"Jim's a tough guy and you can see his personality is all over this football team," Fitzgerald said.
I was going to post this in the thread below, but I thought it would be better as a new forum topic (or maybe a diary I guess?) since I witnessed the whole situation and so there will be less rampant speculation.
I got to the stadium around 2:30am with my tent, and was turned away by the security guard. Went home, slept for a couple of hours, got back at 5:30. There was a line forming at the bus stop at the corner where you can go up to the big house or towards Crisler. I was about 30th in line.
At about 6:45, the people at the front of the line (now about 100 strong) started walking up towards Crisler, meaning to get the line going over there. Some people towards the back started running and then basically everyone was. We lined up at the gate where they generally let people in. The security guard came up to check us out but didn't really say anything to us about moving or leaving.
Maybe 10 minutes later, one of the Maize Rage leaders (not sure who) came up and started talking to the security guard. Apparently it was a big issue that we had lined up at the gate at 6:50 rather than 7. Long story short, she started a new line (at about 7:15) down in the parking lot without really making it clear that it was happening to the people at the front of the original line. This started a new stampede, mostly from the back of the line (now about 200-300 strong).
The people at the front of the line (me included), once this had happened and it looked like they were getting kicked out of the bleachers despite arriving earlier than the people in the other line, pretty much decided that they were staying put. A few security guys tried to get us to move and then they called the cops. The officers told us that if we didn't move, they would get a bus with 20 officers and arrest all of us. Some went to the other line (now of about 500 people) and about 100 stayed put.
Eventually (looking to avoid the PR issue) they convinced us to move to the parking lot. Associate Athletic Director Rob Rademacher took us inside the football visitor locker room (119 people total) and told us that they were going to reserve the front 12-13 rows of Section 130 for us as a compromise. He also took all of our names and uniquenames and presumably will be emailing us to get feedback on this situation. We then (a few hours later) were taken through the facility and the tunnel, and up to the section. The seats weren't quite as good as the bleachers, but it turned out pretty well and the game was obviously amazing.
My personal takeaway: the Maize Rage leader was put in a tough situation, and made a really bad kneejerk decision rather than figuring it out with the people that had lined up early. She then couldn't really backtrack from it without pissing off some group of students or another. The Associate AD was really awesome and made a good compromise from a bad situation.
Others who were there, let me know if you had a different experience.
Beilein has talked about how the Big Ten didn't do us any favors by scheduling our first games against OSU, IU, MSU, Illinois, Minnesota, and Wisconsin on the road (seriously...ALL of them??). But one thing I noticed looking over the schedule yesterday was that our two biggest home games of the season are going to occur during Spring Break, which is officially Saturday, March 2nd - Monday, March 11th. We play vs. MSU on the first weekend and vs. IU during the second weekend, with @ Purdue during the week.
When I was in the Maize Rage the break tickets weren't included in the ticket package. IIRC, the home game vs. MSU was during Spring Break twice and the crowd was a combination of the "Blue Rage" and those students who bought the game a la carte. I personally believe that Home Court advantage means more in NCAA hoops than any other sport, and the students are the biggest reason for that.
Any current Maize Rage members -- do you have tickets to those games? Are you planning on attending? If not, can I buy your ticket for cheap? (jk, sort of)
I realize we have to play some games over break, but can't the Big Ten make an effort to schedule a game against a rival when the students will be on campus...geez.
I have a confession to make: In all my years as a Michigan fan and in my time as a student, I have never once attended a mens basketball game. In my defense, I only had enough cash for 2 sports' season tickets, and since I attended school in the Amaker era it was a no brainer to go with Football and Hockey. Tomorrow night, I am attending my first Michigan hoops game, when the team visits Northwestern. Are there any fan cheers that occur at road games?
Basically, I am looking for help from current Maize Ragers with any tips or specifics on current cheers used by our fans for hoops, since I only know the hockey specific cheers (and I doubt I'll be able to use the C-Ya chant all that often at a hoops game). Are there any things we do at home games that also happen on the road? If so, what are those cheers? I'd like to know so I can join in on them if/when they occur. Hopefully I'll be able to make it up to Ann Arbor this year for a home game so I can put your shared knowledge to use there as well. Thanks in advance for the help!
Great seeing Denard representing Michigan: he was seen at Yost on Fri for the hockey game.
Vote for the Maize Rage for the best student section in college basketball!
I'm bored and the following is a concern of mine. I'm sure some here will share these concerns so I figured I'd throw it out there...
Would it be cool/useful for there to be some global location (i.e. a section on the Michigan Athletics wiki page) devoted to the various M student sections?
I'm a grad student now and this year one of the weird things that occured to me was that current UM juniors have not had the pleasure of a winning season. As such, we've had the wave started in a 2 score game. We've had people try to start the wave on the wrong side of the section, do it in the wrong order, etc.
Worst of all (to me) we've had people chant "It's Great to be..." in games that it shouldn't be chanted in. I don't know about others, but to me in my Maize Rage days that cheer was always reserved as a victory celebration of a big game. We should not be chanting it while walking out of a UMass victory.
But yeah, would the wiki page be a good idea? I'm not a regular of hockey games and I know hockey isn't as organized as the Maize Rage, so maybe this would be a usefull tool for them? Maybe a way to get sections like the Zone (volleyball) and the Ultras (soccer) some recognition.
Are there other traditions/cheers that have been struggling lately?
Or if you just don't care and think I'm yelling at people to get off my lawn, what's your favorite Mich cheer/tradition?
So, The Zone has a wiki page. Pretty cool, seems to have been made by members of the '04 pep band. Oddly, there's no page for the Maize Rage.
Also, I put together a userpage to work on a page for all student sections and have gotten it started. Please, feel free to edit it and get it rolling! I think something cool that this could do is serve as a bit of historical record for old traditions gone by the wayside (marshmellows!) so the more contibutors, the better!