Georgia’s football experience is one of the best in the country, but one juvenile feature threatens to ruin it all …
Saturdays in the fall bring out the best in our campus. Students cease to be art students, engineers, and heartthrob magazine editors, transitioning instead to impassioned Bulldogs. The tailgate scene, the pregame pageantry, and, of course, the University of Georgia Bulldogs contribute to the emotional experience we all share.
For this Bulldog, the emotional peak of a football Saturday is found in the rituals immediately preceding the game. In the upper deck, southwest corner, the trumpet soloist plays the opening notes to the Battle Hymn. Once the band joins the soloist atop the upper deck, Larry Munson’s narration inspires nostalgia and swiftly sobers and grabs the attention of the 92,756 in attendance. I am not ashamed to admit that this sequence often brings me to tears. Calling the Dawgs before the opening kickoff, lighting up the stadium in the fourth quarter, and Ozzy Osbourne’s distinctly menacing voice in “War Pigs” that follows are all masterfully executed by the coordinators of the Sanford Stadium experience. They should be proud.
Unfortunately, though, a newer tradition has creeped into prominence that is entirely antithetical to the Georgia football experience. It completely saps fans of any trace investment in the game and the school spirit that had been building up since “Baba O’Reilly.” I’m referring, of course, to that sickening American sports ritual known as the karaoke cam.
It is as if a board of deep-state cronies sat around and pondered, “How do we totally kill the coolest football environment in the country?” The answer is unfortunately simple: poison Sanford Stadium’s speaker system for the whole of four minutes with the corniest, most overplayed songs in history while the cameraman fires at will into the stands. The camera will typically fall on a group of sorority girls or some drunk dads, and God forbid they find somebody’s kid who thinks they can dance.
Here’s a scenario: Georgia is on a potential go-ahead drive in the second half. I mean, we’re wearing them out, Chubb’s getting eight yards a pop and we enter the red zone. Here, the opposing team calls a timeout to regroup … Karaoke time! This time, it’s “House Party” by Sam Hunt. Keep in mind, this takes place after the fans and players have spent hours being treated to the stylings of the Redcoat Band and their carefully composed, emotional, situation-driven medleys. The timeout is now over, yet everybody is still singing the song. After all, they know all the words, how could they resist? This ‘tradition’ creates a detrimental effect on the stadium’s atmosphere and even on the football team. How is Jim Chaney’s 4-D chess system of play calling supposed to operate with every Tri-Delt singing a Walmart country song over no music?
UGA simply does not need a karaoke cam. Hypotheticals aside, it’s just a bad look, and the worst of it is the ‘air guitar’ solo cam. As a Georgia fan, if you want to make a fool out of yourself, at least do it productively. Over-served at a tailgate and in need of a trashcan? Forgivable. Head-butt an Auburn fan for looking at you crossways? Go for it. But please don’t let me catch you stumbling over yourself trying to imitate Neal Schon during “Don’t Stop Believin’.” Be an obnoxious Georgia fan, but have some self-respect, and have some respect for your university and its football pedigree.
For the rest of this season, Georgia fans, take a stand with me. Join the resistance.
This piece was adapted from one of the same name in the Fall of 2017 edition of The Arch Conservative in print. Grab a copy at our Tate or the Main Library distribution boxes or subscribe by clicking the tab above.
— J. Thomas Perdue is Associate Editor at The Arch Conservative.