The attendance – more importantly the “loyalty” – of West Virginia’s fan base needs to be addressed.
This past Saturday, I was quick to realize how fast the student section had emptied out in a homecoming game versus Texas Tech. When the Mountaineers were down 35-17 at the end of the 4th quarter, there was a noticeable difference in attendance. This is flat out unacceptable.
There are only six home games a year and the excuse of wanting to go drink and tailgate is old. I get it, though. Who doesn’t want to have a few beers with their friends? But, you have 359 other days of the year to drink whenever you want. Hell, you can still drink after the game is over. My message to the student section is quit bailing out on your team. The Mountaineers are playing on the biggest stage in college football and in a Power 5 conference loaded with great teams to watch. Remember, the players feed off of the crowds energy. It may not decide every game, but it can sure help.
Perfect example – last year vs Oklahoma. I understand the score was 41-7 at the half, but when the team cut the lead to 41-28, there was absolutely no crowd. Could you imagine how loud the stadium would have been if no one left? I love the craziness of the student section, but it comes no where close to other’s around the country. It looks bad and embarrassing when the students file out of the stadium.
Many other Mountaineer fans have pointed out this issue and have wanted the student allotment to be reduced if the poor attendance or early exits continue. I wholeheartedly agree with them. If they are not going to stay, then give them to fans that will stay the entirety of the game. Every home game I attend, the entire stadium fills up and stays full with the exception of the students. If it happened every once in a while, it would be different, but when you expect it every game, its embarrassing. If you look at any stadium around the country, their students fill up their section well before kickoff, our’s trickle in all the way up to the 2nd quarter. The Mountaineers are the professional football team of West Virginia. Show your pride and STAY to cheer on these guys until the clock runs out. The amount of hours and hard work they put in should not go unnoticed.
Note*- Those students who do show up early and stay throughout the duration of the game, we appreciate you! Now get more to do likewise.