Normally, I am a pretty laid back person and don't get too bent out of shape over many things, but when I read this article that Aaron emailed to me today, I became immediately pissed off. Seeing red, angry, smoke coming out of my ears pissed off! We have an incredible football program, which I have just dedicated several posts too, then I read THIS! This is absolute BS! The University is just shooting themselves int he foot. If they think the underage drinking is a problem, perhaps they should go about it in a different manner.
Posted in the Daily Iowan
Tailgating Atmosphere Should be Embraced, Not Stifled
The atmosphere of tailgating prior to an Iowa Hawkeye home football game has come under increasing scrutiny in recent years, as popular pregame hot spots closed, became more expensive, or, as was the case with the Field House parking lot, became parking ramps. Recently, The Daily Iowan learned of yet another blow to the tailgating experience: the closure of the grassy hill adjacent to the Myrtle Avenue parking lot.Now, it is a common belief that tailgating is simply an excuse to start drinking at 6 a.m. And while this may be true for some, for most it is a way to display school spirit and pride in a team they love; it brings together thousands of fans, creating an exciting environment unrivaled by most other schools. Attempting to stifle this demonstration of support for a football team that has brought national recognition to both the university and the team alike is distressing, at best.For students, the closure of essentially the last (affordable) tailgating spot within 20 minutes of Kinnick Stadium is especially regrettable. Without a doubt, students provide the highest level of enthusiasm on game day but have received the least amount of consideration when it comes to things football. The crowd at Kinnick feeds off the energy emitted from the student section, and, yet, we were moved to the corner of the stadium, where a view from the 10-yard line is all we can hope for, at best. Sadly, it seems our tailgating tradition is next on the chopping block.The decision to fence off this popular parking area will not just make it more difficult to attend games - it will also discourage tailgaters from engaging in the pregame festivities that make the Hawkeye football season the memorable experience it is. This, of course, is a byproduct of the lot closure and not the reason publicized by the athletics department. Predictably, the department cited safety as the main reason for the parking ban, though in years past, this has not been an issue. Specifically, officials are worried vehicles would slide down the hill into traffic on Riverside Drive, though, unless an ice storm hits Iowa City in September, this seems far-fetched.Yet another rationalization for the university's hindering of the tailgating tradition is the supposed significant issue of vandalism in the surrounding area. However, after a search of DI articles from 2002 to 2006, no publicized reports of vandalism were discovered.The implausibility of these reasons has led many fans to conclude the university is simply attempting to muffle the tailgating roar prior to kickoff - an assumption, as has been demonstrated, not without precedent. What university officials must understand is tailgating is not merely an activity for students. Alumni and other lifelong Hawkeye fans have been and will continue to be affected by the shrinking number of tailgating venues near the stadium.Rather than suppress pregame activities, the university should look for ways to enhance the Iowa football experience - and integrate itself with fans of all ages.
© 2006 Daily Iowan
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I know it would never happen and I wouldn't want to do it to the players, but I would love to see the ENTIRE student section not show up for a game in protest of the closing of the hill. Some of my favorite college memories are of tailgating. This is ludacris. If you click on the title of the article, you can go to the original and leave comments on the DI's website. I encourage you to do so. Right now, I hate the man. Let's stick it to him.