Where there is a good football team, there is an even better student section. Fans are the core of success, honor, and glory for any football team. Their support is incentive for explosive hits, long bombs, and a rampant running game. A spectacular student section requires three things.: Class, organization, and energy. It is the job as students to hold these three truths to be self-evident; to cheer for our football team at their highest and lowest points while showing respect to the school, and the community.
Staying classy is more than wearing a suit on a casual Friday; it is about treating others right, setting a good example, and being a leader. Great student sections hold themselves to the same standards. Cheering should be loud, boastful, and even a little out of control, but not demeaning and inappropriate. Students represent the image of this school and the great people of Saline. Part of their job is to be the leaders off the field, and to set a good example for the younger kids on how to cheer for Saline. In the end it is just a game, nothing for someone to get hurt or arrested over. So be cool with the visiting fans. The U of M has their own policy on the matter in their “A Guide to the Student Section” which reads, “You can support your team without giving its fans a bad reputation. This also means that outside the student section (and outside the stadium)…” A student section with class means even more for a program if it is well organized.
Having a large team, good teamwork, and proper execution can spell death for an opposing team. A student section organized in such a way gives our team an instant advantage. Strong student sections seem to have uncountable numbers, all paying attention to the game. They have chants that get under the skin and into the head of some of the toughest players. Not only are their cheers effective, they are unified into a single voice, echoing across the turf and into the visiting student section. Organization means having a “go to” cheer for certain situations. For instance, if it is 3rd and 3, the leaders of the student section should communicate to row leaders to tell the masses that they will cheering “D-Fense” so there are more than a couple dozen individuals trying to cheer for the whole section. Cheering is a game of teamwork, loud communication, and unified, rowdy behavior.
The most important characteristic of a good student section is energy. Students must be loud often, and in the right situations. Just as the kickoff is about to start, fans should see nothing less than a wave of students, decked out in gold and blue, jumping and screaming. Participation in the student section is mandatory. To earn a spot among peers, students must sacrifice their voice to support the team. Great chants entice great participation in student sections. Utah State’s “I Believe That We Will Win” chant and Wisconsin’s “Jump Around” montage are awesome ways to increase participation in quiet sections. When energy is low, the leaders of the section must mix up the cheers and actions to revitalize the tired. Energy is such a crucial part to any student section, and should be a number one priority.
At Saline, our student section is one of the best, if not the best in the SEC. We have many students and community members excited about the job we are doing. Senior Kelly Richart made the comment, “…that our student section this year has been a great success and each game has been getting better and better. Everyone is having a great time and participating in our themes and “color outs” which is awesome” Also, Ms. Restrick, a coach and administrator at Saline High School remarked, “It seems that there is a mutual respect between the students, administrators, players and coaches for creating a fun and safe environment. Because of this relationship, SHS football games have remained a great place to spend Friday nights” Our student section is a great place for anyone who participates in cheering on our Hornets. We still have lots of work to do in creating the best section we can, applying the ideals of class, organization, and energy will result in dominating more opponents, becoming a better student section, and making more memories.