Syracuse University Magazine

Game Day

Game Day

We asked members of Orange Nation how they get revved up for Game Day. Paint your face? Slip into Orange socks? Eat Orange food? Here are some traditions that fans shared with us.


One day during the 2009-10 season, I decided to bring a 5-foot cutout of Coach Jim Boeheim’s head to a basketball game. Never in my wildest dreams did I expect my creation to generate so much attention. Since I moved to D.C., Big Boeheim has been in retirement, except for the 2013 Final Four in Atlanta and the SU-Georgetown game in D.C. last December. I had Big Boeheim at Clyde’s for the SU pregame gathering (pictured) and sat with it at the game in a section full of SU fans so Hoyas fans wouldn’t try to destroy it.

—Pat Manley G’11
 Washington, D.C.


Any Syracuse football game on national television means I am wearing a custom-made Nike No. 39 Larry Csonka jersey. I had orange and navy jerseys manufactured in South Korea a few years ago.

—Neil Glotzer ’80
Visalia, California


My best friend Lauren Rosenstein ’12 and I went to NOLA [New Orleans] our freshman year to rebuild post-Katrina with Syracuse Hillel. After a little mishap on the bus, I wound up going to the ER the day the group was going to Bourbon Street. As an “I’m sorry you missed this,” Lauren bought us matching “Oranges” Mardi Gras beads! We have worn them to every single game, even now post college. I like to think of them as my good luck charm because we’ve been to multiple Sweet Sixteens, Elite Eights, and Final Fours in the years since I got them. Maybe they’ll bring us a championship soon! Among other Orange gear I wear regularly, these are an every-game staple. Go Cuse!

—Dana Gansman ’12
Washington, D.C.

In my junior year, I moved to the seventh floor of Booth Hall. I met the amazing guys who became and remain my friends—the “Zoo Crew.” We had several football game-day traditions that were fun, even if at times we broke a rule or two. These were the pre-Dome days, still at Archbold. Late-season games were often cold, and could be rainy or even snowy. We didn’t have fancy logo-imprinted cushions to sit on in the concrete stands. So on game days, we’d go to Marshall Street, to the newspaper vending boxes. We’d take about five or 10 copies apiece to use as seat cushions, and put them in a plastic bag. For the rain or snow, we didn’t have fancy orange ponchos. So we went to the hardware store and bought big plastic dropcloths that you’d use to cover furniture when painting in your house. A quick scissors snip for a hole, and you had your poncho. We also had the “halftime sprint.” Each game, one of us volunteered to make the run from Archbold all the way to the liquor store on Marshall Street to buy a pint of brandy, and run back before the second half started. Finally, on days when the hated Paterno-led Penn State team was playing at Archbold, students would load up on fresh oranges to pelt the field on the visitors’ side when their team and coach came out. Great times. Great Orange pride!

—Bruce Waltuck ’73
Hamilton Square, N.J.


During the NCAA basketball tournament, I create an Orange shrine that grows exponentially with each Syracuse victory. This year my daughter immersed herself into the piece.

—Kenneth Koren ’95
Poughkeepsie, N.Y.


Orange food and beverages are critical on big game days.

—Mark Verone ’95
president, SU Alumni Association


Painting my face orange! The one time I did half my face, it was stained for a few days after, which made for a good story.

—Lauren Levy ’11
Oceanside, N.Y.


My wife, Sue (Mendelson) Gansman ’79, has a ritual of always dressing up for SU basketball games. She is a guidance counselor at Carl W. Goetz Middle School in Jackson, New Jersey. On the day of or the day before the men’s basketball team plays, she dresses up in SU apparel similar to what you see in the photo. She plays music and hands out all kinds of orange goodies to her students. The kids love it! Sue dances with students in the hallways in celebration of the games. In order to further display her Orange pride, she has decorated her office with various SU items, including a dancing Otto, pennants, and an SU clock (given to her by one of her favorite students)! Sue is full of excitement when basketball season begins, and nothing makes her happier than to cheer on her Orange Men!

—Cris Gansman ’78
Jackson, N.J.

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