Balancing school spirit and the favorite team

Nicole Ely /The News

Story by Craig Taylor, Contributing writer


Nicole Ely /The News

Nicole Ely /The News

Walking through campus, you can see students supporting schools like University of Alabama, University of Kentucky and University of Tennessee by wearing that school’s apparel.

Andrea Martin, sophomore from Gunterville, Alabama, is a die-hard University of Alabama fan. You can see Martin throughout campus wearing her Alabama and Murray State gear.

“I’m a huge Alabama fan,” Martin said. “I’m a fan because that’s the tradition of my family.”

Aaron Sexton, freshman from Mayfield, Kentucky, expresses his fandom for the University of Tennessee and said that he will always be supporting and wearing the orange and white.

“I was initially born in Knoxville, Tennessee, where pretty much my entire family went to the University of Tennessee,” Sexton said. “Tennessee was ultimately my No. 1 school that I wanted to attend, but Murray State was much more affordable.”

“I attend a lot of Murray State athletic events, my favorite being the Murray State soccer games,” Sexton said. “This gives me the opportunity to show a side of my school spirit.”

Martin and Sexton both agree that wearing apparel from different schools doesn’t necessarily hinder the school spirit here at Murray State. They both feel that they want to keep hold of the tradition they have back at home, but can equally support Murray State.

“I love it here at Murray State,” Martin said. “It’s my home away from home. Regardless, I’ll always be a fan of Alabama, but I will equally love and support the Racers.”

“The only way I could see something negatively impacting school spirit is when I see people wearing other school gear from the OVC,” Sexton said. “Wearing Belmont is an absolute no-go, same for wearing different school gear to other MSU athletic events.”

Leah Judd, junior from Greensburg, Kentucky, said that as a Murray State golf athlete, wearing other schools apparel does hinder the school spirit. 

“I can see both sides because I grew up as a UK fan,”  Judd said. “But as an athlete at Murray State, I’m not allowed to wear apparel from different schools.”

Though Judd said he doesn’t take personal offense from students wearing other schools’ apparel, he feels that you should always show your support at Murray State affiliated events and around campus when you can. 

Leah Carroll, junior from Central City, Kentucky, is a fan of both Western Kentucky football and UK basketball. However she will not wear WKU and UK apparel throughout campus.

“It makes me feel weird and it makes me feel like I have no school spirit,” Carroll said. “I’ve been part of many organizations here at Murray State, such as the Racer Band and Pep Band, which is one of the largest organizations on campus.

“I want to be proud of my school just like people are at UK and WKU,” Carroll said. “Just because we aren’t as big of a school, doesn’t mean we can’t have as much school spirit as the other bigger schools have.”