Whats the difference.....?

Bluethunder

Hugh McAwesome
Supporter
For several years now, I have heard people discuss the difference in the noise level of the women's games vs. the men's games. While often times they would draw roughly the same size crowd, the women's games were always louder, and much more enthusiastic. But why? The most common explanation over the years was the style of the women's team vs the style of the men's team, but that no longer works anymore because the men's team is starting to play a very similar style to the women.

While I didn't get to see all of the men's game tonight online, I did watch pretty much the entire second half. I saw numerous break outs, some press, and several set plays that resulted in wide open shots and a much faster pace to the game then in previous years. The biggest thing that shocked me was the absolutely pathetic crowd. That was one of the most pathetic crowds I have ever heard (or not heard, if you will) and I have been to plenty of games with smaller crowds. What is the problem? We have a much more exciting style of play this year, and brand new scoreboard, new graphics and banners, etc, yet we have the same dead crowd. It is no wonder we struggle to recruit against schools like Xavier, Creighton, SIU, etc. There crowds are twice as big as ours, but more importantly they are three times as loud. What can we do? I don't see how anyone can say WINNING is the answer, because even in games we are winning, the crowd is dead.

One thing I will point out is that certain changes need to be made. First (and I have said this before) if you aren't going to have ANY new routines then we need to just get rid of the cheerleaders. I graduated in the 90s and we are doing many of the same cheers to the same songs (Wabash Cannonball). The cheerleaders do the same cheers, at the same time, in the same places on the floor. If you go to enough games, you probably have some of these cheers memorized.

Also, for those who have been to a game this year (I live out of state), what are they doing with the new scoreboards to get the crowds involved? Are they used at the start of the game to introduce the starting line up? Do they show some team highlights like dunks, steals or three pointers to excite everyone? Are they still playing the same song at the start of the game from years ago? When I was at ISU, they played that Michael Buffer clip from JockJams and they were still playing it several years after I graduated. Then they switched to the Black Eyed Peas, even though by that time the song was several years old. Have they gotten something new?

Point is, this has got to change. I can't stand to listen to our games and not hear anything but the PA announcer and the sound of the ball. With 4000 people in an arena, I should not hear the plays being called over the radio. I shouldn't hear the refs calling out fouls and shoes squeaking on the floor.

Somebody tell me things are being done to fix these problems, or someone throw some ideas out. I have several but I will have to type them at a later date as I am tired. But I know I can't be the only fan on this board that is frustrated by the complete and total apathy at our games. I have been to games where I actually felt weird for being vocal and loud, because everyone else around me was so quiet and passive. We need to be the change Sycamore fans. So start throwing out your frustrations and lets talk about them, then we can move on to step two, which is fixing them.....
 

BankShot

The Kleuh Level
ISU Apathy

Cool down 'Dawg...wo-o-o-o-o...stop the carriage! How long's it been since ISU was over the .500 hump in Men's hoop? Are you surprised that the bandwagon has lost some of its vigor? What you're witnessing is the BYPRODUCT of a losing major sports program over two decades of sugar-rich pastry. How can you expect ISU students/fans to feel "excited" given these conditions? The ISU Board of Trustees should be totally disbanded for FORSEEABLY (yes, they KNEW or SHOULD'VE KNOWN) that such conditions would appear in lieu of their malfeasance in addressing these issues over the past 1/4 century. RP bravely addressed these issues the other day, pointing out the "state of ISU Sports."

Like others have said, it'll be a long road back...Fortunately, RP has taken the lead on these issues where past A.D.'s have simply been content with refining the game of "pocket pool.":sycamores:
 

SycamorePsycho

The Varsity Level
I was at both of the ISU womens game and the ISU mens game. Personally I thought that the crowd was louder for the mens game then it was the womens game. I always try and get the crowd to get loud when I am at the games. At the men's game the crowd got pretty loud several times. I think the reason our crowd hasnt gotten that loud yet is because we have not played a tough team at home. Even though we only beat Ball State by 11 points it never really seemed like a close game. We never really struggled against them one time. In the past when we have played teams like IU, Purdue, Butler the crowd has been ridiculously loud. I think when we play teams like Southern Illinois the crowd will definitely get loud.
 

Bluethunder

Hugh McAwesome
Supporter
It is not just the level of fan enthusiasm at each game; it is the environment in which the game is played. We just don't seem to do little things at the men’s games that could and should get the crowd a little fired up. I understand that many fans have been through many losing seasons and are wary of each new season and what it might bring, but once you are actually at the game, that should be put on the backburner. Do we use the new screens (or will we) to get the crowd involved? Can we play better music at the start to appeal to a broader audience and get more enthusiasm at the start? Can the cheerleaders not do the same routines since 1994? Can we stop playing the Wabash cannonball for the rest of the 21st century? It just seems like we don't really do much to get fans involved. Yes there are moments when fans are louder or more excited, but it is pretty much left up to the fans to do this and these moments are few and far between. We cheer at a three pointer or a dunk, and then it is almost absolute silence for the next two or three minutes.

