Georgetown hoops fans borrow a page from soccer supporters
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Georgetown University basketball’s most dedicated student fans gave us another reminder that soccer is slowly but surely taking over U.S. culture this week.
As Washington Post sports blogger Dan Steinberg reports, the GU faithful produced a soccer-style “tifo” celebrating their school’s decision to break away from the Big East to form a basketball-focused conference along with six other Catholic colleges across the Northeast and Great Lakes regions.
A group of hardcore Hoyas fans had already borrowed from soccer in forming their “Stonewalls” supporters group in an effort to boost the atmosphere at GU hoops games at the Verizon Center in downtown Washington, D.C. (Stonewalls is an allusion to an early Georgetown baseball team and the famous campus phrase “Hoya Saxa,” Latin for “What rocks.”)
Last month they used soccer-style banners to goad rivals Pittsburgh with the message “Traitors and liars will not be missed,” a reference to the internal Big East politics that saw Pitt leave the conference to join the Atlantic Coast Conference.
And for Monday night’s game against Marquette, Stonewall unveiled a huge banner hailing the so-called “Catholic Seven” — Georgetown, St. John’s, Seton Hall, Marquette, DePaul, Villanova and Providence — who are forming their own alliance in reaction to the changes in the Big East.
Titled “Basketball is our religion,” it features seven hooded fans closely resembling European “ultras,” representing each of the seven colleges.
Now let’s just hope that in the wake of the Georgetown men’s soccer team’s thrilling run to the NCAA College Cup final last year, we see a few more of these student fans outside in the stands at North Kehoe Field when soccer season rolls around.
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