Game day ops and experience, Iowa edition

Leonard23

Hall of Famer
Gold Member
Feb 3, 2006
26,963
8,230
113
Good:
1. New LED light system is awesome. It really elevates the game day experience and has a premium, big time feeling. Hat tip to @RutgersFan for lobbying for this on here early last season. Now get a giant videoboard over the North entrance and LED block Rs around the exterior of the stadium.

2. Boardwalk and entire area is fantastic with a bunch of food options and games/things to do, and live music. I hope they never get rid of it again, as we had something similar during the Flood years. They should add some more picnic tables near Rodkin and other areas.

3. Scarlet Walk was packed. Kudos to all the fans that showed up. It could be even better if the busses dropped off and started further back closer to the circle, instead of at the Rodkin or Athletes Glen.

4. MCSO doesn't seem to be in your face anymore (but they need to improve directing traffic).

5. Pretty easy and fast getting into the stadium early around 6:15 PM (but the worker didn't seem to understand the NFC and the yes/no lights on the ticket scanner, so he made me show him my phone screen with the ✔️ after each ticket scanned 🤦🏻‍♂️...)

6. Pretty good variety of music.

7. Iowa Kinnick wave to the children's hospital.

8. Moment of silence for the 2 NJ high school football players that passed away. (Should've also had a moment of silence on 9/10 for 9/11. Hope we don't "forget" ever again...)

9. Fireworks and horn. I like them but the horn doesn't need to be used as much on 3rd downs.

10. Students did a great job showing up and cheering. Wish they stuck around a bit longer, but not surprised as most others fans also left.

Needs work:
1. Cell service was beyond awful with virtually no data service until 30K people left the stadium late in 3Q (texts worked). This is the worst it's been in a very long time. Add a better DAS and repeaters or get Wi-Fi already.

2. Horse is very slow and anticlimactic strolling out in cement boots after the build up on the video.

3. Team entrance needs work. Why do they seem to change it every game? This time they had an R-U chant and no music right before the team ran out. Fix it already. Bring back Thunderstruck... And why did they get rid of The Hum Knight Pulse, even though that worked well to pump up the students and crowd? Someone needs to go watch a VT game.

4. Regular LeGrand Don't Stop Believing" tribute between 3Q and 4Q was back after skipping it for a quick acknowledgement of him in game 1, but it was rushed into 40 seconds while the cheer team wasn't even lined up during a long 3 min timeout. Play the full song. Let the crowd enjoy and sing it, instead of rushing 5 other things into the timeout.

5. NFL Knights should be between the 1Q and 2Q.

6. Rushing snippets of songs, like Living on a Prayer, so they could do something else, like the 10th t-shirt toss. Play the full song. The crowd sings the well-known songs. Let the crowd enjoy a song, instead of bouncing around and forcing 5 things into 2 or 3 minutes.

7. (Edited to add this) Bring back The Birthplace of College Football signage on top of the scoreboard. You can't really see it on the wall because the cheer teams and others block it. Put it above the Shi Stadium signage or move that up and this below.

Not sure how the lower level concessions were, since I didn't get anything, but everyone else I was with didn't seem to have an issue with them.
 
Last edited:

NotInRHouse

Legend
Oct 17, 2007
66,953
44,851
113
My guess is Knights in the NFL was moved to 1Q to ensure recruits see. Historically it's always been early in the game.

I thought the lights at the beginning of the game were excellent. Definitely hope to see that for Nebraska.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Leonard23

Leonard23

Hall of Famer
Gold Member
Feb 3, 2006
26,963
8,230
113
My guess is Knights in the NFL was moved to 1Q to ensure recruits see. Historically it's always been early in the game.

I thought the lights at the beginning of the game were excellent. Definitely hope to see that for Nebraska.
Could be. Not a bad idea to do it during the 1st timeout.
 
  • Like
Reactions: NotInRHouse

MrsScrew

Heisman Winner
Gold Member
Sep 27, 2006
12,033
18,761
113
NJ
Re #9. I believe the loud, long train horn was done on purpose. Athletics has received a huge amount of complaints regarding the students & the fps chant. One way to drown it out is the horn. It was very effective for that.

Your other 9 positive points totally on target.

