Now, after reading the follow-up coverage to the story, it's obvious Rutgers fans are a soccer riot waiting to happen.
In a story from Rutgers' Daily Targum (via Yahoo.com) about Rutgers school officials apologizing to their Naval Academy counterparts, I came across these quotes from Rutgers students who were interviewed for the piece:
Although matters appear to be smoothed over between Rutgers and the Naval Academy, the incident left some students scratching their heads.
"At every game I've ever been to, there are people that start those chants," Rutgers junior Jenny K. said. "It was just another team that works when you put it in a chant, and I don't think it was meant to be directed specifically at people who might go overseas for us."
Jenny K. said such offensive practices were not specific only to Rutgers.
"My dad's a professor at Bates College in Maine, and the same stuff happens there. I mean, it's college," she said.
Rutgers junior John C. said the heckling is not uncommon and was not targeted at Navy specifically. He also attributed some of the fans' behavior to alcohol.
"It's the student section where it seems like more than 80 percent of the people there are under the influence. ... Why should that offend anyone?" John C. said. "It's a football game, it wasn't the U.S. soldiers versus the Rutgers football team. They're just another college at that point."
After reading the column, Jenny K. was not surprised that it brought controversy to light, but hoped that students would not read too deeply into the offensive chanting.
"Putting Rutgers in the title seems like a good way to get people to read your stuff. ... People root for us now," she said. Navy "can be offended by the language used, but they shouldn't take it personally. It's a chant where each game, students just insert the name of the other team. Should the referees be offended after they make a call and they hear the usual chant 'Bulls---?'"
John C. also said people should consider the time and place of the incident before judging Rutgers fans too harshly.
"It's a football game in the student section," John C. said. "You're not going to curse and yell like that at a Rutgers soccer game where students sit with adults and their high school-age, or younger, kids."
Rutgers sophomore Erin B. said she was aware of some fans getting carried away with their chanting.
"I can understand where [the column] comes from," Erin B. said. Rutgers "students were pretty aggressive. ... There was a guy in Navy apparel, head to toe, standing with friends in our student section and people were basically trying to start fights with him all night. But it's all just a mob mentality."
Uh, are you kidding me?! The outraged response by college football fans across American left some Rutgers students "scratching their heads?!" Are they really that clueless?!
So let me see if I get this straight -- the one female student thinks it's okay because, basically, "Hey, we do it to everybody." Oh, well, shit, my - and others - bad for bringing it up. I mean, if you're kind enough to tell everybody to fuck off, shame on anybody for being offended. I mean, it's not like you single anybody out with your asinine behavior. Then she continues to excuse the conduct by her fellow Rutgers students by invoking the "it's college" excuse. How pathetic.
Then the next Rutgers rocket scientist excuses the behavior by saying since most of the students are drunk, people shouldn't be offended. Oh, is that how that works, Einstein? I see. Man, they should put you on the university brochures with that kind of logic. What a credit to your school.
Finally, is the last student interviewed in the story really saying it's okay for fans to try to beat up a spectator wearing the other team's colors because "mob mentality" has taken over amongst the otherwise rational individuals?
(Long pause to shake my head in disbelief. Still shaking. Keep going. Shaking it some more.)
Folks, if I hadn't read the story myself, I'm not sure I would have believed such stupidity.
But, alas, these Rutgers fans aren't alone. Since the story became such big news, Mark Dilonno, the Star-Ledger columnist who wrote the original piece, wrote two follow up stories, linked here and here. Read his articles then read the comments left by readers. It's unreal some of the things said by Rutgers fans justifying what happened/happens and personally attacking Dilonno for bringing attention to it. Simply stunning.
If the Rutgers fans expressing the above views and those following Mr. Dilonno's articles are so clueless as to think what happened versus Navy (and apparently happens all the time at Rutgers games from the sound of it) is okay, sad to say, a tragic "accident" is probably not too far off.
Then again, what's the big deal. They're just drunk college kids under the influence of mob mentality. You got a problem with that?