View Full Version : What is wrong with us?



betts
02-09-2014, 10:24 AM
In thinking about the Marcus Smart incident, I remembered my son's reaction to his beloved Raiders losing a game when he was in grade school. "I don't want to go to school tomorrow" he would say. And, of course I told him he had to but asked why. "Because everyone in school will be mean and tease me about the Raiders losing" was his usual reply. And I said, "That's nonsense. Their teams will lose too off and on. What happens then." They'll get teased, he said.

I went to t-ball games with my kids where parents were far too invested in the outcome. We had one dad who routinely was ejected from his daughter's softball games. We saw coaches screaming at kids who were playing "for fun". My same son, who was pretty talented, dropped out of basketball because the "coach screamed all the time."

We have fans who are "famous" for their taunting. For them, it's clearly a sport and perhaps the primary reason they go to games.

Then I remembered my childhood. My father was the sports editor of a newspaper, so we went to every sporting event imaginable. Especially when we were young and he was a sports reporter. They frequently didn't have money for a babysitter and so we all piled in the car and went to gymnastics and wrestling meets, hockey, basketball and football games, track events. My father wore a suit and tie and my mother wore a suit, hose and heels. Ask me about the Northwestern football game he took her to in December some time. She still wore her suit, hose and heels.

My father taught us that fans cheer and clap for their team. They pretty much ignore the other team. We were not allowed to boo the refs or any players. At the end of the game, everyone shook hands. It was simple, it was fun, it was clean-spirited. Sports were uplifting, not a reason for controversy. I miss that.

I hate sitting by hecklers. It ruins the game for me. I can only imagine how the players feel. They take the fun out of sports, IMO. What is wrong with us that this is considered a normal behavior for a fan?

Then I hear people touting "freedom of speech". When freedom of speech was included in the Bill of Rights, it was designed to give the minority a voice. It was a reaction against suppression of political thought that had occurred in Britain. I wonder what Thomas Jefferson would think about heckling during a sports event. I think we've taken the Bill of Rights far beyond anything that was intended. I'm not an originalist, but I think that sometimes we emphasize freedom of the individual so much that the rights of the community are ignored.

Easy180
02-09-2014, 10:43 AM
Some fans are just desparate to try to be part of the game. Maybe it makes them feel better about how much they forked over for a ticket

As a kid I used to get very upset when my teams lost. Once I realized I had nothing to do with the outcome whatsoever losses don't mean much

Garin
02-09-2014, 11:10 AM
It's called your father taught you about morality and fathers today are teaching just the opposite.

ou48A
02-09-2014, 12:45 PM
The other side of this is probably on this video.

Depending on your point of view it may not be right but to think that crowd noise or heckling has no impact on games is naive at best and not understanding sports at very sophisticated levels.

Its a major part of MLB. If done with creativity it's like an art. As long as its kept to PG13 standards I usually don't care.



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6vSb1o0Inag

dankrutka
02-09-2014, 02:26 PM
It's called your father taught you about morality and fathers today are teaching just the opposite.

Fathers today are teaching immorality? Lol.

dankrutka
02-09-2014, 02:29 PM
There's a bit of romanticizing going on here about the good ol' days. I've been around respectful and disrespectful fans, but it's not like disrespectful fans are a new thing. Just ask Jackie Robinson.

AP
02-09-2014, 02:57 PM
This is one thing I absolutely hate about sports. I am the most competitive guy you will meet, and play just about every sport there is to play. The environment that fans create at these higher levels is something I'm so glad I never had to be a part of. Everyone just acts like "Why is everyone mad, that's just sports." Tell me one other place where you can go and absolutely berate a person and they are not allowed to respond and there is no consequence because it is "part of the game"?

okcboomer
02-09-2014, 05:42 PM
Well in a perfect world, I guess all fans would simply cheer for their team. But we aren't in a perfect world and never have been. Players need to stay out of the stands. Period.

Easy180
02-09-2014, 06:08 PM
Well in a perfect world, I guess all fans would simply cheer for their team. But we aren't in a perfect world and never have been. Players need to stay out of the stands. Period.

