Sunday, September 7, 2008

Note to the OSU Athletic Department

Closing the stands because they are unsafe (even though the materials for new bleachers have been lying on the ground within sight of the stadium for at least a year, and even though they still use the press box, which sits on top of the stands)? I can live with that.

Actually having event staff security at soccer games? There's no need, but I can live with that - though they always come across as small-minded and mean-spirited. Last year they sometimes banned bags from the field; I also had one threaten to deny me entrance to a game if I didn't show my student ID, which was surreal; it's a good thing I still carry it around. (For those of you who don't know, OSU soccer games are free and open to everyone, regardless of student status. In fact, more non-students than students attend games.)

Searching bags and banning anything but sealed water bottles? Not acceptable. There's no reason for it. I've been told there have been incidents in the past, but I've been going to home men's soccer games for six years, and I've never seen anything that warranted this. I have also been told this is a new Pac-10 rule, not an OSU thing. Seeing as how it came from the 'security' folks, I am skeptical (though it should be noted that even if it is a Pac-10 thing, it remains unnecessary). I tend to think the newfound fear of liquids has more to do with the sale of $3 bottles of water and a control-oriented culture than anything else.

Soccer has always had its own culture and practices. Here, that has meant a relatively low-key, dedicated fan culture (the occasional frat boy stupid fan notwithstanding). It has never, to the best of my knowledge, meant a need for security or insanely overpriced food and drink. It's insulting to fans.

(While I am complaining, can I just note that I agree with this post regarding the strength of OSU's preseason schedule? I've seen two men's games so far this year, and OSU has outscored their opponents 10-0. In two games. I've left both games early because there was no point in staying. I know they've struggled in the past few years, but that's no reason to adopt this schedule.)


Anonymous said...

Maybe it's the hooliganism that happened right after you left early?!! Maybe you leaving eary cause a max exodus from the stands and someone slipped on a bottle of water brought in illegally? I am sure Hering will write about it.

Dennis said...

I'm going to assume that first sentence is a joke.

For security to appear now, that should have meant there was a problem earlier - like two seasons ago, before security.

I was referring to leaving games early this season.

Therefore, there's a bit of a cause-and-effect problem with your statement.

Again, please tell me that was a joke.

Anonymous said...

Yes, I was joking. Your post just cracked me up. Obviously with the threat level at orange (or mauve), you can never be to sure about stadium security!

Dennis said...

Oh, thank you.

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