Cardinal Caravan checklist

Among the most exciting aspects of cheering for one’s team are the inevitable road trips that diehard fans take at least once a year to support their heroes.  The tunes are already programmed, so the next item on the agenda is prepping the vehicle itself.

First and foremost, the biggest fans don’t need an excuse such as a road trip to keep their vehicle forever showing their team colors.  Personally, I will probably never buy a vehicle that does not fall under the umbrella of the University of Louisville’s team colors:  red, black, or white. And as long as we’re being choosy, make that a Naughty Volvo S60.

If that doesn’t happen, there is still a round-the-clock decoration that can be arranged, the team license plate.  Not the ten or twenty dollar variety that fits on the front.  I’m talking the official state license plate that registers you as an official fan/alumni of your school with the DMV of your state.  That way your car is always decorated through the good times and the bad.  No taking it off after an embarrassing defeat.  Have to stay on that bandwagon!   Now, on to more temporary measures.

The team car flag is the official designation to let the world and fellow motorists know that you are on your way to a big game to support your team.  I love traveling the interstates during football or basketball season and seeing the various team flags ripping through the winds at high speeds and trying to figure out who or where they are going to cheer:   “Oh look!  It’s a West Virginia flag driving north out of Atlanta!  They must be coming from the butt-whooping the Eers just laid on Georgia in the Sugar Bowl! (HONK HONK)  Go Eers!  Go Big East!”  My car flag is so tattered from following the Cards, just can’t seem to throw it out – sentimental like that.  Too many miles, too many car windows, to just abandon to the heap.

Two flags at most, both on the rear windows.  Three or more is too much and if you put them on the front windows you’re liable to lose one by accidentally cracking a window for fresh air on those long trips, not Louisville to Cincy, say Louisville to the Big Apple.   Have you seen the All-State commercial?

I’ve never been a big fan of painting the windows;  it just seems too senior-prom for me.  Subtle, yet classy is the goal.  A few other miscellaneous pieces of flair, such as a front license plate, back window sticker with the mascot head or team letter, or maybe even the noble “UNIVERSITY OF…” sticker does the trick.

Secondly, another very important part of the trip is just getting there.  If your ride can’t get you there, what good are the decorations?  Keep the oil changed, use good gas (cheapest isn’t always the way to go), keep the tires properly inflated (and use Armor All Tire Shine to keep that shiny, wet look), and only use genuine factory parts;   you don’t go to AutoZone to for new discs or pads on a naughty S60!

Volvo of Louisville is the only option for properly maintaining your ride correctly.Things like this will keep you rolling down the highway to cheer on your team and have you looking good all the way to the win column!

Author: Steve Springer

Steve Springer is a lifelong University of Louisville fan and is officially "The Biggest Fan of the Big East." He graduated from Eastern High School, attended the University of Louisville, and finished his BS at Murray State University. He earned the honor of the conference's biggest fan in a contest sponsored by Volvo during the 2010-11 basketball season.