Place item was collected
Eccles Ice Arena Logan, Utah
Point of Discovery/Informant Bio
Benson Hoopes has been an avid Utah State University Hockey fan for about four years and loves cheering the team on at games. He grew up in American Fork Utah, but has lived in Logan for the past ten years. He graduated from Utah State two years ago, studying Mechanical Engineering and German. He now works in Brigham City as an engineer for Autoliv and still lives in Logan.
This folklore and interview were collected at a home hockey game against UVU on a Friday night. This was also the “Military Appreciation” game so the team was in camo jerseys and there were several armed forces members in their uniforms in the stands. USU won the game 16-2. The team plays at the Eccles Ice Center, which is about a fifteen-minute drive from campus, but is still owned by the university. The arena is built like a stadium, with the seating surrounding the ice rink in the center. It is a nice facility that is well-kept and clean. The game was almost, if not completely, sold out so the stands were packed. The atmosphere was loud and exciting. I observed this folklore from where I was sitting in the student section benches. Everyone in the arena supporting USU participates in the chant. Benson leads the chant from his seat that is close to the center ice, about halfway up the stands. His seat is right next to the tunnel that the players enter and exit from. From what I observed, he seems to sit in the same seat every time. This chant is done after every single goal that the USU team scores at every home game. Benson even mentioned that he has done this cheer at some away games. During the game I was watching, USU scored twice before we were able to do the cheer and Benson made sure that the crowd completed two chants for both goals. He said that he did not start the cheer, but when no one stepped up to continue it, he took the lead. I interviewed Benson during the break between the second and third periods where he was sitting. The stadium was still very loud because the crowd was cheering for a promotional game that was taking place on the ice, and music was playing.
The chant starts with Benson standing while everyone else in the crowd is sitting. People don’t usually stand during these games, so everyone can see him. He waits until the announcer has finished talking so everyone can hear him. He loudly calls “Three, Two, One!” and at the same time holds up the numbers with his right hand. Then the crowd all join him in saying, “He shoots, he scores, hey goalie, you suck!” The last two words are shouted louder and with more vigor than the other lines. Some people in the crowd, including Benson, will point at the opposing goalie while saying the last line, but it is not a uniform/required movement.
When I went to interview Benson, I took him a little bit by surprise since I just walked up to him during a game, and he responded a little warily at first to my questions. However, he was very willing to talk about the cheer and excited to share. Sometimes our conversation was a little bit scattered and interrupted because we both got distracted by what was happening on the ice. The USU hockey games are a loud and rowdy environment, and this cheer fits right in. The cheer is yelled loudly and vigorously. There is a feeling of anticipation and excitement to do the cheer once everyone has finished celebrating the goal. Everyone waits for it and looks toward Benson to see when it will start. It is also chanted with the attitude and intention to get under the other team’s skin and shake their confidence. Benson commented on the texture of this chant as well, saying, “Uh, I know the fans really like doing it [crowd cheering in the background]. The team has told me they really enjoy it cause they can hear it, it really boosts them up to, like, go and do it again.” When asked how he felt about being able to do the cheer Benson stated, “I love it, I absolutely love it, so, its fun. I—you know, I like to get everybody involved. It’s not just my cheer, it’s just a cheer I do with everyone else. I don’t consider it my cheer by any means. It’s just the cheer we do as Aggie fans, so…” Because everyone is involved, there is a sense of community and unity in this chant, and it links the crowd to the team.
Introduction to Folklore, English 2210
Dr. Lynne S. McNeill
Semester and year
G3: Occupational and Avocational Rhymes and Sayings
Enos, Mealii, "Utah State University Hockey Goal Scoring Crowd Chant" (2017). USU Student Folklore Fieldwork. Paper 202.