Monarch Insider No. 25-Pillow-Fight Friday

March 05, 2011
By ODU Athletics

March 5, 2011

Monarch Insider No. 25 - Pillow-Fight Friday

Monarch fans enjoy action at the Tournament on Friday, especially since we don't have to play.

Brendan O'Hallarn Monarch Basketball Insider

The Richmond Coliseum was mostly empty, as the Northeastern Huskies and Delaware Fightin' Blue Hens warmed up for their first round CAA Tournament game. The bands played lustily, the cheer and dance teams warmed up, the players stretched and shot baskets on the Coliseum floor, knowing the winner would extend their season by at least a game.

With all that nervous energy, I thought I'd check in with the most relaxed people in the building.

Two whole rows of ODU fans were getting ready for their third game of "Pillow-Fight" Friday, knowing that Old Dominion was waiting to take on the winner the next day (Delaware ultimately prevailed). The best part of the game? It wasn't our season ending tonight.

"Pillow-Fight Friday is probably the best day of the tournament for me, because Old Dominion can't lose," said Bryce Rogers, a finance student graduating next year. Rogers attended Friday's games with his girlfriend Laura Williams, a `12 history major.

Williams wasn't a Monarch fan before she met Rogers. "He just started dragging me to games, and he converted me. We've been coming to the Tournament for four years now." Rogers and Williams were among the younger Monarch fans at the game. Barbara Pruitt became an ODU fan after relocating to the region from Ohio in 1983. "I was looking around for a team after I arrived. I went to a William and Mary football game, and that didn't work. But then I saw ODU and Petey Sessoms play UVA at Scope. I've been hooked ever since," she said. Now Pruitt drags her husband Lance to field hockey games, baseball games, just about every ODU sport you can imagine. "We're like the oldest fans in our group, but we're the biggest, too," she said.

Just before tipoff, the ODU players ambled into the stands to watch their prospective opponents, and our fans gave them a rousing standing ovation. As I walked down the stairs to the court I heard from behind me: "That's the loudest cheer you'll hear in here all night." That might not be far off.

Saturday's going to be a long day, so I didn't stay for the bulk of the game. But on the way out, just before the tip, I ran into the Northeastern players doing their "hype" huddle before taking the court. I love hype huddles. Makes me want to jump into the middle, and start bumping chests, no matter which team is doing it. I've seen the huddles that many teams do this season in the tense moments before games. You know which team is the calmest in their pregame huddle? Us. I guess that nervous energy goes on the court.

Brendan O'Hallarn, an employee in public relations at Old Dominion University, writes Monarch Basketball Insider. To see other stories, please see the Monarch Insider website, at If you would like to share your thoughts about ODU basketball, or have a story you'd like to see Brendan write, contact him at

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