The crowds at school sporting events may be well known for being a rowdy bunch, but there a point when diehard fans are taking it too far.
Our sports teams never lack a rambunctious crowd of fans rooting their athletes on to victory. Our opponents expect it, and it, along with the many other traditions, is what brings our student body together.
Although some competitors may be on the receiving end of an intensified version of Eagle pride conveyed by fans, at the end of the day it should be known where the line is drawn.
Sporting events more publicized due to old rivalries shared with certain schools (i.e. Strake Jesuit, St. Pius X, etc.) often become the scene of a clash between sour crowds and, on occasion, players. There certainly is not anything wrong with some healthy competition, but when the student section has resorted to profane chants and throwing trash, our sportsmanship, character and the respect we have gained is all called into question.
The annual Strake game is always a heated event. Altercations between fans in previous years prompted officials to require more law enforcement present and a strict separation of those wearing green from those in red.
This year those precautions taken to prevent quarrels were ineffective in keeping the Strake band from marching right on up to our sideline during the halftime show. Their attempt to provoke indecency on our side was successful. We should have, but were unable to, resist the urge to retaliate, and instead lashed out by throwing trash at the band members.
This was not the representation of a man of St. Thomas that we are regularly trying to convey to others. The bawdy attempt of mockery that was shown by the Strake band was quickly forgotten and disregarded upon witnessing our reaction.
Our school needs more seniors that reside in the stands to take note of the excellent example for how a St. Thomas man should show school spirit exhibited by the sideline Eagle Guards and spread that behavior amongst underclassmen in the crowd.