For the first time in Racer history, the freshman class ran onto the football field in Roy Stewart Stadium for the inaugural “Gold Rush” to kick off the first game of the football season.
Alongside First Year Leaders, Vice President of Student Affairs Don Robertson, and President Bob Davies led a mob of freshmen and other volunteers through the horse gate of the stadium and onto the field in front of the student body.
“This is my first Racer football game,” said Isaac Logsdon, freshman from Clarkson, Ky. “I was really excited and it made me feel like I was back at home.”
Not only have students been waiting for the event, but the volunteers have as well.
Amy Pulpaneck, athletics marketing and promotion intern, told students it was a collaboration between various offices on campus.
“This event was definitely a success.” Pulpaneck said. “Come rain or shine we knew we would have students out here to give the players the support they deserve.”
Pulpaneck said FYLs were involved and hyped up the students. FYLs help incoming freshmen adjust to life on campus.
“As a First Year Leader it makes me excited that kids that I have come to know are going to have the opportunity to run out in front of everyone and get the greeting from the University they deserve,” said Michael Mann, sophomore from Springfield, Ky.
Several students were glad to see both Davies and Robertson on the field getting involved with the students.
Logsdon said it showed how involved they are with the students and that they’re willing to be behind the student body.
“It is important that we get to know the students so they feel comfortable to approach us with anything,” said Robertson.
While students lined up, they learned new Racer chants alongside the infamous Murray State mascot, Dunker.
When Davies arrived, he only had one favor to ask – to try and not run him over.
“I believe that it shows a great deal of character and leadership from (Robertson and Davies),” Mann said. “The fact that they are wanting to rush the field with freshmen makes me proud that the leaders on campus are actively trying to connect with students in every way they can.”
The Gold Rush events began at the start of the school year with a pep rally and dinner hosted by Racer Athletics and the Office of Student Affairs.
All week, volunteers have been handing out promotional items in the Curris Center and local restaurants have been hosting promotional deals for students.
Finally, the main event of the Gold Rush week started at the baseball field Thursday where freshmen met with their FYLs and picked up their free shirts.
The students ran out on the field and rushed toward the south end of the field toward a blocked off section where the students and their FYLs were able to sit and watch the game.
Robertson said the Gold Rush will be an annual event hosted at the first football game of every season.
Story by Kelsey Randolph, Contributing writer