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Goalpost becomes symbol of school unity

Nov. 4, 1997

Saturday was one of those days that Baylor fans will always remember.

They will remember it long after the final score, or maybe even the team we beat escapes their memories. What no one will ever forget, however, is the spontaneous and unified display of school spirit shown by everyone at Baylor, not just the football players.

This had been a very long football season, one full of heartbreak and diminished dreams, and here we were on homecoming, almost lifeless with a 1-6 record.

But there, on the warm AstroTurf of Floyd Casey Stadium, something almost magical occurred. It's not that our win over the University of Texas was such a miraculous feat, it's just that it satisfied a hunger many Baylor fans had deep inside.

When time expired, something happened that one just doesn't see from Baylor's normally apathetic fans.

Hundreds of Baylor's fans erupted onto the field and stormed the southern goalpost, tearing it down in celebration.

The police tried to wave off the crowd as it approached, but they were also told to not hold them back if it seemed like something they wanted to do.

Boy, was it.

Not only did they tear the goalpost down, but members of the Baylor Line and other students hoisted it on their shoulders and march it out of the stadium all the way to President Robert B. Sloan Jr.'s house.

Sure, they halted traffic during the march, but if the honking cars and applauding passers-by were any indication, nobody seemed to care too much.

The goalpost eventually made its way to the front of the Bill Daniel Student Center, where it quickly became the largest three-pronged cast in history as students, alumni and other Baylor fans gathered to sign it.

'I think it was a wonderful thing because it became a tangible expression of their emotion,' president Robert B. Sloan Jr. said in Monday's Waco Tribune-Herald. 'These are the things that are spontaneous. We want to take advantage of people's enthusiasm.'

According to that same article, the goalpost will cost between $7,000 and $10,000 to replace, but athletic director Tom Stanton said 'it was definitely worth it. No question about it.'

Everyone involved: the players, students, alumni, administration, police and Waco residents should be commended for making this homecoming one to remember.

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