Friday, September 14, 2012
Golden Gopher Football: Students Starting To Believe?
With the Gopher season only 2 games in, and the team undefeated, it appears that this might be the year the students invest. With big crowds following to the team to Las Vegas and the student section being “packed” this past week, the question begs to be answered; “Are the students starting to believe?”
Even though there were a lot of free tickets handed out to students prior to last weeks game against UNH, I still believe the passion and emotion for the team was there. Usually when you get something free you are just going to check it out. Not these kids. They game with a passion and an excitement not seen at The Bank in recent memory.
Maybe it was the nice weather and the fact that the team steam rolled UNH. Or maybe it was that some of the 21+ plus student could enjoy their favorite adult beverage for the first time at the game. Either way, they showed up full throttle.
Now I know some people will say, “But wait; only the lower level was packed. Not the whole thing.” This statement is true. However, with no real assigned seating at the games for student, most, no matter how cramped, will pile into the lower deck. Once there is literally no room, other than someone’s shoulders, they make their way to the upper deck. I can’t blame them.
The atmosphere in the locker deck is electric. From the moment the team is on the field for warm ups and until the last whistle blows, it’s a Gopher Nation party. Will the second deck get there? I really do believe so. If the team keeps winning and the weather stays nice, The Bank will become a hot ticket.
With the weather appearing to mirror that of last weeks, I expect much the same, if not better, this Saturday when the Broncos of Western Michigan visit Dinkytown. The Broncos post a record of 1-1 with a loss vs. Illinois (24-7) and a win against Eastern Illinois (52-21).
UWM appears to have a solid weapon in receiver Jaime Wilson. In two games he already has 3 TD’s on 19 catches for 213 yards. If Alex Carder can get his favorite target the ball early and often, it could be a long day for the Gophers.
I believe the Gophers will match their win total from last year on Saturday, but I don’t think it will be as easy as the last victory. One thing I do know is that if the student section shows up and the fans get behind this team, it could make a world of difference this season. With other teams struggling early in the Big Ten season, we might just be smelling ros….sorry, could finish that yet, but hopefully soon.