Last year at my school, we did not have a good football team. They were barely over .500 and did not make the playoffs. This year is a completely different story. Our team is 7-1 and having one of the best seasons in school history. Part of the reason this makes our school excited is because we have very dedicated fans. Before each game there is a tailgate in the parking lot two to three hours before the game starts. It does not matter if our team is away either -- our fans will set up a tent and grill anywhere they can. Besides taking up half the parking lot before the kickoff with people, food, and games, our fans are even more obnoxious when we move into the stands during the game.
There are about 50 kids that have been at every tailgate and game no matter how cold or wet it has been outside. Even though it is a relatively small number of kids, they make a lot of noise. From yelling and screaming on a big play to booing the referee on a bad call our fans do it all. When it is a really close game and there is a big play there are even mosh pits in the stands. During one of our team's away games our fans were jumping up and down on the bleachers and screaming to get pumped up when all of a sudden... CRACK! Two of ours fans broke the bleachers. After the area was cleared we began to cheer again, jump again, and -- who would have guessed -- a different section broke, too. We won that game and we have brought those planks of wood to every game since as a good luck memento. It helped when we played our town's "North" rival. South massacred North 48 to 0 and we now have a full year of bragging rights.
The problem with having a good team is that you never see anything from the losing fans' perspective. After each win we are loud, cocky, and arrogant. We do not stop to think about how the other team or fans feel because we are overjoyed with another win. We have beaten teams during their homecoming and not even once have we stopped to think how much that hurts, especially for their senior players. When we broke a team's bleachers, all we did was cheer, no one stopped and thought how we would feel if fans came onto our school, caused damage and also beat us during our homecoming game. There is a line of respect that people should have for one another... On October 28, we were playing a team who we should have easily destroyed. They had lost to a team we had shut out earlier in the season and they were not having a good year. Even in the beginning of the game we were cocky because our team scored on the second play of the game. Our regular group of rowdy fans was there and we were as loud as ever, but then for once the game did not go our way. It was the other team's homecoming and we ended up losing 27-24. Our fans and players both left the game humiliated. I was not sure whether to be distraught like everyone else, or to be a little happy that our team and fans saw the losing team's side for once. I wonder what our next game will be like coming off of our first loss, but I'll be there to tailgate, cheer, hang with my friends and have a good time. I may just be a little more careful about how I celebrate.