Once Again, I Have No Idea Why College Students Insist On Destroying Their Campus After A Big Win

  • Eric Goldschein

If you live in Storrs, CT and you are either not a student at the University of Connecticut or a basketball fan, let me extend my deepest condolences to you for what happened last night. It’s entirely possible that some of your personal property was destroyed, or you were kept awake by the sound of sirens and/or teenagers screaming, or your walk to work was littered with broken glass and overturned garbage cans.

The reason that your town was destroyed is because your local college basketball team won a game. A big game. The biggest game.

“But why would our team winning the game result in students trashing the campus?” you might ask. “Wouldn’t throwing poles through windows, flipping over cars and lighting things on fire be something angry, upset, disappointed people would do? Isn’t that what you do when Rodney King’s assailants escape conviction? Isn’t that what you do when you want to overthrow your government?”

All valid questions. And the answer is, once again, I have no idea why the fuck college students do this to themselves and their campus after their team scores a big win.

Here are just some of the many photos and videos broadcast across social media from Storrs last night, moments after UConn beat Kentucky. The first few photos are of things I would generally expect to happen — large gatherings of kids in public places, fireworks, chanting, etc:

But watch how quickly things escalate, until you’re not sure whether this is Connecticut or the Ukraine:

Total insanity, and completely unnecessary. And before you think I’m being hard on these poor UConn students, some of whom were perhaps swept up in the moment and not thinking when they threw chairs at cars and poles through windows (or were just shitfaced drunk), I wrote a similar article two years ago when Kentucky (of all schools!) won the national title and the students decided to trash their campus:

For some reason, this is the typical response when a college team wins a game. Their fellow students, who will then brag for the next 12 months about how “they” totally won that game so “fuck you, bro,” go out and celebrate by destroying things. Though I don’t know whose car that was, I’ll venture a guess — considering it’s parked in Lexington on game night — and say it belongs to a fellow UK fan. How is that person going to feel when they go out for breakfast Sunday morning, only to find their car upside down and crispy?…

Destroying property on your own campus makes no sense, kids. Celebrations should include the following: shouting, yelling, cheering, holding up signs, kissing/hugging each other, and perhaps parading through the streets peacefully. They should not include doing things that will cost your university, your fellow students, or your fellow citizens of your college town/city/farm time and money to fix. Your celebrations become punishments when you do that.

And indeed, it appears as though a few kids were already feeling the consequences of their actions last night:

Where is the logic here? Your team wins, and so you destroy some of the very infrastructure and establishments that they utilize and frequent, costing your university money? And it’s not like UConn president Susan Herbst is going to be sweeping up the garbage tomorrow — it’s the schools janitors and other blue-collar guys who were probably just as excited about the win that now have to spend time cleaning up your mess.

Worst of all, students who participated in this debauchery contributed roughly nothing to Kevin Ollie and company’s title run. They simply walk the same streets as Shabazz Napier and his teammates, and they felt that gave them the right to fuck things up. If anything, it’s Kentucky fans who should be out destroying things, since they just lost the national title and their coach might leave.

College students, I beg you: Stop destroying your campus whenever your team wins a big game. It makes no sense, it takes away from what should be a joyous occasion and it make people around the country say, “The fuck is wrong with these kids?” Not a good look.

Now I’ll go ahead and undermine myself by saying this is fine. Better than flipped cars, anyway.