The Return of Cub Student Sections

The biggest game changer for UDJ Athletics

Milan Manriquez, Cub News Writer

With the arrival of the winter season comes all things sports – specifically the return of U of D Jesuit High School basketball. Although high school hoops come and go every school year, something tells me this season might mean a little more to the guys of UD High. For as long as I could remember, one of the best aspects of our school was the sense of brotherhood and camaraderie. This characteristic lends itself to a rowdy student section, no matter the sport. When you combine that all-male teenage camaraderie with the collective emphatic love for the sport of basketball, you get something special – an atmosphere that’s so loud, so entertaining, and so appealing, that it seems almost every Cub at the High wants to be a part of it.

Ever since Covid hit the United States during the 2019-2020 school year, high school sports (including basketball) have yet to be the same. After about a 6-month hiatus, high school sports returned to the High, although nowhere near how they used to be – there were fewer games with little to no spectators allowed, strict rules for meeting as a team, no contact practices, and sometimes even daily Covid tests. Let’s just say it was hard to be a fan of sports as both an athlete and a spectator under Covid guidelines. The following year was a bit better for the athletes, as no-restriction practices were implemented, and more games were scheduled. However, it still wasn’t great for the boys at the High, considering there was still a maximum capacity of students allowed in the crowd – which obviously made it difficult for the Cub student section to bring the same energy as previous years.

Fast forward to this year, and all restrictions for both athletes and spectators have been lifted. Full capacity crowds – including larger student sections – have finally made a return to U of D basketball games for the first time since Covid hit . When asked how this affected him as a player, Varsity junior Charlie Curoe stated: “You know, student sections are always a big part of the game. It’s always great to have a lot of fans, to bring the energy, and to help the team get rowdy”. When I asked how the Cub student sections at U of D home games affected his game, Varsity sophomore Sebastian Randolph told me “Just having the student section hyping all of us up throughout the game, and just them knocking the other team off of their focus level, I feel like that plays a big part in our game.”

Although the basketball season has just started, with the Cubs having only played two league games so far, it’s clear to see that the energy of the crowd is different this year. Let me tell you – the boys are back. The boys in the Cub student section are showing up in numbers and being as rowdy as possible, showing their support for our guys on the court. I think it’s safe to say this season means more to the Cubs from UD High than it has before, and that both  athletes and spectators alike are trying their best to make it count.