Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern


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Regan: Gold is the new purple

For every Northwestern student from a Midwestern state, college sports produce a conundrum. Growing up on the Big Ten, many of us had die-hard love for our state schools – or at least loving apathy. But by choosing to attend NU, we had to maintain a delicate balance when said state school was in the same league and played the Wildcats.

Uh-oh.

There are some who completely disavow State U for the Purple, as they are paying enough tuition to keep a sub-Saharan family of 10 happily fed for the better part of a decade.

Others hate the Cats and stay loyal to their roots.

But some of us choose certain sports to root for: NU for football, Big Ten state school for basketball or baseball, safe for hockey because the Cats don’t field a team. Well, I’m in that camp. I jumped on the Minnesota hoops bandwagon early and saw through the Cats mirage of greatness.

I was sure the Gophers would dismantle NU the same way they did last year, when they swept the season series and outscored the Cats by 39 in two meetings. So sure, in fact, that I wore my favorite maroon and gold Minnesota sweatshirt along with my new Twins hat.

After being asked for my WildCARD to sit in the student section, I took my seat and waited for the carnage to start. It looked good until halftime, when the Cats surprised everyone and actually played the full 20 minutes.

Yes, I was shocked. Yes, I felt like an idiot, though a fortunate idiot due to the number of Minnesota fans who trekked south for the game. But I found a way to help the team win more than one home game every other year.

Fans, dress up in the opposing team’s colors and root against the Cats.

Call me crazy, but so far it has worked once. All the other methods are spent. Nobody has faith in underdogs anymore after they watched NU go belly-up every time a conference foe appeared at Welsh-Ryan last season.

Be that fan who chooses teams and picks against the Cats. You will have the opportunity to bring down the average of the opposing state school’s collective good looks, not to mention the chance to help out our sagging economy with big purchases of team paraphernalia.

Instead of meekly taunting the other schools’ student fans, we can, as one, taunt the season ticket holders.

But even better, the team will actually have a chip on its shoulder when it has to earn back the trust of its own fans and has to shut up a hostile Wildside.

The best part of choosing sports to root for and against the Cats in is that at pep rallies for football, students could collectively burn their enemy colors to help pump up a team that doesn’t respond to normal cheering.

Hopefully, this strategy works well enough to propel the Cats to victory in their seven remaining home contests and possibly to some sort of postseason.

Should that happen, bring out the bandwagon and let everyone on.

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Regan: Gold is the new purple