Two weeks ago we brought you an inside look at a fan’s perspective following the Huskies on the road. This week, we’ve started another series of Dawg Pack Road Trip chronicles, this time on the way to Corvallis to take on the Oregon State Beavers. Our guest author is Joseph Wood, a University of Washington student and Dawg Pack member.
Dawg Pack Road Trip, Part III: Warmups
By Joseph Wood
We see Coach Romar for the first time and yell to him. He acknowledges us with his famous, awkward fist pump.
Shortly thereafter, we come across the real person we have all been waiting for. We spotted him earlier, walking around the arena when we were outside looking in. It’s the Oregon State ballboy, Jarred, and here he is (Jarred, for those of you who don’t know, has been an OSU ballboy for a number of years, of which he has spent time interacting with the Dawg Pack during games in Seattle. He is a decent shooter and likes talking the attention we feed him.) We chant his name and he immediately turns and laughs as he acknowledges us. He told us in Seattle last year that he would not be back in 2009, but says now that “things did not work out,” without elaboration (grades, perhaps?). We now have all the material we need. We continue talking to/heckling Jarred as he walks around the court aimlessly doing nothing, ignoring his own players and basically perfecting the same role he’s played for years.
That’s when we are approached by our first usher. She comes up from the floor and tells us that we are not allowed to heckle the players. She is very serious and looks mean. We tell her we are friends with Jarred in an attempt to diffuse the situation. But then she surprises us all with a smile, and says “I’m joking” with a laugh. She may be joking, but as more and more students start to file in around us we can tell that we are not as appreciated by the security staff as this lady has made it out to be.
We are soon approached by our second usher of the night. She asks if we have tickets for the seats we’re currently in, and we explain that are seats are up higher but we’re just watching warm-ups. She seems satisfied with this and turns around. The Oregon State ushers are, so far, much nicer than any of the other security staffs around the Pac-10. The usher talks on her radio for a second, then turns back around and says, “Sorry guys, but my supervisor says you are going to have to move.” No doubt we’ve made an impact, if we are what they’re talking about on the radio. We have Come Early, Been Loud, and plan to stay late! We’re also wearing purple.
After moving up to our real seats, we are greeted by fellow Huskies whose seats are near ours. We continue to yell from halfway up the upper level, as the arena is still fairly empty and our voices continue to carry. We then yell with the Dawgs as they do their “Husky Jacks” to conclude warm-ups. As the floor clears, Jarred, the ball-boy, reemerges with a basketball. The crowd of Husky fans goes nuts. We yell down to him, doing our best to convince him to put a shooting display. He complies with no hesitation, stealing the show from the other ball boys who don’t quite understand what it means to be cool.