On Feb. 10, the K-State Wildcats defeated the Kansas Jayhawks in overtime, 85-82, in what was likely the highlight of the season for the basketball team so far.
The game was exciting throughout, and though the Wildcats gave up a big lead in the final minutes and were forced in overtime, they were remained poised and sealed the victory in the extra minutes.
But this victory has been overshadowed by the actions of the student section. One of the main lingering stories of the game is not just about the game or the rushing of the court afterwards, but about the student section throughout the game. During the song “Sandstorm,” a popular song at K-State basketball games, students added their own chants, one of which included the phrase “F**** KU.” The chant was audible throughout Bramlage Coliseum, as well as nationally via the televised ESPN broadcast.
Some have said that the students were just into the game and expressing their love for their team; others have said that it was not respectful and wrong. I believe that it was disrespectful behavior, and that it should not have happened, for several reasons.
Everyone realizes that the K-State versus Kansas rivalry is a massive one. Fans on both sides are going to be deep into the spirit of the game, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t lines that shouldn’t be crossed.
The day after the game, The Kansas City Star wrote about the situation, saying, “(B)ut the anger here is a different flavor. It’s heavy from the start, layered throughout, and cover your children’s ears when they play that techno song in the second half.”
The major problem with the chant is the nationwide effect that it has on not just the university, but the students themselves. After the Wildcat win, SportsCenter attempted to show highlights of the game, but some of them were ruined by the profanity laden chant from the student section. It comes off terribly and makes both our basketball team and fan base look like we lack common courtesy for any other team. It is not in good taste and portrays us in a bad light, something students and the university should not want.
As K-State fans, most of us would like to think that we are “better” than our blue and red loving counterparts. Think back to when the Wildcats played at Allen Fieldhouse earlier this year. Although the Jayhawks ran away with the victory, what stands out in my mind was when, about halfway through the second half, KU fans started performing the highly-annoying Rock Chalk chant they love. When we performed the “F-KU” chant at Bramlage, it made me think back to when they did their chant. Our actions made us no better than them.
The chant was not in good taste and it puts our university, fan base and basketball team under a bad light. Our reaction made it appear that we’d never won a game, and our lack of true sportsmanship and respect is not how we would have been wanted to be treated had we lost the way the Jayhawks did in Manhattan.
As a die-hard Kansas hater and K-State lover, I would typically agree with something like this, but this issue comes down to sportsmanship and respect toward others. Remember, what goes around comes around.
Andrew Carlsen is a freshman in pre-journalism. Please send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.