West Virginia needs to get a grip … soon

Admit it, West Virginia, you have a problem.

We recall being warmly greeted by a WVU fan shortly after arriving in Morgantown for the Louisville-West Virginia football game in 2005, he and his party falling over themselves at the hotel to make us feel at home. Asking about our family, offering to carry our luggage, inviting us to join them for breakfast. Wow, I thought, these people sure are hospitable, extraordinarily so. Why this particular group was being so friendly would soon become evident.

The warm fuzzies would fade quickly after arriving at Milan Puskar Stadium, however.  Passing through the crowd of Mountaineer rowdies was anything but a picnic, starting with getting intentionally bumped. “Hey, Kaintuck, you owe me an apology,” he slurred. “Not after that insult,” I replied.  We were moving in opposite directions, no further discussion.

So many unrulies in one place, taunting U of L fans in every direction. We would lose track of the number of obscenities hurled our way. After the game, right on schedule, there were the sound of sirens, fire trucks being dispatched to quench what we presumed were burning couches.

One could only imagine how things would have gone had they lost a game that day. Reports this season that an LSU couple was assaulted after a game have since been disputed by the woman who was involved, but no one would have been surprised had a game-related incident occurred.

Paul Sykes, over at Cardinal Couple, reminds us in an e-mail that U of L cheerleaders had things tossed in their direction in 2009, forcing them to leave the game early for safety reasons. The cheerleaders and the dance team reportedly won’t be making the trip to Morgantown this Saturday. If this is true, it is a direct reflection not only on WVU fans but on local and state law enforcement.

By not taking effective action to discourage activities, the school’s administration is, in effect, condoning the primeval  behavior, reinforcing a stereotype of West Virginians that is ugly at best. Until they begin to clamp down hard on fans, the conditions will only get worse. When a tragedy occurs, which is all but inevitable, the school will be compelled to fork over millions of dollars.

How such a hostile environment came to be is inconceivable for UofL fans and for other schools across the nation.  It would never occur to Louisville fans to disrespect visitors to Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium.

The upcoming game has UofL fans as concerned, if not more, for the safety of the fans and players making the trek to Morgantown as much as the outcome of the game.

Something is amiss on those country roads. Take a good hard look in the mirror, West Virginia. Some of your fans are giving the state a black eye, and it’s not going away anytime soon.

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Author: Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, as well as a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.

89 thoughts on “West Virginia needs to get a grip … soon”

  1. Get over it would you!!!??? You weren’t picked. It’s ok, now you can be the 4th best team in the Big East instead of the 5th … One thing you wrote about is true, we don’t like you. Wanna know why? Simple. You think you are better than everyone. Fact: you are not an Ivy League school, your basketball team is good, not great, your football team has sucked since Bobby P left and you weren’t that great then and you have egos like you’re something other than inbred hilljacks from Kintucky!!Now maybe we’ll see ya in a few years, maybe not but we’re in, you’re not, so ba bye!! Oh yea…birds don’t have teeth!!! Ha

    1. How sad is it that a school is fearful of sending cheerleaders and dance teams? Address the problem and we might take you seriously.

    2. Took my 10 year old son to L’ville last year and was yelled at several times as we walked in “Hey Brokeback Mountaineer!” “Did you marry your cousin?” My son asked why these people were yelling at us.

      When I got to the seats (in a UL section) an older “lady” immediately said, “Who gave these damn West Virginia people tickets in this section.”

      1. How is that possible Scott? As was pointed out in the blog article, this only happens to opposing fans. Not towards WVU.

    3. You just proved Charlie’s point…WVU continues to lead the nation as having the worst fan base in America.

  2. Hey Charlie, Would that be the same team that lost to FIU?
    Nice job writing a flame piece, must be why you’re a former editor/writer.

  3. Also, Charlie, I have encountered Louisville fans IN Louisville who made statements to me that are based in very ugly stereotypes, including statements that my parents must have been related and that I must sleep with my own sister. I know that you are a homer, and I don’t mind that, but have a little bit of integrity about what you write.

  4. It’s not a matter of fear to send our teams, it’s just a legitimately dangerous situation. Even as vicious as the UK/UofL rivalry is, fans can still visit Commonwealth without being attacked or having beer bottles tossed at them. There’s a point where being a raucous crowd becomes a nuisance, and that line has clearly been crossed in Morgantown.

