The Washington Post

Duke cheer sheet takes aim at U-Va. lingo

I think it goes without saying that most of you inherently disapprove of mimeographed cheer sheets at sporting events. Also photocopied ones.

I think it further goes without saying that there’s something inherently sad about a 30-something professional adult spending more than three or four seconds writing or thinking about a sporting-event cheer sheet designed and used by enthusiastic collegians still unencumbered by the realities of life, for whom shouted athletic-event cleverness, or even just the approximation thereof, must bring an incredible sense of purpose and satisfaction.

Also, when I was a kid, I went to Division III Fredonia State men’s basketball games and screamed insults at visiting players who wore goggles. I mean, goggles! Can you imagine? Athletes in goggles! What jokers. They deserved it.

All that said, I thought this cheer sheet prepared by Duke students for other Duke students in advance of Monday night’s meeting with Virginia was notable in that it largely skipped past the suggested taunts part of the cheer sheet in favor of just straight-up insults about the school and its traditions, insults that seemed unlikely to generate much in the way of clever cheers, unless there are many excellent cheers that involve Thomas Jefferson quotations and dissertations on the amenities of certain campus housing options.

And seeing how some of my readers are loyal Virginia fans, and other of my readers delight in taunting loyal Virginia fans for their peculiar ways, this all seemed appropriate.

Even though I flew way past the three or four second cheer-sheet-thought limit in preparing this item. Apologies.

Here are the relevant passages:

Handy Reference to UVa Lingo

* Grounds: refers to the UVa campus, except under no circumstances should a UVa student call the campus grounds a campus. Why? We may never know.

* First-year: the equivalent of a freshman at a normal college. UVa also does not have sophomores, juniors, and seniors, but rather second-, third-, and fourth-years, because Thomas Jefferson.

* The Lawn: the central quad on the UVa campus grounds, characterized by old “prestigious” rooms with great amenities, neither bathrooms nor air conditioning.


* Wahoo: a carp found in the waters of Virginia, which is “capable of retaining a prodigious amount of liquid to increase its size” and fend off enemies. Sometimes UVA students/athletes are referred to as “Wahoos.”

* This may be a reference to how much UVa students like to think they drink.

* Also a lyric in “The Good Ol’ Song,” a traditional school song with perhaps the dumbest title, ever.

Dan Steinberg writes about all things D.C. sports at the D.C. Sports Bog.



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