My daddy, one huge Ram fan, had season tickets to the VCU basketball games for many years, and always offered to take us kids. James took him up on the offer a few times, but I never went with him, something that I found that I would regret shortly. So once I was accepted to VCU, everyone asked me “Are you excited for the games?!” Which I would smile and say duh of course who wouldn’t be, and if the person was a bit realistic they might say something like “You know those tickets are impossible to get.” Well thanks a heap, Coyote Ugly, I really appreciate you bringing me down.
So a few weeks ago Hannah and I requested those all allusive men’s tickets against George Mason (Yes, you do have to request tickets. It’s a lottery), and a couple days ago we received emails with our tickets! Finally, I would be going a VCU game, and with my best friend!
So we got to the Stu and were immediately bombarded with size XL t-shirts (cool logic) before we could even find our seats in the student section. Getting as close to the court as we could, I gazed out at the sea of black and gold and found it hard to believe seven months ago I graduated from Saint Gertrude in this very same place that five months ago my five gajillion VCU freshman classmates and I endure Michael Moss’s hair during convocation.
So when the game started, Havoc was unleashed. Now this isn’t baseball so I can’t give you a play by play or color commentary, but it was an extremely close game. Back and forth, Mason up by 2, VCU up by 1, until about midway through the second half when it was pretty clear VCU was going to run away with it. Hannah and I cheered on Jordan Burgess like we did in high school, and a new little favorite who looks like Jazz from the Fresh Prince of Bel Air. (Is it bad that I found my fourth husband tonight? He plays basketball for Mason….awk.)
But just like the fight song says, “You don’t wanna go to war with the Rams”, you hella don’t wanna mess with the Ram fans. Since VCU breeds crazy and weird people, the fans are no exception. Looking across the court to the other side, in the mist of yellow Rowdy Rams I see this kid wearing a striped shirt and I’m like “hello there sir you’re supposed to be one of the most spirited people in this building where is your black and gold.” Then I realize this kid is dressed up as Where’s Waldo? This, I must tell you, is quite the occurrence at VCU, and it’s a good one. Another one of my favorites was the Rowdy Ram in our student section who wore a cape and ram horns hat and used a white board to give us cheering directions. What about the giant heads of Shaka and the players you can hold up to distract the opposition? Or better yet, what about our number one pep band, the Peppas, covering Miley Cyrus’s “Wrecking Ball”, including a cat poster to hold up?
I don’t watch enough basketball to know x from y (Note to self: watch more Chapel Hill games with Tim), but I do a good play when I see one. Like when one Ram missed a shot and then another air dunked it. Fight songs were played so much that now I can’t get them out of my head. But that’s okay.
A plus side of college games versus high school, besides the amazing pep band, is all the free stuff. Benedictine gave away expired McDonalds’ coupons once on their tickets; but here I got three free shirts and a sweet light-up button, Qdoba burritos were thrown to the crowd, and tshirts flew from the rafters, and there was a promise of more coupons if the Rams scored 85 points but they were just a few away.
My first VCU game was amazing and I’m so glad I got to go to one as a freshman and especially with my best friend! Even if I never went with my daddio, I know he was up there, glass of red wine in his hand, face glued to his tv, turning to whoever may be next to him and saying, “See Burgess? He went to Benedictine, where I went. He’s cool as shit. And you see that little girl in the silly striped pants? That’s my daughter, she’s with her friend, also a Gertie Girl, and this is their first VCU game.”