‘Storm 30’ adds new aspects to routine


File Photo/The Lion’s Roar

Roomie leads the crowd at “Storm 30” prior to the first home football game of the season.

A pre-game football tradition continues to evolve with the start of the new season.

Starting 30 minutes before kickoff, “Storm 30” is a pep rally that starts in Friendship Circle and migrates into Strawberry Stadium. The performance will be done by the Lionettes and the Spirit of the Southland Marching Band.

This season, the Victory Bell was incorporated into the routine.

Lindsey Owens, assistant athletic director of marketing and student promotions, explained that the new addition was voted on by the University Traditions Committee.

“We felt like the Victory Bell is such a vital component of game day, and it’s been parked on the turf for home games,” shared Owens. “As an institution, it was important to let others see the bell up close and have it recognized. So, now it lives in Friendship Circle until ‘Storm 30’ where our Southeastern ROTC walk the Victory Bell into the south end zone of Strawberry Stadium.”

A student group named the “MANEiacs” was added as well.

Owens said that these students are in the routine to enhance the spirit of the occasion.

“This group is exclusively made-up of Southeastern students who showed interest in extending their passion and love for Southeastern Athletics,” discussed Owens.

Through this tradition, Lions fans are able to follow the parade into the stadium and lessen traffic at the stadium entrance.

“Fans are able to get through the gates, bag checks, concessions, restrooms, etc. without hassle and the lines you’d typically see at kick-off,” explained Owens. “Students will be able to take advantage of getting a better seat in the student section as well as get free giveaways, if applicable, as there are limited quantities available. This is a traditional activity for Southeastern and athletics, but we felt it was time to communicate the purpose and idea to those who may be new to campus or have just joined us on game day.”

Derek Stoughton, interim director of bands and director of athletic bands, shared that one difference he noticed in the performance is that the band now follows behind the cheerleaders and university fire truck instead of leading the parade.

Stoughton shared what challenges came with the preparation for the first home game.

“There are always a lot of new folks who are joining us for the first time, and we haven’t settled into a normal routine yet,” said Stoughton. “There is always a lot of excitement and energy in the air, and you have to constantly be reminding your people to stay focused, remember what we’ve practiced, and execute everything to the highest level possible.”

Overall, Stoughton is proud of the way the first performance went.

“Everything that we did was done with a high success level,” shared Stoughton. “That being said, we’re always working on improving our sounds, getting better on our first notes and remaining focused throughout the entire day. However, I am very proud of our group and thought that they performed excellently all day.”

Fans can witness “Storm 30” at every football home game, with the next home game taking place on Sept. 21 at 7 p.m. against Lamar University.