  5. And then there is the comment we actually heard UofL Baseball Coach Dan McDonnell make at a luncheon that his team no longer wears their logo athletic gear when in W. Va. because they were inhospitably refused service at a restaurant there on an earlier trip. Classy place. Go Cards!

    1. Comment you heard? So there was never a report of them being denied service? Or a report of them filing a claim for I dont say, DISCRIMINATION?!?! Because wasn’t there a whole movement in the 1960s that ask that people be allowed to eat whereever they wanted regardless of their race, religion, sex, etc.

      Oh wait I just looked up the Civil Rights Act of 1964, they forgot to add in college affiliation. Might need an act of Congress to stop this illegal activity!!! Quick lets get together and march!!

      1. Hello, WVU Girl. U of L baseball coach Dan McDonnell doesn’t allow logo items on bus trips to West Virginia. Not everybody goes running to the media, the cops or the courts when something happens. So, no, you’re not going to find an official report anywhere.

        1. When you can give me a direct quote from the coach himself stating why he doesn’t allow logos on trips to WV, then I’ll believe it.

            1. But you have time to write an article but not have sources to back it up beside your own personal experience? Before you go around and put another team’s fans on blast you might want to make sure you have the evidence to back you up. Especially when the fans are passionate as we are.

      2. F- it CARD fans! Fight fire with fire! WVUgirl probably weighs 283lbs. and smells like that cheap-ass beer they drink. I am sick of this. GO CARDS!!

  6. These WVU pill heads coming over and proving your very point of the article is classic!

    To me… this fan base couldn’t be any lower on the scum factor. I can hardly take them serious. These guys are just a group of redneck clowns wanting so badly to be a real school.

    It’s one thing to have these stories come out from a single school… or rival. But when you hear them from EVERY school, you really gotta step back and look in the mirror.

  7. Things like this happen in EVERY stadium across the country whether it’s college or professional. You seem to be so butt-hurt about West Virginia that you’re using your ignorance as some kind of rabble-rousing pyscho-babble and it sounds very petty…and hilarious

    do you know for a fact that fans aren’t reprimanded for their behavior? As a former student and attendee I can assure you they are. Also I can promise you that you did not hear sirens as soon as the game ended. Not only is that statement hyperbolic (another sign of a great “journalist”) it’s flat out false. How do I know this? Because we mostly reserve couch burning for meaningful games…something that Louisville has not, is not, and (thankfully) never will be again after Saturday.

    other than that..great article.. keep the baseless crap coming!

      1. never, they dont even browbeat…lol

        But in all seriousness.

        Could you please link to an article or email stating the abuse the cheerleaders endured. Also would like to hear the response from UL to WVU. Not to mention the respinse from police, were any official complaints filled to the Motown PD? Im sure this must exist as you wrote an article based solely on this incident and your first hand experience…thanks for your time.

  8. Mudslinging because you got left in the BE. Keep crying maybe if you complain enough someone will pay attention to UL.

      1. Its called an alias bud. I played a game where a villain’s name was Jasper Mudbottom. Its easy and it works lol if you thought I would put my real name on here.

  9. Let me try this again. For some reason, my earlier posts were not permitted. Charlie, the story about the assault on the LSU fans has been proven not to be related to the game or WVU fans (http://dailymail.com/Sports/WVUSports/201109273190?source=rss_teams_West_Virginia_Mountaineers). Also, I have been in Louisville for games between WVU and UofL and had Louisville fans say some very rude things to me based on incorrect and hateful stereotypes. One young man suggested that my parents must have been related, and another young woman told me to “go home and $%&k your sister”. I can assure you that the only thing that I could have done to provoke these verbal attacks was to wear a jersey with the number 5 on it (Pat White’s number).

    The point here is that part of what you write is based on exaggeration and just plain wrong information. Also, some Louisville fans (like the some fans of just about any college sports team in the country) can be and are crude in how they treat opposing team fans. Generally speaking the folks in Louisville have been gracious hosts, but there clearly are some bad apples as well (just like anywhere else).

