We have a conference game this week at noon. I can give you some excuses. We’re playing a team that’s 2-3, but should be 5-0. We’re playing at noon. Who cares? Get up. The Mantrip’s at 9:45 a.m. Are we going to have a good crowd or are we going to have nobody there?
You may have heard by now, but Holgy had a few choice words about the attendance at Mountaineer Field so far this year. He didn't go on a "rant" and he didn't yell and scream. Actually, he just answered a question about the attendance. And you know what? He's right. WVU fans, in terms of being consistently present, loud, and supportive, are not elite. At least not compared to the teams we'd like to associate ourselves with, like LSU.
Now, I'd like to see what the attendance is in Columbus or Ann Arbor or Happy Valley under those same circumstances. I'm sure I could find those numbers if I cared enough to dig. But really, it doesn't matter. Those programs already have their elite reputations and aren't going to lose that status any time soon. We're the ones trying to get into the club, so we need to tout the things we can control, like fan attendance. Yes, it's easy to not get excited when the weather sucks and we're playing an inferior opponent. But you know what it's easy to get excited about? This offense. I mean, if you don't enjoy watching Geno Smith, Tavon Austin, Stedman Baily and Dustin Garrison break school records on a weekly basis, I don't know why you bother being a fan.
Holgorsen talks about how the players and coaches are out there every week regardless of the weather. Well, yeah, that's their job. But he also talks about how highly regarded our fanbase was, then compares us to LSU, who drew 92,000 for a noon game against an awful Kentucky team. And he did it in his typical, matter-of-fact way.
See for yourself at the 13:10 mark:
I said earlier in the week that I was going to defend our fans on this one (though I have a different opinion about the Norfolk State attendance) because it was cold and wet, and we were playing Bowling Green the week after the biggest home game in years. Well, I was wrong. I left at halftime, and I shouldn't have. If I'm going to aspire that WVU be an elite program, I'm going to do more than just blog about it. I'm going to donate to the MAC to the extent that I can, and I'm going to go support my team at every opportunity. I understand that people sometimes have limitations where they can't make every game, whether those be logistical, financial, vocational, or familial. But there are certainly enough people, when we pool together and include the students as well, where we can pack Mountaineer Field every week. We owe it to players and coaches, we owe it to our university, and I think we owe it to ourselves if we truly want to call ourselves elite.
The good news is, there is something we can do about it, starting this week. This week, despite what Holgy said, we have no excuses. It's Big East play. It's against a team that beat us last year to knock us out of BCS bowl contention. It's supposed to be 78 and sunny. There are plenty of tickets left. Just go to www.wvugame.com and if those are sold out or you can't afford the $55, check our partner TiqIQ, where seats are going for $46. Or if that doesn't work, I guarantee you can scalp, and if all else fails, contact me through the blog and I'll see if I know of anyone trying to get rid of tickets. Seriously. See you Saturday.