In my four years of Kansas State sports fan experience, I’ve noticed one glaringly obvious thing: the student section is not the most musically inclined group of people out there.
To help remedy this gap in our fan experience, here are some helpful hints on how to make the most out of K-State’s favorite songs and give our musical traditions the respect they deserve.
1. The national anthem
“The Star-Spangled Banner” is a sports tradition all around the nation, from ice hockey to American football. Despite this, it’s still surprising how often people can mess it up.
It’s commonly understood that all audience members should remove their hats and place their right hand over their heart while the flag is advancing or displayed during the anthem. Since K-State’s tradition includes the audience singing along, I’d like to remind everyone that Francis Scott Key did not use the word “Chiefs” anywhere in his lyrics.
2. Wildcat Victory, a.k.a. the Fight Song
For some who are new to the K-State family, singing a song that you’ve never heard before may seem rather intimidating. There’s no shame in looking the lyrics up or making cheat sheets until you have the lyrics memorized.
For those among us who have trouble keeping time during the fight song, pay attention to the drum majors or the percussionists. The drum majors provide an excellent beat to clap along to, even when the band changes the tempo on us.
3. The Alma Mater
The Alma Mater is the easiest song in the entire game day line-up. The words are displayed on the video board for all to see, the tempo is slow and it requires a minimal amount of energy.
The hard part of this song, however, is putting your arm around complete strangers next to you. This problem is even worse when it’s a hot day.
I’d recommend making friends with your neighbors before you get thrown straight into the Alma Mater. This will help reduce the awkwardness immensely.
4. The Wabash Cannonball
Recognized by ESPN as the greatest pre-game tradition in the Big 12 and by K-Staters everywhere as the best ab workout in existence, the Wabash is a more recent addition to the list of K-State’s songs.
Make sure to coordinate with your neighbors so that you don’t end up facing the same way. Once you have the coordination and movements down, the Wabash is pretty easy. Just make sure to keep the dirty words about the dirty birds away from this beloved song.
If you have any further questions about K-State’s music, grab your favorite band geek and get ready for a lesson. At the end of the day, we’re all a bunch of sports fans with a love of the Wildcats. Stay hydrated, enjoy the games and make sure to keep cheering on the ‘Cats — just try to clap on beat.
Jason DeFisher is a senior in animal sciences and industry. The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Collegian. Please send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.