Madness experience not worth the hassle

Fans+set+up+tents+during+the+Big+Blue+Madness+Campout+on+Wednesday%2C+September+28%2C+2016+in+Lexington%2C+Ky.+Photo+by+Hunter+Mitchell+%7C+Staff

Fans set up tents during the Big Blue Madness Campout on Wednesday, September 28, 2016 in Lexington, Ky. Photo by Hunter Mitchell | Staff

Paidin Dermody

Big Blue Madness is exactly what its title suggests: Madness. We all know that UK fans are some of the craziest in the country, but isn’t camping for tickets to a practice taking things just a little too far? Especially when there are better things that these people can be spending their idle time doing.

UK’s basketball team is definitely something for us to be proud of, but camping out for an entire week just to be first in line to buy tickets to watch them practice is outrageous. 

There are entire families camping around Memorial Coliseum with small children. The weather has had a tendency to be less than cooperative during this week for the past couple of years, always leaving the campers to deal with flooding tents and colder temperatures. 

These are not acceptable conditions for small children to be exposed to for an entire week. Take those kids home, get them into a warm bed and buy tickets to the practice online.  

Did we even stop to consider how the basketball players might be feeling about all of this hoopla? 

To be fair, they are most likely pretty excited to be getting so much attention in their young careers, especially the freshmen on the team. But some of the designated camping areas are located in the surrounding parking lots of their dorms. It’s nothing short of terrifying to have hundreds of crazy fans surrounding the place where you sleep at night.

Related: Respect tradition: Big Blue Madness unifies Kentucky

The time spent sitting and waiting during this week is frankly a waste. Let’s imagine what these hundreds of people spending the span of a week could otherwise accomplish:

With this amount of manpower, several houses could be built for Habitat for Humanity during this week instead of several games of cornhole ending in a drunken argument over unfair teams. 

Local soup kitchens are always in need of volunteers. The people laying in their tents for a week could split up into teams and divide and concur. 

Honestly, the Red Cross should take advantage of the mass of people and set up a blood drive across the street to give these crazy fans something to do that’s actually beneficial to the greater community while they wait for their precious practice tickets.

The list of alternatives is endless. 

The point is, there’s nothing wrong with showing team spirit and there’s nothing wrong with being a crazy fan to an extent. But we can’t ignore that our time could be better spent giving back to our community instead of in a tent on the sidewalk waiting to purchase tickets to, not even a real game, but a practice. 

Paidin Dermody is the opinions editor of the Kentucky Kernel. 

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