Mary Catherine Richmond Diary
The crowd plays a huge role when playing a volleyball match in Redbird Arena. Led by the cheerleader with the big redbird banner, we run out onto the floor, rub Reggie Redbird’s nose for good luck, and take a lap while everyone cheers for us on our “grand entrance”. This is to the sound of our fight song, which I love. It’s probably one of my favorite songs EVER! The band’s loud music, the cheers from our 2000 or more fans, seeing all the red in the stands, and finding my family in the crowd all adds to the excitement.
We begin warm-ups and our adrenaline is pumping throughout the whole thing in anticipation for the match, especially a huge one like Northern Iowa or Bradley. For games like those, we always get more fans, like 3000 plus. There is nothing like hearing 3000 people in unison chanting “Point Illinois State” after every rally we win. And there is nothing like having that many people, young and old, backing you up and rooting for you to win the game.
One of my favorite things about or fan base is the number of little kids that come to our games. I love finding a little kid to throw my bouncy ball out to when my name is announced for the lineup. They are so cute because they get so excited to get a ball and, after the game, to get our autographs. To tell you the truth, I feel pretty special to think that someone sees my team and me as professional and wants my autograph!
Like I said, there is nothing like playing in Redbird Arena. Our fans are amazing supporters of the team. I can’t imagine playing without them and thank you to all who come and support us! You are greatly appreciated!
GO YOU REDBIRDS!