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Friday, October 22, 2021

A how-to guide to cheering at UC Davis football games

JAY GELVEZON / AGGIE FILE
JAY GELVEZON / AGGIE FILE

Bossy cow-what? Read on and find out!

Let’s begin with a little explanation about the objective of football.

The goal of football is to get the ball into the endzone, or to get a touchdown. This is accomplished by running or throwing the football down the field. The team has four tries to get the ball at least 10 yards across the field. If the team gets the ball past the first down marker, then it gets four more tries. If the opposing team stops the other team on or before the fourth down, the ball changes possession and the opposing team picks up where the other left off. Once a touchdown is scored, the team can either kick the ball through the field goal for an extra point or try to run the ball in for two extra points.

The UC Davis football team is eleventh in the Big Sky Conference, with one win and five losses, but, because not every game is a conference game, the team’s season record is 2-7.

At a UC Davis football game, there are a few cheers that are consistently performed.

UC Da-vis!

and

Here We Go Aggies, Here We Go!

These cheers show general support for the UC Davis football team and raise the spirits of the crowd. Either the emcees in the front of the Aggie Pack or those in the stands can start these cheers.

UC Davis is also known for having one of the most obscure cheers in the country, the Bossy Cow-Cow cheer, which is a favorite of both the Aggie Band-Uh! and the Aggie Pack.

Bossy Cow Cow

Honey Bee Bee

Oleo Margarine

Oleo Butterine

Alfalfa

Hay!

“It’s an old Aggie tradition that we’ve done for generations, so we continue that tradition,” said Ishita Singh, a fourth-year economics and international relations major and UC Davis Athletics Department marketing intern.

The Bossy Cow-Cow cheer is not hard to participate in getting the hang of it, even though the lyrics are quite odd and there is a choreographed dance. Begin on the right knee and shake to the right, to the left, to the right, and once more to the left. Then do a box step, or pretend to move in a small circle. Repeat that box step in the other direction, do a roll to the bottom and hands go up in the air on “hay!”

Other common cheers are performed after the first and second downs.

Move! Those! Chains!

and

U-C-D, First Down!

The first cheer represents the moving of the first-down markers (which use chains to measure distance) down the side of the field, showing that the UC Davis football team is progressing down the field. The latter cheer is performed often and is another favorite of the Aggie Pack. When cheering, point to the direction of the down at the same time as the words “First Down!”

The scoreboard will show a #1 next to “Down” and the emcees will lead off with a “1-2-3” count when The Aggies score a first down.

During the course of a game, the UC Davis football team feeds off the energy from the crowd.

“They bring the energy that we need to perform,” said senior punter Colby Wadman. “When we’re looking up, seeing them all cheer for us when we score and [when] we just see them erupt, it definitely brings that energy for us.”

His teammate, senior running back Manusamoa Luuga, agreed, and said that the Aggie Pack, the crowd and his own team’s cheering helps the team’s performance.

“When you make a big play, and you look over to the sideline and see the whole sideline jumping and everybody going crazy, it’s probably one of the best feelings,” Luuga said. “It’s definitely just a sense of motivation for us just to continue to keep going, just to stay in the game and to ultimately get the victory.”

Cheering not only helps the UC Davis football team, but it often has a positive impact on  the fans.

“I always encourage being part of the Aggie Pack, and even body painting,” Singh said. “Not only is it a great experience for [the fans, but] it shows our great teams that you’re excited and that we’re going to have a good time.”

According to Singh, cheering can also help to form new friendships and discover professional opportunities, like UC Davis Athletic marketing internships.

However, one of the most parts about cheering at a football game is knowing when not to cheer.

“If they make a big play, we want everybody yelling and screaming,” head coach Ron Gould said. “When the offense is in the huddle, they should be quiet. When they break, when they come out and get on the center, there shouldn’t be any noise, but when we make a big play, it should erupt. It should go to 10,000 decibels once we make a big play.”

Don’t waste this valuable information; be the most spirited Aggie in the stands on Saturday, Nov. 19 when UC Davis football faces off against Sacramento State in the 63rd Causeway Classic. There’s also the chance to score some free giveaways, like the coveted tube socks and cowbuckers that the Aggie Pack emcees throw into the crowd.  

“When we walk out, when those guys run through the tunnel and they see all those fans out there […] It really lifts their spirits,” Gould said. “It inspires them to keep moving forward.”

Written by: Liz Jacobson — sports@theaggie.org

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