Editor’s note: Tyler joined the Exponent as a sports writer in January. He is currently undergoing more treatment for the bone cancer that has recurred once more, but his enthusiasm for Purdue sports has not waned.
Here are his tips for becoming a diehard fan.
As you start your classes and become quickly overwhelmed by the whirlwind that is the transition to college, I am here to help walk you through everything you need to know to get the most out of Purdue Athletics.
The 2017-2018 football season was a really exciting one for Purdue. The team was was able to achieve a winning record, something that had not been done since 2011. Not only that, but the team also won the Foster Farms Bowl and, most importantly, beat Indiana University to claim the Old Oaken Bucket.
This season should be even more exciting for Purdue football. We are scheduled to have two games under the lights and play some big-time opponents like Ohio State and Wisconsin at Ross-Ade Stadium.
So, how can you get the most out of attending Purdue football games?
First, you will want to make sure that you have purchased the Board Pass from the Purdue ticket office. This will guarantee that you have tickets to every single home football game, and trust me, tickets will not be easy to get when teams like Ohio State come to town.
Additionally, if you’re like me, you want to get to as close as the football field as possible. Students who join the Ross-Ade Brigade are allowed to enter the stadium 15 minutes before the general public. Every season, those who are in the Brigade will also have the opportunity to travel to an away game.
Last year, Ross-Ade Stadium adopted the clear bag policy. This means if you are going to enter the stadium with a bag, it needs to be completely clear.
Bags that follow the new guidelines can be purchased on Amazon or in the Purdue Team Store at the north side of Ross-Ade Stadium. Having a bag allows you to bring in empty water bottles to fill up at water fountains, bring in various snacks, and pretty much anything else you can fit in the bag.
Last season may have ended in disappointment for a lot of Purdue basketball fans, but it was an exciting season nevertheless. The 2018-2019 Purdue team is shaping up to be another that may be able to make a solid run when March Madness comes around.
You won’t want to miss any home basketball games. Mackey Arena has been nicknamed the “concrete dungeon of noise” for a reason.
Sadly, most freshmen will not be able to reap the benefits of being in the Paint Crew. If you are a freshman and did get into the Paint Crew, consider yourself extremely lucky. You will want to find a group of other students in the Paint Crew.
The way the Paint Crew works is that every group of students (capped at 10) will show up to Mackey Arena at a certainly time before the game. Depending on the order in which people signed up, the group will be assigned a number.
The Paint Crew officers will then determine the order in which the groups will enter Mackey by using a bingo cage to randomize all the groups’ numbers. Depending on the size of the groups, the first few called will get the best seats in the lower bowl.
For the majority of you who did not get in the Paint Crew, know that the lower bowl of Mackey Arena is reserved for Paint Crew members. Everyone else will sit in the upper bowl.
All freshmen who are not in the Paint Crew should be aware of these things called “Boarding Pass Rewards.” You can earn reward points by going to various sporting events all around campus and using the Boarding Pass Rewards app to check in.
You should know, student tickets for Purdue basketball have a cap. In the event that more students request tickets than are available, you may not get a ticket to the game.
However, you can guarantee that you will get a ticket by having more than 1,000 points in your rewards account. Tickets will be randomly given out to those with fewer than 1,000 points.
You should also be paying attention to the ticket request window. The ticket office will send out an email telling you to request basketball tickets by a certain date.
You miss that date, and you won’t be able to request a ticket. I know several people who missed out on basketball games last year because they missed the date to request tickets.
Other sports on campus
The Boarding Pass will also give you access to request tickets to Purdue women’s basketball and volleyball games. All of that can be done through the Purdue ticket website, and you will almost always be able to get tickets to those events.
The Purdue baseball season will start up during your second semester at Purdue. Tickets for games do cost money, but the baseball team will regularly run promos where you can get into the game for free by showing your student ID.
Most importantly ...
Embrace what it means to become a Boilermaker. Show up to support your fellow Boilers. Learn the Purdue fight song and various chants.
Live in the moment and enjoy the games. College will be some of the best years of your life. Welcome to Purdue!