One final question. I hear a lot of people say when we start winning it will get better. How much better does everyone think it can realistically get? Do you think consistent sellouts are possible in Terre Haute or just a pipedream? Is 9000 or 8000 realistic? How much enthusiasm will that bring? I don't know the answers, just wondering what everyone else’s thoughts are on the matter.
 

BankShot

The Kleuh Level
For your answer, check the attendance #'s during Bird's three (3) years @ ISU. How many HC sellouts?:talktohand:
 

gostate03

The Varsity Level
Attendence

What was the attendence figures during the two years of ncaa tourneys? I would guess around 7000 to 8000, but it was always loud!! You have to have something to cheer about!!!

Go State!!
 
H

Harvest

Guest
Attendance

I was at both the women's and men's game Sat. To me the crowds looked to be about the same. I didn't take time to count. ( thats a joke) One thing we are forgetting is that the women's crowd is more compact. Most seats are filled in the blue area where the men seats are more spread out. I saw a lot more in the yellow seats at the men's game where most of the blue was filled during the women's game. That could account for the increased noise heard on the radio.

I did have the pleasure of sitting in front of Jay's family Sat. night. I never know who will be seated behind me. I enjoyed talking to Jay's mom and dad. Yes we were both (Jay's Dad and I) loud during the game but dads do not chear we just get loud during play.
 

Eleven

The Newsom Level
What was the attendence figures during the two years of ncaa tourneys? I would guess around 7000 to 8000, but it was always loud!! You have to have something to cheer about!!!

Go State!!
I remember it being 5-6k... It was louder. It's much easier to cheer/get loud when you are pretty sure that shots will go in, or that you are going to win...
It's much harder to cheer when you are "hoping" to win, or the shots just don't fall time and time again....

I was at both games... The first half of the men's game was pretty brutal to watch. It was very fortunate that we were playing a team that was not very good... We could have EASILY been burried in the first half.
 

Revolution

The Varsity Level
Forward your concerns to Mr. Prettyman. All of your points are very valid and have been discussed ad nauseum on another ISU basketball message board. Prettyman NEEDS to hear all of these concerns because they are extemely valid. All who feel this way should email him today.
 
C

CoachTerri

Guest
Lack of enthusiasm

I was at the women's game and have been at women's games for years. What I am noticing is that when the band should be playing something upbeat during a time out to get the crowd involved John Sherman is having some kind of contest. I think they should save that stuff for half time not during time outs. The other thing that would help is if the band gave some thought to what they played when...when we need to get the crowd fired up the band does it not the cheerleaders. The school song and wabash cannonball do get a little old but it seems to get the crowd more involved. Some of the songs that have played the last two home games have people looking at each other a little. ... It seems like they follow a program instead of going with the flow of the game. I could be wrong about this but a couple of times lately the band has actually quieted the crowd.

Sponsors are important but it sort of seems like they distract the crowd with these contests.
When there was only the pepsi shot people sort of got excited about it but now its sort of like "oh not again".

Just my .02
Coach T
 

ssoats

The White Level
ssoats

You're right on the money, coach terri. I get really tired of them running out there at time-outs. It distracts me and people sitting around me say the same thing. Usually a time out is called when one team or another has done something good and if we are on the side of the good we want to root and stand up for that and cheer the athletes on, not sit there and watch a half-court shot that will never get made. It takes away all focus on the reason we are there, to stand and yell our players on, be it the men or women, and this to me has been a distraction.
 

schmidt

The Recruit Level
Here's a largely positive response that will seem out of place in this thread...

I for one appreciate the efforts of our student performers at the games who undoubtedly give many, many hours to the school in practices and performances. In many ways they compare favorably to similar groups at other schools I have seen. I also very much like the new scoreboard and banners--what great improvements! I would be upset if I didn't hear the Wabash Cannonball or March On at the games. I can't imagine fans at Duke complaining because the band plays "Devil With a Blue Dress On" with the same dance routine in the same way they have done it for many years. The same thing with "Rocky Top" at Tennessee, "Sweet Georgia Brown" at IU, the Seminole War Chant at Florida State, "Boomer Sooner" at Oklahoma, "Tiger Rag" at LSU, "The Chomp" at Florida, etc., etc.. The fact that those songs and cheers happen at predictable times is what creates that anticipation and full participation. We have all too few things that are uniquely Sycamore and all too few people who are vocal and loyal. Let's focus on creating new traditions and fans, not try to tear down the few traditions we have now.

