FanPost

Open Plea to the Student Section and Attending Fans (Basketball)

The time has come for things to change. Just because we have done something for a long time doesn't make it good. Of all people, college students should know this best. And a lot of our previous "traditions" are frankly... stupid.

We have an opportunity to start fresh. As we enter the ACC, now is the time to show a new face of Syracuse. A face that understands basketball. Not only can we make Syracuse seem like a smarter fan base, but we can also help our boys win along the way.

The Tradition:

Stand and Clap

Why it needs to change:

It's a great effort to show our interest and support at the beginning of the half. However it places too much pressure and effort on our own team's shoulders. Not only do the players feel like they need to score in order to keep them in the game, they feel like they need to score to let the fans sit down. When they hit the first TV timeout, while the players should be intently listening to Boeheim's sage advice, they are instead thinking about the fact that everyone is still standing. Second TV timeout, it gets worse. Finally, when Syracuse puts home that first bucket, instead of a cheer of happiness, they hear a sigh of relief. It's just not the right feeling for our players.

How to change it:

I saw a very interesting idea during Mike Water's Q&A this afternoon. We should still stand and clap to start the game. However, we shouldn't sit down until the OPPOSING team scores their first FG. This way, the pressure is put on the other team, and the longer we go clapping, the louder and more excited we get. It's no longer an exercise in standing, but instead an intimidating taunt from 30,000 opponents. Instead of waiting for our offense to produce, we are standing behind our legendary 2-3 defense. It just makes sense.

The Tradition:

"And you still suck... balls!"

Why it needs to change:

It's stupid. It's juvenile. To some fans, it's obscene. To me, it just doesn't make sense. The only word that you hear on TV is "Balls". It doesn't stop the other team from making free throws. There's just no good reason to keep doing it.

How to change it:

I wouldn't mind giving the student section some ideas to play with. Colorado's students do a drumroll followed by the wave. Some other student sections yell mean things at the players to get in their head. Some students just go crazy. You could always A'Cappella a pop song solo, which seemed to work against UNC...

If you need to yell something AFTER the free throw, try something else. Hand out a cheat sheet with absurd comments to yell. "Ball Don't Lie!". "Championships and Horse!". "AFLAC!". "YATZEE!". "I DON'T KNOW WHAT WE'RE YELLING ABOUT!!". Take your pick.

The Tradition:

Airball... Airball...

Why it needs to change:

Let's be clear. I don't mean chanting immediately after an airball. Go for it. That's a good one. Let him hear it.

I mean chanting everytime the airballer touches the ball for the ENTIRE GAME. Stop doing that. The more our players hear "airball", the more they will think "airball?". And it only lights a fire under the opposing player. Never has the player put up multiple airballs after that. They've only hit three pointers to silence everyone and make us seem foolish.

How to change it:

I want to encourage a lot more "Random Yells". Specifically, one student, yelling something really loudly, during a moment of silence. The players hear that a lot more than crowd murmor. Crowd noise is easy to drain out. One person yelling directly at you is harder to unhear. "Basket's this way!". "Stick to Moonshine!". "Do you want to phone a felon?". Just make the opponent stop thinking about basketball for a second. It works.

The Tradition:

5...4...3...2...1

Why it needs to change:

This one, it's not what to say, it's when to say it. Syracuse's defense is notoriously good at forcing shot clock violations. That's like our specialty. So that's something you want to help. Right now, the students begin their countdown with 7-8 seconds on the clock, hoping to force the opponent into flinging a shot before they are ready. This hurts the Orange by avoiding the shot clock violation, allowing the opponent to get a shot off (See Villanova, sometimes they go in), and by offering up a rebound. The zone defense does not allow optimal rebounding position, so we are likely helping the opponent get another possession.

How to change it:

Simple. Begin the countdown at 3 seconds. This will cause the opponent to hold the ball until past the buzzer. Mich St students did it flawlessly during crunch time. If we did this once per game, that's a huge swing. The first time we do this, especially after counting down from 8, the opponents will be fooled badly.

Cheat Sheet - North Carolina

Here are some things to yell at North Carolina:

  • Fats Thomas
  • We Want PJ
  • Belmont
  • UAB
  • Oh and Three
  • Let's Go Duke!
  • (When they Travel) "Fun-da-mentals" Clap Clap Clap-Clap-Clap
  • Hey Roy! Remember '03?

The moment is upon us. It is up to you, the students, to make this happen. As goes the student section, so goes the rest of the fans. I know how passionate and interested our fans our, so the logical next step is to update our antics to better reflect that.

We have the best fans. We have the biggest attendance. We have the best team. Let's go out there and prove it.

Let's! Go! S! U!

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