To be fair arenas and stadiums these days put the stands right on top of players. Always a decent amount of contact between players and fans especially in basketball.

betts
02-09-2014, 09:18 PM
There's a bit of romanticizing going on here about the good ol' days. I've been around respectful and disrespectful fans, but it's not like disrespectful fans are a new thing. Just ask Jackie Robinson.

Well, my childhood had none of that, but I'm not so old that Jackie Robinson was during my time. I went to Minnesota Twins and Vikings games and never saw or heard anything racist. Nor did I ever hear heckling like seems routine nowadays.

It sounds as if the fan has been uninvited back so there's likely more to the Marcus Smart story than anyone is telling.

dankrutka
02-09-2014, 11:33 PM
Well, I've heard plenty of similar stories since Jackie Robinson's day. That was just one example. If you want to say it is more pervasive now that's one thing, but to say it didn't exist when you grew up just isn't true. There have always been rude, terrible, and awful fans. I've watched too many sports interviews and documentaries with tons of stories from all eras to think this is a completely new problem. Please don't make me go drag up tons of examples... ;)

Pete
02-10-2014, 09:36 AM
It is definitely a generational thing.

I've played sports and gone to them my entire life, but about 10 years ago I had an eye-opening experience that made me realize how much things had changed in a pretty short period.

I first moved to California in 1990 and that year OU played UCLA at the Rose Bowl. UCLA has always been my 2nd favorite college team and my friends and I were treated as respected guests the entire day, at the great tailgating before and after the game and by surrounding UCLA fans inside the stadium.

OU played at UCLA again in 2005, almost a generation removed (usually defined as 20 years). It was the absolute worst fan experience of my entire life.

Just walking around tailgates we were yelled at and taunted. And worse yet, the OU fans were taunting back. OU & UCLA are hardly rivals and both teams had already lost a game coming in... Yet this was the most tense and unpleasant game I had ever witnessed to that point.

And it was just as bad inside the stadium and afterward. What a massive change in just 15 years!


I know my parents hated the change in sportsmanship from when they were younger, so this is just a continuation of a theme. But it's very hard to grow up with certain values and then have the entire sporting experience driven by younger people who see the world much differently.

Similarly, I am very active with a local triathlon group and most the members are about 20 years younger than me. I'm constantly surprised (and frankly, disappointed) with their attitude towards others in a sport when you are supposed to be competing against the course, not other athletes.

RadicalModerate
02-10-2014, 09:47 AM
I used to be a big OU fan. My former wife and I had season tickets. One time, back in the early 80's, we managed to get tickets to the OU/Texas game. OU got their clock cleaned that year. I still recall--after the game, walking through the Fairgrounds, next to The Cotton Bowl--how non-gloating and cordial the Texas fans were. I would bet it's different these days, but I wouldn't know . . . on account of I gave up spectator sports and the vicarious thrills at the excellence of others not long after that.

Easy180
02-10-2014, 09:58 AM
I used to be a big OU fan. My former wife and I had season tickets. One time, back in the early 80's, we managed to get tickets to the OU/Texas game. OU got their clock cleaned that year. I still recall--after the game, walking through the Fairgrounds, next to The Cotton Bowl--how non-gloating and cordial the Texas fans were. I would bet it's different these days, but I wouldn't know . . . on account of I gave up spectator sports and the vicarious thrills at the excellence of others not long after that.

Was down there last in '05 when Vince Young destroyed us. It wasn't that bad at all afterward with just some mild jabs from the younger fans. I'm sure if they switched to later games with more drunks the fair atmosphere would be just a tad bit different after the game

no1cub17
02-12-2014, 09:11 AM
It is definitely a generational thing.

I've played sports and gone to them my entire life, but about 10 years ago I had an eye-opening experience that made me realize how much things had changed in a pretty short period.

