The Norman Transcript

January 12, 2013

Stand up and cheer for Sooner team


The Norman Transcript

NORMAN — Editor, The Transcript:

I am writing this letter with a sad heart. It may spark a discussion. It may fall on deaf ears. I’m going to give it a try. Please don’t get bored and stop reading.

My husband and I live in Canyon, Texas. Our daughters graduated from the University of Oklahoma. Meaghan Collier, Gaylord College of Journalism & Mass Communications, Class of 2005, and Mandi Collier, College of Arts & Sciences, Class of 2007. Gary and I have traveled to Norman for football games since Meaghan began in 2001. We have not missed a home game. We travel to out-of-town games, OU/Texas games and bowl games. We have six season tickets and are proud of our perfect attendance. We love the Sooners.

We are passionate about Sooner football. We stand and cheer with a vengeance. We never give up. Our season tickets are in Section 20, and — as far as I can tell — ours is standing and cheering throughout the game.

We traveled to the Cotton Bowl game. Unfortunately, our past experiences with enjoyable football games and fans were abruptly demoralized.

We sat in a section full of OU fans. We were provided red and white pom poms. These were obviously provided to the fans to be used for cheering on the Sooners. We are on our feet, along with the rest of the section, except for time-outs and media time-outs. If our boys were on that field, giving it their all, then the least we could do as fans was be on our feet supporting them with our voices (and pom poms).

At the beginning of the fourth quarter, our row was surprised by a security guard telling us we had to sit down. We, of course, argued (yes, we argued loudly) our point and our right to stand and cheer for our team. The ticket does not require the fan to sit down, nor does it stipulate when a fan can stand up or for how long. There are rules regarding stadium usage, but there is no standing-up rules.

There were 88,000 people in that stadium. Why were they not asked to sit also? We didn’t see the Aggies sitting down. We were not drinking (the beer was too expensive) and we were not shouting profanities. We were cheering for our team.

We left our section, with the security guard, and yes, we were not happy and were verbalizing our disgust of the situation. We were then confronted by six Arlington police officers.

Meaghan is a producer and host for a TV affiliate. The security guards and police officers, and the “fan,” didn’t like her relevant journalistic questions regarding the situation at hand. My son-in-law was removed from the stadium. He was removed because the woman sitting in the seat behind him “couldn’t see.”

I asked this woman later why she didn’t stand up, and her remark was “I didn’t want to.”

I am sad, appalled, disgusted and sickened by the behavior of this female “fan.” We, as a section, were standing, yelling, cheering and supporting our Sooners. Those boys were on that field working as hard as they could, doing the best they could, giving it all they had, and yet this “fan” had the nerve to call security and have a young man thrown out because he was standing and cheering and she couldn’t see.

My advice to this “fan” and any other “fan” who wants to sit and quietly remark “Go Sooners” should stay at home from now on. We need standers and yellers and cheerers. Just like we see on the big screen, during home games: “Make Some Noise.”

Sooner football players and coaches, I am apologizing for that woman’s behavior. Shame on her. You deserve better fans than that.

We will continue to support you and your efforts and will continue to stand, cheer and be proud that we support Sooner football. Maybe it wasn’t a perfect season, but only a select few are. Co-Big 12 Champions and a 10-3 season is something to be proud of.

Thank you for an enjoyable season. Good luck, and we will see you at the spring game.

DEBBIE COLLIER

Canyon, Texas

For local news and more, subscribe to The Norman Transcript Smart Edition, or our print edition.