    1. Jarvis, clearly there are more good and courteous West Virginia fans, and the rowdies are in the minority. But there are still too many of them. Visiting fans should not be fearful of attending a football game in Morgantown.

  10. Mr. Springer,
    As to the bottle throwing incident, I am very skeptical that this occurred. I have attended EVERY home game since 2004. EVERY home game. I remember this game and I do not remember EVER seeing bottles being thrown at ANY opponent cheerleaders or dance members. In fact, I took a look at youtube and found a video with Louisville cheerleaders visible at 7:04 of the 4th quarter. So, unless the incident happened after that point, your Louisville cheerleaders were still on the field of play.

    Now, you seem to want to take jabs at WVU fans as a whole, but this is unfair. Here is why. I traveled with my 7 year old son to Tampa in 2007, i believe, to watch the USF Bulls play WVU on a Friday night. I removed my son from the stadium with 10 minutes left in the 3rd. Why? He was called a “Little Mountain F**king Queer” by a man in his 50’s. Should I label all USF fans as you have WVU fans because of this incident? Seems like you would. Pitt 2008 I was pulled to the side by Pitt Security because I had ChapStick in my pocket. I was GRILLED by Campus PD and asked why a WVU fan needs ChapStick. Funny right? Should I label all Pitt fans as you have WVU fans?

    As far as Louisville fans go, I was one of the few people to hang around for the 3OT game that put Pat White and Steve Slaton on the map. I was hounded by two Louisville fans that scalped tickets right next to me. Hounded for 3 and a half quarters. At the end, I said nothing to them but “hell of a game.”

    How would you label me Charlie?

  11. It’s funny how if it keeps happening it’s rarely heard of. It must mean that it’s either not happening that much. or that it happens so frequently in other places across the country that it’s a non-issue.

    You and the Louisville fans sound like a scorned lover grasping at straws make yourselves feel better It’s very unbecoming. And to all the people making “redneck, hillbilly, pill head, etc. comments” – uhm…L’ville is in Kentucky….KEN-freakin-TUCKY I wouldn’t say that your reputation as a state is that much more (and maybe a lot less) spotless than that of the Mountain Sate..

    and for that I say…Get a Grip yourself, Mr. Springer and the rest of you L’ville crybabies.

  12. It’s a great rivalry the majority of fans on both sides are hospitable but somehow WVU got a reputation of being too rowdy and nasty to opposing teams and that may be because its true I hear it even from the Marshall fans is it being blown up now? Yes its a rivalry we enjoy pissing eachother off

  13. When I attend the WVU vs. UL game in 2006 I had things thrown at me both during the walk into the stadium and during the game. I also had two UL fans come running up behind me and slap my arms while I was carrying two cups of hot chocolate back to my seats in an attempt to make me spill it and burn myself. Classy fans alright.

  14. Hey Card fans, not doubting any claims made here, but I just don’t see what is being reported here, with Louisville or any other school.

    Visiting fans are routinely welcomed in the light blue parking lot where I park, I would suggest you come there, I’ll be offering a cordial welcome.

    I’m a 50 something and, ironically, the last time I was physically accosted at an away game was in Louisville in 2006. Nothing like a punch or anything, but a liquored up fan came up from behind before the game, slapped me on the shoulders with two hands yelling some Deliverance gibberish.

  15. You Louisville fans are so full of it, it’s sad.

    We hear this crap from a handful of schools, Pitt, Marshall, and now you fools.

    Yet, you can ask fans of other programs, LSU for example, and they will tell that even though we lost that game we still took it and treated the fans with respect, sure a few jabs here and there but that’s what it’s all about.

    When you have Les Miles along with the entire Game Day crew giving your school praise you’ve done something right.

    So get over it, you’re not in the Big 12 and have been irrelevant for awhile now, enjoy your Big East.

  16. I have been a WVU fan since the late ’70’s. I love WV sports. But I will admit that the small amount of fans do get carried away. It embarrasses me to see and hear of this behavior. It does go on, I have actually told students to stand down from this type of actions. Also, it does go on at other places as well. How do I know, funny you should ask. I lived in KY for 20 years and had season UK tickets to both football and basketball. Neither UK or U of L fans should be casting stones. It happens. All places seem to do a good job of stopping it when it starts. It seem WV does not as good as job. I would think that WVU would start a program to promote better fan interactions with others. It would help clean up it’s image. Which needs it. SO please fellow WVU fans, stop the kids that run their mouths to much because they have drank to much before a game to the other teams fans, it will go a long way in the end. Thanks for your time people.

