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Nut House craze pumps up, packs in crowd

The bleachers shook and the gym filled with noise as the cheers of the Nuthouse reached their peak. Cheered on by their nutty fans, the boys’ basketball team went on to defeat Mendota, 64-44, to clinch a tie for the West Sierra League title on Feb. 12.

Started in the early 90s by Scott Callisch, then varsity basketball coach, the Nuthouse has become a time-honored campus tradition. It is composed of the craziest and most ardent sports fans, called Nuts, who cheer on their team with passion. Administrators encourage the Nuthouse as a way for students to vent their team spirit in a positive way.

“The Nuthouse allows FC fans to go crazy,” student leadership adviser Christopher Schultz said. “Its an outlet for them. We give them the freedom to be Nuts.”

In the years before the Nuthouse existed, there was no student section at basketball games. Callisch decided that he wanted one to cheer his team on. He collaborated with fellow teachers on a name, and the Nuthouse was born.

“The Nuthouse started off as a joke,” Callisch said. “However, it got so popular that we started to charge money to be in the Nuthouse. You paid five dollars, and you got a Nut Pass, which lasted all year.”

To boost student participation, there were Nuthouse sponsored dress-up days. The themes ranged from car accident victim, to doctor in the House, to world conqueror day.

“Everyone would go nutty,” Eunie McEntee, teacher and Nuthouse collaborator, said. “The Nuthouse really picked up when Carlos Moran, ’01, came (Carina’s brother). He got everyone pumped-up at the games.”

The Nuthouse has been markedly quieter this year compared to past years, and many attribute this fact to the large size of the new gym. The close, cozy atmosphere the old gym offered has been replaced by the gaping spaces of the new gym.

“In the old gym, 15 people cheering sounded like 500,” Schultz said. “Now, in the new gym, 500 sounds like 15. Since the gym is so huge, it lessens the impact of the cheering.”

Others attribute the quieter Nuthouse to the lack of leadership in the Nuthouse.

“The Nuthouse does not seem as loud as last year,” Hillary Kell, ’05, said. “I think its because the usual Nuthouse leaders are all playing on the basketball team, but I still think the Nuthouse has been good this year. It is good times!”

Despite the silence trend in the Nuthouse, many students still participate, and they enjoy the time they spend as Nuts.

“I love being in the Nuthouse,” Jamie Meadows, 03, said. “My favorite part is cheering on the varsity basketball team with my friends. We made up cheers for all the members of the team, like ?Sam Babcock (’02) what a shock!’ or ?Jon Steele (’03); he’s for real!’ My favorite though is ?Josh Justin (’03) sure ain’t rustin’!”

The next Nuthouse event will be a varsity boys home game. However, the date for their first playoff game has yet to be announced. Check the announcements for date and time.

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