College Sports (from a skeptical point of view)

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Two weeks ago I went to my first GW basketball game. I had missed the first ten or more games because of papers, cold weather and… lack of motivation. But I finally decided I needed to go, mainly because my roommate told me it was probably the last game “our” team would win.

Of course I was late as usual so I missed the very beginning of the game. Yet, I did stay until the end so I was able to draw a few conclusions:

1)    You’d better not play at another university: After 5 minutes of games, the cheering and booing gave me a sense of the unbalanced situation: 95% of the people who came to see the game were for GW, the last 5% were for the other team. You could easily do the math: the other team was going to have a hard time. In the last minutes of the game, I was even for the other team because I felt sympathy for them. When the “enemies” tried to make a shot, everybody was yelling and making noise so that they would fail. When GW was making a shot, everybody was silent except for the 5%. And if they tried to make some noise, the 95% would start yelling at them.

2)    GW loves t-shirt: Not much to say about that except I had never seen so many people wearing yellow and blue t-shirts in the same room.

3)   George Washington is a little bit scary: Even though I have a problem with the name of the team being “colonials” considering… what it means, I’ve always thought the George Washington mascot was rather cool. Yet, at the game, he became a little bit scary, raising his fist and doing some foot tapping or something of the sort.

4)    It is hard for a feminist to watch cheerleaders: I tried to be opened to my friend’s arguments that there were some male cheerleaders but I am still skeptic. First, why do they change clothes three times a game? Second, it is hard to see men play and girls dance, no matter how you try not to perceive this as sexist.

5)    College sport makes people really aggressive: I was not surprised by the aggressiveness because people can get really passionate at soccer games in France too. Still, some people take the game really seriously. Maybe my perception is biased by the fact that I had a very angry supporter right behind me who kept kicking my seat and yelling insults at the other team. Yet, I think I will probably never understand the stakes in college basketball and to be honest I didn’t really care about who was going to win.

6)    At a basketball game, you have to deserve food: $4 a slice of pizza, seriously? This may be a strategy to fight against overweight but at 8:30 I started to be really hungry and a dilemma came to me: do I pay $1 for a bite of pizza or do I starve myself to death (that is to say until 9:30)?

7)    You can here “Billie Jean” played by a band (which doesn’t happen often): Some might say you haven’t lived until you’ve heard a Michael Jackson song played by saxophones, trumpets and other wind-related instruments. I don’t want to oversell it so I am just going to say that Michael Jackson himself would not have done better.

8)    I still don’t understand the part when guys danced with bayonets

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