With the greatest event in sports upon us, I want to visit a controversy that has been talked about a lot this year. Let me set a little stage for you: "The year is 2000-2001 and Gallagher Iba arena has been voted one of the loudest arenas in college basketball. The Missouri Tigers visit the Pokes and the arena is packed. So packed, that my friends and I get there a bit late and are using binoculars to see the action from our seats. I will never forget this game, because it was the loudest I have ever heard in that place. The play that sealed the deal was Terrence Crawford stealing the ball and slowly rumbling down the court to slam it home. I lost my mind, didn't think twice and started running down the aisle towards the floor. Sitting where we were it took us a while to get there, but we didn't care at all, we wanted to be on that floor tackling TC to the floor. And we got to the floor and it was mayhem."
I look at this and wonder a couple of things. First of all, why did we do it. My answer for that is because it was an out of body experience. At no point in the rushing of the court, did my mind kick in and tell me I should hold my horses and give it a rest. Secondly, should we have rushed the court. And the answer to that is no, we shouldn't have. It was a crazy game and a huge win, but it did not merit us bombarding the court. Third, is it a smart, safe practice. The answer is a clear, a resounding no. When you have thousands of college aged kids having an out of body experience and not able to control themselves, you are in trouble. I know, I lived in a fraternity house. Never do the kids who are rushing the courts have any control of their actions and when that happens, bad things will happen.
Here is what rushing the court does, the pros and cons.
Pros - The fans feel like they actually won the game. You find them running around aimlessly wondering where they are and who they can hug
The players kind of like it. They like it when fans come to congratulate them and Rudy them off the field.
That's about it, there is nothing else.
Cons - As you can see from the video above, no one has control and if someone is trampled, well, good luck.
You are entering onto the players turf. We remember what happened when Artest decided to have a calm, polite conversation with the gentleman in the stands who was trying to get his attention. Well, if fans rush the courts, they are not caring about the opposing teams players, and those players are not in a good mood. They should be able to defend themselves if needed.
Act like you have been there. When Hickory won on the final shot to win the Indiana State High School Basketball Championship, that should be a rushing the court type of afternoon. But this year, when OSU beat OU at home, should they have rushed the court, no they shouldn't have. It just becomes childish.
Coach K things it is a bad idea, and he is smarter than me.
All this to say, I understand why kids do it, but I do not agree with it. It is becoming a fad, like Dave Matthews, Toms, or Presidents. People don't know why they do it, they just do it because they are following others.
Side Bar to prove that last point:
Most people there aren't there for the right reason of being a fan. Let me explain. The new cheer everyone does is when an opposing player fouls out of a game, the home crowd starts to ovally escort them to the bench, chanting "Left, Right, Left, Right" as they walk, and then when the player sits down, the fans yell "Sit Down!!" Well, players aren't dumb, so they wait until the home team is shooting their first free throw, and then sit down. So you basically have the home fans rooting against the home team's first foul shot. This makes me livid, and you can usually find me yelling at the scream for them to shut-up. They have no idea it could hurt their players, they just want to cheer and follow the crowd.
I would like to offer places where we should start 'storming the court'
- Church - after a killer sermon
- Bullritos - after they masterfully create our meal
- Car Wash - after our car is dried, who wanted want a storm of rabid, pleased customers
- Weddings - Right after the I Do's
- Kid's first potty training - Like that one commercial, how awesome would that be
- Dance Recitals - When your daughter hits that perfect Swan Lake whatever dancers do
- Airplanes - When the pilot safely touches down, because he did just save all of our lives
So, as a country, let's ban storming the court and try these new practices. Please for the love of God, Coach K and Wheelchair Robert are begging you.