Freshman Guide: Homecoming Gameday
Hey freshmen, So it’s October, and you may be starting to feel like pros at the whole “college” thing. You’ve learned there are a few differences between high school and college, among them the new lack of parental supervision and the ability to eat all the fruit snacks you want!!! drink and party that comes with it. But another difference that might put you in some unknown territory is fast-approaching: homecoming.
No longer are you and your friends pairing up with another group of friends you sort-of-know who agreed to be your dates, sitting in a gender-segregated formation in a booth at Benihana, going to the dance (but just for a little because you’re only going ironically anyway because it’s totally lame), and then having a (co-ed!) sleepover in Jeremy’s basement where you’ll get tipsy off a can of his brother’s PBR you split with Kendall. In college, the festivities are quite different. For better or for worse, homecoming is pretty much all about sports. This year, the day will be structured around #20 Northwestern’s showdown with #17 Iowa on the morning of October 17, and we’ve provided a few tips to help you do it right.
Part I: The Pregame
- Like every other game day, it’s a marathon, not a sprint. Don’t overdo it early on. The human body can metabolize one drink per hour. Naturally, the best way to decrease this time is to supplement your alcohol with plenty of foods your body will metabolize more quickly, like Maggi 2 Minute Noodles, which, as its name suggests, your body will metabolize in two minutes.
- Unlike every other game day, this year’s homecoming face-off is at 11 O’CLOCK IN THE FUCKING MORNING. This may sound daunting, but there’s more than one way to look at it. Society has latched onto the myth that getting drunk at the crack of dawn is “unacceptable” or “unproductive” or “disruptive when you yell outside your RA’s room at 9 a.m. and try to make out with him after vomiting in his doorway.” But society has clearly not been introduced to the joys of getting up early just to drink, of which there are many. What college student who hasn’t had Malort-soaked scrambled eggs can really say they’re doing game day right?
- While tailgating, never, ever walk on the sidewalk with an open container. You’ll get arrested, and you won’t get to go to the game. You might think when we say “open container” we mean cups or cans with alcohol. You would be wrong. While the ninnies at the so-called NU police department might have gone soft and stopped there, we discourage you from carrying open containers of any kind. This includes your unzipped backpacks, the lidless Tupperware you stashed dining hall fries in because you knew they wouldn’t serve them again until Tuesday and your Elfa™ Savvy Space Savers storage cubes. Either close ‘em up or don’t carry them in public. It looks sloppy, and it’s an embarrassment to this university. Don’t think we won’t be on the lookout. If that container is not closed, expect a visit from the Sherman Ave Citizen's Law Administration Brigade (SACLAB). We will be incessantly blasting NBC’s Sunday Night Football theme song in lieu of a siren. And not the Faith Hill version.
Part II: The Actual Fucking Game
For all you fake-ass jerks who have the nerve to call yourselves football fans when you really just throw on some purple and tailgate before getting back in bed and not giving a shit about the games, this is for you. You’re fucking welcome. For all you real-ass jerks, sorry, but this has to be done: We’re going to lay down some fundamental principles of American football.
You might be wondering why a publication at a school where every student without exception has an undying devotion to all sports is pointing out such basic gameplay rules. This is because, as we all know, the previous sentence is completely false, and that is disgusting. The students used to truly care about football. During NU’s golden era, just after it was founded by Brett Favre under the name Sports University, our school was unstoppable. But as you may know, since current university president Morton Schapiro assumed office, Sports U’s prestigious Cutler School of Passin’ the Pigskin and John R. Fumble College of Touchdowns (for whom the fumble was actually named) have been replaced with some of Northwestern’s bullshit schools like “Medill” and bullshit majors like “engineering.” And with that transformation, the dumbass admissions officers started letting in slews of the aforementioned fake-ass jerks who care more about “academics” than America’s pastime.* In other words, some of you propeller-hat-wearing, pocket-protecting nerd bombers have some catching up to do.
- You have 4 tries to go 10 yards, or else the other team gets the ball. Each try is called a “down.” It’s often advised to punt on the 4th try.
- Every touchdown is worth 6 points. After you score a touchdown, you have the option to kick a field goal for 1 point or re-try your last play for 2 points.
- That’s pretty much all we know. What did you expect? We don’t know sports. We’re writers, for crying out loud. How many times do we have to emphasize that the two are mutually exclusive?!
- Keeping #6 in mind, clueless though we all may be about where in heaven’s name those boys are running on that field (man, they look like ants down there!), there are people around you who actually know this shit. They watch games when there’s no drinking involved. They use the term “fantasy league” outside of their dungeons and dragons RPG groups. Follow these people. Cheer when they cheer. Boo when they boo. Put up your hand in a claw shape and say “ooooh” when they put up their hand in a claw shape and say “ooooh.” Freshmen, heed this one closely; this is about much more than enjoyment. We can’t tell you how we know this, but last time a student was caught moving their arm the wrong way during the “Whoosh!” portion of the “Time to move the chain! Whoosh!” chant, a member of the Wildcat Welcome Board of Directors winked twice, nodded, and within seconds, that student was escorted off the premises … and never seen again.
We hope these tips help you have the best first homecoming your little hearts could desire! Our last bit of wisdom, which we think applies here, is the mantra our football team recites before every game: “Clear eyes. Full hearts. Can’t lose sight of the fact that I have a midterm on Monday. Shit, I should really study after this.”
Get out there, and make Northwestern proud.
*America’s pastime is baseball, you know-nothings! Case in fucking point.