Through the Lens of Lentz

by Dan Lentz | 10/10/11 10:00pm

Last week I suggested that we have more home football games at night and an Ivy League championship game for the sport ("Through the Lens of Lentz," Oct. 4). Two weeks ago, I wrote on the need to change the Class of 1953 Commons ("Through the Lens of Lentz," Sept. 27). This week there will be more suggestions. There will be movie references. What would we have if the noner columnist had his druthers? Well, let's find out.

First and foremost I would implement the aforementioned idea about night football games we've done it once, but we need to do it on a regular basis. I know it takes away from how special they are as a rare event, but that's like saying you really should only go out one night each term just to savor it. Not true.

If football were to play at night, we could have other teams play on Memorial Field during the day. The venues near Leverone Field House are just too far away. Since some members of the Dartmouth community who are of age like to get "lubed up" before going to sporting events (Tom Brady's words, not mine), driving is not an option. This small change would simply boost attendance, and more rowdy fans could increase the moral of those on the field.

How about another attendance booster? I call this my attendance stimulus. The name may seem weird, but it makes it sound more official. Anyway, between early-afternoon soccer/field hockey games on the football field and the night games, the College would sponsor tailgates at EVERY fraternity or sorority that wanted one. In return, the house would buy a fixed number of tickets to the events, ensuring revenue and a likely increase in attendance.

Why should Dartmouth do this? Because let's be honest, college students especially those in Greek houses tend to be lazy. While students in houses could simply pay for their own food and go to the game for free if they wanted to, they largely do not because they are too lazy. My solution helps Dartmouth's students and its teams.

Once people are actually at the game, we need to have some more halftime entertainment in order to keep them there. Those 15 minutes between halves are a killer for second-half attendance. My vote is that we start pouring money into a school band that could give the band in "Drumline" (2002) a run for its money. Now I agree with you, Drumline is quite possibly one of the worst movies ever made, even though it continues to be replayed on TV four or five times a week. But the chance of a Nick Cannon-like character getting into a drum-off at the midfield line during halftime is just far too great to pass up. We need this. In fact my column needs this I would never have to think of material to write about again.

Speaking of things we need for no real reason except for giving me things to write about: Let's have a Homecoming parade. Is a renegade frat taking over the parade and causing thousands of dollars in damage like in "Animal House" (1978) a likely possibility? No. But is it a chance we need to take? Of course.

We also need a few more things. From here on out we must refer to Hanover Country Club as Bushwood. We need to invite Kevin Costner to move to Hanover, so he can do one of two things: Take over the golf course's driving range a la "Tin Cup" (1996), or take over some farmland and build a baseball field like he did in "Field of Dreams" (1989). Or we could choose not to invite him, build the field and just whisper, "If we build it, he will come," creepily until he shows up.

Back to more Dartmouth related things. The College needs to add the RedZone channel to its basic cable. We have students from all over the country, even all over the world. This would be a small compromise to all football fans and D columnists who need more excuses not to do work on Sundays.

As sports czar, I would annex the food establishments and make a few small changes. Serious changes: Have meals rollover from week to week and find a better late night option than the Courtyard Cafe, a real sandwich line and better hours for '53 Commons. Not serious but incredibly important: Bring back a wider array of Panini options, find trays in '53 Commons that are made for more than one plate, and bring back nuggets. I mean, c'mon.

And finally, my last suggestion: Require freshman dorms to regularly attend different sporting events. That easily adds another couple hundred fans at each rowing, sailing and volleyball match. Think of the golf recruit who comes to see Dartmouth play at Bushwood and sees a Tiger Woods look-alike following on the 18th hole. It would transform Dartmouth sports.

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