Best Non-Revenue Sport Experience?

Submitted by VCavman24 on June 17th, 2013 at 12:04 AM

Now that all of Michigan's sports are finished for the 2012-2013 year, and the board is rather slow, I figured I would ask all of the MGoBloggers what their favorite non-revenue sports to go to are.  I personally have been to a few Volleyball games and found those to be exciting and a good atmosphere.  Some of the Women's Basketball games, against better opponents, were fun to go.  So, MGoBlog, what is/are your favorite non-revenue sports to go.  Include atmosphere, price, team relevance, or whatever in your reasoning.

Comments

South Bend Wolverine

June 17th, 2013 at 12:24 AM ^

I can't pretend to have made an exhaustive study, but it will surprise no one around here I'm sure that I'll put in a plug for the softball games.  All three of your suggested criteria speak well to softball games being great family-friendly entertainment.

Price - Last I looked, outfield bleacher seats are $5 & infield ticketed seats are something like $6 or $7 (and one ticket gets you into both games if it's a double-header).  You could easily take a family of five to a game, buy all the kids a hot dog, and still not be out more that $50.

Team relevance - Michigan is a perennial national powerhouse, regularly ranked in the top ten, first team East of the Mississippi to win a national title, and riding a streak of six consecutive B10 titles.  We are hands-down the premier softball program in the conference & in the entire Midwest.  With a great team stocked with young talent, the future is as bright as ever.

Atmosphere - As is the case with many of the non-revenue sports, the stadium is small, virtually guaranteeing you good seats.  I've always sat in the outfield when I've gone, but the view is great (softball diamonds are alsos smaller than baseball ones, so the outfield isn't as far away).  The early games can be sparsely attended due to the chilly weather, but the crowd gets pretty big towards the end of the B10 season, and the playoff games pack out quite well.  Alumni Field is a fantastic place to catch a game on a warm early-summer day.

I don't know as much about the other non-revenue sports, so I can't compare directly - I've been to volleyball a couple times, which was fun, but not at Alumni Field level.  Men's soccer looks pretty cool, with an organized student fan group (the Ultras).  Don't know much about any other ones.

justingoblue

June 17th, 2013 at 12:37 AM ^

but Michigan is second to none east of Oklahoma (possibly Arizona if you're very good at arguing). If you want to watch a nationally elite team, softball is right there, and it's an added attraction because Hutch probably has limited seasons in the dugout and might be the best coach in Ann Arbor right now. I recognize exactly how much that statement means, by the way, and I stand by it.

justingoblue

June 17th, 2013 at 9:57 AM ^

M is definitely tops of any program east of Oklahoma, and might be tops at any program east of Arizona (which would be inclusive of Oklahoma) if you can really stretch an argument. I must really be confused here, but how else is the original sentence getting read?

Edit: Okay, yeah. I was using Arizona as another possible geographic point, not name a possibly better program east of Oklahoma.

WolverineHistorian

June 17th, 2013 at 12:37 AM ^

I went to a Michigan/Nebraska baseball game last year.  Had a decent time baking in the sun and the good guys won. 

Walking inside, Dave Brandon knocked into me while talking on his cell phone. 

Bando Calrissian

June 17th, 2013 at 1:59 AM ^

Volleyball at Cliff Keen. I was there for the birth of the Zone, and saw what started as a small group of people who'd show up to eat off a buzz with some Bell's pizza turn into a hilarious, creative, fun student section that has followed the program from the ground floor to Final Four. I think I still have some of the packets of opposing team Facebook profiles the Zone core used to hand out.

I truly think there is no more exciting sporting event on campus than a big-time volleyball matchup. Revenue sports included. 

BOX House

June 17th, 2013 at 2:15 AM ^

Baseball may be considered a revenue sport, but I have some fond memories of those games. 

Back in the springtime when most of the students disappeared, we used to bring folding chairs and coolers of beer and park out behind the outfield fences. It was the perfect way to start one of those college nights before the house parties began. 

Seth

June 17th, 2013 at 2:31 AM ^

The concept of taking HTTV indie was discussed at a tailgate early in the 2011 season, however Brian and I hashed out all the details over a Michigan softball game. It was early in the year for it to be 70 and sunny, but 70 and sunny it was. Blazingly sunny. It's hard to remember there are crappy things in the world when you see Michigan's softball team play. It's an entire team full of Denards.

