Worth the hype?


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Everyone across campus, even if not by name, knows that group of wild, decked-out students at sporting events cheering on the team. Behind this lively student section is a club called the “hype squad.” This group chooses themes for sporting events, promotes important dates on social media, and motivates students to show up to games in style.

According to most upperclassmen, two years ago, the hype squad reached its peak, and had an invigorated student section at every game. Recently, it seems that school spirit has been lacking. Once the football season came to a close and other sports teams took the spotlight, the student section at other athletic events drastically decreased.

The Pumas are known for having various exceptional athletic teams. “In any sport, winning brings fans,” principal Dan Serrano explained. These teams have the wins and statistics that make an interesting game, but a shortage of fans.

Who is responsible for making this contradiction a reality? The hype squad or the students?

The hype squad was established as an official club last year to combat this issue and increase school spirit. Simply put, “We go to school activities…and we try to make the experience more fun for other students,” senior Kadin Cramer, president of the hype squad, stated.

Cramer further explains that themes are chosen to coordinate with the school that the team is going up against that day. For example, a theme for a game with Basha would be camouflage, and a theme for a game with Brophy College Preparatory would be frat.  

However, most are quick to comment that these themes are repetitive. “We’d have to come up with new, different themes,” club sponsor Dominguez mentioned. Keeping the themes persistent is likely a factor of students becoming uninterested in attending games.

With that being said, the themes are up for interpretation by the students, and can become elaborate and unique. “We don’t have control over much, we’re just there to make it fun.” Cramer added.

Apart from that, the hype squad strives to add structure to their planning to ensure that students attend games. “[We need to] get more groups of kids to all of the different sports [events], but it’s hard because there are a lot of sporting events,” Dominguez pointed out.

She proceeds to explain that by assigning around ten students to a game, it will encourage others to go.

There is no real culprit to the disappointing student section this year. If the hype squad and student section improve gradually, these small steps can restore the group to what it used to be.   

Annie Brown
A comparison between the student section and the parent section at a varsity basketball game on Jan. 22 against Basha.

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