SFU Clan Looks to Build School Spirit Starting with the Battle of the Border Event
Oct 01, 2014
Pictured: SFU takes on Central Washington at Pop Keeney Stadium.
Last weekend, I took a fun trip down on a shuttle bus organized by the Simon Fraser Student Society (SFSS) to Bothell, Washington for the inaugural Battle of the Border event between the SFU Clan and the Central Washington Wildcats.
This initiative was not just an opportunity to send down families, friends, and fans of the Clan to the event, but also allowed the SFSS to promote school spirit and garner more student supporters for the athletics community.
“We’re hoping to build on it and make it an annual occurrence,” said Jeremy Pearce, an at-large representative on the board of directors for the SFSS and a SFU Clan Football alumnus. “I think there’s a lot of potential for community involvement and school spirit.
“Now that I’m done football and working for the student society, I wanted to put out the opportunity to everybody and get the student body more involved in the athletics program.”
At Pop Keeney Stadium, the amount of school spirit was overwhelming for the Wildcats, but the Clan had quite a few supporters in the stands as well. Filled with excited family members and friends, the Clan section showed its school spirit in waves of cheers, blowhorns, and organized chants.
Pictured: the Clan also had a fair share of supporters across the border.
“We try and make it to one or two away games every year,” said Tony Spagnuolo, past SFU Clan football player and father to Stephen Spagnuolo, #32, a senior running back on the team. “I was surprised at the number of SFU supporters at the game tonight. It’s absolutely fantastic!”
Although SFU ended up losing to the hosts, there was a lot of school spirit from the families and friends of the Clan football team, and it was definitely a great atmosphere to take part in!
However, if one thing was clear on the ride home, it was that the SFU Clan football team needs a stadium on campus in order to really draw out a crowd and the support from students in the future.
“It’s going to be hard to get any kind of any spirit generated for athletics events unless you get a proper stadium,” said Mr. Spagnuolo, who also mentioned that SFU was one of few large athletic institutions across Canada that does not have a stadium for its varsity events.
Luckily for SFU, there seems to be plans in place to build a stadium atop Burnaby Mountain as a part of the Build SFU project, with the consultation and design work happening this year. With a new stadium in the works, the Clan, especially the football program, can look to gather more student support for their team over the next few years.