Looking south of the border we see an alarming difference between varsity sports in the NCAA compared to that in the CIS. Attendance at games, tailgating, and the blind loyalty that students and alumni have for their school sports teams is enormous in comparison to that of Canadian universities. This disparity got me thinking; why can't schools in Canada replicate what happens in the States? Is it because of the culture? The amount of money put into athletics? These questions may be the reason we see these differences between NCAA and CIS games.
In the fall of 2013, a fellow student and I set out to change attendance at Waterloo sporting events and get more alumni and students in the stands. We created a group called the Warrior Tribe. The purpose of the group is to have members attend games decked out in black, gold, and our iconic Warrior Tribe hat and cheer on our Warriors. The end goal is to create a similar crowd atmosphere that you see televised at NCAA basketball and football games.This club is an attempt to give our teams home court advantage and revive the Waterloo spirit that most students and alumni want but don't often see. I think for the most part people have the innate feeling to be proud of their school and creating an environment where people can showcase this pride is important.
We have been particularly successful in spreading awareness and have received support from both FEDs and the Athletic department. We have even been clapped out of the CIF hockey arena after a women's hockey game as parents and fellow fans felt like we made a difference and appreciated our spirit. However, I would like to encourage current students to show their support as well as call on alumni to come back to campus and support their alma mater by attending games. Alumni can even take advantage of the Alumni Big Ticket granting them free access to regular season home games. Check out the website for more details on the 2014/2015 pass.
The Warrior Tribe is something that will carry on beyond my years at the University, and will hopefully let the rest of Canada know that being a Warrior means more than getting good grades.
For more information on ways to get involved or make donations feel free to contact us.
Co-president Adam Birch