Jillian Kurtz

The Snake Pit student section in Jenkins Field House was lacking in student presence throughout the 2017-18 basketball season. With an overwhelmingly higher number of adults and Sixth Man Club members compared to students, many wondered why students were not showing up to support their fellow Mocs.

“I personally believe that games were not advertised as much as they could have, and I think this is part of the reason why students did not show,” cheerleader Marissa Mengelkoch said. “Social media pages should increase their postings, which would get the news to the students quicker.”

Entrance into basketball games is free for students, and several games count as the School Pride Passport Points.

“Every student should know when we are playing our rivals and should feel encouraged to attend the games,” Mengelkoch said. “I think it is also important for each sport to support each other – since we have such a large student athlete population.”

The FSC Athletic Department has ten all-male sports teams, twelve all-women’s teams and
two mixed gender teams. With a large percentage of the student population being involved in athletics, many teams encourage their players to go out and support their fellow athletes, yet there is still a lack of a student fans at games.

“Basketball games at the collegiate level are very intense and are honestly the best to watch,” Mengelkoch said. “I think most people are used to high school
games, where the talent level is not really at its highest.”

Both the men’s and women’s basketball teams had successful seasons, with the women’s team claiming the Sunshine State Conference Championship Title and the men’s team advancing to the NCAA Division II Regional Tournament.

“Our athletes work really hard, and they deserve to have us supporting them at games,” Mengelkocj said. “It would make them feel better and, in turn, play better.”

Both of the teams worked hard for their accomplishments while representing Florida Southern and the rest of the student body.

“My team and I definitely noticed the lack of students in the stands compared to adults and the sixth man club members,” freshman basketball player Tyler Smith said. “I think they should come to support because we had a 21 and 10 season, and next year is planned to be even better, so the students should come and see.”

In years past, the Snake Pit Student Section would be filled with cheers and support, but that has decreased this year particularly. Advertising for games tends to be limited, and many do not know when games occur. Schedules are posted online at fscmocs.com.

“When we travelled to other school that had a large student section, it felt like we were competing against the team and their fans,” Smith said. “My favorite part of the season was when we got to go to the NCAA Tournament and came back and won from a 21 point deficit with 12 minutes left of the game against Morehouse College on their home court.”

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