Former coach encourages students to attend spring game
It is a craze that is sweeping Colorado football fans everywhere: fill Folsom Field for the spring football game. Already countless Facebook groups have been created inviting students to attend the free spring game on April 19.
With thousands already committed to attend, how did all this get started, and who was the person to encourage students to flood the stadium?
The answer lies with former football head coach Bill McCartney.
Bill McCartney, the coach for the Buffs during the 1982-94 seasons, including the 1990 national championship season, urged students to fill Folsom Field for the upcoming spring game. This request came after the University of Alabama, who CU played in the PetroSun Independence Bowl this year, was able to get 90,000 students to attend their spring game. Though he left the ranks of head coach over a decade ago, McCartney said he will still get involved in the Buff program when asked.
He urged students to attend the spring game in order to create a crowd dynamic that has been absent in previous years. He added that if high school prospects see crowd support behind the football program, they will be more willing to sign to the school.
“I read that Alabama had 92 or 93,000 for their spring game, which led to this year’s recruiting class,” McCartney said. “If you have that kind of support, that’s were kids want to go.”
It may be hard to believe that crowd support is not as present at Folsom Field after attending a game amid jeering students plastered in black and gold. As McCartney pointed out, however, this is because Folsom Field is one of the smallest stadiums in college football, therefore leading to less crowd support.
“Of the top 30 schools in terms of schools that are ranked, we have the smallest attendance because we have the smallest stadium,” McCartney said.
Because of this, he is urging that students turn up en masse on April 19 to fill Folsom and show support for the Buffs.
During his 12 years as the head coach, McCartney turned a 1-10 football program into a national championship team. He said having large crowds in attendance will draw star-quality performers who will in time be able to make the team national contenders. Though great recruits help, he also said the efforts of current head football coach Dan Hawkins have had a positive effect on the program.
“It seems to me like he’s a special guy, and that he has tremendous resolve and enthusiasm,” McCartney said. “Those kind of things are contagious.”
With a determined head coach and a new highly-touted recruiting class, the football program is in a place to turn a good team into a great one. By McCartney’s standards, one of the biggest things left is for students to comply with his request and fill Folsom Field to show support for the football team.
Contact Campus Press Staff Writer Rachael Fischer at firstname.lastname@example.org.