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Uh, no, they’re saying "Boo-urns, Boo-urns."

For the record, I applauded at the half …. very unhappy, but it was applauseBoo-birds were heard at least twice within The Rock Saturday. Once, when Presbyterian’s team ran out onto the field.

The second? When App State ran off at the end of the first half. And yes, as we said, this was AT The Rock.

The latter flock was much less conspicuous than the first, but was indeed heard. Now, is it fair to classify both boo batches as the same, or different?

Let’s ask an expert. What does Bill Simmons say?

I believe a player should be booed by the home crowd for four reasons only: 1) a noticeable lack of effort, 2) an indefensibly dumb mistake, 3) if the coach keeps stupidly trotting him out in big spots (in which case the expressed displeasure is for the decision, not the player) and 4) if he happens to be named Tim Thomas or J.D. Drew. Our favorite teams are extended families. There’s no way you’d boo a family member at a Little League game, so why is it okay to boo someone on your favorite team? What’s the goal? To make him feel worse than he already does?

From time to time, a respected veteran even upbraids the fans for badgering a player. Jason Varitek recently begged Red Sox fans to stop booing the beleaguered Drew, saying, “I wish the fans understood how much power they have. They can help J.D. Drew.”

But just for the hell of it, let’s say Boston fans took Varitek’s advice. Let’s say they cheered Drew every time he came up, and every time he killed an inning, they reacted like Little League parents and shouted things like “Keep your head up, buddy!” and “Don’t worry, we didn’t need those runs!” How long could that show of faith last before they turned on him again?

True, professional baseball is a much different beast than the huge commercialized big business the student-athlete-centered college football. But fans are fans, regardless of the sport.

The Apps inspired some home boos for – charitably speaking – failing to live up early to their potential. It’s one thing to struggle at home against the mighty Stink or Furman. Quite another to appear lucky to have a three-point halftime lead against a second-year I-AA FCS program.

Those few halftime boos were more a vocal demonstration of “you guys are better than this” than a “you suck” chant.

Not excusing it, just tryin’ to explain it. And not sayin’ it should happen, but acknowledging that it will.

We’re big time now, remember? You expect otherwise?

12 Comments

  1. Dominick

    September 29, 2008 at 10:09 am

    Well put! Not one of those that Booed but can understand why they would…I was however very silent until we caught fire later in the 2nd half.

  2. Geoff

    September 29, 2008 at 10:12 am

    As previously stated, I don't think booing is the right approach, silence would have gotten the point across. I do agree however that it was more of a motivating, "you are better than this" than a "i hope you don't come back out and play another half" sort of deal, at least that's how i tried to look at it since i KNOW our fan base is classier than that (we sounded like a CAA stadium). Hopefully the only jeers we hear next weekend will be towards the general existence of the Bulldog football program. Give 'em Hell Apps, welcome these puppies back to MOUNTAINEER COUNTRY!

  3. Appgrad

    September 29, 2008 at 10:54 am

    I was saying Boo-urns…

  4. Appgrad

    September 29, 2008 at 10:55 am

    BTW – Simmons also said that you shouldn't be able to complain about your team for 3 years after they win a championship (or some time frame like that).

    After 3 National Titles, I think that means we have to be quiet for 9 or so years. 🙂

  5. Jesse

    September 29, 2008 at 11:26 am

    I don't agree with booing but I was certainly quiet as they left the field at the end of the first half.

  6. Dave

    September 29, 2008 at 11:27 am

    I didn't boo, but believe it or not, I did shout "Come on guys, your better than this!" Not to defend booing, but I do think Simmons's #1 reason may have come into play a bit in the first half with some of the crowd.

  7. Kelly

    September 29, 2008 at 1:50 pm

    The reason Varitek was asking fans to give to Drew a break last year (that WAS last year, not "recently") was because Drew's little boy, a toddler, was in a full-body cast at the time. Fans don't stop to realize that these guys have a life off the field and sometimes that life can have an effect on their on-field performance.

  8. clayton

    September 29, 2008 at 2:13 pm

    not a fan of booing our own team but, you think Coach Moore can recruit a player with a name that sounds like boo? I always thought that was fun. Like Issac Bruce? Does he have a kid or nephew, we could use another receiver?

  9. Geoff

    September 29, 2008 at 2:45 pm

    "not a fan of booing our own team but, you think Coach Moore can recruit a player with a name that sounds like boo? I always thought that was fun. Like Issac Bruce? Does he have a kid or nephew, we could use another receiver?"

    i think Muhsin Muhammad has like 6 kids (at least two boys in there i believe), it was kinda cool hearing "MOOOOSE" throughout B.O.A. Stadium this weekend, might have to look into his kids. just make sure we don't recruit anyone from the Brad "HOOOOV" Hoover Family….cant trust anyone born and raised to become a Catamount!

  10. rebekah815

    September 29, 2008 at 6:17 pm

    I can testify that my family was sitting in front of the main perpetrators of the booing at the Presbyterian game. When we asked them to stop, they responded with " we paid the same amount as you did for these tickets and we can do what we want." That, of course, escalated into more immature and unsportsmanlike conduct on their part. They (highly intoxicated) began to hurl obscenities at us and call us the "wine and cheese" crowd for suggesting that they control their behavior. I wish people would #1. Be more respectful and considerate, #2. Pay attention to the fact that there are children around them ( and by the way, my children have just as much a right to be there as they do). We have become friends with almost all of the people whose season tickets are around ours, and these newcomers just don't get it. Loyal Mountaineer fans don't boo their own team under any circumstances. One more item of note: One of the "booers" said," I'm from Philadelphia and we boo the team when it stinks." Well jerk, you're not in Philadelphia anymore. All of us in our section would gladly chip in to send you back!

  11. Barry

    October 1, 2008 at 9:32 am

    There is never a time to boo, not even the other team. Silence is much better when the other team comes out. Have I been upset with our play at times this year? You bet!but booing needs to stop at a first rate University.

  12. smiley

    October 1, 2008 at 6:37 pm

    Presume it's a lot of "johnny-come lately" fans. Booing is BUSH LEAGUE!!! Especially at The Rock!

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