How Band, Flags, and Cheers Make New Fans

written by Fred Campos
How Band, Flags, and Cheers Make New Fans

[I]t has been a little over a year since I have been assimilated into the high school football Borg. This cybermetic cultish collective has been an interesting process for me personally, now that my daughter is part of a band. For that reason, my obligation for watching football has increased a hundredfold. I have seen more live football in the past year, than all my sports watching combined previously in my geeky life.

Through these experiences, it has taken me a while to understand the value of “kicking an oblong ball made of pigskin through a big H.”

YouTube/, Coming to America Football Scene

I’ve had a year to run some data, do some assessments, and really analysis the intellectual passion behind the purpose of high school football. I believe I have figured it out. The purpose to the football conundrum is to make new fans.

It is a circular, self-feeding, Malcolm Gladwell Tipping Point from which new fans are created by the people group experience.

Here let me explain.

The Football Team’s Parents & Families Make New Fans

We all understand the value of teaching teamwork in school. After all, as they say, “There’s no ‘I’ in TEAM.” Kids today need to learn the value of outdoors and exercise. Combine all three of these with matching costumes, weekly games, stripped fake grass, and you have the spark to make new fans.

Cheerleaders, Flag Parents & Families Also Make New Fans

An organization should not be purely one sex. Since football seems to be a predominately male sport, its logical to create another team predominately of females to add to the circle. I fully understanding the need to create other costume driven cheerleaders, drill teams, and flag groups. These additional organizations promote the need for stadiums, stands, people to organizing tickets, food, and other trinkets. To help identify which club you represent, shirts and paraphernalia needs to be bought and sold as well.

THE BAND with their Families, Complete the “Make New Fans” Objective

Chasing, throwing, and running after pigskins is complicated business. It requires rules, timeouts, and live commentaries to explain what everyone just saw with their own eyes. But alas, maybe it is necessary since most of us are waiting for our flag twirling daughters, band marching sons, to invade pigskin’s halftime.

The Community Addition Makes New Fans

Next, with five culture groups on field, the community begins to wonder, “What’s going on? As “as keep up with the Joneses” followers, looking for a reason to TiVO, they fold into the stands and join the noise.

Finally, at this moment, the cool aid is drank. The Borg is assimilated. Resistance is futile. The cult gains a new member.

You put the laptop down and become one with the moment.

You get caught up in the chant. You breathe in the fumes of the giant pretzel. You take a bite of the over priced hot dog. You scream at the top of your lungs…

“Throw that pigskin to the leotard guy in the golf grass by the big H!!!!”

To which everyone in your section stops and looks at you like you have syntax error in your code.

Time stops and life re-compiles.

The costume dude, with his hands in the air, catches the pigskin by the H!

Your section explodes AT THE TOP OF THEIR LUNGS! The stands shake with an 8.7 earthquake magnitude. Popcorn and Coke spill aimlessly on your laptop.

People who just seconds ago wouldn’t give a dying man CPR, are now jumping, hugging, and kiss you! Strangers are slap your butt! You are being picked up and twirled around, like you were the actual coach who called that play.

With so much noise and you actually go deaf with over ringing ears.

It’s in that mind numbing silence that you have your “moment of clarity.”

This is how they make new fans. You just became one of them. You, YOU ARE A FAN!

What do you think of high school football? What has been your experiences?

Image of my daughter’s high school marching band.



  1. Robert

    FullCustodyDad, you absolutely make me laugh! I hope you don’t really bring your laptop to football games. We gotta get you out more. I cannot believe you are really naive on football, but your assessment of high school football is not that far off base. Go check out some other sports as well and keep the humor coming.

    • FullCustodyDad


      First and foremost, thanks for your comment. Yea, I actually do bring my laptop to the game. But I actually take my laptop with me EVERYWHERE. In fact, most of my closest friends have NEVER seen me without a laptop on my shoulder. I probably have a problem, but can’t admit it. (12 Step Program for Geeks).

      Yea not really into sports, but probably should venture out and see more. I hear they have a game where kids bounce balls–at least that one is indoors. I’ll try to write more humor, pretty much my view on the world is humorous, but I digress.

  2. Denise Walters


    well your analysis is absolutely correct (and certainly funny). Down here in Round Rock we take our “cultish” football pretty serious too. Maybe it’s a Texas thing!

    Loved that movie “Coming to America” it was one of Eddie Murphy’s best clean movie. Good for you supporting your daughter in the band. Now that you are a fan, you need to leave that laptop at home.


    • FullCustodyDad


      thanks for the comment. Yes I do believe Texas fans take high school football to a whole ‘nother level! I’ve seen more parents yelling than I ever thought possible. In my mind, I tell myself it’s just a kids game. I don’t say it out loud because I don’t think most of the parents I’ve met at the game have gotten that memo. *hehe*

      Yes, I am really disappointed in Eddie Murphy. That movie “Coming to America” was proof that he could make a humorous clean movie without using profanity every other word. So sad, some comedians feel the need “to go there.” I loved the fact, he played like 3 or 4 characters–remember the barber scene. Just talking about it is making me feel old. LOL

      Thanks for the comment, keep reading!

  3. Cory Stevenson


    yea I think us Texans take our football too serious. It’s pretty big down in Galveston as well, but certainly not as big as it is in other parts of Texas. Didn’t I read somewhere that you serve on your daughter’s school board? What district are you in? What do you really think of sports in regard to education?

    • FullCustodyDad


      First and foremost, thanks for commenting. My kids LOVE Galveston. You have some of great museums down there! I do in fact serve on the HEBISD board as a newly elected trustee (elected in May 2015). Education is so much more than book knowledge, STARR and SAT scores. Working in teams, working towards goals that are bigger than you, training and cheering in organized sports is very important.

      Honestly, I didn’t realize how important it was to child development, until I got to see first hand the difference in the kids lives through my daughter’s marching band. I have seen a growth and a sense of belonging that perhaps would not have occurred had she not tried to join a sport, band, or extra curricular activity. One could argue that very few kids will go on to play professional sports. I get that, but I think they are missing the point.

      With kids growing up in instant gratification society that in my opinion is very “selfie” oriented, I believe sports, bands, and clubs are extremely essential to education.

      Now extremes in anything or everything can be bad, but that’s another story for another time. Did I help answer your questions?


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