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yoco :: College Basketball
(a sports weblog) news and commentary on men's college basketball and the ncaa tournament

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Monday, November 15, 2004

Keeping it

real. Senior Jeremy Craig's affinity for Maryland Terrapins basketball games is, er, history.

I was a fan of Terrapin men's basketball, and as it happens, a damn good one. I camped out for tickets to the Maryland-Duke game in 2002. I went to every game that season in Cole Field House...I'm done for a lot of reasons. I'm done because of commercialism. For those of you who never experienced the atmosphere at Cole Field House, I can't describe its magic. It had soul. The Terps now play in a corporate "center" instead of a "field house." I'm done because of "Rock and Roll, Part II." For better or for worse, that was a tradition that defined the university and energized the crowd.

I'm done because of the new ticketing system. You're telling me I'm a senior who has been to every game this year and I can't even get into the game against Jackson State? I'm done because of the security staff telling me I have to sit down in the student section because I'm blocking someone's view. Are you kidding me? I'm sorry I support the team enough to stand and cheer...

I loved Terps men's basketball. It was a big part of my college experience. But I'm done. Maybe nobody in Maryland athletics will mourn the loss of a fan who didn't dish out money to the "M Club" and who drank water from the fountain to avoid paying $3.25 for Aquafina. Maybe that's because they've forgotten who the Terps play for.

I'd heard a lot about a student backlash against the administration's decision to uphold a ban against the controversial "Rock and Roll, Part II" cheer. But I excerpted Jeremy's piece because his critique runs deeper and should serve as a warning about the impact of certain reforms on collegiate athletics.