The MUSS: More than a Student Section

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The MUSS: More than a Student Section

Utah Football fans in the MUSS student section cheer for the defense during the game vs. the Washington Huskies at Rice-Eccles Stadium on Saturday, October 29, 2016

Utah Football fans in the MUSS student section cheer for the defense during the game vs. the Washington Huskies at Rice-Eccles Stadium on Saturday, October 29, 2016

Utah Football fans in the MUSS student section cheer for the defense during the game vs. the Washington Huskies at Rice-Eccles Stadium on Saturday, October 29, 2016

Utah Football fans in the MUSS student section cheer for the defense during the game vs. the Washington Huskies at Rice-Eccles Stadium on Saturday, October 29, 2016

By Scott Funk

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Known for its rowdiness and presence at the University of Utah football and basketball games, The Mighty Utah Student Section, also known as The MUSS, gives students attending the college a place to go meet new people, be a part of a fun college atmosphere and feel what it is like to exemplify school pride.

“We are a community on campus,” said MUSS president Steven Havlik.  “We’re a place to come to gain new friends and a place to call home.  Joining The MUSS was one of the best decisions I made when I came to the U.”

The MUSS is the university’s student section, and it has 6,000 members according to the U’s website. It was established back in 2002, and since then it has grown to be one of the best student sections in the country.  In 2014, The MUSS was ranked the fourth best student section in the nation by NCAA.com.

Most colleges throughout the country have a student section, but what makes The MUSS unique is the crowd surfing, the costumes, the 3rd down jump and The MUSS Bus. Whether it be on the field or on the court, The MUSS makes its presence known.

“Joining The MUSS has been an amazing experience,” said MUSS member Daniel Holzrichter. “I think we bring a different kind of atmosphere to every game that makes it difficult for opponents.”

Back in 1994 when now head football coach Kyle Whittingham was an assistant, he said the student section consisted of four students and a stray dog, according to a quote on the U website.

“We bring passion to the university and the Pac-12,” Havlik said.  “We have a sense of pride that makes it a hostile environment for the other teams.”

To become a part of this “hostile” environment, students must attend the U, own a student ID and be enrolled in at least one class.

Students can present their student ID at the door of men’s and women’s basketball games, gymnastics meets, baseball games and volleyball matches to gain entrance. There is also the option to bring guests, but the number of guests varies for each sporting event. All of that information can be found at themussblog.com.

Football is the only sporting event where students need to pay for tickets. This past spring when registration opened for seats, each student wanting to attend was required to pay $50 for their ticket, and they had the option to register two additional guests for $235 each.  These are one time fees that get students seats at every home game, and a free MUSS t-shirt.

Seating for the events is on a first come first serve bases, with the exception of football. Seating for football is based upon when students register for The MUSS.  The sooner students register, the better seats they will receive. The upcoming 2017 football season, both reserved and standing room seats, have already sold out, but Havlik encourages students to still look for opportunities to attend the games, and to pay close attention in the spring when registration opens again for the 2018 season.

“Joining The MUSS is one of the best things you can do when you attend this university,” Havlik said.  “Not only is it a community, but you gain a sense of family.”

Besides sporting events, The MUSS also gets involved within the community. One example of that is every fall the students involved in the organization participate in the University Food Drive.

“It’s great to be able to be a part of the community and to give back,” Havlik said. “Every experience I’ve had with The MUSS improved my experience at the U.”

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@scottfunk0