For the second straight year, the University of Dallas Blue Crew held a pep rally in the Maher Center to promote UD student-athletes. For a second straight year, the timing of the pep rally prevented some student-athletes from attending.
A year ago, the pep rally was held during basketball season, while both basketball teams were on the road. This year, the pep rally was held while all the spring sports were in season, and the men’s basketball team was in Colorado for the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference (SCAC) tournament.
Baseball, men’s lacrosse, and track and field were all out of town. The only team that had home games scheduled was softball, who was supposed to have a doubleheader on Saturday that was later canceled due to the rain.
Blue Crew President Moira Quinn said they originally scheduled the pep rally on Feb. 9, the day that both the men’s and women’s basketball teams would take on Trinity, but the athletic department told them they couldn’t use the gym that day.
As a result, the pep rally happened this past weekend when there ended up being no home games.
“For me saying that these sports aren’t going to be in town is the worst thing ever,” Quinn said. “Especially being the leader of blue crew, I’ve been stressing out about this since we figured [it] out. It especially hurts me that sports people would feel like we’re leaving them out.”
Quinn said that the purpose of the pep rally was to help bridge the gap between athletes and other students.
“[The purpose is] to get more of the students who would never go to games to come and see all the hard work that everyone puts in,” Quinn said.
If this is the goal, it’s hard to do without having the athletes there, but it also needs to happen on a game day or at least a game weekend. Quinn agreed.
“It’s kind of hard after you have a pep rally and you’re all amped up and it’s like, ‘well, where do we go?’ “ Quinn said. “So, I think that would be fun to have some kind of pep rally before an actual game or the day before a game.”
The purpose of a pep rally is to get people excited for an event. These are typically done in high school. I’ve heard the criticism that a pep rally at UD isn’t a good idea because it’s a high school type of event. I don’t necessarily agree with this criticism, because UD is a small, close community. Those are more elements of a high school than at a large college.
However, if there is no event to get excited for, what’s the point?
For this pep rally to be successful in the future, I think it needs to be in preparation for an event. This will require both more planning from the Blue Crew as well as cooperation from the coaches. It is challenging when there is only one gym to do it, so it will require a lot of planning and perhaps some sacrifices from both sides.
The Blue Crew creates a fun atmosphere at games when they’re there, but they’ve struggled with their resources. This semester they are a club for the first time, giving them more resources than before, but there’s still some growing pains for the new club.
“We are a new club, we’re still learning, so we make mistakes,” Quinn said. “We apologize if it comes off a certain way, but that’s not our intent at all.”
Quinn also wants to make sure no athlete feels overlooked.
“I don’t want athletes to feel like they are being left in the dust,” Quinn said. “I want them to feel like they can come to us. If they have ideas, we need ideas, because in the end we’re trying to help the athletes. So if they have anything that they think would be helpful for us to do for them that would be awesome.”
**To hear Rory and Kevin McGuirk discuss the pep rally and more, listen to the Crux de Athletica podcast https://archive.org/details/AroundWithBattlecrier05**