Being a die-hard sports fan is a little bit like marriage. You pick the team that you identify with and you stay true to that team for life. If it is a home game, the true fan will dress up in team apparel and come out to the arena to voice their support. Fans will cancel plans if their team has a road game that is broadcast on television.

True fans are forever: bleeding black and gold

Fans from the ’40s and now show strong support

Being a die-hard sports fan is a little bit like marriage. You pick the team that you identify with and you stay true to that team for life. If it is a home game, the true fan will dress up in team apparel and come out to the arena to voice their support. Fans will cancel plans if their team has a road game that is broadcast on television. Cheering on a team through good times and bad takes dedication. Every sports team has a group of serious fans, and the CU Buffaloes are no different.

Betty Hoover and Peggy Cloppom have shown their dedication as Buffs fans since they started supporting the football team, beginning in 1940. These friends attended CU for one year during World War II and have been true fans ever since.

“We started going to football games back in 1940,” Hoover said. “You didn’t even need tickets to get in back in those days. You could sit wherever you wanted. We didn’t start attending basketball until 17 years ago.”

The duo tries to attend every football game, men’s and women’s basketball game, and the occasional volleyball and soccer game as well. They rarely miss an event and are widely known among the CU athletic community.

“We love all the sports,” Cloppon said. “It is hard for us to make every game because the different sports seasons tend to overlap, but we do our best to come out and cheer.”

The twins are hard to miss in the stands, as they sit in the same two seats at every game. Adorned in their yellow CU sweatshirts, they stand at each timeout and cheer with the cheerleaders, pom-poms and all. They are grateful to live in Boulder because of how convenient it is to come to the games. The only games the two have missed this season were due to the December blizzards, which forced them to stay home. Win or lose, these ladies are proud to be Buffs.

“We have both had children and grandchildren graduate from CU and we just love coming to the games,” Hoover said. “We are so proud of our Buffs and all of the student athletes. They are great.”

Fans can be old and young alike, as the founders of the C-Unit prove. C-Unit is a quickly growing campus group that supports the men’s basketball team by getting students to come to the games and leading the crowd in cheers, similar to the Cameron Crazies of Duke University.

The group was started by Dennis Collins, a junior political science major, Aaron Sapiro, a junior journalism major, and Jason Weiss, a senior business major.

“We got it going freshman year in the dorms with about 10 to 15 buddies,” Collins said. “We made some shirts and started going to all the games, but it didn’t become a formal club until last year.”

Before last basketball season, the founders of C-Unit met with CU Athletic Director Mike Bohn to discuss promoting the club. They worked with former Buff quarterback and current basketball commentator Charles Johnson to get the C-Unit shirts made and club logistics worked out.

C-Unit is an easy club to join and has an influential presence at the games. All students have to do is sign the e-mail list and they will get the free t-shirt. Each game, the events center is filled with loud and crazy students wearing their C-Unit shirts. This club shows passion for their CU basketball. While the point of the group is to cheer the Buffs to victory, the founders have a larger goal in mind.

“After the Nebraska football game, (when students threw things on the field) the school had a bad image in the public eye,” said Collins. “In general, the goal of C-Unit is to change that view. We want to get more people out to the games and help CU earn a more positive reputation.”

With fans like these, CU athletic teams are clearly hitting people in the right place: the heart.

Contact Campus Press Staff Writer Ben Dignan at benjamin.dignan@thecampuspress.com.

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