As game ticket prices for all sporting events inch ever skyward, there’s a growing concern about gameday atmosphere. Stadia are promoting luxury suites and “improved sight lines” — but this has some consequences for the ordinary fan (and we’ll get to Notre Dame Stadium and our solution in a minute).
In the past year, various reports have been popping up that stadium ushers at both NFL and NBA games have issued “fan card” warnings to spectators who may be disturbing those around them, or in some cases, cheering for the visiting team.
First things first: crass fan behavior has no place in a public forum (or online, but that’s another discussion for another time).
But there’s quite a difference between the environment of watching a game from one’s couch, in a climate-controlled room, with several HD camera angles…and the sights — and yes, sounds — of immersing oneself in a live sporting event.
Attempts for Improvement
But some teams (and fans) are doing it right, in my opinion. Much ink has been spilled about Super Bowl Champion Super Bowl Champion Seattle Seahawks and their “12th Man” crowd influence, but the crowds in Kansas City rivaled those anywhere else in the NFL. Last autumn on the collegiate level, Clemson took a shot at some historic decibel levels when FSU came calling, and there’s the legend of seismic events in Baton Rouge.
Notre Dame’s Position
So where does Notre Dame’s Stadium and fans fit into all of this? The answer, as with many things, is complicated.
On the one hand, there are both distant and recent examples of crowd noise (and crowds with phantom whistles?) that frustrate opponents. And different arms of the school itself have encouraged a more engaged fanbase — from the athletic director to quirky videos. We’d like to reward & encourage more of this behavior/atmosphere.
But there are swaths of fandom who still prefer a mausoleum of 80,000 — a seated and sanitized experience free from the inconveniences of standing or elevated decibel levels. What’s an enthusiastic fan to do?
We here at HLS HQ have put together a fan card for folks who want to leave their opera glasses at home. Now you can proactively notify those near you of your plans. We’ve accounted for a wide range of opinions, states of mind, and sentiments. Print some of these out, check off the appropriate boxes, and cheer as Her Loyal Sons are marching onward to victory.