I first moved to California in 1990 and that year OU played UCLA at the Rose Bowl. UCLA has always been my 2nd favorite college team and my friends and I were treated as respected guests the entire day, at the great tailgating before and after the game and by surrounding UCLA fans inside the stadium.

OU played at UCLA again in 2005, almost a generation removed (usually defined as 20 years). It was the absolute worst fan experience of my entire life.

Just walking around tailgates we were yelled at and taunted. And worse yet, the OU fans were taunting back. OU & UCLA are hardly rivals and both teams had already lost a game coming in... Yet this was the most tense and unpleasant game I had ever witnessed to that point.

And it was just as bad inside the stadium and afterward. What a massive change in just 15 years!


No kidding - would not have expected that at all from UCLA - a barely football school compared to OU. Weird indeed. There's still some good in the world though - few buddies and I went to College Station for the '06 OU @ A&M game - have never been treated so well by opposing fans in my life. Everyone was extremely friendly. Upon entry, the usher who scanned our ticket gave us their rally rag and said "welcome - this will make a nice souvenir." Great stuff. In fact the OU fans in our section were far more obnoxious (one got kicked out) than the Aggies. A shame A&M is no longer in our conference.

Pete
02-12-2014, 09:33 AM
There are still a lot of schools where they treat opposing fans very well, usually the schools with a good winning tradition and appreciation for college football in general.

I had very good experiences at Texas A&M in 2000, at Notre Dame in 1999 at Oregon in 2006 at Air Force in the 90's.

I've heard very good things about Bama fans.


The UCLA thing was partly due to the lack of an NFL team in LA and thus a lot of the thug Raider fans have since attached themselves to USC and UCLA.

ou48A
02-12-2014, 10:02 AM
I used to be a big OU fan. My former wife and I had season tickets. One time, back in the early 80's, we managed to get tickets to the OU/Texas game. OU got their clock cleaned that year. I still recall--after the game, walking through the Fairgrounds, next to The Cotton Bowl--how non-gloating and cordial the Texas fans were. I would bet it's different these days, but I wouldn't know . . . on account of I gave up spectator sports and the vicarious thrills at the excellence of others not long after that.
I have been going to OU Texas games since the late 70's and have heard many war story's from more seasoned veterans than I .....The atmosphere is many times better now and its really not even close.

An occasional drunk will cause probables but that's about the only thing I have seen in recent years. Significant problems between the attending fans are rare today.... The biggest problems are the local thugs around town.

Since the formation of the BIG 12 I have seen that most OU and UT fans have developed a degree of respect for each others university.

ou48A
02-12-2014, 10:07 AM
I have heard several older sports journalist indicate that there has always been fan problems but the differences is that there are now so many more recording devises out there and every game is now broadcast on TV......almost any problem gets covered now.
I have seen some pretty poor behavior out of those supposed best fans in the world from Nebraska back in the 70's... Miami fans were horrible in the 70's, 80's, and 90's. Many pro venues have been tough for decades.

This is more about a local culture....I have seen fans policing there own.
I have done this on occasion and I have seen other OU fans doing it too. I have also seen it done at a few other university.
To paint with a broad brush is a mistake IMHO....If over all its worse now... its not by that much.

ou48A
02-12-2014, 10:24 AM
I've heard very good things about Bama fans.


In 2002 many Alabama fans who traveled to Norman said they had never been treated better.
When OU fans made the return trip in 2003 many OU fans said they had never been treated better.
I concur. While visiting Tuscaloosa my wife and I could not walk 10 feet at times without being offered food or drink and being told welcome to Alabama. Just like fans of other blue blood programs most OU & Bama fans know if they fail that the problem is not the opponent, but in the mirror.

Alabama fans have since made it a point to treat the fans of their out of conference opponents with great respect.
Many fans of opponents of OU have had very nice things to say writing letters to the editor about their trip to Norman except for maybe the score.

