNNNEEEEE HUNDRED DOLLARRRRRS.” Everybody knows it.
The Blimp that flew around at halftime and dropped coupon cards. Not really important but still entertaining to watch. Give me coupons!
YMCA guy that rips his shirt off. Not the wannabe fat pep band guy who stayed clothed. I want a giant, sweaty fat guy humping the air with reckless abandon before ripping his booze smelling shirt off and firing it into the crowd. Those that remember the REAL guy also remember the frequent 10-0 runs that came out of those time outs. Come on fat guys! Step up!
The T-shirt sling. We don’t need t-shirt cannons or the fairy armed male cheerleaders throwing the $1 t-shirts into the stands. We need the Mountaineer slinging those EZ To Use Big Book trash shirts 200mph at the top row of what used to be section 66 (Now section 200 something).
Pretty much goes without saying, but classic halftime entertainment:
River Valley Skippers
Coca Cola High Flyers
Obviously Red Panda
…and absolutely no youth basketball except for Stepping Stones guys and girls. Everybody loves that and for good reason. Those people are awesome. Especially the one kid that plays to the crowd and they can never get him off the court. Love that guy.
Things that need to go away:
PA Announcer Bill Nevin saying “OK Mountaineers fans, get on your feet and clap those hands!”
Dear God, is this serious? Who could have possibly come up with this and thought….YES SIRRRR! I’VE GOT IT! I KNOW EXACTLY HOW TO GET THIS PLACE ROCKING!
That might be the most pathetic, embarrassing thing that I have ever witnessed at a WVU sporting event. Do we really need someone to tell us to get up and “clap those hands”? Laughably bad.
And don’t get me wrong, I do like Bill Nevin in some capacities and I hope that it wasn’t his idea to start saying that (similar to “Join in the Let’s Go Mountaineers cheer when the band inverts the state formation” which is also sooooo stupid). I think Bill does a great job with the band introduction and with most of the basketball PA announcing. His football play calls leave a lot to be desired though and he would be a distant third on the depth chart behind Doc Stevens and Travis Jones. We need overwhelming presence and enthusiasm and Bill’s voice just doesn’t provide it.
The Coliseum Re-seating. I got screwed by this. Matt Borman straight up lied to my family during this process and wanted $6500 per seat when the actual number should have been $450. We obviously bailed and I haven’t spent more than $200 total on tickets since (so I guess thanks Matt Borman?) and I go to every game. The re-seating pissed off a ton of other people too and it shows. So now we have the entire lower bowl of seats owned by companies which means those seats remain empty for half the games. Great idea!
The “I Believe That We Will Win” Chant. Can we do anything that is original? This is used by Utah State and soccer. It isn’t ours. Don’t use it. Ever.
Things that need to be added:
Booing the Kroger Shopping Cart Shootout girl relentlessly every time she misses a basket. Nobody gets more insanely mad at this promotion than I do. I hate it. The concept is great. Kroger is basically donating $100 to a college girl for doing a simple task. The only problem is…THEY NEVER WIN. These girls cant underhand toss a basketball into a shopping cart that is located 5 feet away from them. It is beyond pathetic. So I propose that we boo these competitors incessantly until they cry. I want all of the tears. Why can’t we do this?
A Turnover Tracker on one of the million scoreboards that we have. I can’t even believe that I am putting this in the “things that we need” portion of this article. We just installed like 20 new video boards. How are we not using at least one of them to track turnovers the entire game? Why do I have such great ideas? I don’t know. I just don’t know.
Good OOC home games. Less Northern Kentucky/VMI/Mississippi Valley State/Mount St. Marys/Radford/New Hampshire/Manhattan. Like way less. And more Louisville/Kentucky/Maryland/Georgetown/Villanova/Syracuse/Ohio State/Cincinnati/and obviously that team 70 miles north (next year I know).
Listen, I get that we can’t play a Kentucky every game in the non conference. But we have ZERO non conference home games that are worth anything. And I don’t consider Texas A&M non conference since they are directly in the middle of the Big 12 schedule. The Virginia addition was nice. The Virginia Tech subtraction was unfortunate. But why can’t we play 3 or 4 legit opponents early in the season? Duke does it. Kansas does it. Kentucky does it. Michigan State does it. Why can’t we. Losses don’t hurt. And your team gets much needed adversity they can use at the end of the year.
All you have to do is look at the Women’s team. They play the worst OOC schedule year in and year out and lay eggs in the postseason year in and year out. Those wins against Longwood and Fairleigh Dickinson don’t help at all when you have to play actual competition in the NCAA tournament. Hopefully the Men’s team doesn’t follow that trend. Play somebody.
I am sure I, along with you, the faithful reader, will think of a ton more things that can be added to this list so give me your ideas and lets really Make The Coliseum Great Again.