Re #4 in needs work. I think of the te had actually left the locker room when they were supposed to during the R-U chant it would have been great. However the chant petered out before the team left the locker room. Not sure if the chant was started early or Schiano was running late, but it was definitely not synched correctly.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Leonard23 and 17Q66

sct1111

All Conference
Nov 30, 2014
4,804
6,104
113
Getting into the stadium is ridiculously slow. Other than that the environment was very good.

They need to open up more entrances.
 
  • Like
Reactions: NiTeKnight

17Q66

Senior
Mar 17, 2015
1,542
1,181
113
San Francisco
From the program's perspective, nearly all of this falls under "the things we can control" category, and - from that perspective - the program is both moving in the right direction and making good strides.

I'm disappointed by the outcome of the contest, but I never felt like this 2022 team didn't belong on that field last night. More and more with each passing year, I'm impressed by what I see from Rutgers as "a program in the Big Ten" surrounding the game. I've really got to tip my hat to the staff assembled by Pat Hobbs and his (literally) tireless leadership. I really hope he's got a rock-solid succession plan in place for staying the course and growing alumni fidelity.
 

ScarletDave

Heisman Winner
Oct 7, 2010
10,063
10,472
113
Positives: added the loud speaker announcements outside the stadium before and after the game, public service announcements. This I noticed when we went to Nebraska - very professional, big-time. “Thank you, join us for the next game against x”, and “This is coach Schiano, welcome to Rutgers Stadium” etc. nice job.

Cons: Bad timing on the in-game segments. Clearly scripted, they should have room to insert certain ones depending on game flow. No reason for wonderwall/tremor remix with light show when we’re about to go on offense. That needs to happen before we go on D. They overthink this stuff a lot - loud crowd pump-up when on D, offense stuff should be screen promos, t-shirt Toss etc.
 

Knight Shift

Legend
May 19, 2011
65,990
59,585
113
Jersey Shore
Good:
1. New LED light system is awesome. It really elevates the game day experience and has a premium, big time feeling. Hat tip to @RutgersFan for lobbying for this on here early last season. Now get a giant videoboard over the North entrance and LED block Rs around the exterior of the stadium.

2. Boardwalk and entire area is fantastic with a bunch of food options and games/things to do, and live music. I hope they never get rid of it again, as we had something similar during the Flood years. They should add some more picnic tables near Rodkin and other areas.

3. Scarlet Walk was packed. Kudos to all the fans that showed up. It could be even better if the busses dropped off and started further back closer to the circle, instead of at the Rodkin or Athletes Glen.

4. MCSO doesn't seem to be in your face anymore (but they need to improve directing traffic).

5. Pretty easy and fast getting into the stadium early around 6:15 PM (but the worker didn't seem to understand the NFC and the yes/no lights on the ticket scanner, so he made me show him my phone screen with the ✔️ after each ticket scanned 🤦🏻‍♂️...)

6. Pretty good variety of music.

7. Iowa Kinnick wave to the children's hospital.

8. Moment of silence for the 2 NJ high school football players that passed away. (Should've also had a moment of silence on 9/10 for 9/11. Hope we don't "forget" ever again...)

9. Fireworks and horn. I like them but the horn doesn't need to be used as much on 3rd downs.

10. Students did a great job showing up and cheering. Wish they stuck around a bit longer, but not surprised as most others fans also left.

Needs work:
1. Cell service was beyond awful with virtually no data service until 30K people left the stadium late in 3Q (texts worked). This is the worst it's been in a very long time. Add a better DAS and repeaters or get Wi-Fi already.

2. Horse is very slow and anticlimactic strolling out in cement boots after the build up on the video.

3. Team entrance needs work. Why do they seem to change it every game? This time they had an R-U chant and no music right before the team ran out. Fix it already. Bring back Thunderstruck... And why did they get rid of The Hum Knight Pulse, even though that worked well to pump up the students and crowd? Someone needs to go watch a VT game.

4. Regular LeGrand Don't Stop Believing" tribute between 3Q and 4Q was back after skipping it for a quick acknowledgement of him in game 1, but it was rushed into 40 seconds while the cheer team wasn't even lined up during a long 3 min timeout. Play the full song. Let the crowd enjoy and sing it, instead of rushing 5 other things into the timeout.

