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Tuesday, July 5, 2022

Life + Arts

Prove that you are the pride


It’s undeniable that support from fellow Cougars encourages our sports teams to bring home the victory. Brush up on your knowledge of fight songs, the alma mater and other traditions so you can cheer the Cougar basketball teams on to a win. | File Photo/The Daily Cougar

This weekend, the women’s and men’s basketball teams will be playing in a doubleheader against Tulane and Rice, respectively.

Though the women are close to having a record-breaking season, the men’s team is in a bit of a rough patch and has the potential to step up its game in Saturday’s re-match. Either way, very few students go to the games and show support for their fellow Cougar athletes. Among other reasons, this could be caused by a general lack of knowledge of UH traditions.

Believe it or not, UH was once known as a basketball school. During the 1980s, Hofheinz pavilion was home to a hugely successful basketball team and a few traditions as well.

The first — and most obvious — tradition is the Cougar Sign. It dates back to 1953, when Shasta I (we had live cougars on campus in those days) lost her toe in a cage door on the way to a football game — thus the folded-down ring finger. When the Cougars make free throws, fans put their paws up. If the player makes the shot, the crowd calls out, “Swoosh.”

When an opposing team member shoots a free throw, fans build up a “Choke” chant to distract the player from making the goal.

Another long-standing tradition is to call out “Who’s he?” in unison during the introduction of players from the opposing team. Originally, fans would tear up The Daily Cougar and throw the pieces in the air, making it rain like confetti after the UH players were introduced.

The band also has a lot to do with the long-standing traditions in all athletics. Eric Shannon, a teaching assistant for the band program, oversees the Cougar Brass and explained the band’s role in team support.

“We go with what the game gives us,” Shannon said. “If it’s a close game, we try to keep the energy up and keep fans on their toes.”

Each time the team runs out of the tunnel, the UH Fight Song is played; it is also played at the beginning of the second half and end of the game. The band also closes the game with Alma Mater and, if we win, “Bugler’s Holiday,” an Olympic fanfare song.

“Eat ’Em Up Coogs” is another song that’s played by the band during games. It was composed by UH band director Bill Moffit in the 1970s and is played by almost all schools across the country.

“What’s unique about ‘Eat ’Em Up Coogs’ is that it actually has a snippet of the fight song in one of the verses,” Shannon said.

Coogs, it’s our responsibility to “Be the Pride.” Be sure to prove that you bleed red and show your teams support at Hofheinz Pavilion this weekend.


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