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Thursday, June 20
The Indiana Daily Student

sports football

IU fans ashamed after 33-14 loss

The lights were on, the stage was set and the curtain was drawn.  

Fred Glass’ vision had come to fruition, as Memorial Stadium’s east side was packed with 11,000 students ready for a party. With a 3-1 record and dreams of a bowl game fresh in IU students’ minds, at least a spirited effort was expected.

Instead, the students left before the final gun with their tails between their legs.  

The conversations in the bleachers, concourses and parking lots all ended the same way: “That was so embarrassing.”

It wasn’t the 33-14 end result that embarrassed IU fans – a double-digit loss to a top-10 team happens to the best of teams in college football.  

The humiliation came when a third-quarter punt snap looked more like Ski-Ball practice, resulting in a safety. It came when thousands of Ohio State fans shrieked “O-H-I-O” as the Hoosier faithful desperately and depressingly tried to replace the final letters with “I-U.”

And it was capped off when the Hoosiers scrambled in the final seconds as they charged for the OSU goal line, calling a time-out to conserve one last play and stick it in the end zone.

The band belted out the fight song, and the few remaining fans let out sarcastic cheers in between covering their faces with frosted hands.  

Now, it’s back to square one for those trying to draw students to the stadium.

IU football is notorious for the most fickle fan base in the Big Ten, and Saturday’s output will only further the inconsistency in loyalty.  

The question that entered most IU student’s minds had to be “I came out here for this?”    

Students gave up their Saturday night to watch the Buckeyes gain 219 rushing yards to IU’s 18. They bought tickets, cheap as they might have been, to see the Hoosiers commit nine penalties for 87 yards.  

The students weren’t happy in the end, but the players were grateful for the support before kickoff.  

“Obviously the game didn’t turn out the way we wanted it to, but they were great as a whole,” senior linebacker Matt Mayberry said. “They really got us fired up before the game.”

Senior cornerback Ray Fisher felt the fire, too, and he said he hopes to feel it the rest of his final collegiate season.

“Anytime we get a student section like that, it should pump us up, because we don’t have it a lot,” Fisher said. “It really shouldn't take Ohio State coming here for it to happen. It happened today, and I was grateful for it, but I think it should happen more.”

A rabid student section is something Hoosier players will always want, but 125 years of mediocrity has put football second to everything in Bloomington.  

Then, when the student body collectively decides to attend, the product on the field proves its most cynical prejudices with a sub-par effort.

As it has been for decades in Bloomington, no one will buy the tickets if the show isn’t worth attending. It doesn’t help that no one likes to be shamed like the IU faithful were last weekend, either.  

The show must go on, but the next screening might be in front of another half-empty theater.  

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