The UL-Lafayette Merchants Tour Experience
Today, April 15th, we were invited to be part of the annual UL Tour where fans, faculty, staff, and coaches visit local merchants that sell UL Merchandise. Yes, we went to many local stores that have littered their stores with Red & White. However, it was during the tour that I learned just how important it is to any university to have the support of locals, fans, and alum.With so many schools in the state of Louisiana, it is easily understood why some may favor other institutions or even offer their support to outside institutions. However, one thing remains, if any institution has ever given anything to YOU, it should go without saying that you should in return give back to it. Today I saw what is the root of UL-Lafayette. I saw fans, faculty, and alum support the school that they love. Now, it goes without saying, I did not attend UL-Lafayette, as a matter of fact I attended a different institution less than hour away. Yet, do I find anything wrong with these wonderful fans and/or others supporting who and what they love? Absolutely Not!!! As matter of fact, I was thoroughly impressed to see just how much support UL really has. If you went or go to UL, or then USL, you should support this institution. The university, as like many, offers so much to the community it is based in.
One of the easiest ways to support your school or university is to purchase their sports apparel. I learned today that the money the university sees in the sales of their product goes towards scholarships, promotions, and image of the university. For example, the bus were rode in today is wrapped beautifully with scenes from Cajun Field. It was not done for free, but the the money used to do such a thing came from merchandise sales. Too often "fans" will moan and groan that the facilities aren't up to par, or that things at the university look dated. Ask, what have I done to better it? By simply visiting places like we did today that carry UL apparel and making a purchase goes a long way. UL's "Wear Red Day" is one of, if not the, most successful campaigns in the nation on "Wear Your College Color(s) Day." That says a lot about this area and a lot about the fans of UL, yet you can't help but ask, how much better can it really be?
I guess the point I'm making is this, if you love something support it!! If something was kind to you, offer the same kindness back to it, and if you are a fan of anything be proud of who you support. All teams, colleges, and universities go through hard times, but what makes someone a true fan is one that is their by their side in the good times, and during the bad times. Take pride in your colors, and get out there and support your colors. Oh, and it's ok to support more than just one school or university from the same state. Too often fans create rivalries when in actuality, all state schools (coaches & players) wish the best for their in-state competitors.
All in all, I want to say THANK YOU to the University Of Louisiana at Lafayette for inviting me to be part of this tour. Not only was it a lot of fun, it was rather enlightening to me. I wish more of you could see what a great thing we have here in Lafayette. Oh, and yes that comes from a "Tiger." Thanks Again!!!!