Luck visits Maniacs’ first meeting
Published: Thursday, August 23, 2012
Updated: Thursday, August 23, 2012 05:08
The Mountaineer Maniacs, West Virginia University’s premier fan organization, held its first meeting of the year in the Mountainlair Wednesday.
WVU Athletic Director Oliver Luck made an appearance at the meeting, speaking and answering questions from current and prospective Maniacs.
"The Maniacs have a tremendous history at WVU," Luck said. "You’re joining a great tradition of Mountaineer athletics."
Luck came to the meeting to welcome students and to ask a favor from the fans.
"We have a reputation that we’re a rough fanbase, and our fan behavior has been dodgy at best," he said. Luck believes this reputation comes from generations past.
"We have an opportunity to change that, though," he said.
As WVU enters its inaugural season in the Big 12 Athletic Conference, Luck asked the Maniacs to extend friendship and good sportsmanship to fans from other schools.
"What you’re doing when you come to WVU is representing us and our small state," he said. "Lots of these fans from the Midwest have never been here before, and we have a chance to roll out the red carpet and extend a hand in welcome."
Although he asked the Maniacs to give friendly greetings to new competitors, he still expects fans to show energy.
"We can rock it out in the stadium, but we also have to change these perceptions about our fans," Luck said.
In addition to Luck’s speech, Mountaineer Maniacs Executive Director Chris Northrup announced several changes to the Maniacs rewards programs.
The Pride Points system was reintroduced, and Maniacs will earn points for game attendance. The top 25 Maniacs earn early access to basketball games.
The "Qdoba Points" plan is also being introduced this year. Maniacs can accumulate points earned by attending games and trade them for free food at Qdoba, a local Mexican grill.
"It’s a great way to incentivize attendance to games," Northrup said. "We really want to increase our attendance this year."
Northrup also announced several trips to away games, with tickets, transportation and tailgate opportunities discounted for Maniacs.
"One of the great things about the Maniacs is that we don’t just support the Mountaineers in Morgantown," he said.
The Maniacs plan to travel to Fedex Field in Landover Maryland for the Football game against James Madison University September 15, as well as two basketball games at Marshall University and the University of Michigan.
"This is our chance to show the nation what West Virginia and the Mountaineers are all about," he said.
John Galatic, a freshman finance student, is joining the Maniacs for a singular reason.
"I want tickets to every game," he said. "This is a great opportunity for students to go see some quality football and basketball games, as well as the other sports."
Rachel Hall, a freshman general studies student, came to the meeting without any knowledge of the Maniacs.
"It makes me feel welcome to see all of these people here," she said. She was interested in the Pride Points program but expressed some concerns.
"I don’t know how adding points up could be fair," she said. "I won’t be able to do as much as other people [to earn points]."
For more information about the Mountaineer Maniacs, visit http://maniacs.wvu.edu.