Opinion | Our sports deserve love

Luca Evans
Sports Editor

Folks, it’s time to get out there. On Friday and Saturday nights, consider for a moment not sprucing yourself up to go to that frat party. Consider not laying on your couch to play video games until the wee hours of the morning. Instead, consider taking a second to swing by the football field, or Hutton Sports Center, or even hit the road and watch Chapman’s athletic teams play against their Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) rivals.

If you sat in the stands at Wilson Field to watch the football team play at all this year, you saw that they’re fighting by the tiniest sliver of skin on their teeth to bring pride to this school. Every single team is. So it’s time to give some of that love back. We have to take a couple hours out of our week, slap on a Panthers hat, cheer our lungs out for our classmates battling on the field or court, because that’s the atmosphere a powerhouse school should have. Yes, that’s right. I said it.

We’re officially a powerhouse, or at least getting to that point – certainly within the SCIAC and, in some cases, within the entirety of Division III. Women’s soccer and women’s volleyball saw their seasons sadly come to an end recently, but both teams were a near-lock for victories throughout the season. Meanwhile, the football team, one of the biggest Chapman-related storylines in any field, just completed an incredible undefeated regular season – the first time in program history they didn’t lose a single game. And let’s not forget about baseball, who of course literally won a national championship last spring.

Ah, yes – right now, you’re blowing this off. You think, “So what? We’re still just a Division III school.” Well, consider the fact that Chapman isn’t permitted to offer athletic scholarships to incoming students – they have to choose to play on their own accord. So it’s legitimately amazing that the programs on campus have such strong foundations, which further speaks to the dedication that coaches have in their recruiting. You can hate the institution of professional sports with a fiery, molten lava-oozing-from-your-pores passion. But college sports are different.

Especially within Division III, athletes pour their hearts out to bring pride to their universities. They aren’t paid. They take hours upon hours out of their weeks to practice. They give the school – they give Chapman – a saving face, a crutch to fall back upon when other aspects of college life may be in turmoil.

So if you want to support the school in any way, go watch a football game. Go watch a basketball game. The players certainly appreciate it. This is bigger than just sports, than just Division III or the SCIAC – this is about your love for Chapman.