Friday night's game between UNM and Western New Mexico should have around 3,000 people in it, but it might be one of the loudest. Why you ask? Students! There is a group of students that have a plan to get a "real" student section back in The Pit and they are willing to do what it takes to get it started!
As many of you know, TheRedMenace.com was the only media outlet that gave these guys any positive publicity last week (CLICK ON LINK FOR STORY) because I felt they had the right idea and the way they want to go about it is positive. I realize in the morning paper a couple of days ago these young men were made out to be jerks or stupid, let me be the first to say that this so far from the truth. This group led by UNM students Brandon Burnett and Mackenzie Bishop have one goal, that goal says Burnett ""I want this place to be like when my mom brought me when I was younger. She told me how this place used to really get rowdy."
I asked the young man if he has spoken with Rudy Davalos about getting a student section back, and he said, "No, not at this point, we don't have enough people to do that."
After talking with Burnett and Bishop last weekend and over the phone I came up with a suggestion that I think will be the start. Why don't you fill up the rows in front of the band with all the people you can. Make those rows bulge with students and fans that are loud and want to raise a little hell. It worked at Rocky Long Stadium with The Red Menace, so I know it can work here!
"Our short term goal has to be to take the section we are at (in front of the band) now and just make it better. We have to make it louder and more of a party atmosphere," said Burnett. "Then once we've got a couple of thousand people into our group, we can then work on getting down to the floor!"
Don't you think you are asking for a lot to be given back the student's section and to take away Lobo Level seating and the money that is generated from those seats being sold?
"We understand that UNM needs boosters and that they support the program, and we aren't asking for the whole west side of The Pit to the floor," says Burnett. "It doesn't have to be in the middle, we would be happy with say the Northwestern section of the west side (in front of the band) and leave the middle for the boosters and media."
I found out that the students pay $5.00 per game in The Pit (NABC cost 8.00) and for a student that might be a little tough, add in that many students feel that they aren't really wanted in The Pit has led to student apathy and avoidance of the famous arena.
"We pay $5.00 a game to go see these games, and then to be pushed back while being told we have the best seats in the house doesn't make us feel like a real part of the program," says Burnett.
Is the overriding issue the $5.00 or getting the front rows?
"Like I said, we aren't saying we want the entire west side of The Pit, just a piece of it," says Burnett, "I believe that if we are given a section of the west side all the way to the front the students wouldn't mind paying the $5.00 a game, they would come back and every game we could feel it up. To me, it would feel like Rudy (Davalos) cared about the students and wanted them here."
Like I said Lobo fans, these guys aren't rude, they aren't asking for the impossible, nor are they stupid. They are looking for a compromise. They are looking for a solution to a problem that exists in The Pit.
This brings us back to Friday night's game vs. Western. I know Coach McKay doesn't want to hear this, but the chances of Western getting a victory in The Pit is likely as the game being a sellout. That being said, Burnett, Bishop and their "group of around 15 guys so far" plan on filling the section in front of the band with signs and noise. Burnett says, "Get there early and ready to get excited."
I implore Rudy Davalos on behalf of not only the students but all fans of the University of New Mexico to allow these young men to have their section complete with signs and noise. Allow them to spark a new and exciting atmosphere that has been missing in The Pit for the past few years.
I also ask that you fans and especially fellow students go down in front of the band before the game and help these guys out! It is time to bring The Red Menace into The Pit and it is time to once again recapture the memories of our youth while helping these young men create memories themselves!
Friday night in The Pit, help these young men bring The Red Menace attitude into The Pit!
Can it work in The Pit?