by Carson Storie
The Eagle Guard is a time-honored tradition. Only the most spirited of the student body can be on the Eagle Guard.
Their responsibilities are to lead the pep-rallies and the chants at the football games in addition to escorting Tom Eagle to and from all of the games.
The Eagle Guard for this year includes seniors Collin Burwinkel, Josh Mitford, Cole Stevenson, Paul Palomo, Zack Krus, Nathan Hoelker and Matt O’Connor. They plan on making this year different and more unique than previous years.
Friday, Sept. 6 was this year’s first pep-rally. It featured many of the same chants students are used to doing at pep-rallies. It included the cheerleaders performing a routine too.
The pep-rally also included the much anticipated “Beat Strake” video, in which students and faculty members did their best to get pumped up for the big game.
The only new element used in this pep-rally was the balloon sticks. These noise-makers added to the chaos and intensified the cheers from the students.
While this pep-rally was exciting and inspiring, this year’s Eagle Guard believes that they can do an even better job.
“The balloon sticks were a good addition,” junior Danny Bang said. “They made the pep-rally a fun experience.”
The noise-makers were an effective tool at Friday’s pep-rally. They made it much louder in the gym and got a lot of students to participate in the pep-rally. The Eagle Guard hopes to use this to their advantage.
“We are going to try to bring different noise-makes, like cowbells, to each pep-rally,” O’Connor said.
However, noise makers are not allowed at the football games. Many students, parents and property owners living adjacent to the football field probably remember the cannon that sounded off when the Eagles scored last year at select home games.
“We cannot use the cannon again because it is against TAPPS rules for noise-makers,” Hoelker said.
At the first two football games of this season, the Eagle Guard led the student section in chants in addition to escorting Tom Eagle. These chants were very loud, as the attendance for the student section for the first two games was impressive.
High attendance might have been a result of the fact that both of these games were home games.
Unfortunately for the fans, the football team has two away games, a bye week and two more away games over the course of the next five weeks.
The games include at Huffman-Hargrave, at Concordia Lutheran and at Beaumont Kelly, each one over 45 minutes away from campus. This has some members of the Eagle Guard worried, as the past has proven that attendance at away games has been less than stellar.
“We are going to try to get some students to go on buses to away games,” Hoelker said.
Student Council, in conjunction with the Eagle Guard members, is trying to get buses for students to ride to away games.
There will be a bus going to Huffman-Hargrave this Friday. Students will be charged $10 to ride the bus, but there are only fifty seats. If more students sign up to ride the bus than what it can hold, student council will consider paying for a second bus for the next away game.
Hopefully, the addition of noise makers and the transportation of students to away games by bus will increase the participation, attendance and enthusiasm at pep-rallies and football games.
A higher attendance at away games should take away the other team’s home field advantage because we know that our students can out shout and dominate any other student section.