5. NFL Knights should be between the 1Q and 2Q.

6. Rushing snippets of songs, like Living on a Prayer, so they could do something else, like the 10th t-shirt toss. Play the full song. The crowd sings the well-known songs. Let the crowd enjoy a song, instead of bouncing around and forcing 5 things into 2 or 3 minutes.

Not sure how the lower level concessions were, since I didn't get anything, but everyone else I was with didn't seem to have an issue with them.
Agree with everything you said.

I'm fine with the horse, and so are a lot of people who sit around me during the game. I told them it was a hot topic with one particular poster on the board, and they burst out in laughter, asking "Over a horse?" That's not you. We know who it is. Some people find reasons to be unhappy.

But you gave a very fair and balanced summary of last night. Nice work.
 
Last edited:

Leonard23

Hall of Famer
Gold Member
Feb 3, 2006
26,963
8,230
113
Re #9. I believe the loud, long train horn was done on purpose. Athletics has received a huge amount of complaints regarding the students & the fps chant. One way to drown it out is the horn. It was very effective for that.
Ugh... that's hysterical and makes sense. Where/who are the complaints coming from? I'd rather the chant than the overdone horn.

Agree with everything you said.

I'm fine with the horse, and so are a lot of people who sit around me during the game. I told them it was a hot topic with one particular poster on the board, and they burst out in laughter, asking "Over a horse?" That's not you. We know who it is. Some people find reasons to be unhappy.

But you gave a very fair and balanced summary of last night. Nice work.
Thanks. I'd like to see a little more pep in the horse, but last year it almost took out some cheerleaders, so maybe they did something to calm/slow it down?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Knight Shift

Knight Shift

Legend
May 19, 2011
65,990
59,585
113
Jersey Shore
Ugh... that's hysterical and makes sense. Where/who are the complaints coming from? I'd rather the chant than the overdone horn.


Thanks. I'd like to see a little more pep in the horse, but last year it almost took out some cheerleaders, so maybe they did something to calm/slow it down?
The horse before the game:

wolfof-wall-street-get-the-ludes.gif
 
Last edited:

RU-AGK

All American
Aug 2, 2001
5,380
1,687
113
it took a few horn blasts for me to put it together, then I realized it was happening every time. I know some of the high end donors have complained.
I don't give a rats purple ass. If that continues I won't be back after this season and I'm sure the AD's position will be the same towards me.

I'm not saying I'll no longer be a fan. I'll watch from home, but Rutgers athletics won't ever get another nickel from me on purpose ever again. The public apology to those scum was bad enough during the darkest of Hermann's years. Drowning out one of the few things the student section actually gets right and shares a common thread with all the long suffering fans across the generations is a mutual hate for Penn State. I'm really happy for big donors who walk in through special entrances everywhere they go, but if you've ever walked in/out among the unwashed either at home or in Crappy Valley you know you're looked down upon by them as if you're trash beneath them. They're not shy and make it very obvious. I LOVE the chant and look forward to it. It unites our students... so let's shit on it and snuff it out. If drowning out the chant continues it just shows 100% Rutgers will NEVER understand how to build a 'big time' atmosphere. I'll create my own atmosphere at home and will more than likely be able to convince my whole crew to as well. I'm tired of Rutgers cow towing to every perceived slight.
 

Leonard23

Hall of Famer
Gold Member
Feb 3, 2006
26,963
8,230
113
it took a few horn blasts for me to put it together, then I realized it was happening every time. I know some of the high end donors have complained.
The chant won't stop, and the overused horn ruins 3rd down and makes it worse for fans. Not sure what the answer is but it isn't that.

One other suggestion, unrelated to that, is they need to add back The Birthplace of College Football signage to the top of the scoreboard. You can't really see it on the wall because the cheer teams and others block it. Put it above the Shi Stadium signage or move that up and this below it.
 

Ridge 22

All American
Gold Member
Jul 1, 2007
5,031
5,567
113
The boardwalk idea is great. But it needs to be more efficient and they need more tables. It took 45 minutes to get food at the BBQ truck. That is just way too long. Otherwise I love the concept and hope they continue to improve upon it.
 

RU-AGK

All American
Aug 2, 2001
5,380
1,687
113
The chant won't stop, and the overused horn ruins 3rd down and makes it worse for fans. Not sure what the answer is but it isn't that.

