Game Day is a big day. Note the fact that Game Day is capitalized. It is a full on proper noun--an entire experience. As some USC students adamantly proclaim, “it’s as marathon, not a sprint.” They are pretty correct. However, everyone does Game Day differently. There are the endurance competitors, the casual spectators just along for the ride, and everyone in between. The USC Credit Union is here to support all types of Trojan fans. Whether you live for Game Day or you somewhat fear Game Day, we would like to offer tips and tricks from experienced tailgaters of all perspectives.
Game Day as a Die-Hard Fan
The first Game Day is here, and you couldn’t be more excited. You’ve already started hydrating to prepare for the heat, and you’ve had your outfit planned since June. You’re pumped and we are pumped for you! Check out this list of tips and advice from the USC Credit Union to ensure a legendary and safe Game Day.
1. Get some sleep the night before! I know you’re going to be up super early to celebrate your love for the Trojans all day. I get it and I support it. Just make sure you go to sleep ~relatively~ early the night before so you’re not falling asleep by noon.
2. Eat breakfast AND lunch. You will be yelling and running around and standing all day. Make sure you have fuel in your body so you can be as hype externally as you are internally!
3. Drink water throughout the day. Bottled water is expensive inside the coliseum, you can’t bring any in, and you won’t want to leave the game to sip from the water fountain too many times! Bring a paper cup in your fanny pack to reduce these trips, but also make sure you’re drinking water all day. It will be incredibly hot and the sun will try to dehydrate you. Hydrate or die-drate amiright.
4. Recycle throughout the day!!!!!! Game day seems to be the only time that USC puts out recycling bins around campus. Use them! Pick up any recyclables you see and throw them in one of those blue bins. You’ll be making your USC home and our world a better place.
5. Stay until the 4th If you’re really feeling good and you’ve followed all these steps, you may have enough endurance to stay through the end of the game. This will give you the chance to catch a coveted “I stayed until the 4th quarter" t-shirts. Then everyone will know you’re a genuine Trojan.
6. Visit a local restaurant after you leave! The restaurants on Figueroa and in the Village are always packed with Trojans once half-time rolls around. Instead of spending a lot of money there, maybe find a local taco stand, food truck, or pupusa spot to fuel up after the game. They have incredible food for low prices, and you’ll be supporting the community!
Game Day as someone who bought the season tickets because you felt like you should and you like football season but also have other things to do on your Saturdays
Hello, Game Day is a lot. We get it. For whatever reason, you find it overwhelming, and that’s ok! Check out our tried and tested list of tips for a successful, smooth, and enjoyable Game Day experience.
1. Sleep in if you want! There is usually only one 11am game in the entire season. If you aren’t fully into the day-long experience, then there is no reason to wake up at 7am for every game. Take your time, get your rest, and wake up when your body wakes you up!
2. Make brunch with your friends! If you have time before the game (especially if it’s a 5pm game), invite your friends over and create a low key tailgating environment for yourselves. Whip up some pancakes and sip your coffee while hanging out in your pajamas. You could even watch a couple episodes of Friday Night Lights to get in the mood!
3. Enjoy the time before a 5pm game. Everywhere is empty on game day. The gym*, the library, the study lounges, and the grocery stores are all abandoned. You could crank out a paper and maybe even work out on a 5pm Game Day! Get those errands done and out of the way! *Note: the campus gyms often have different hours on game days.
4. Avoid campus until absolutely necessary. Everyone on campus during the day belongs in the “Die Hard Fan” category. It’s crowded and loud and overwhelming, so I would definitely recommend avoiding that scene until your walk to the coliseum.
5. Recycle throughout the day!!!!!! Game day seems to be the only time that USC puts out recycling bins around campus. Use them! Pick up any recyclables you see and throw them in one of those blue bins. You’ll be making your USC home and our world a better place.
6. Sneak a paper cup in your clear fanny pack. Coliseum rules are pretty strict, but if you fold up a paper cup and put it in your fanny pack, you can use it at the various water fountains around the stadium! This will help you stay hydrated and save $6 on a bottled water.
7. Visit a local restaurant after you leave! The restaurants on Figueroa and in the Village are always packed with Trojans once half-time rolls around. Instead of spending a lot of money there, maybe find a local taco stand, food truck, or pupusa spot to fuel up after the game. They have incredible food for low prices, and you’ll be supporting the community!
Game Day as a member of the Trojan Marching Band
No experience is more unique than being a member of the Spirit of Troy, the Greatest Marching Band in the History of the Universe (EVER!) on Game Day. But to be a member of the band on Game Day, some special considerations must be taken. Here's some tips on how to do Game Day like a true Trojan bandsman.
1. Sleep is for the weak. You don't need sleep. And how could you sleep??? It's Game Day! You should be bursting with excitement! Get up for Game Day!
2. Eat a balanced breakfast. You'll need energy to push you through a very long day. You'll likely be hot and tired, so make sure you eat something healthy and filling. You do NOT want that breakfast burrito making a reappearance later.
3. DRINK WATER! Being in band requires you to drink more water than you ever thought possible. Hydrate at any given moment throughout the day. You'll thank yourself later.
4. Pace yourself. It's a long day. You'll be there long before the game starts and be some of the last people to leave the stadium. It's a marathon not a sprint, so save some of your energy for when we're tied in the fourth quarter and the team needs you most!
5. Be aware of your surroundings. There's a lot going on on Game Day. Make sure you keep your eyes open for any obstacles or loose Bruins looking to stir up trouble.
6. Have plenty of ENERGY! The team needs you to be the loudest and proudest fan in the stadium! Defeat is not an option. So muster up all of the energy you have so you can always be yelling, cheering, and chanting to ensure a Trojan victory. Even when times are tough and the outcome isn't looking great, a true Trojan bandsman NEVER gives up hope!
7. You did it! Time to SLEEP and EAT!!! Whooo! You did it. Game Day is rough. It's time to reward yourself with a hearty meal and a great (14 hour) nights sleep. Good job supporting the team today, Trojan!
No matter what level of fan you are, we can all share in being a part of the Trojan Family for life. Now you can invite everyone you love to be a part of USCCU and if you're a student, you can refer a friend and each earn a $50 gift card!