As I surfed through the Internet this weekend, scouring for any and everything that bore even the smallest association with Georgetown basketball, I was quite pleased to find a letter by Scott Minto (SFS ’02), a founding member of Hoya Blue, posted on

Minto’s letter presented the very interesting idea of creating Traditions Day at Georgetown. The idea calls for a day on which the university would celebrate its heritage and allow “student groups, faculty and administrators to explore and exhibit their respective traditions within the context of the campus-wide celebration.”

Given Minto’s ties to Hoya Blue, I would assume that this celebration would focus on our athletic traditions. But even if it doesn’t entirely focus on those of the sporting world, reviving various athletic traditions or at least doing something to promote some sort of fan cohesion at sporting events is a great idea that deserves the support of the entire university.

When I first came to Georgetown and heard about Hoya Blue, I thought it was a great idea, a group whose sole purpose was to form a daunting student base to scream and cheer and present an imposing sight to the visiting team. But while at times this has definitely been successful, of late it seems to be slipping.

Before I go any further, let me make this perfectly clear, I do not dislike Hoya Blue. Some of my best friends are Bluish. Just because I criticized their tactics two years ago, and they managed to construe that criticism as some deep-born hatred to which they retaliated with several very mature prank calls, does not mean that I dislike the group. I think Hoya Blue could serve a very important function for our athletic department. That said, I don’t feel that it is currently fulfilling that function, which is why I fully support Minto’s Traditions Day and any other such proposals to increase student involvement in university athletics.

It is no secret that Hoya fans have not been the most boisterous in the nation in recent years. Even when students manage to fill the shrunken student section at MCI Center, the only cohesive cheers or taunts that we sport in our arsenal are those shared by every student in the nation. Believe it or not “De-fense!” was not a Georgetown original, nor was “Let’s go, (insert school), let’s go.”

But the blame for this lackadaisical attitude cannot fall on Hoya Blue. That would be like blaming a coach for the poor play of a team. But the group could, and should, be doing more to involve fans in games.

Since the beginning of the year, at every home Georgetown football game there are four freshmen kids who have painted their faces and screamed their lungs out even when most English majors couldn’t count to the opposing team’s point total. But these four were the only people doing anything to try to rally support for the Hoyas.

With just these four kids screaming, it seems like they’re only trying to be loud obnoxious fans – which is partly true, because they are loud. And they should be loud. And if more people, like those corralled by Hoya Blue, added their vocal chords to the fray, then Georgetown might finally have a daunting sideline presence supporting their team.

I don’t know if these four kids are Hoya Blue or not, but regardless, I commend them for doing a great job at home games this season. But they need more support.

This season the men’s basketball team will head down to Durham, N.C., to play in feared Cameron Indoor. Now THAT is what Georgetown fans and Hoya Blue should strive for. Students shouldn’t just attend games, they need to be a presence – loud, raucous and supportive, with unique, intelligent cheers.

What’s more impressive: “Let’s go Hoyas” or “Who’s your daddy, Battier?”

I realize that the spacious confines of MCI Center pretty much offer the acoustic atmosphere of a library, especially compared to the reverberant hells of arenas like Cameron, but there’s still a lot we can do.

The best part of last year’s season, from a fan’s point of view, was the free distribution of navy blue Hoyas T-shirts on every seat in the student section. These T-shirts should be a must-wear item for student fans. The student section would look pretty impressive if one quarter of the lower bowl appeared as an unbroken sea of navy.

The other thing that the Cameron Crazies do, and Hoya Blue should adopt, is to create a sheet full of cheers for each game. Prior to every home game at Duke, the students receive a sheet so that everyone knows four to five cheers to collectively use during games. When everyone knows when and what to shout, it sounds really imposing; imagine 1,000 kids start chanting “Boing, boing, boing” every time an opposing player dribbles and screaming “aaaAAAHH!” whenever he picks the ball up. That just has to be unsettling to the opposition.

Georgetown already has a lot of unique traditions that people like Minto have discovered, so Hoya fans and Hoya Blue should be well on their way with an arsenal of material. Let’s make sure tradition does not just make a one-day appearance in November, but rather becomes a fixture at every home athletic event. Hoya Blue has the capabilities to rally the Georgetown fan base, and if they lead effectively we should, and will, follow.

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