One other suggestion, unrelated to that, is they need to add back The Birthplace of College Football signage to the top of the scoreboard. You can't really see it on the wall because the cheer teams and others block it. Put it above the Shi Stadium signage or move that up and this below it.

I hope you're right.
 

Leonard23

Hall of Famer
Gold Member
Feb 3, 2006
26,963
8,230
113
The boardwalk idea is great. But it needs to be more efficient and they need more tables. It took 45 minutes to get food at the BBQ truck. That is just way too long. Otherwise I love the concept and hope they continue to improve upon it.
Have you been to many food truck festivals or events? While less than ideal, 45 mins isn't uncommon for some trucks when it's packed and they're blowing through food quickly. That has nothing to do with Rutgers. Heck, I've waited 90 mins at work for food trucks to have their food. Hit a different food truck if the wait doesn't work. Yesterday throughout the day and night, I hit 4 or 5 different trucks/stands and never waited more than 5-15 mins.
 

RUskoolie

Hall of Famer
Gold Member
Aug 1, 2007
23,162
40,080
113
The entrance is pretty bad. They mash up so many songs and the build up is like 5 minutes.

They have gotten better with a lot of things but operations and the football team were not ready for the big time last night.

The train horn has become absolutely obnoxious, same with giving away TVs and the t-shirt toss. Do it once. Not 5 times per game.

And hell, if you're going to do it, do it right. By a gun that launches the t-shirts into the crowd, not so the first 3 rows of the student section gets them.
 

MrsScrew

Heisman Winner
Gold Member
Sep 27, 2006
12,033
18,761
113
NJ
The boardwalk idea is great. But it needs to be more efficient and they need more tables. It took 45 minutes to get food at the BBQ truck. That is just way too long. Otherwise I love the concept and hope they continue to improve upon it.

How do you propose to fix this? It's a food truck. Lines are always long if it's a popular food item.
There were 14 trucks/stands to choose from :
7 food trucks and another 7 dessert trucks/stands. Check out the lines & choose accordingly.

I
 

Ridge 22

All American
Gold Member
Jul 1, 2007
5,031
5,567
113
How do you propose to fix this? It's a food truck. Lines are always long if it's a popular food item.
There were 14 trucks/stands to choose from :
7 food trucks and another 7 dessert trucks/stands. Check out the lines & choose accordingly.

I
No idea. I was simply commenting on my experience. Had no idea when I ordered it would take as long as it did or I would have skipped. Not something I have any expertise in though. That is for the people who do it for a living to figure out. Some obvious solutions would be to get more trucks and/or more workers to handle the volume.
 
  • Like
Reactions: rumarine

rurichdog

Heisman Winner
Sep 30, 2006
17,588
7,236
113
The entrance is pretty bad. They mash up so many songs and the build up is like 5 minutes.

They have gotten better with a lot of things but operations and the football team were not ready for the big time last night.

The train horn has become absolutely obnoxious, same with giving away TVs and the t-shirt toss. Do it once. Not 5 times per game.

And hell, if you're going to do it, do it right. By a gun that launches the t-shirts into the crowd, not so the first 3 rows of the student section gets them.
Slingshots are illegal in NJ, you think the state would permit a potato gun that shoots tee shirts in a public venue?
 

Leonard23

Hall of Famer
Gold Member
Feb 3, 2006
26,963
8,230
113
The entrance is pretty bad. They mash up so many songs and the build up is like 5 minutes.

They have gotten better with a lot of things but operations and the football team were not ready for the big time last night.

The train horn has become absolutely obnoxious, same with giving away TVs and the t-shirt toss. Do it once. Not 5 times per game.

And hell, if you're going to do it, do it right. By a gun that launches the t-shirts into the crowd, not so the first 3 rows of the student section gets them.
The entrance has been trending downward and needs a good amount of work. The train horn is good for scores and maybe turnovers. That's it. Not every 3rd down. Go back to the bells for that.
No idea. I was simply commenting on my experience. Had no idea when I ordered it would take as long as it did or I would have skipped. Not something I have any expertise in though. That is for the people who do it for a living to figure out. Some obvious solutions would be to get more trucks and/or more workers to handle the volume.
Hopefully with how great it’s been so far it fixes itself and more trucks sign up. Think it’s a really great idea.
More trucks won't really solve the issue, as some will always be packed with long lines and waits for food. In general, I've found that trucks could do better communicating the approximate wait times when you order, so they set the right expectations. The problem with that is they are afraid to lose business because some would go elsewhere, which I understand as these are small businesses. At a July 4th fireworks show, I waited 75 mins for food after waiting 20 mins in line to order, so I was annoyed because they could've told us that, and I would've gone to a different truck that was much faster.
 

