Officials at the University of North Carolina realized that they did the wrong thing after their men's basketball team began the season 0-7 earlier this year. The problem, officials said, was not in hiring the wrong coach, but that tickets for lower-level seating in the "Dean Dome," were offered to faculty and administrative staff instead of students.
Officials say that university professors and administrative staff and their families "just didn't make enough noise. It was so quiet in the lower levels that you could actually hear a pin drop. Students were beginning to bring their books to study during basketball ball games instead of cheer."
"It was quieter than the library," commented one student. "We used to bring our books and just hang out and study," he said of the "Dean Dome." "Every now and then, when we needed a break, someone would go get some popcorn and we'd watch the game, then, get back to work."
The problem got so bad that university officials were thinking about changing their mascot name from the North Carolina Tarheels to the North Carolina librarians, or archivists.
This is very much in contrast to cross-town rival Duke University whose student fans, the "Cameron Crazies" raise so much hell in a stadium about half the size of the "Dean Dome" that opponents cannot hear signals being called from the bench and absolutely dread having to play there. The Crazies abuse is so constant, so vilifying and maliciously destructive and of such of a directly personal nature sometimes that most players from the opposing team must undergo at least 10 sessions of psychotherapy after the game to undo the psychological damage.
"It is a form of psychological warfare," said Dr. Sigmund Soda, Professor of Psychology in Duke Universities Department of Psychological Warfare.
"We teach principals of psychological warfare to students of private universities because we know that these kids are going to be America's next leaders and need to learn how to control the mind of the masses. The fact that they use these techniques in the basketball games is simply an experiment. They're just kids trying out an insidious, new weapon. That's all."
Considered a sixth man on the court, the "Cameron Crazies" earned their reputation in the 1980's after fans threw Twinkies at overweight players on the opposing team and panties and condoms at players who had been charged with sexual assault. They've also been known for scurrilous chants such as, "We're smart and you're dumb!" and "Fire Mike Jarvis!" former coach for St. Johns.
"It's like having a chanting editorial at each basketball game," says one observer. "If we want to know what's going on in current events, we just tune in to the Crazies. It's like having the newspaper above the pissing stalls, where intellectualism and bodily function meets sports."
The "Dean Dome," was opened as a student activity center in 1986 to accommodate larger crowds for basketball games, commencement exercises and concerts featuring sawed off filthy rich, little pop singers from England with a closet full of shoes who continue to sell out despite advancing ages and new material that was recognizable.
The "Dome" was also created so that the Rolling Stones would come to Chapel Hill and play one, three-hour concert offsetting most of the $1.1 billion cost of building the arena.
The "Dean Dome," one of the larger stadiums in the country, normally seats 21,750, but can actually hold 22,125 when cross-town rival Duke University comes to town and tickets sell for $3,000 a pop. Nestled right in the heart of the Carolinas, it is considered one of the only areas in the South where liberals can congregate and actually be in the majority. The other two places were Greenville, S.C., Asheville, N.C. and any town that the Grateful Dead happens to be tourning in that night.
"We hate it when the Cameron Crazies come over here for the Duke games," said one Carolina fan. "They show their ass at every opportunity and make us all wonder how any of them ever scored a fourteen hundred on the SAT."
The Crazies, synonymous with the word, Gremlins, are reported to hang from rafters and sit on the giant television monitors located in each corner of the 300,000 sq. foot arena and pour soda and popcorn on Carolina fans chanting, "You're All Wet! You're All Wet! Go Home Change Your Clothes! Go Home Change Your Clothes!"
Reporters didn't know why university officials had this seating arrangement to begin with, but some believe that it was a message that university officials wanted to send to the student body that the good seats must be earned with hard work, discipline and scholarship and that they weren't just given away.
But after Carolina lost several games, the "big daddy" strategy was put aside for more practical solutions, so that the team would start winning again. Carolina, who boasts five national championships over the past century and has retired so many of their player's jerseys that they now have to use negative integers, has a long-standing winning tradition.
In other sports news today, 10 members from the Cincinnati Bengal's football team were arraigned on charges of DUI and were forced to attend AA meetings. Coaches for the team concerned that players would not be able to understand play board diagrams changed straights lines to squiggly ones and spoke to the players through a series of racist jokes which almost got one of the coaches killed.