NWA EDITORIAL | Sure, it’s tempting, but don’t make the game a low point that’s now distant history

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Fanatics.

It’s not just what they call people who start wars over a perceived breach of an article of faith.

What is the short version of the word? That’s right: the fans. Like people throwing their arms in the air while simultaneously pursing their lips to make a long “wooooooo” sound. Or hanging out for hours outside Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City. Or wearing fake cheese on your head.

You name it and it’s probably a sports fan somewhere who did it to support their team. At the University of Utah, police and college officials are investigating two women after they showed up to a recent game with only a body-painted “U” covering the upper half of their bodies.

Public nudity aside (we suggest obeying the law, by the way), fans find plenty of creative ways to support their teams and, sometimes, give the other team some good-humored ribs.

And sometimes it’s not so good child, unfortunately. There’s a fine line when the other team is the focus of a fan’s energy on game day. We appreciate more people who dedicate themselves and their creative energy to support their team. It’s just sport, people, as sacred as that sounds.

And so we come to today’s contest between the Arkansas Razorbacks and the Missouri State Bears, a game that brings Hogs head coach Bobby Petrino back to Fayetteville. Fans — heck, everyone in Arkansas — know how Petrino’s time went, and it wasn’t pretty.

Now comes a slew of reports that some fans, possibly students, may be wearing a certain medical device in tonight’s game in a bid to mock the opposition’s head coach.

Here’s our suggestion: Don’t.

This game isn’t about Bobby Petrino and a decade-old wreck. Yes, it did a lot of damage and set the Razorback program back nearly a decade. But Sam Pittman and his jukebox are running the Hogs now, and it doesn’t feel good? Why wasting time with the former coach and what was one of the lowest points in Razorbacks history?

It might be old-fashioned these days, but isn’t it more fun to cheer on your team than to devote your attention to an opponent? We don’t even like people booing the opposing team when they walk into the stadium, as that always diminishes the Hogs’ cheers.

As the fight song goes, “Give a hooray. Rah! Rah!”

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