By Bridget Seelinger | The Duquesne Duke
Fans passionate about Duquesne basketball have found a home on an online forum hosted through Boardhost, an online forum that has been hosting discussions since 1998.
The name is DuquesneFans and it hosts analysis of men and women’s basketball and football.
Many of these passionate fans are season ticket holders, too.
Phil Schomer, an alumni of La Roche College, was a season ticket holder until he made the move to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.
“I had started to follow [Duquesne] when I was a kid, 13 or 14 years old [in 1961],” Schomer said. “They were the big winners in Pittsburgh at that time. I listened to them on the radio. My dad starting taking me to games and I was hooked forever.”
Douglas Simmons, a Duquesne alumni from the class of 2008 and one of the founding members of the Red and Blue Crew, regularly posts on the forum and recalls memories such as storming the court after defeating Xavier in 2009.
During that year, there was a fierce rivalry between Xavier and Duquesne. With less than 30 seconds left in their January meeting, Melquan Bolding, who was new to the starting line-up, nailed a 3-point shot to give the Dukes a 70–69 win. The Dukes were fated to lose to Xavier a few weeks later, but the excitement was certainly memorable.
“The [Xavier] crowd was always so fun,” Bolding said. “[Xavier] wore Snuggies, and I even remember one fan stopping and doing the Hulk Hogan gesture to the ear where they want to hear more noise. It was so electrifying and I remember Aaron Jackson screaming for us to rush the court,” he recalls.
Sadly, those days are long gone but users on the forum also have ideas about how to improve the basketball program and opinions on mistakes made in the past.
SCDuke, a 65 year-old user on the forum says that the main problem is administration.
“[Duquesne’s decline] was a combination of administration mistakes and trying to get by cheaply when other schools were making more of a financial investment to stay competitive.”
All the same, these fans are as passionate as ever about their team and are hoping for a brighter future.
“We’re hoping for 16-18 wins this year,” Schomer says, “Die-hards on this board are forever hopeful.”