RU-AGK

All American
Aug 2, 2001
5,380
1,687
113
The entrance has been trending downward and needs a good amount of work. The train horn is good for scores and maybe turnovers. That's it. Not every 3rd down. Go back to the bells for that.


More trucks won't really solve the issue, as some will always be packed with long lines and waits for food. In general, I've found that trucks could do better communicating the approximate wait times when you order, so they set the right expectations. The problem with that is they are afraid to lose business because some would go elsewhere, which I understand as these are small businesses. At a July 4th fireworks show, I waited 75 mins for food after waiting 20 mins in line to order, so I was annoyed because they could've told us that, and I would've gone to a different truck that was much faster.
They're not experimenting with that horn, they're using it as a weapon against our own student section and they're p*ssies for doing it.
 
  • Like
Reactions: rumarine

Jimpeg

Junior
Sep 2, 2014
738
419
63
why did the concession close on the lower level right after half time? getting into the stadium took 11 mins and i was in my seat at 635...so thats acceptable from an operations standpoint IMO..
 

RUPete

Hall of Famer
Feb 5, 2003
21,230
9,038
113
Have you been to many food truck festivals or events? While less than ideal, 45 mins isn't uncommon for some trucks when it's packed and they're blowing through food quickly. That has nothing to do with Rutgers. Heck, I've waited 90 mins at work for food trucks to have their food. Hit a different food truck if the wait doesn't work. Yesterday throughout the day and night, I hit 4 or 5 different trucks/stands and never waited more than 5-15 mins.
So true. If you’re looking for speed, the most popular food truck at a given event probably isn’t for you.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Leonard23

Knight Shift

Legend
May 19, 2011
65,990
59,585
113
Jersey Shore
The entrance is pretty bad. They mash up so many songs and the build up is like 5 minutes.

They have gotten better with a lot of things but operations and the football team were not ready for the big time last night.

The train horn has become absolutely obnoxious, same with giving away TVs and the t-shirt toss. Do it once. Not 5 times per game.

And hell, if you're going to do it, do it right. By a gun that launches the t-shirts into the crowd, not so the first 3 rows of the student section gets them.
Agree on the entry music. Don't know why they lost the Knight Pulse. We got a small sample last night. Have the team marching down the stairs to the Hmm, hmm part, and have them explode out of the tunnel when the music starts. Seems natural, seems to be something RU started. They played it at Greg's intro at the RAC during the basketball game in 2020. Greg was into it. It isn't that difficult, but Rutgers sure knows how to complicate the simplest things. Like hiring a Penn State guy to run game day music.

 

Leonard23

Hall of Famer
Gold Member
Feb 3, 2006
26,963
8,230
113
Agree on the entry music. Don't know why they lost the Knight Pulse. We got a small sample last night. Have the team marching down the stairs to the Hmm, hmm part, and have them explode out of the tunnel when the music starts. Seems natural, seems to be something RU started. They played it at Greg's intro at the RAC during the basketball game in 2020. Greg was into it. It isn't that difficult, but Rutgers sure knows how to complicate the simplest things. Like hiring a Penn State guy to run game day music.

Yes. Agree with everything.
 

ScarletDave

Heisman Winner
Oct 7, 2010
10,063
10,472
113
Agree on the entry music. Don't know why they lost the Knight Pulse. We got a small sample last night. Have the team marching down the stairs to the Hmm, hmm part, and have them explode out of the tunnel when the music starts. Seems natural, seems to be something RU started. They played it at Greg's intro at the RAC during the basketball game in 2020. Greg was into it. It isn't that difficult, but Rutgers sure knows how to complicate the simplest things. Like hiring a Penn State guy to run game day music.

