Written By: David Holbrook
What came first? The Chicken or the Egg?
While getting ready to depart for the Nevada vs. NMSU game in Reno, I couldn't help but ask myself the question of the Chicken and the Egg saga.
Although I substituted in 'Winning' and 'Fan Support', it still gets to the same point. What does it take to get student body and fan support behind a team? Is it right to ask the fans to buy tickets, tailgate and support a team that has not yet shown it can win on a regular basis? Here is my take on the subject.
If a team has a winning record the fans will come. It doesn't matter what time the game starts or what other commitments you have, if your team is winning, you are willing to do whatever it takes to make the game and show your support. On our trip to Nebraska we even heard about weddings being delayed until after football season so that the groom didn't have to choose between attending his own wedding or a Cornhusker game. Everyone wants to be associated with a winner. Aggie Memorial Stadium would be full every home game if the team was a proven winner. Tickets would be hard to come by, revenue would be up and things would be Crimson and White all over Southern New Mexico.
People are called fair weather fans all the time suggesting that if their team isn't setting the world on fire, they'll find other things to do with their weekends. The old adage of "Show Me the Money" would surely apply to this scenario.
With the increase in revenue and fan support the recruiting process gets easier. It's not such a hard sell to get a kid to choose Las Cruces over another area if he sees the success on the field and the community support. Facilities improve and this also aids in recruiting. No college athlete wants to commit to play somewhere for four years in front of a half full stadium (or less). The players that can turn a program around want to know that his committment has already been met by the community and students.
Die hard fans are going to continue to support their team year in and year out. Those fans never go away regardless of the level of frustration they feel. They continue to make donations, buy tickets and travel to the game to support their team. It's the new breed of fan that needs the extra push in the win column to get on board.
Our next home game on October 18th is against San Jose State. And while the Spartans will be a huge test for our Aggies there is a bigger opponent that we are facing. This game is being championed as the "Tough Enough To Wear Pink" game and is in need of your support.
While I don't know the outcome of the Nevada game (I predict a 42-36 Aggie win) I do know that Win or Lose we must fill the stadium on October 18th. I know that a loss in Nevada will certainly dampen the spirits of Aggies everywhere but it should not be a reason to give up on the team.
So what are you? The Chicken or the Egg? In the end it doesn't matter as long as you are an Aggie. Let's fill Aggie Memorial Stadium each remaining home game and show this Aggie team that the fans are ready to turn the corner and help them achieve their goal. Become a "Die Hard" fan and support this group of Aggies as they battle week in and week out in the WAC. It is an exciting time to be an Aggie fan and I am looking forward to cheering this team on to becoming bowl eligible.