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Commentary: Will mob rule rise again?

By Roman Veytsman
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Thursday, November 3, 2005
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We will never be the Cameron Crazies. We will never sleep with Dick Vitale, share failed NBA stories with Bobby Hurley or discuss ACC basketball with Jay Bilas.

We’ll never camp out two weeks in advance to face our in-state rival (even if ASU actually wins a game or two), walk outdoors with nothing on but body paint in below-freezing weather (we live in the desert, baby!) or set up sleeping bags outside McKale Center.

But like Duke, we can now also say that we have some semblance of a student section.

Buyer beware — it might not be everything you asked for.

The Good: No longer will you have to beg girls in your dorms to switch the Sam Houston State game in season A for the Stanford game in season B.

No longer will you have to leave the seats you were sitting in after some idiot decided to walk in at halftime and take his rightful place just because he saw the Wildcats in an actual close game. No one wants to hear how you lost on the river in your Party Poker game while Hassan Adams is throwing down a windmill dunk.

No longer will you have to witness some jerk hitting on his date, while she’s trying to pay attention to the game.

No longer will you have to sit next to Sean Elliott’s jersey even if you came hours before tip-off.

Now, you can get together with 10 of your friends, have some drinks before the game and ask Chris Hernandez in chorus why he’s been at Stanford for eight years, without the fear of the old lady in front of you telling you to be quiet because her baby is trying to sleep.

The Bad: We went from having two sections, and being courtside behind one basket, to having one section and having pretty much no courtside seats at all.

Dude, we’re getting screwed. Why couldn’t we get the lower part of each section, instead of having half the students sitting in the nosebleed section?

As it is, for at least one half the opposing team will be shooting free throws while listening to alumni insert their hearing aids.

Plus, we have to sit behind the entire band. I don’t want to have to tell the tuba player to put down his instrument or fear my cotton candy. I don’t want to get decked with that thing while I’m not looking, either. And if that trombone pokes me in the eye, I’m suing and getting Kobe’s attorney.

I need to see Kirk Walters, dammit (and hopefully he does the “worm” after every basket). I need to see whether Fendi Onobun is wearing his Fendi Cent vest. I need a close-up of the sharpness of Mohamed Tangara’s elbows. I want to hear Ivan Radenovic say ‘Watch the pick’ in Serbian.

The Ugly: The long-lost art of saving seats at basketball games is back, and it’ll be uglier than Roseanne on steroids.

No, your 15 friends are not in the bathroom. What can they possibly be doing in there for half an hour? I don’t care if you’re a pledge. I’m not in your fraternity. I hope they haze you for getting their seats taken.

Most of you may not have been here long enough to remember, but for those of you who have enjoyed your experience so much you want to stay a little longer, just recall the mob for student tickets in October 2002. Students trampled one another to get seats, and alas, the lottery we have today was reborn.

Everyone may have tickets this time around, but there will still be a line, and everyone will still want the best seats in the house. Add a little alcohol into the mix, and we may see the mob rear its ugly head once again.

Sure, things may be civil when we play Sonoma State, but what happens when North Carolina comes to Tucson next season? I don’t want to say anything, but we’re kind of known for riots.

So there you have it, the Good, the Bad and the Ugly with the new McKale student section. Here’s to more good than bad and keeping the ugly at a level lower than “The Jerry Springer Show.”

P.S. A Cameron Crazy would get killed in one of our riots.

Roman Veytsman is a journalism junior who has a courtside seat at every game. He can be reached at

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