Can you feel it?
The 2015 UCF Knights football season kicks off in just one week and I can almost hear the chant of “U-C-F” echoing throughout The Bounce House already.
The Knights begin their AAC title defense with what should be an easy win with FIU coming to Orlando next Thursday night…but hopefully that won’t deter fans from showing up and doing so before the opening kickoff.
Over the years UCF fans have had to deal with a lot of media people both locally and nationally making fun of them for their less than spectacular attendance numbers. The reasons have always been talked about and for the most part they all make sense…but not anymore.
I understand that there are 60,000+ students at UCF and not all of them are football fans, nor do they have to be. That doesn’t excuse showing up late, leaving early and bailing on games because of kickoff time or opponent…and don’t tell me about the weather, this is football.
Season ticket holders get a bit of a pass for the most part. A lot of them have families and careers to worry about. This makes weeknights and noon kickoffs on Saturdays more difficult for them.
Students obviously have classes to worry about, but so do students at Ohio State, Oregon and Texas. Their fans don’t have a problem showing up before kickoff for every single home game.
Winning games and the bureaucratic stuff is on George O’Leary, but it’s the fans that could put the cherry on top of the power-5 sundae. A loud and excited home crowd looks amazing on television…silver benches do not.
I have personally witnessed a massive improvement over the past few seasons when it comes to both overall attendance and the time of arrival of the student section, but it isn’t enough. Not at this, the highest point in UCF football history.
This is the time that the program needs you most.
If the Big XII is in fact tuning in, then now is the time to prove the media types wrong. Show them that they are wrong to underestimate the UCF fan base and make their jokes. Prove that you’re ready to not only watch big time football, but be big time fans.
It’s time to become the beginning of a great college football tradition.
Stop with the excuses (fair or not), show up before kickoff and stay for the Alma Mater after the game. Create an atmosphere that terrifies visiting teams and makes them dread coming to The Bounce House. Make UCF a place that players across the country say, “Hey, I want to play there.”
I know it can happen because I’ve already seen it first hand at the Bounce House Brawl two seasons ago. The home crowd that day had a top-10 South Carolina team rattled. Imagine what a crowd like that would do to SMU, USF or FIU.
Next Thursday night the media will expect you all to roll into the stadium near the end of the first quarter and leave before the fourth. They’ll expect to see a half empty Bounce House and a lackluster crowd for a lackluster opponent.
Prove them wrong.
Any and all feedback welcomed! Get me on Twitter (@Ditti33) or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org!