In finishing his opinion piece about the “F-Bomb” chant at the recent K-State-KU basket-ball game, Jon Ungerer wrote, “I’m proud of my university AND its students and I hope this nonstory can just stop now.” I’m not aware of the buzz it took on with the national media, but to some of us locals, the crude chant is anything but a nonstory.
Unlike Mr. Ungerer, I agreed with Ned Seaton’s opinion that it’s time for our students to be more creative in supporting our teams in Bramlage. I have attended hundreds of college basketball and football games as an undergrad, graduate student and faculty member over the last 35 years, at three major universities. I have seen the good, the bad and the ugly with individual fans, but never participated in a chant that included the F-bomb, even as a college student. And it wasn’t because we didn’t lose at my schools; we lost plenty.
I must admit, I’m not the best behaved fan in front of my own TV, but when attending events in public, I try to restrain myself. I agree with Mr. Ungerer’s assessment that K-State fans overall are good sports and that folks like visiting our town and stadiums.
But a few loud and vulgar apples can ruin the whole bunch, especially if you’re sitting by a couple of those bad apples. I took my wife to the KU basketball game a few years ago (on Valentine’s Day), and we had excellent seats right down on the floor. However, several students in the section right behind us were so vulgar yelling at the KU players that it ruined the entire experience for my wife. We left early and she has little desire to go back.
Being in a public arena does not give one (or several) fans the right to yell whatever they want. I mean, how creative is it to come up with a two-word chant that includes the “F-bomb”? Surely we can do better than that.
Using an excuse of frustration of losing so many games to your rival school, as Mr. Ungerer offers, is not good enough. K-State has won big games on national TV in the past, and will win (and lose) many more. If K-State fans’ behavior becomes a national story, well, it does because it happens.
We’ve been blessed with one of the classiest football coaches in the country for 20-plus years. I believe we also have a classy basketball coach. Do you think either Coach Snyder or Coach Weber are proud of our student body for chanting the “F-bomb” to our opponents?
Yes, there are coaches at other major universities whose own sideline behavior might encourage the fans to act poorly, but not at K-State. I am very proud of being a K-Stater.
At the end of that recent KU game, ESPN’s Holly Rowe was interviewing Thomas Gipson while they both stood on the scorer’s table surrounded by cele-brating students. As Holly finished the interview, you could hear Thomas ask Holly, “Do you need some help?” Now, that was class and something to be proud of, just like the effort all our players gave during that game.
As Mr. Ungerer noted, these games do exist because of student-athletes and the student body. I just don’t think it’s too much too ask that our fans show the same class as our players and coaches. Go CATS!