Is the Student Section Worth It?


Marisol Orlina, Editor

What all happens in the student section? A lot. How much can I say? Enough? Maybe. But please, let me tell you all the absolutely fantastic characteristics of the chaos stuffed into the football stands.

Beforehand, a quick standard I should set is my respect for school sports, but especially everyone involved in football season. It’s exhausting. From the halftime shows to conditioning, the whole school is involved. The varsity players are just the tip of the iceberg.

But I don’t have a stake in the games, or anything else for that matter. And I’m not a football fan. I don’t have anything against it, but it’s not an environment I spend my time in, and it hasn’t ever been one I’ve sought out.

Last year, my freshman year, I’ll admit I went to a majority of the games. But never to sit in the student section or to watch the game. To me, it was just another time to sit around somewhere other than my house.

So instead, this year, at the Channelview game, I decided maybe it’s time to appear as part of the student body. My friends were going, and occasionally the atmosphere is nice. Why not?

Well because my first and only student section experience was borderline disturbing; pickles were thrown, couples were intertwined, and the guy in front of me stepped, in his sock, into mustard and ketchup.

When I tell you I was going to hurl.

It was downright traumatic. Painful. Ungodly. I never went back to the student section again. The memories were just too horrific. But last week, I did. All for this article. All for you.

It was not as tragic as I remember. It’s still not the scene I prefer, but I can see the obvious appeal.

First and foremost, the student section has some assumptive rules.

For one, all underclassmen to the back. Even the AP’s at the game think so. If you’re a freshman or sophomore who somehow found their way up to the front, you’re taking up room that should be filled by a senior or junior. You get sniffed out? You’re in trouble.

Additionally, everyone stands. There is no sitting in the student section, that’s ridiculous. You do your part, stand on the bleachers, and participate in cheers. Get loud or go home.

Some people also like to exaggerate the importance of dressing on theme or minding your personal space. Those are harder to enforce. Once 300 students are crammed into a single block of bleachers, people aren’t paying attention to your outfit, and, quite literally, there is no room for a ‘personal bubble.’

Instead, the 300 personalities merge into a single blob of impulsive, rowdy, energy. I can understand a few water bottle splashes after a touchdown, or the jumping up and down. But when actual traffic cones are being hurled across the student section. That’s where I draw the line.

In some situations, the student section can be so rough, attendees can suffer from (sort of minor) injuries, like a big bruise, or being stepped on repeatedly. Obviously, it’s not a dangerous place, but there is some risk in being a part of the student section’s rowdiness.

But in the end, that’s why it’s so exciting; and as a school, a thriving football season is something to be grateful for.

Contrary to “Friday Night Lights,” football’s importance correlates with the season, which lasts three months. But what you can consistently find at the heart of any school is the student body. Although in the big picture, football seems small, the positive interactions from students boost morale for the season, and ultimately the whole school year.

Any student section is going to be aggressive, clearly not excluding Clear Lake. But depending on perspective, it’s either the going to be an uncomfortable swarm of bodies or a way establish a relationship with the school, even if you’re competing with 2000 other students.