The Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association is trying to curb student-section chants at high school sporting events, including "Air ball!" and "Scoreboard!" with rules aimed at promoting respect.
Perhaps fans will rise up with a strident "You canâ€™t do that!" in response.
The WIAA, which has had the policy in place for years, sent out an email in December to reemphasize it, especially as pertaining to student cheers at games. But the rules only recently became news, thanks to a suspension of an athlete last week who lambasted them on Twitter.
The WIAA's 40-page Sportsmanship Guide is available online, but the December email from director of communications Todd Clark has not been made public. According to Post-Crescent Media, it conveys a message to increase fair conduct and graciousness among spectators at games. Specifically, the email says the state athletic association is seeking to reduce the "amount of chants by student sections directed at opponents and/or opponentsâ€™ supporters that are clearly intended to disrespect."
The WIAA email reportedly provided examples of now-banned chants, which included longtime favorites like "Fundamentals," "Sieve," "We canâ€™t hear you," "Air Ball," "You canâ€™t do that," "Thereâ€™s a net there," "Scoreboard" and "Seasonâ€™s over" during tournament play. (Add the obligatory clap, clap, clap-clap-clap to each for the full effect.)
This will be tough to take for high-school students, who for years have conceived of mildly offensive, surprisingly clever and amusingly inane cheers with which to (largely playfully) praise their teams and jeer the opposition. Looking back at my experience as a high school athlete and fan, these new rules â€“ besides being a total lame drag â€“ would have hurt attendance and entertainment for less-popular sports like soccer and volleyball, which benefited from a rowdier crowd element. The "scoreboard" chant, for one, is perhaps as ancient and adored as sport itself.
The first real victim of the new rules, Hilbert basketball player April Gehl, was suspended five games by her high school last week for a tweet directed at the WIAA about the changes that contained profanity â€“ although the governing body told Post-Crescent Media it did not issue the suspension nor direct the school to do so.
Clark did not immediately respond to a request for comment Monday.
Whether they like it or not, it seems, Wisconsin high-school students will just have to be more creative â€“ and constructive and encouraging! â€“ when cheering on their sports teams. Or, when think think of the new fan rules, they may just go with that one chant that concerns the excrement of male cattle.
No Talkbacks for this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Jimmy Carlton
Published July 25, 2016
The Packers placed wide receiver Jordy Nelson, Nelson, tight end Jared Cook, receiver Ty Montgomery, guard T.J. Lang, center Corey Linsley and linebacker Sam Barrington were placed on the physically unable to perform list. Green Bay also released running back Don Jackson and defensive end B.J. McBryde.
Published July 22, 2016
Longtime Chicago Bears cornerback Charles Tillman, who retired earlier in the day, threw out the ceremonial first pitch Friday evening in Milwaukee, delighting the Cubs fans who'd invaded Miller Park (aka Wrigley Field North). Cool, Brewers.
Published July 22, 2016
During the Packers' annual shareholders meeting at Lambeau Field on Thursday, team president Mark Murphy made some waves by revealing that Green Bay had applied to host the NFL Draft. But does the area have the hotel rooms to accommodate such a big event?
Published July 20, 2016
If there was any holdout hope still flickering that Green Bay would bring back beloved veteran John Kuhn for another year, it was all but extinguished Wednesday - quietly and subtly - with the signing of undrafted free agent Warren Gatewood.
Published July 19, 2016
Perhaps soon, we will finally begin to understand Latrell Sprewell. On Tuesday, The Pabst confirmed the notorious Milwaukee native and ex-NBA star would be the on-stage guest of Michael Rapaport's popular "I Am Rapaport: Stereo Podcast Live" at Turner Hall on July 29.
Published July 18, 2016
Miles Plumlee seemed to be intuitively aware of where he should be and how he should move in Milwaukee's offense, particularly in the pick-and-roll. He brought hustle, athleticism and a rim presence to the Bucks, who reportedly re-signed him Monday for four years and $52 million.
Published July 15, 2016
Milwaukee is 38-49, which is good for fourth in the Central division and 11th in the National League. Let's quickly review the Brewers' first half, complete with arbitrary awards, surprises and statistics, and lightly preview the second half of the 2016 season.
Published July 14, 2016
Aaron Rodgers sat down with Bill Simmons last night for the sports pundit's new HBO show, "Any Given Wednesday." The interview went as expected, which is to say it was amusing, entertaining, at times enlightening and often predictable. Here are some excerpts.
Published July 13, 2016
Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers' 61-yard Hail Mary touchdown pass to Richard Rodgers to beat the Lions with no time remaining won the 2016 ESPY Award for Best Play on Wednesday night.
Published July 13, 2016
The Packers have put another running back into their crowded backfield to compete for the No. 3 job behind Eddie Lacy and James Starks. Green Bay signed undrafted rookie Brandon Ross on Wednesday, adding him to the group with Don Jackson, Brandon Burks and John Crockett.