Having said that, I agree that way too many timeouts are spent on shooting contests. Two per game would be plenty...

As a fan, I believe it is my job to come to the game ready to cheer for my team, not someone else's job to force me into it. If I'm not willing to get on my feet, no scoreboard, band, or promotion is going to do it for me.

Go Sycamores!
 

Bluethunder

Hugh McAwesome
Supporter
The only thing I will disagree with you on is the fact that every song you mentioned above by the different schools elicits a huge response from the crowd, and I don't think we can put the Wabash Cannonball on the same level. Is it supposed to get a response? Yes. Does it? Not really. I personally think it is used too much and if we are going to use it that much then we should at least try and some up with something to go with it to get EVERYONE involved.

I do agree that as a fan, it is not (nor should it be) someone's job to get me on my feet and cheering. Lets face it though, we have too many fans at ISU games that put their coats on their laps and sit like they are at a movie theater all night. I have had people look at me funny for standing after a dunk or when we have gone on a run and the other team has called a time-out. THAT is the culture that we need to change, but I confess I don't know how to do it. We just don't seem to have any traditions at our games that everyone knows and gets into and can be passed down to teh next generation of students. We don't have any O-H-I-O like at Ohio State games or "Boiler Up" chants at Purdue games. Those are the things that we need to cultivate and put into place.

Any ideas???????
 
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schmidt

The Recruit Level
The difference isn't that we haven't had traditions or attempts to create some. The difference is how many people respond to them, and at what level, which in turn determines how many of them live on. It's just like cheering after a good play, or laughing at a movie theater -- you tend to do it a lot more if there a lot of people around you who are doing it. The key is getting more people in the seats and getting them more involved. There's no easy answers to that, but doing things like spending the money on a new scoreboard with video screens certainly is a step in the right direction. But I don't hear any of us talking about the improvements, nor about how else to get people to the games. We're talking about blaming the volunteer students who are trying to do something for the people who either aren't there or aren't involved while they are there.

I'm not sure what you mean by saying it's used too much. If you're talking about the Wabash Cannonball, then I can't remember when it was played more than once before the game and once during the game. If it was never played again or if there were a new dance routine to it, would that get people on their feet? Whether you're doing something old or something new, people have to want to get involved. And the things that have the best chance of getting everyone involved are the things that everyone see as belonging to everyone in the gym (see the list above). You can play rap music, big band music, country/western, metal, whatever, but any of those things will only appeal to a minority of the tastes present and there is no guarantee that it will make them stand up and yell. Try new things, sure, but let's not act like the Wabash Cannonball is the reason why we don't have more people at the games or that people just sit there quietly. Let's face it -- if the team comes on the floor, the school song is played, and people don't stand up and clap, then let's not kid ourselves...they're not going suddenly decide to get involved simply because the Cannonball is played less often, because there's a new dance routine to it, or because something else is done that's never been tried before. You have to want to be involved.

We're no different than anyone else -- it's easier for us to criticize someone else who is trying to do something than to take the responsibility for making it better ourselves. Let's be inviting other people to the games, respecting the old traditions, and be ready to get involved with new ones.
 
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BlueHeart

The Sycamore Level
[I can't stand to listen to our games and not hear anything but the PA announcer and the sound of the ball. With 4000 people in an arena, I should not hear the plays being called over the radio. I shouldn't hear the refs calling out fouls and shoes squeaking on the floor.
/QUOTE]

I think to make a judgment on the crowd noise based on what you hear on the radio may be giving you a false impression of the atmosphere in Hulman Center. One of the reasons the women's game may seem louder is there are a lot more young kids and ladies in the crowd, also mostly sitting in the lower bowl (proximity to the mics). Higher pitched voices and a compact crowd are going to get picked up on radio microphones more than the lower pitched voices and spread out crowd of the men's games. I attend both games in person each time and don't think the men's games are lacking enthusiasm by comparison. You just need to be there to feel it. Radio does a great disservice to those of you who try to gauge the excitement of the crowd.

All of this being said, many successive years of watching a team give away games that could have been won do sort of make the crowd "apprehensive" about the outcome. "Wonder how we'll lose this one"? I don't think that new cheers, new songs, new contests will do anything to take this mind set away. A successful team on the floor will. I am excited about seeing the baby steps that Coach Mac has been able to accomplish. This year may not be what we all hope for, but it is certainly going the right direction. After all, the majority of the team are returning players from last year, the rest are new to Division I ball. How much change is really fair to expect?

OK. One criticism. Too many contests at the wrong time. These contests should be at the half only. During the game, they seem to come at the time when the band/cheer team should be allowed to "whip up" the crowd. Instead you see some poor soul heave a ball from mid floor in hopes of earning pop for a year?!? It sure does throw the wet blanket on my enthusiasm.
 
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