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10 Things only Cougs understand

An easy intro into our sports fandom.

Washington State v UCLA Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Good afternoon, Coug fans!

I sat down today and started thinking about our wonderful little community, and all the things that make us, well, us. I came to a few conclusions- feedback is more than welcome! But these are the things that I think are so true for Cougs across the board.

1) How annoying the phrase “Coug-ing It” is.
I contemplated not even putting this in here because it grinds my gears so much, but that anger is such a staple I think. I know I’m not alone in that. This is probably one of the easiest ways to piss off any Coug, and I know I have some non-Coug fan friends who read these, so let me make myself clear: this is not an invitation to use this to mock me, using this would result in me leaving the room.

2) The ability to rally like no other.
Every single time I find myself back in Pullman for a weekend, I always swear I won’t overdue it on the first night and burn myself out. However, we all know the effect The Coug has on us visiting fans. Waking up on Saturday morning knowing you have no choice but to run it back again stirs an almost unexplainable strength, which I will do my best to describe now. It’s like when you’re doing the pacer test in P.E. and your ultimate academic rival is right next to you on the line. You can’t quit before they do, and the power of a thousand suns begins to flow through your veins. You suddenly have something to prove. And you will.

3) Feeling old and then getting too drunk to care.
This is a new one for me, but I know it’ll resonate to the non-students. Whenever I wander around Pullman I think to myself “did I look this little too?!” - yes I know I’m still young, but it’s not about that, it’s about how suddenly college students look like toddlers to me. And then I realize I did in fact look like that, and then before I know it, I’m in the bathroom of Valhalla contemplating how soon is too soon to start using night cream (spoiler alert, I’ve been using it for about a year now).

4) Disappointment settling deeply in your bones, then leaving as soon as it arrives.
We just know how to shake things off. Most of us have had lots of practice. Sure, we’ll take to Twitter and say some potentially regrettable things that our employers aren’t gonna love, but that’s every sports fan! You wake up the next morning, maybe delete some, and you get ready to do it all again.

5) The rush of seeing a stranger in public wearing Coug gear, and then suddenly not being strangers anymore.
I have never made a friend faster than upon seeing someone I don’t know in Coug gear. Sure, all sports gear sparks a conversation, but Cougs know how to talk- and especially know how exciting it is to find someone out in the wild! It’s happened to me in the most amazing places, and I always end up talking to the person for upwards of five or ten minutes, just bonding. I will leave knowing that persons graduating class, mother’s name, and favorite memory from their time there. My hand will tingle a bit from the crispness of the high five (Coug fans always give the best high fives). My week will have been made.

6) Having amazing calf muscles.
Those hills are no joke. And I wasn’t even a student there! I just take some extra time on the stair master a few weeks before I know I’m gonna hit Pullman so I can ensure my calves won’t be crying for the duration of my trip. It’s all in the prep.

7) Walking uphill in the snow BOTH WAYS is very real. And painful.
This one was submitted by my dear friend Nate, and he’s right for it. This is a brutal sensation that seems impossible, but is a commonality in Pullman. I have experienced it occasionally, but those of you who commute under these conditions are, and I mean this, braver than me. It makes Chicago wind chill seem like bikini weather. Do you guys need anything? Some soup? A big hug?

8) Crimson and red are DIFFERENT.
Please stop saying our colors are “red and gray” - it’s not red. Nate also gave me this idea, but it’s true. Crimson is dignified, represents an institution, and sounds almost regal if I’m being honest. Red is fine. They are not the same.

9) The delicious taste of Busch Light.
I don't make the rules, I just inform you of them. After a long day, or during a nail biting game, nothing hits quite like a Busch Light. Judge me all you want, but this is just the truth.

10) How HARD the opening notes of Back Home hit.
Nothing makes anyone grin harder. Tell me I’m wrong. You cannot.