As far back as I can remember I’ve been attending St. Joe’s basketball games. After every game, I have vivid memories of rolling down the hill that led to the track after watching Debbie Black dominate as point guard at only about 5-feet-tall. Even the women’s games were crowded, although not as packed as the men’s; those are games that I will never forget as well.
When a friend of the family started playing for the men’s team, the games took on an even more personal aspect. He played on the team when they went undefeated in regular season, which is still, to this day, the only team to do so.
The Fieldhouse, which is where the games are held, is smaller than most gyms that a Division I school would play in, but that’s what makes it so special. The atmosphere is something that you can only experience if you attend a game and the feeling you receive after you leave is incredible.
One bleacher was always filled with students who were jam-packed together, screaming and singing chants every minute of the game. I remember asking my parents why they would never sit and they would always tell me, “When you go to college at a school like this, you’ll understand.”
I soon came to understand why they would never sit down even for a minute in a game. In August of 2004, I moved into Jordan Hall as an official freshman of St. Joseph’s University.
The St. Joe’s community lives for basketball season. I know other athletes from the school and if they read this they would probably be upset, but it’s true. Basketball is the No. 1 sport there, but even more specifically, men’s basketball. When basketball season comes around, the school is more alive than ever and people start planning their lives around home games.
It’s the most amazing feeling being there; everyone in the stands ready for the game, the band all matching in cute, little jerseys, a chant starting from the minute warm-ups until the end and “Oh, When the Hawks Come Flying In” theme song is sang.
Coming from St. Joe’s to Cabrini College has been a drastic change when I attend a basketball game to say the least. There’s nothing against the men’s team here, or the fans, but nothing compares to the atmosphere of a home game at St. Joe’s.