Dos and don’ts for Louisville football fans

Time to update the rules of etiquette at University of Louisville football games.

Everyone is familiar with the casual fans who somehow wind up at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium seemingly without any interest with what’s happening on the field. Some of the rules are for them, others are for hardened fans who also grate on the nerves of their fellow fans.

The list has evolved over the years with suggestions from Card Game frequenters.  Feel free to suggest additional rules (and share the list with slow learners):

  • Shut down the tailgating well before the game, head for the stadium, be in seats before kickoff (Howard Schnellenberger suggested an hour early).
  • Don’t walk in front of other fans in the middle of a play. (Nothing more clueless, exposing you as inconsiderate of fellow fans. Wait till the play is over, then move quickly).
  • Know when to stand or not to stand (Your back could be an inviting target for irritated fans, bigger or smaller than you).
  • Don’t be a Negative Nancy (There’s always some guy who thinks every play is terrible, every tackle is sloppy, any gain by the opposing team is due to our poor defensive play, and any offensive play that doesn’t result in a touchdown was poorly executed).
  • Keep the cliches to yourself (We’re bored and irritated by them, and will ignore you at all times).
  • Spare us the running analysis (We’re not impressed with your knowledge of the obvious).
  • Don’t keep repeating everything you hear on the radio ear buds (We’ll ask if it’s important).
  • Limit alcohol intake (For obvious reasons).
  • Limit social, non-football dialogue while play is underway (We so look forward to game-day updates on your friend’s yeast infection).
  • Don’t sell your Louisville vs. UK tickets to Kentucky fans (Your seat neighbors will hold it against you).
  • Don’t leave before the game is over (Unless you have a valid reason that doesn’t include beating the traffic).
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Charlie Springer

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

16 thoughts on “Dos and don’ts for Louisville football fans

  • July 26, 2012 at 10:24 pm
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    If you have a child with you, now is the time to help him or her learn how to be a “good” fan. Go over the above pertinent rules with your child/children, and discourage their standing and blocking the views of those behind. Likewise, if you have children sitting near you, mind your language! Go Cards!

    • July 26, 2012 at 11:37 pm
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      If you are saying to discourage standing and getting into the game at UofL football games then I hope you will not be sitting around me. Please stay at home if you are going to harass people or be offended if they stand. Let’s not try to create a Freedom Hall lower bowl Part 2 at PJCS. I do agree with the whole watch the language thing, although there will be the occasional slip-up on bad plays.

      • July 27, 2012 at 8:16 am
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        Someone who is standing when there’s nothing happening is simply being an ass.

        • July 27, 2012 at 11:15 pm
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          If everyone is standing then everyone can see. Looks better than everyone sitting.

          • July 28, 2012 at 9:54 am
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            We’re not doing this for looks and we’re not posing for TV cameras, we’re into UofL football. And unless our defense is trying to make a stop or our offense is doing something great, don’t stand in front of me.

  • July 26, 2012 at 11:31 pm
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    We need to create a college football atmosphere at UofL. The home games last year outside of the Rutgers game felt like NFL contests where people would only get into it during big plays. I have been to games in major college venues, and if we want to be a school that has aspirations of joining an ACC or BigXII, we have to create a 12th man and have a better traveling fan base. I have talked to fellow UL fans who won’t go on the road because they are scared of opponenets fans. Find a friend or several and travel in a pack and get out to support the team. People who cuss and yell at people to sit down when they are trying to get excited or “fire up” fellow fans should stay at home to watch the games or sit in the luxury suites. Charlie Strong is not going to stay around if there are thousands of empty seats and the only time people get into the games are for T-shirt tosses. We need more games like the UL/WVU game in 06, and we have to get a traveling fan base of the Petrino days back. Stand the whole game, get loud and show the nation we can be a premier program. Go Cards, let’s have a great 2012 campaign and many more in future years.

    • July 27, 2012 at 7:46 am
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      Nobody is scared of opponent fans, except West Virginia where you really do put your own safety at risk. Every where else I have been has been fine. Even UK.

  • July 27, 2012 at 9:36 am
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    The givIng up of UL vs. UK game tickets to sCat fans is especially grating on me because the friend that asks me to go to games with him will take a female UK fan…and she’s married to someone else. He has no chance in hell of getting her but they’ve been friends since elementary school. I often point out to the other season ticket holders in his section of his shenanigans, trying to get them to give him some grief for this miscarriage of fandom. It hasn’t worked yet.

  • July 27, 2012 at 10:05 am
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    I’ll add one to the observers list.

    Watch your choice of language around little kids.

    We, unfortunately, had a fan in our row for several years that would break into a barrage of unsavory words when LOUISVILLE did something wrong. HE was quite busy during the Kragthorpe years.

    Finally, enough was enough. We have several “young’uns” in our area. They don’t need to hear language that would make R. Lee Ermry blush.

    I followed him up the steps at halftime of a game. Took him aside, offered to buy him a beverage (which he probably didn’t need..but was starting out civil). Explained to him the offense that people were taking to his choice of words. Suggested he substitute other words to express his displeasure. HE was non-committal and sarcastic in his reply .

    I took a different approach, telling him that I would notify an usher each time he spouted an obscenity. Usually, it’s three strikes and you’re out with the security folks at PJCS. This seemed to sink in with him.

    WE spent a blessed rest of the season without his vulgar remarks. He didn’t purchase those seats the following year.

    Remember that ushers and security people are there to make sure EVERYONE can enjoy the game. IF you encounter a problem, consult with one of them.

    Or, if all else fails, comment that they’ll have a hard time eating corn on the cob with no teeth..but be prepared to back it up if needed. 😉

    • July 27, 2012 at 3:25 pm
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      Good story, Paul, from the king of the story-tellers. Thanks for taking care of business.

  • July 27, 2012 at 11:42 am
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    The concession stand should offer one free beer to anyone in the stadium 30 minutes or more befroe kickoff.

  • July 27, 2012 at 11:54 am
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    I have never been around any person that has ever played football that do not discuss formations and the excution of plays. The only silent peop;e that set on their hands and cheer are the basketball first crowd! Football is like chess match and basketball is not.

  • July 28, 2012 at 11:35 am
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    How about the third time people slide by you to buy a beer they at least say either “Sorry” or “Excuse me.”

  • July 28, 2012 at 11:00 pm
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    How about letting the band play? We also need more stadium cheers, not just C-a-r-d-s. Something that each side of the stadium yells. Is there any organized student cheer group, or a a frat, that could do the ground work to start such a thing up?

  • July 29, 2012 at 7:14 am
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    I agree about getting into the stadium early. I agree about not selling your seat to a UK fan for the Governors Cup. I also agree about the commomn courtesy of avoiding walking in front of someone during the action and watching your language around young children. Those are just good manners.

    However I am all for standing and cheering for every play throughout the entire game. That includes fair criticisms and trash talking the opposing players (if you are fortunate enough to be within earshot). I am all for running commentary about the game and even the boring cliches as they pertain to the action on the field. It part of the fun of being there!

    As for my pet peeve at PJC;, people clogging up the concourse – standing in the middle of the walkway – talking to their friends while 55,0000 other people are actually trying to walk. If you are going to ignore the game and socialize with your friends, do it off to the side of the concourse. Or better yet retire back to your tailgateing spread. Whatever – just get out of everyone else’s way.

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