Yep x2. It’s the one thing we have music-wise that’s original … not enter sandman, not sandstorm, not sweet Caroline … and for some reason they have to trim it to 8 seconds so they can play 10 other songs in the 2 mins before the team comes out. PJ Mullen totally blowing it
 

MrsScrew

Heisman Winner
Gold Member
Sep 27, 2006
12,033
18,761
113
NJ
Like hiring a Penn State guy to run game day music.

A friend & I actually had a long conversation with PJ yesterday, probably spent a good 30 minutes with him. He is totally all in on Rutgers. He put the Xfinity party together & got the airspace over the Linc rented back in February. Has spent a year getting all the permits (being NJ you can imagine how many) to close Scarlet Knight Way for the Boardwalk & the Ferris wheel & other rides. He's been working on the light show & a bunch of other things. I was worried he'd come across as a psu cultist but I have to say my friend & I were in agreement that he seemed nothing but gung ho RU wanting to make the experience better for the fans.
 

75liteweight

Senior
Gold Member
Dec 3, 2005
2,144
960
113
The entrance has been trending downward and needs a good amount of work. The train horn is good for scores and maybe turnovers. That's it. Not every 3rd down. Go back to the bells for that.
Train horn is NOT good for scores. They blow it the same time cannon is being fired, actually drowning out the cannon. No need to do both and would much rather have the cannon.
 

HPNJRUfan

All American
Gold Member
Mar 6, 2003
9,207
1,327
113
Highland Park, NJ
A friend & I actually had a long conversation with PJ yesterday, probably spent a good 30 minutes with him. He is totally all in on Rutgers. He put the Xfinity party together & got the airspace over the Linc rented back in February. Has spent a year getting all the permits (being NJ you can imagine how many) to close Scarlet Knight Way for the Boardwalk & the Ferris wheel & other rides. He's been working on the light show & a bunch of other things. I was worried he'd come across as a psu cultist but I have to say my friend & I were in agreement that he seemed nothing but gung ho RU wanting to make the experience better for the fans.
Sorry but its not that hard, especially for a public agency like Rutgers. If people are actually on the ball these things get done, even with red tape. (source: I work for a different state agency that requires coordination with various levels of gov't across the state)

Not sure if its all this guys fault, but there has been little direction to gameday operations since his arrival - other than doing everything he can to rid RU games of the ancillary facets that make it enjoyable and uniquely Rutgers.

PJ Mullen sucks at his job.
 

fatsam98

All Conference
Gold Member
Mar 23, 2005
4,079
5,666
113
Not sure what's more cringeworthy...

"Fireworks, are you ready!?"

or

"Ev-ry-bo-dy-clap-your-hands" 18 times a game.

Seems like we're pretty united on hating this kind of crap as a fanbase. Hopefully everyone is letting them know in the post-game surveys they've been sending.
 

bitnez

All Conference
Jan 18, 2006
4,465
3,285
113
Not sure what's more cringeworthy...

"Fireworks, are you ready!?"

or

"Ev-ry-bo-dy-clap-your-hands" 18 times a game.

Seems like we're pretty united on hating this kind of crap as a fanbase. Hopefully everyone is letting them know in the post-game surveys they've been sending.

I hate the stupid horn are you ready etc. It actually made me cringe last night
 

Knight Shift

Legend
May 19, 2011
65,990
59,585
113
Jersey Shore
Not sure what's more cringeworthy...

"Fireworks, are you ready!?"

or

"Ev-ry-bo-dy-clap-your-hands" 18 times a game.

Seems like we're pretty united on hating this kind of crap as a fanbase. Hopefully everyone is letting them know in the post-game surveys they've been sending.
Holy smokes, had no idea with was Ye, and it still sucks.

 

Leonard23

Hall of Famer
Gold Member
Feb 3, 2006
26,963
8,230
113
Train horn is NOT good for scores. They blow it the same time cannon is being fired, actually drowning out the cannon. No need to do both and would much rather have the cannon.
You make a great point. The cannon should be the focal point. Maybe coordinate better and don't have the horn sound until after the cannon fires? Otherwise, I'd be ok with just using the train horn for turnovers and maybe select big plays.
Time to retire the cannon.
Blasphemy. The cannon is great and uniquely Rutgers. We have such little sustained tradition like this, so the cannon should always be used during games.