  17. I guess WVU will just have to tuck its tail with its embarrassing population and head to the Big 12 and their crappy league. Wait.. wait a sec. The Big 12 is two or three tiers higher than what is left of the Big East and they didn’t want they high and mighty UL Cards? This can’t be right? You mean a conference of higher caliber found the WVU Mountaineers to be a better conference partner than UL? They must be idiots.

  18. From my experiences, the last two times WVU has com to Louisville, the Parrish House has treated the fans who tailgited with us with courtesy and respect. We let the WVU band perform in our parking lot. Set the fans up with a buffet and full bar service. I even learned the words to “Country Roads” so I could sing it for the attendees along with the Robbie Bartlett Band.

    Honestly, I’m afraid to go back up there this year. Hadn’t missed one up there in the 21st. century. The Parrish House has planned bus trips up there several times over the past years, but decided to not go this year because of safety concerns for the members.

    I don’t recall a West Virginia tailgating group ever extending any courtesies to me in attendance there. I do recall several rowdy teenagers terrorizing a group of elderly ladies I was escorting back to the bus in 2005 and a couple of guys threating to “beat the $#!&” out of me in a WVU bathroom in 2009.

    Isolated incidents, sure…but enough to keep me away from Morgantown Saturday.

  19. The stories listed above are completely fabricated.. I miss very few home football or basketball games in Morgantown, and it is very very peaceful. The ridiculous stories about beer bottles , etc… and not getting served are completely false. We never EVER, have had bad thoughts about Louisville. They’ve never been a rivalry or a feared opponent.. Actually, it’s always been very civil. So sad to see the fictitious crap being posted by bitter angry people… You will never get treated poorly at Mylan Puskar stadium. Opposing fans always compliment my wife and I on how well they’ve been treated. Fabricated stories are the product of some sort of jealousy about this Big 12 thing…

      1. It’s not a blind eye… I’m there to see it. I see the games and atmosphere in person… I have seen problems at home games and away games. It is unfortunate, and if I ever did see a WVU fan being rude to an opposing fan or fans, I myself would confront the rude WVU fan. So, my eyes are wide open, and I will see to it that U of L fans aren’t mistreated Saturday. I will do my part. Rude fans are highly frowned upon…

    1. Fabricated? You wouldn’t be calling the baseball coach a liar, would you? I was in the audience when he told about the incident. Go Cards!

  20. Sour grapes. Enjoy your horse racing. Drunk fans are EVERYWHERE numbnuts. If you’d get out of your cave, or your log cabin, or since you’re from “Kaintuck”, quite possibly jail, and explore the world around you, you might learn something. Don’t knock the place until you visit (and truly visit with an open mind). If you look for something to complain about, chances are it will happen.

    Maybe stop crying and posting garbage like this on the internet.

    Feel free to write me an email sometime. I don’t know too many people as ignorant as you.

    1. Hard to believe after reading your comment that you have the nerve to call anyone ignorant. Face it, the Big 12 wanted WVU because the Big Boys need another whipping post; hope you enjoy your bottom feeding in that pathetic conference. I’ve been to Oklahoma and let me tell you WVU “fans”. Those fans will kick your butts all over Oklahoma and West Va. and it couldn’t happen to a sweeter, kinder bunch of couch burners. I never wanted U of L to go the the Big 12 but I love the rumors we’re getting now on national blogs that we are being considered for the SEC; now, THERE’S A TOUGH CONFERENCE. Go CARDS!!!

  21. Wow, thirty five responses so far, mostly from WVU fans, on a comment made on a Lousiville fan site. Ironically, the unruly behavior that some feel represent WVU’s fan base probably worked in their favor in the Big 12’s decision. In some eyes, fanatical behavior indicate that the fans care more about their program.

