Sep 052005
Authors: Matt Hitt

I spent last Saturday in Boulder. The stench of hippie was thick in the air. I plugged my nostrils and entered "drunken hippie palace" or, as they call it, Folsom Field. I watched as the defenders of all that is pure and just in the universe – or as they are typically referred to, the Rams – managed to come up just short for the third straight year.

I am a junior. My beloved Rammies have lost the Rocky Mountain Showdown every year I have been at CSU. This situation is getting a little tragic.

But what is even more tragic is the fact that what is supposed to be an equal rivalry has been played in Boulder for two straight years. The series spent six years in Denver before that.

When was the last time the nauseating, cheating lords of scum – or as they prefer to be called, Buffs – visited Hughes stadium? 1996.

Now, CSU lost fair and square this year and the year before, despite playing in what can assuredly be called the "hairy, female armpit of America." We lost. It's true. But the playing field could have been slightly more level.

Here are a few quick facts for you: Since the Sonny Lubick era began in Fort Collins, CSU has only lost five non-conference home games. That's five losses since 1993.

How about on the road? They have suffered 26 overall road defeats since 1993.

The fact is, playing the game at home matters. A lot. Especially in a huge rivalry game like the Rocky Mountain Showdown. So why not take away that advantage, and play the game somewhere else? That's a pretty good idea and has worked in the past. When the game was on neutral territory for six years in Denver, CU won three times and CSU won three times.

And from a monetary standpoint, Denver is a logical choice for the game. According to the Coloradoan, CSU nets around $400,000 on average more from a game in Denver than Fort Collins.

But here's the thing; CU has had their chance to host the game. Two years in a row. That's not fair.

Moving the game back to neutral territory permanently makes sense in the long term. But for the short term, for next year, we need some payback.

That payback must take the form of forcing the Brass Buffaloes to come to our house and try to win with 10,000 CSU students in their ears all game. The thousands of CU students made their voices heard Saturday. Playing in Folsom Field gave a huge advantage to the Buffs. We are long overdue to have the same advantage for the Rams.

And frankly, I want to see the biggest game of the year played in our house just once before I graduate. CSU officials have yet to decide the location for next year's game. They can choose between Denver and Fort Collins.

I am not ready to see CSU lose for the fourth straight year. We need some payback. And we need to put the game in the stadium that gives CSU the best chance to win.

If you want the Showdown to come to Hughes next year, make your voice heard. A decision has to be made, and we can influence it. Call Athletic Director Mark Driscoll. Call CSU President Larry Penley. Tell them you want payback. Tell them you want to see the Showdown at Hughes just once before you graduate. Tell them these things everyday until they make it happen.

Mark Driscoll can be reached at 491-3350.

Larry Penley can be reached at 491-6211.

Remember, everyday until they announce that next year's game will be played right here in Fort Collins.

Matt Hitt is a junior theater major. His column runs every Tuesday.

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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