This school needs some pep.
We need energy. We need excitement. We need a little school pride.
For far too long have I watched my Lancers compete alongside a bland and lackluster sea of Columbia blue. For far too long have I seen a row of enthusiastic girls suffer as they attempt to rally their fellow classmates. For far too long have I witnessed our pep club remain hidden among the throngs of students as if they are just your average East fans. It’s time for a little change, and I think this is the year we should all buy in.
I’ve heard a legend about a time when Grant Morris would parade around at games gallantly in full knightly attire — even if it was only a cheap plastic knight’s outfit. But since the unfortunate extinction of our former mascot (the costume broke), we have been without such a spirited beacon of unity. That is why I decided to take the future of my beloved school’s mascot into my own hands. With support from this school’s fine clubs and parent organizations, I am confident we will have a feisty and parading Lancer on the court for the annual epic Rockhurst vs. East boy’s basketball game. Even so, this school needs to pep it up.
Firstly— heralders, where did our enthusiastic flag bearers go? This year not one male tried out to be a heralder. These two pepsters brought a smile to my face every time I saw them enthusiastically wave our flag before pep assemblies and games. They were the type of people that any team would want to have cheering them on. We need their energetic presence at all of our games because that kind of energy can motivate an entire crowd to get pumped up. Furthermore, flag bearer is a prestigious title to hold. Who else but they are allowed to lead the Lancers onto the field or court before each game? Who else but they are allowed to run the East flag on the track after a touchdown? Every legit college in the nation has a flag runner. Heck, even SM North has one! It’s only right to have two of our own.
On to pep assemblies. Time and again these gatherings of the masses fail to rouse my inner love for the great sport of (insert any East sport besides boy’s basketball or football here). Every year, sports like tennis and boys’ swimming that consistently make solid runs at state are overshadowed at pep assemblies by every high school’s Big Two (football and basketball). It’s no wonder that our pool area, a place that has been home to four of the past five boys’ state championships, is never filled with the cheers of stands full of students. It’s because nobody knows about the meets! While the basketball and football teams are continually granted time by the pep club for full skits at assemblies, the highly ranked girls’ volleyball and tennis teams have received nothing more than a sentence or two.
Every sport deserves to have equal publicity at our pep assemblies. I’m not saying we run two hours of skits at every pep assembly, but every sport deserves at least one assembly during their season where they are the star of the show. We need to do a better job of recognizing the great achievements of our fellow classmates no matter which sport they play.
January 29 marks the last Rockhurst game I will witness in the comfort of my own gym. Last year’s game was pitiful to say the least. I’m not talking about the score; I’m talking about the stands. The Rockhurst guys put on a clinic when it comes to school spirit (at least when they play us). “Lazy Sunday” destroyed whatever last minute theme we tried to put together. I still don’t know what our “official” theme actually was for that game. While pondering a solution to our organizational problems, I came up with the idea of creating a group of people that would be responsible for our school’s spirit, chiefly a theme for us to follow, during sporting events. I then realized that is exactly what pep club is for.
Pep club, I beg you to do more than hold the door open for me as I enter the gym for a pep assembly. We have no hope of meeting or exceeding Rockhurst’s high spirit standards without you. A Facebook group made the night before the big game telling us the theme is “black out” simply will not do. Announcements and posters must be made that let the student body know not only where to go for a game, but what to wear. All of our fans that night (and every game night) need to be unified. The only way this can be done is if you, pep club, can give this school the School Spirit 101 class that Rockhurst seems to mandate as part of their curriculum.
So are you going to listen, East, if pep club comes knocking? Are you going be someone that goes straight down to room 415 after reading this and asks where one could find a heralder application? Are you going be someone that cheers pool side as the swim team chases yet another state title? Are you going to be a person that wears their Columbia blue prouder and with more spirit than any Hawklet or Raider could ever wear their own colors? Because, if so, you’ll come back to 7500 Mission Road many years from now, knowing that you didn’t waste four of the best years of your life.