Lack of School Spirit a Downer for Student Athletes
After LSU fell to Alabama this past weekend, Cajun fans across Lafayette stormed social media to point out that even the Ragin’ Cajun football team was able to put up 14-points against the number one ranked Alabama Roll Tide.
While LSU's loss initiated radiant enthusiasm by Cajun fans, it left UL Athletes wondering where this school spirit is when the Cajuns are faced with an opponent on Saturdays.
Dion Ray, a wide receiver for the Ragin’ Cajun football team said, “I think the student section is lacking for a variety of reasons. One is maybe the record that we have currently, and I think moving tailgating may have affected the student section as well.”
Some students say that the reason they do not go to the games is that there is nothing that holds their interest.
UL student, Amy Connor said, “the overall atmosphere is not exciting.”
After comparing both UL football and Basketball games, Connor said that with basketball, “the pregame show with all the effects gets you more excited. At the football games, the pregame stuff isn’t as in your face.”
Even though attending games may not be important to some UL students, it may help boost player confidence and contribute to a victory.
Ray said, “It gives us energy seeing our student section is full and loud with people that are our age. It’s nice to see the fans on the home side but seeing students really fires us up. It’s a downer seeing the student section empty."
In an attempt to encourage game attendance for this weekend, the University Program Council at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette put on a meet and greet event in the student union on campus.
UPC Entertainment Liason, Erineka Johnson said, that the event, "was a collaboration with the athletic department in preparation for the blackout football game. The goal was to allow students to meet the coach and players in hopes of getting them excited for the game and coming out to show their support Saturday."
During this event, students were able to meet with football Coach Billy Napier, try on football jerseys, and take pictures in them.
When asked what he would like to say to the Cajun fans ahead of this weekend’s home game, Ray said, “come out and support. We gone give y’all a show.”
The Cajuns are set to take on the Georgia State Panthers today at 4 pm.
There will be free t-shirts to the first 500 students who attend Saturday’s game. The game will feature a halftime fireworks show in a special performance to honor our veterans. It will also include an LA National Guard Blackhawk flyover.