North Dakota’s Quest for Time-Honored College Football Rituals
There is a lot of college sports going on. It's a good chance to show school pride or make fun of people who aren't doing as well. Any color, brand, mascot, or food can be used. Several of my friends went to bigger schools with long-standing practices before and after games. Let's face it: when it comes to college football customs, the Big 10 schools have some of the most famous and loved ones in the country. From the "Jump Around" at Wisconsin to the "Script Ohio" at Ohio State, these practices are more than just pregame and postgame rituals; they are the heartbeat of college football.
Traditions before a game:
- Jump Around at Wisconsin: Before the fourth quarter, the Wisconsin Badgers and their fans do the famous "Jump Around" at Camp Randall Stadium. As fans jump around to House of Pain's hit song, the whole stadium shakes. This creates an electric environment that gets both players and fans excited.
- Before every home football game, the Michigan Wolverines football team takes part in "The Walk." As the players and coaches walk to the stadium, fans line the streets to cheer them on. This makes a sea of corn and blue.
- The Lion Shrine at Penn State: Before games, the Nittany Lions of Penn State rub the nose of the Lion Shrine for luck. Fans, players, and coaches all take part, which makes it a sign of school pride and unity.
Traditions after the game:
- "Script Ohio" at Ohio State: During break, the marching band at Ohio State University plays "Script Ohio." After the game, the sousaphone player, who is known as the "dotting of the 'i'," marches to the dot at the end of Ohio and carefully dots it, making for a unique moment after the game.
- Victory Bell at Minnesota: After every home win, the Minnesota Golden Gophers ring the Victory Bell. This custom brings the team and fans together after a win to show their pride and celebrate.
- After the first quarter of home games at Kinnick Stadium, all of the fans turn around and wave at the nearby children's hospital. It shows how much people care about the patients and their families.
Now, the question is: What practices could be started at the University of North Dakota (UND) or North Dakota State University (NDSU) in North Dakota? These are lame, but I needed to at least do my part!
The Bison Stampede (NDSU): Before games, the Bison mascot could lead fans in a "Bison Stampede" around the field. This could become a tradition at NDSU. This would get people excited and bring them together.
Fargo Freeze-Out (UND): After a home win, UND could start a "Fargo Freeze-Out" where fans wear winter clothes and fight with snowballs in the stadium. This would fit in with the weather in North Dakota and give the parties after the game a unique twist. I don't know if beer would play a role, but it would be interesting if it did.
Peace Garden Parade (Both): Before a game, both UND and NDSU fans could take part in a "Peace Garden Parade" as a joint ritual. This symbolic action would honor the universities' shared past and friendship.
Here are some thoughts. These "new" customs would not only make things better before and after games at UND and NDSU, but they could also cement their place as some of the best college football traditions in the country. "Tradition never graduates," as the saying goes, and these new traditions could become a part of college football in North Dakota for a long time to come. What idea do you have? Use our social media pages to tell us.