HELLE

June 17th, 2013 at 7:34 AM ^

I went to the Women's Golf Wolverine Invitational last year. It was free to get in and maybe 200 fans attended. I had a great time.

JimmyAngell

June 17th, 2013 at 9:38 AM ^

First round game of the NCAA tournament this year at home... Central Michigan led 1-0 pretty much the whole game unatil Michigan tied it up with less than a minute to go. After that M had all the momentum and won it just a few minutes into overtime. Never heard the soccer stadium that lound as after the game in regulation... people went nuts. It helped that the Central fans were insufferable the whole game.

 

Go Blue! 

Bosch

June 17th, 2013 at 9:57 AM ^

I would have supported our non revenue sports more than I did so I don't have too many stories.

One I do have.....

I was friends with a couple of baseball players (Pitcher 1 and Pitcher 2), who were also in Civil Engineeering.  They were on a 5 year plan, as was I.  In year 5 (1997), they had used up their eligibility.   Pitcher 1 had finished second for "Big Ten Pitcher of the Year" honors the previous season.  He lost out to a hurler from Penn State (Nate Bump, played a few years for the Marlins).  Anyway, Michigan had a home series with Penn State and it so happened that Bump was scheduled to throw.  Pitcher 2 was renting a house on State Street and had a kegerator in his basement.  A few of us were over there having some drinks the day of the game, and we decided to head over to the Ray Fisher Stadium to watch.  We ended up standing along the fence by the home dug out, which isn't much more than 100-feet from the pitcher's mound and we proceeded to lay into Bump... nothing too foul, just chanting mostly.  My recollection is a little fuzzy, but I remember him being visably flustered.  I can't find box scores that go back that far, but I believe Michigan got to him repeatedly...... which could also have to do with Michigan having a pretty good team in 1997.

Good times.

Vote_Crisler_1937

June 17th, 2013 at 9:58 AM ^

It was hard for anyone to be a college pitcher in 1997 with the electric bats the hitters were using. I remember watching Mark Mulder & JJ Putz get tagged repeatedly in a 12-10 game. A bunch of guys who went pro in something other than sports can claim some big hits off bona fide big leaguers.

BlueVball8

June 17th, 2013 at 10:09 AM ^

Everyone is on top of each other, the arena is packed, it's loud, and the fans know and love volleyball. Honestly it is a great experience and as a student it was really cool to see parents yelling louder and going crazier than the students. I know the arena is up for a renovation but I hope it still has its flavor.

douggoblue

June 17th, 2013 at 10:19 AM ^

It may be just because I really like soccer, but I think the Men's soccer games are some of the best non-revenue games. Especially for matches against State and OSU the student section gets pretty rowdy with a good set of organized cheers. Plus the soccer facility is really nice.

I've also been to a tennis match at the indoor facility and that was pretty fun as well.

Yorzinlax

June 17th, 2013 at 10:37 AM ^

 for a fast paced physical game. I grew up with it in the northeast, played through 2 years of college. Great atmosphere almost anywhere you see it.

bronxblue

June 17th, 2013 at 1:05 PM ^

I went to a couple of indoor track meets when I was in school, and for atmosphere it is hard to beat.  Probably just the confines, but a great environment to watch people run really fast.

DoubleLegTakedown

June 17th, 2013 at 2:30 PM ^

Tickets to a dual meet are only $5 so check out a match if you have the time. In 2002 went to a dual meet against MSU, down to the wire, OT heavy weight pin, coaches on the mat in a dispute, it was intense and UofM won!

Feat of Clay

June 17th, 2013 at 2:57 PM ^

I am sorry to say this, but rowing has to be near the bottom.  

You watch them put the boats in, and row away out of sight to the start.  Then you sit around in the cold (it's ALWAYS cold) waiting for them to come back.  BRING YOUR KNITTING is what I am saying.

Sonofdetroit

June 17th, 2013 at 10:06 PM ^

My favorite Michigan non-revenue sport to watch is the wrestling team.  The reason is simply because majority of the people that go to the matches are extremely familiar with the sport, how it's scored and the work ethic behind the scenes. If you've never wrestled or watched family wrestle, you probably haven't been to more than one or two matches in your life.

It is the most grueling yet rewarding sport you can partake in. You can sense the wrestlers feeding off of the crowd during the matches. Cliff Keen Arena is alright, but Iowa's Carver Hawkee Arena is like Disney World for wrestling advocates.