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ASU fans embarrass themselves at USC October 13, 2008

Filed under: Public Relations — Stephanie Sheppard @ 4:41 pm
Tags: , , ,

My friends and I road tripped to Los Angeles this past weekend to attend the ASU vs. USC football game. Despite the embarrassing Sun Devil loss, we managed to have a great mini-vacation.

We purhcased our tickets through the ASU Alumni Association, so our seats were in the ASU section (which, of course, was the worst section of the stadium). The entire sections was mostly gold t-shirts, with the exception of a few USC fans. Even before we started losing by more than a touch down, I was embarrassed by our fans’ behaviors.

First, a fight broke out between a group of ASU students and a USC fan sitting near them. As the USC woman, who was obviously drunk, was escorted out of the section, the students began chanting “ASU” at her. It was as if they forgot we were sitting in their stadium and losing by a lot.

Later, ASU fans began fist fighting with each other! Then, because the students didn’t realize that the fight was among our own kind, the “ASU” chants started up again. Classy! USC security had to break up the fight and calm down the crying, drunk girls.

The entire experience was pretty embarrassing for me and my well-behaved friends. I couldn’t help but make the public relations connection. Team brands are heavily influenced by fan base behavior (Oakland Raiders, anyone?). ASU fans seem to be on track to develop a bad reputation. If we keep this up, other stadiums will stop offering us tickets – and rightfully so. What a PR nightmare that would be.

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3 Responses to “ASU fans embarrass themselves at USC”

  1. 39 Dallas Cowboy fans were ejected from the University of Phoenix stadium (home of the Arizona Cardinals) this week. This is up from 33 last week. So it’s not so much a college thing. I think it has to do with alcohol and rivalries.

  2. arizonabrian Says:

    Teams would never limit who can buy tickets. It just won’t happen. I think it would have been a PR nightmare if ABC would have continously shown the students in ASU shirts on tv fighting – but they don’t and they won’t because they understand the the atmosphere of college sports. That’s how students will act and it won’t change.

    I think ASU should focus more on their image when it comes to overall college rankings. With over 70k students on muliple campuses, I’m sure PR nightmares are happening every day. As a current student, you should go on some informational interviews with ppl in ASU’s public affairs office and learn about some of those nightmares.

    Just a bit of advice from a public relations professional and ASU grad…go devils!

  3. Stephanie Sheppard Says:

    That’s a great point. It would be much, much worse if their behavior had been broadcast on ABC. At least the embarrassment was contained to people in our section. While I agree that teams would never limit who can buy tickets, I could see eliminating an opposing section so we’re all spread out. Perhaps, though, that would cause more problems.


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