Times are exciting in McGuirk Arena right now as both the men’s and women’s basketball teams are having successful seasons.
Unfortunately, you wouldn’t really know it from the “Rowdies.”
Head coach Keno Davis has been working off the court to get the student body to show up and cheer on his team. He’s offered free pizza, held student section events in McGuirk Arena and has had players meet and mingle with students to try to get them to come out. And they have, for the most part — attendance at last Wednesday’s game against Bowling Green was fantastic, with students filling both ends and flowing into the upper level of the arena. But the students weren’t nearly as loud or antagonistic as they could be.
All the while, women’s head coach Sue Guevara has done nothing but win on the court.
Guevara has prepared her Chippewas for a Mid-American Conference run with one of the toughest non-conference schedules in the entire nation, including a home game against 2012 national runner-up Notre Dame. Students came and got excited for that game, but that was it.
Guevara’s women’s team is good, really good.
It’s not only a threat for the MAC title, it’s gunning to make a run in the NCAA Tournament, and, with competitive games against the Fighting Irish and Marquette and wins against Purdue, Louisville, Texas in the last three seasons, that isn’t out of the question.
This is a team the student body should be proud of and should be excited to watch, yet students aren’t showing up, and, when they do, they aren’t rowdy.
While things are a bit better for the men’s team in terms of attendance, there still is not enough buzz around campus for a team that is on the rise. If we want the Chippewas to become a basketball force to be reckoned with, the student body needs to show up and make their voices heard.
It’s vital to the continued success of the teams that students show up. If CMU can trot out a successful team day in and day out with a raucous student section cheering them on, that can only mean good things for Keno and Guevara as they seek to recruit the top players in the state and region.