  22. The bad thing about this whole conference realignment has been the day in and day out comparison of our school to West Virginia not only West Virginia but listening to fans from Iowa State, OK State, Ks State and elsewhere talk about how superior they are to Louisville when they have achieved nothing, not in football, not in basketball and not in baseball or underwater basket weaving for the matter. The Big East has made us all a step child of which the other conferences can mock…sad. Here is a clue West Virginia fans…you are not in the Big 12 you have been invited and have accepted but unfortunately you fail to understand or comprehend contractual law! Your lawsuit will probably only delay even further as there will probably be an injunction enforced by the courts. The irony is that you probably sold some type of BS to the Big 12 about how you could compete next year and they bought it thus picking you…news flash if you breach the agreement with Big 12 you may very well be sitting in the Big East with the rest of us…now that is what we call karma. Looking forward to Saturday and playing the superior athletic team and school should be very interesting. Sportsmanship is a dying term of which it is clear West Virginia may have never understood.

  23. I was at the Louisville game in 2009 and sat very close to the UL cheerleaders, who are very good by the way, and saw nothing thrown at them. After hearing this accusation it certainly made me wonder why nothing was said or any complaint lodged with the uiversity. Short of the guy two seats down from me giving Philpott a hard time nothing even out of the ordinary was said to anyone. It is a tad amusing however that all this vitriol being spewed at WV fans never came to a head until the Big XII chose our team over yours. My advice? Come to the game Saturday and enjoy your football team and quit repeating unprovable tales.

      1. wrong again charlie, you should really try checking at least some facts before you type. wvu and the big12 have very clearly stated that wvu will begin conference play in 2012. “wahh, but there’s a contract and you’ll be sued!” absolutely, that’s why wvu’s legal team filed the lawsuit. it boils down to how much will wvu have to pay fat man in providence to make him and his pitiful conference of little sister schools to go away? just because there is litigation doesn’t mean that wvu can be held hostage in the big east. contracts are broken every day, across all industries. the crux of the issue is the amount of damages incurred.

    1. Not so fast my friend..You’re not in the Big 12 yet, you’re still in the Big East…by the time you get over the legal hurdles Oklahome and Texas may be long gone and you may be left holding the snipe bag. We’ll see….

  24. What I don’t get is, there was nothing, absolutely NOTHING going on between WVU and UofL in the past that remotely resembles the crap going on this week. What’s the difference? It has to be the fact that one school was asked to join a better conference, the other team was not. Neither WVU nor UofL considered one another a “rival” until this week. WVU’s only true rival is Pitt (altho Marshall fans like to elevate themselves by thinking they are our rivals) Now, the Cards have done nothing the last 2 days but trash WVU fans. I am 1982 WVU grad and long-time season ticket holder. I have been to many games over the years, and I can honestly say that I’ve seen more unruly fan behavior at high school games. UL fans go ahead put all the BS on the internet they want, it doesn’t make their situation better. In fact, while most fans wanted to support UL in going to the B12 in the future, that no longer is true.

    And seriously – Kentucky people making fun of WV?? Really?

      1. When I asked “What’s the difference?” I meant what is the difference between this week and past weeks, with regard to what is transpiring here – i.e. the Big12 selection. THAT is why we’re being dogged by UL fans this week. This crap has not been going on between our schools, to this level, every before.

        As far as wearing a Pitt jersey in our Blue Lot – well HELLO! We ARE rivals – not WVU/UL. duh

        1. Sorry – meant to say this has not been going on between our schools, to this level (degree) EVER before.

          1. Well Charlie, I think it has more to do with you guys getting “left behind” in the Big Least. I certainly don’t recall this much flaming of our fans in past years. Go pick a different “rival” like Marshall perhaps?

        2. Sorry but it has been going on – for years we have heard horror stories from U of L fans who were threatened in Morgantown. It never happened to me because we would never go there. Oklahoma fans and Texas fans (and OSU for that matter) have rabid fans; they will NOT tolerate anything but submission from WVU both on the field and off; we are really looking forward to watching WVU play in the Big 12.