My trip later that season to NOLA for the Sugar bowl with LSU was by far the worst experience with opponents fans I have ever had bar none.

ou48A
02-12-2014, 09:27 PM
Suggested reading
Marcus Smart incident: Big 12 wants to preach basketball sportsmanship but not practice it | News OK (http://newsok.com/big-12-wants-to-preach-basketball-sportsmanship-but-not-practice-it/article/3932729)

betts
02-12-2014, 09:44 PM
In 2002 many Alabama fans who traveled to Norman said they had never been treated better.
When OU fans made the return trip in 2003 many OU fans said they had never been treated better.
I concur. While visiting Tuscaloosa my wife and I could not walk 10 feet at times without being offered food or drink and being told welcome to Alabama. Just like fans of other blue blood programs most OU & Bama fans know if they fail that the problem is not the opponent, but in the mirror.

Alabama fans have since made it a point to treat the fans of their out of conference opponents with great respect.
Many fans of opponents of OU have had very nice things to say writing letters to the editor about their trip to Norman except for maybe the score.

My trip later that season to NOLA for the Sugar bowl with LSU was by far the worst experience with opponents fans I have ever had bar none.

Alabama had a history of great behavior long before the Oklahoma games. It's a southern tradition. But that's a generalization, as I've had some friends who went to Auburn tell me of less than wonderful experiences.

I went to the OU-Nebraska game in 2000. My brother worked for the University of Nebraska at the time, so we gave our tickets to some of our other family members and my son and I sat in the Nebraska section behind the goalpost where every single touchdown was scored. As an OU fan, that was an amazing and exciting game. But, I was ashamed at the behavior of some of the OU fans sitting around us. There was definitely some incredibly rude taunting going on. It wasn't a lot of people, but it was real. Out of respect for the Nebraska fans I was sitting around, I just wore red without any identifying marks. So, no one had any way of knowing I wasn't a Nebraska fan and I was glad of that, because I was ashamed of the behavior of some of the OU fans sitting around us. Afterwards I was even more ashamed that I didn't speak up and tell the OU fans to stop.

I've been to games all over the country and I agree, the LSU fans at the Sugar Bowl were the worst of any I've ever encountered anywhere. But, my point is, no school is likely immune. There are incredibly rude OU fans too. The bottom line is, some people never grow up. Do we tolerate that behavior or at least make sure we don't have to listen to it? I favor the latter.

dankrutka
02-13-2014, 12:01 AM
I've never seen anything like those LSU fans at the Sugar Bowl. The behavior of their fan base bordered on the absurd. Every OU fan I know has awful stories of unprovoked insults, throwing of drinks and objects on and at OU fans, and so much more.

ou48A
02-13-2014, 12:21 PM
Alabama had a history of great behavior long before the Oklahoma games. It's a southern tradition. But that's a generalization, as I've had some friends who went to Auburn tell me of less than wonderful experiences.

I went to the OU-Nebraska game in 2000. My brother worked for the University of Nebraska at the time, so we gave our tickets to some of our other family members and my son and I sat in the Nebraska section behind the goalpost where every single touchdown was scored. As an OU fan, that was an amazing and exciting game. But, I was ashamed at the behavior of some of the OU fans sitting around us. There was definitely some incredibly rude taunting going on. It wasn't a lot of people, but it was real. Out of respect for the Nebraska fans I was sitting around, I just wore red without any identifying marks. So, no one had any way of knowing I wasn't a Nebraska fan and I was glad of that, because I was ashamed of the behavior of some of the OU fans sitting around us. Afterwards I was even more ashamed that I didn't speak up and tell the OU fans to stop.

I've been to games all over the country and I agree, the LSU fans at the Sugar Bowl were the worst of any I've ever encountered anywhere. But, my point is, no school is likely immune. There are incredibly rude OU fans too. The bottom line is, some people never grow up. Do we tolerate that behavior or at least make sure we don't have to listen to it? I favor the latter.

If you see this again please speak up..... Or, now you can text a message to security.

I have spoken before a few times and almost gotten in a fight once with a very drunk guy who was yelling F bombs at the top of his voice.. It takes a little courage but if fans will police their own it helps.. I have seen this done several times and at university’s other than OU.

