Student Section: Not as Cool as You’d Think


It’s homecoming week, which means an endless supply of spirit day pictures on Instagram, the same posters hung in the same hallways every year, a pep rally that is always more rally than pep, and the iconic homecoming game. Thanks to childhood television shows glamorising high school football and “Friday Night Lights”, the bleachers are typically full of students who know little about the sport, cheering on a team that’s losing by 30 points. With weekly spirit themes that are always either completely overboard or barely noticeable, it’s hard to miss who’s watching the game to enjoy it, and who’s part of the Student Section. 

The inconveniences from this section exclude members of the Eagle Club and those who come to support the players, who can make the game more exciting and are a vital part of home games. It’s those who occupy the Student Section that use the game as an excuse to hang with people they never see outside of school that prove to be more of a distraction than a fun addition. With their back consistently turned against the field, it shows the disrespect these games receive from members of this section. The majority of attendees of the football games are the families of players coming to support their loved one in an environment they thrive in. These families shouldn’t have their focus involuntarily falter between who they’re supporting and other students running amuck without paying attention to the game. The occasional conversation is perfectly fine, but when it means missing a touchdown or field goal, it’s evident the reason for being there is to hang with friends and not necessarily watch the game. 

Outside of cheerleading and playing an instrument in the marching band, it can be difficult for other students to express their support for the football team, which is where the Student Section comes in. It can be exhilarating at times to laugh with people whose names you just learned, but it’s a different story when the vexatious screams and cacophonies of laughter are the only things heard while everyone else is silent because a player is lying down, injured on the field. A player could be experiencing any amount of excruciating pain, and it shouldn’t fall on someone else’s shoulders to instruct the Student Section to sit down and stay silent. And even when the crowd is seated in the stands, the silence is broken by the continuation of conversations. Coaches, medics, and other professionals need the proper, quiet environment to efficiently and effectively diagnose the situation and help the injured individual as best and safely as possible. What they don’t need is a crowd complaining about how long the rest of the game is going to be or if they have enough time to run and get some concessions before the game continues. 

Though mask mandates have been somewhat lifted, it doesn’t mean this return to normalcy should be taken for granted. Personal space isn’t always a bad thing, and there are enough stands to spread out further than one small section of bleachers. We’ve lasted almost two months while wearing masks during school hours, and while there aren’t any mandates per se about outdoor activities, it couldn’t hurt to continue to protect each other. It’s impossible to tell how long we’ll be able to see each other face-to-face everyday, and the inevitable should be prolonged as much as possible. It’s certainly not just the students choosing not to wear masks, but the rowdiness and lack of proper distancing makes these games a dramatically higher risk than it would be if more distancing were practiced.  

It’s fun to dress up. It’s fun to wave or shout happy cheers. But it stops being fun the instant it stops being about the game and cheering on the team, and becomes distracting. At the end of the day, people come to watch football. They don’t come to see rambunctious teenagers who want to play “main character” for the night. They don’t want to watch disgruntled teenagers consider themselves cool for simply showing up to a game. 

Students should be coming to sports games. Though the football season may be ending, many other sports are starting to have theirs. Students should be supporting their classmates. But they shouldn’t be disrespectful or a distraction to the game they paid to attend.