Students will not hear “Jump Around” at Badger football games for at least the next two years, according to University of Wisconsin officials.
Fans who sit on the west side of the stadium have “expressed uneasiness” about students jumping after third quarter every year, but the new Camp Randall renovations gave Athletic Department staff an extra incentive to sack the song, Athletic Department spokesman Steve Malchow said.
Malchow said the decision stemmed from the large number of calls and letters received annually from adult fans complaining about “Jump Around,” but new construction surrounding the stadium this year pushed the Athletic Department to temporarily suspend the song during this “season of caution.”
“This whole season, we’ve taken a cautionary approach,” Malchow said. “This seemed to be the appropriate year [to suspend the song].”
Construction on Camp Randall will be completed by the 2005 season, when Malchow said “Jump Around” would return. He said the stadium’s renovation might give the stadium a completely different feel for fans, although no reinforcements are planned for the structure beneath fan seating.
Malchow said Athletic Department staff conducts weekly meetings to review football game days and would discuss “Jump Around” and any third-quarter backlash by students, but he did not suggest the department would reconsider playing the song to appease angry students.
Malchow said the football stands shake during the song and the press box sways, giving a number of individuals working in the press box an uneasy feeling.
UW senior Kelsey Mandl, who works in the press box for UW Athletic Communications, said she can feel the press box vibrating during the song and see coffee in the workers’ cups sifting around. However, she said she has never felt unsafe due to the movement.
Malchow said Camp Randall is architecturally sound and no renovations are planned for the floorboards underneath the fans.
Ald. Mike Verveer, District 4, said UW police knew in advance that the song would not be played, leaving the song’s absence a surprise to no one other than UW students.
When the fourth quarter began and students realized they would not be given a chance to jump around, they chanted “F-ck the sound guy,” generously flashed their middle fingers and booed the sound booth at a volume comparable to a Wisconsin touchdown.
The chanting and gesturing did not fade until the Badgers’ 99-yard play leading to a touchdown by Lee Evans, but booing still resurfaced occasionally.
Editors note: On Wednesday, at 10:30am in the Mendota Gridiron Room at Camp Randall (enter through Gate 15) the Athletic Department will have its weekly game management meeting. This is an open meeting that students can attend.