Once I was done writing for The Daily, I did not miss a game and me and my buddies would always be at W-R right when the doors opened to get our seats in the front row. It was an absolute blast being in the student section. I am glad that it is more organized. I remember being at the Big Ten Tournament in 2010 and we ran into Bill Carmody's wife and she was absolutely ecstatic that we were in Indianapolis to support the team (one of the few NU fans that made the trip, unfortunately) and she talked to us for a little while before one of the games about how to get students more involved.
It may not be perfect but this is a step.
I am curious though if this is one area the Big Ten Network has hurt. When I was a freshman (2006-07), every game was on Wednesday and Saturday. The schedule was regular and it was well known when games would be. Northwestern won only two Big Ten games that year, but the student section (at least the half closer to the opposing bench) were packed. I remember feeling claustrophobic for Craig Moore's miracle heave against Penn State. That always seemed to be the argument for why football attendance was often better was because it was clearer when games would be.
The shuttles are always a mess and having an off-campus stadium in the winter does not help either. If you go outside and it is snowing or it is particularly cold and you aren't that into basketball anyway, it isn't worth the effort to sit out in the cold and wait for the shuttle.
These problems can be overcome. I am glad the Wildside is there now to try and engage the students. The giant faces have been awesome. And I am SOOOO happy there is no longer a Mildside!