As far as the 2000 Nebraska game that was probably the worse I have see OU fans behave but it was also the best I have ever seen too.

It was a situation where OU fans had been down for many years and Nebraska had been on a great run of their own. OU fans remembered Nebraska running up the score just a few years prior scoring 73 points in one game.

I have seen several examples where a fan base has not seen very much successes and then suddenly their team gets better...It seems to breed a mob like behavior with a few fans particularly when facing their toughest foe and rival.

In response to that game OU did put out a code of fan conduct the following year. IMO all university's need to act proactively and let fans somehow know what isn't acceptable.

One note about that Nebraska game. At the time I knew several high school students from Norman High school, Moore and West Moore High schools who ran onto the field after the game. They all said that almost everybody on the field after the game were from those 3 high schools. This is the only time that I know of where OU fan stormed the field after a home game. None of the kids I knew had a ticket to the game.

Spartan
02-13-2014, 01:39 PM
This is all true but I still think the glass is half full. There were a few seasons that I traveled to all OSU road games and we were treated so respectfully that it shocked me. Even in surprising locales like Austin.

The reality is each fan base has a few bad apples. And Tech fans will always be Tech fans. On the bright side, I think it's pretty good (comparatively) that OU/OSU fans treat most fanbases well except each other and Texas. And I love UT students, Austin is one of the finest places on the planet IMO, along w Lawrence.

jerrywall
02-13-2014, 02:25 PM
I know when I was in the marching band for OSU in 93, and we were playing in Norman, we had golf balls thrown at the us in the stands. My entire time in the OSU marching band, Norman was the only place I (as a band member) was yelled at, called names, or had things thrown at me.

Stew
02-13-2014, 02:49 PM
What is wrong with us? Perhaps that way too many folks get way too emotionally invested in a game that they have zero impact on the outcome. It would be like me screaming at a quarter for coming up tails.

trousers
02-13-2014, 03:06 PM
What is wrong with us? Perhaps that way too many folks get way too emotionally invested in a game that they have zero impact on the outcome. It would be like me screaming at a quarter for coming up tails.

What??!!! You actually want it to come up heads??!!! Never!!! Your choice of pistols or fisticuffs!!

dankrutka
02-13-2014, 05:57 PM
What is wrong with us? Perhaps that way too many folks get way too emotionally invested in a game that they have zero impact on the outcome. It would be like me screaming at a quarter for coming up tails.

Zero impact? Then why do home teams win so much more than road teams? Good home crowd definitely impact games.

(I agree with the too emotionally invested, or at least, invested in the wrong ways part)

ljbab728
02-13-2014, 09:09 PM
I know when I was in the marching band for OSU in 93, and we were playing in Norman, we had golf balls thrown at the us in the stands. My entire time in the OSU marching band, Norman was the only place I (as a band member) was yelled at, called names, or had things thrown at me.

I was in the OU band in the 60's and that happened to us at Nebraska only it was chairs instead of golf balls.

jerrywall
02-13-2014, 09:15 PM
I was in the OU band in the 60's and that happened to us at Nebraska only it was chairs instead of golf balls.

I just don't understand that behavior, any more than the behavior of OSU fans at Bedlam this year. It's all totally unacceptable, but beyond that it's sub-human.

ylouder
02-14-2014, 02:46 AM
What is wrong with us? Perhaps that way too many folks get way too emotionally invested in a game that they have zero impact on the outcome.

Ive mentioned it in other threads, but as a former player ive always wondered that too. I've seen people screaming, crying, throwing things and threatening other fans over a game that they never played and had absolutely zero impact on their actual lives. Find a booky and place a grand on the team and then I will understand being that invested in the outcome, but if not chill out and actually find a real physical hobby to direct the extra energy into. Dont spend your whole life on the sidelines watching others actually live there lives.

On a side note, ive found that once a person does compete in an actual physical competition (bike racing, 5k run, marathon, etc) they seem to develop a better respect for watching others in an actual competition.

Besides mens softball, thats just an excuse to drink and get mad between football and basketball seasons.