  25. Sorry you all didn’t get picked 1st to be in the Big 12, but making up stories and crying foul will not help. I have been to about all of WVU’s games both home and away since mid 1980’s. I was even at the famous “Blackout” in Louisville. There I did get a coke knocked out of my hand as I was going back to my seat. It happened as three teenagers were running down the steps by me, they smacked me on the back and I dropped my coke spilling it onto a Louisville fan. I apoligized and the guy said ok but his friend said “What a dumbass” So if this is an incident about a WVU fan throwing a drink on a Cardinal it did happen. As for fans at Morgantown never have I seen an incident and I tailgate alot. Most visiting fans just walk by and that’s it. You guys were welcome to the Big East to get it back to where it was before VT Miami and BC left. Your programs weren’t as highly recognized and you were the little brother of the league maybe still are if your whining and complaining continues. Play big on the field and you to may be invited up GOOOOOOOOO MOUNTAINEERS!!!!!!!!!!!!! We don’t whine

  26. Good job at flame baiting. I can’t help but see the irony in the timing of a few of these articles, including one from Louisville referring to batteries being thrown, and couches being burned. I never once saw a battery being thrown at 4 years, every home game at WVU, including UL’s first Big East game at WVU. (Also, I will say couch burning doesn’t affect fans visiting Morgantown, even when did they occur)

    You write an article about West Virginia fans, and expect them to reply without any animosity? I see this purely as flamebaiting/trolling whatever you want to call it but it’s hard to read this as a civil WVU fan and just wave it off.

    I do think WVU fans are rowdy, these types of articles can read by anyone on the internet and claim they attended WVU’s game and were harrassed without any evidence, fully anonymously.

    Again, I think WVU fans are rowdier than most but I think these type of articles but it continues to perpetuate the idea that is how WVU is like this.

    I saw many LSU fans mingling with WVU fans this year without any incident.

    But once again it’s easy to claim they you, your uncle, and you cousin were all harassed, and threatened at every WVU game they’ve attended. That’s all the proof you need to continue to sully WVU.

    You want WVU to clamp down on fan behavior, that’s fine. Unfortunately as a WVU fan even this type of behavior was snuffed out today and never resurfaced again these type of comments would still pop up.

    It’s easy for you to write this article and claim this is such a common behavior.. much like couch burning you’ve never see, but to you it still occurs.

    1. What tipped the scale for me Randall was that U of L didn’t want to expose cheerleaders and dance team members to the fan behavior. Couch burning doesn’t occur in Morgantown?

      1. The Question is have you ever seen it? Do Louisville fans not have bonfires at yard parties? It’s sort of the same thing, but we light our bonfires in the middle of streets, and use unwanted furniture as fuel.

        Well, was it the the U of L not taking the Cheerleaders or was it your personal experience?

        Here is a quick link to SBnation and what one of their female editors thinks of these “safety concerns”:

        http://www.sbnation.com/ncaa-football/2011/11/1/2530577/louisville-cheerleaders-morgantown-west-virginia

  27. Louisville fans beware, if you are going to the West Virginia game. Please do not make the “Wrong Turn” on your trip to Morgantown.

  28. These illiterates come here and prove everything written about them is true. Is there any other so called university of higher learning that you have to fear for your safety as much as you would going into a terrorist nation?

    Keep lying to yourselves about what a disgrace you are. “Wrong Turn” isn’t just a movie it’s a documentary.

    1. Wouldn’t “illiterate” mean that we can’t come here and read what you write about us? So how are we illiterate? It would seem that it is you who are demonstrating a lack of comprehension or critical analysis skills.

      Keep calling us inbred and toothless and barefoot and illiterate. And We’ll continue to point out that you have had one good season of football ever and are stuck in the Big East. We’re going to the B12. And for how “scared” you pansies are of coming to Morgantown, Next year at this time we’ll either be playing Texas and the like, or we’ll be whooping your tails one last time for good measure.

  29. Go Cards! Siva and Marra are injured/ wounded, will not play against Bellarmine. Is it time to wonder how CRP runs his practices?

  30. Groucho Marx once said, “I would never join any club that would have someone like me as be a member.”

    I hope that U of L feels like they would never again join a conference that would have a program like WVU as a member.

  31. Yes, every fan base has a fringe element that they would just as soon ignore.

    Many WVU fans would like to pretend that their fringe element is small. Opposing fans agree that the greater portion of the WVU fan base IS the fringe element.

    Unless the good WVU fans put heavy pressure the (obviously)extemely weak WVU adminstration to stop hiding under their desks, pull their heads out of the sand and FIX the problem, they will continue to suffer the the indignstion of opposing fans in every conference.

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