Today I walked by what I assumed to be a fraternity fundraiser. It featured an old car at the mercy of students willing to donate to a good cause in turn to smash and damage for one minute on the clock. The beaten car was also spray painted with the phrase “Stanfurd Sux.” Then I remembered, It’s Big Game Week.
Once a year comes an event that exemplifies school spirit and a rivalry steeped in age-old tradition. If this is your first Big Game week or your last (as a student) there are a few things to check off your Big Game Bucket list.
- GO to the Bonfire Rally– A long standing Cal tradition held in the Greek Theatre and this year will be at 7pm on Friday, the day before the game. This is an ASUC sponsored event that UC Rally Committee plans and executes with the same spirit as when it began. It is truly a spectacle of Cal spirit and will sure to bring a sense of pride and excitement before the game. The event features a history about the Big Game and the Stanford Axe. If you plan on going, get there early! There is always a large line. Wear something warm because it is a night event, but if you are close to the flames be prepared to shed some layers.
- WEAR a Big Game shirt– Every year some student group and even local apparel stores create a wonderfully original shirt to wear to the game. This can be anywhere from a simple “BEAT STANFORD” shirt to a slightly distasteful version (be careful with these shirts at the actual games). And while you are wearing your new fabulous shirt get ready to yell, “Take of that red shirt!” to any Stanfordians.
- KNOW “The Play”- There are a lot of memorable Cal victories over Stanford at Big Games, but the most memorable is hands-down, “The Play.” And while I do not claim to be a sports analyst, I can say that I know this certain play has to do with the Stanford band royally failing and ending in a glorious and bizarre end to the 1982 Big Game.
- LEARN some history- Big Game is not a recent phenomenon. Starting in 1892, Cal and Stanford have rivaled on the football field. If you are really feeling the Cal spirit, open up an old yearbook and look at the pictures and read the stories. A lot has changed, but you would be surprised what traditions have stuck.
- SEE a BIG GAME-This is an obvious choice for the list, but I should say that the best experience is seeing the Big Game at home and at Stanford. There is nothing like beating someone on their own turf and dubbing it “Bear Territory.” This is also a great time to tailgate with friends and schmooze with alumni. You will soon see that everyone in blue and gold is friendly and that all in attendance are for one cause, beat Stanford.