Staff editorial: Support NMU football

NW Staff

For most currently enrolled students, the NMU football team’s standing record of 5-2 is the best record they have ever seen. The ?Cats are 3-1 at home this year and have outscored their opponents 158-48. They’ve shut-out opponents twice at home and, for the first time since 1987, have a chance at making the playoffs.

Despite this, attendance and school spirit seems to be at an all time low. Our team has played their way to a winning record without much support from their peers. With the upcoming senior day marking the last home game, students and community members need to step up the support if we want our team to continue succeeding.

Players on the field feed off the energy of their crowd. To keep team morale up, they need to know the school they represent is behind them, whether they win or lose. Anyone who has ever played a sport or performed in front of an audience knows how great it feels to hear the roar of a crowd. It’s part of what makes players and coaches love their sport, and it is also part of what makes them want to succeed.

For how significantly this year’s squad is bettering the reputation of NMU football, the number of attending fans at each game seems grim. Only 4,271 attended the homecoming game they won against Ferris State. When the ‘Cats beat Wayne State, who were then ranked 19th in the nation, only 2,879 people attended, which filled less than one-third of the 8,000 plus seats at the Superior Dome. At a school which holds a student population of 9,258 and a town with a population of about 24,000, these numbers (which include both home and visiting fans) are ridiculous.

Our record for attendance was 8,672 at the Michigan Tech game last year, which just so happened to be televised on CBS College Sports TV and Fox Sports Detroit. The time students offered most support for our football team was when we all had a chance to have our faces on television.

When you’re attending a game, you are not only supporting our football team, but NMU as a whole. You are cheering with the cheerleaders, encouraging the marching band and showing our team’s opponent what our school is made of. On senior night, which is Nov. 7, 16 football players will be playing their last game in the Superior Dome. Let’s make their final night as Wildcats worth it.