Life at Taylor

For Freshmen

How to Prepare for Silent Night

By: Will Severns and Chris Yingling

You’ve seen the coverage on ESPN and the videos from past years on YouTube. You’ve watched Taylor students dramatically freak out at the scoring of the 10th point. You’ve gawked at the crazy costumes that students wear.

But are you ready to experience your first Silent Night?

Silent Night has been a Taylor tradition for over 20 years and now it’s your turn to be a part of history. However, it’s a bit daunting to attend your first Silent Night; all the upperclassmen are watching you and how you respect the tradition.

How are you going to stand out for Silent Night?

Prepare Your Costume

The clothes that you wear to Silent Night may be the single most important decision that you’ll make all year. Everyone who’s someone is wearing more than just jeans and a t-shirt to Silent Night. Make yourself standout with a few easy steps:

• Go all out: Don’t just slap on something mediocrely funny. If you want to be funny, make your costume hilarious.

• Be conservative: No one likes the guys that wear short shorts or girls that show a bit too much. Find something wacky that doesn’t avert gazes.

• Create a theme: Floors and wings love to go in groups to Silent Night. Create a theme for your wing and dress accordingly. Roommate pairs always work great for a “Noah’s Ark” interpretation.

• Wear breathable clothing: Don’t forget that Odle Arena gets really hot with all those people packed in. Air conditioning or not, you will be sweating by the end of Silent Night. Might want to leave that 80 lb. duck costume at home.

Know The Game

Possibly the most embarrassing thing you could do at Silent Night is scream during the silent first 10 points. Don’t be that guy, know the Silent Night rules:

• The first nine Taylor points are dead silent. If you can’t hear the squeak of the shoes, it’s not quiet enough in Odle. Shots are celebrated using a silent wave. Observe students around you and act accordingly.

• At point 10, scream like you’ve never screamed before. Make your voice the loudest in the arena and relinquish all care of your eardrums and vocal chords. Everyone around you will be doing the exact same thing.

• After Taylor scores the 10th point and chaos ensues, head coach Josh Andrews will take a timeout. Once you are sure he has called the timeout, storming the court is acceptable. Be as crazy as you can for a few minutes while the timeout occurs before returning to your previous position.

• Watch the rest of the game and cheer when appropriate, but get ready for the finale. Huddle up with your closest buddies or the strangers next to you and sing “Silent Night” (the Christmas carol) as the team concludes the game. Let the opposing team wallow in the fact that their team is likely losing and feel good about singing the song to close them out.

Be Smart, Get Ready For The Long Haul

Silent Night is not simply an hour-long study break; it is an all-evening consuming activity that will likely have you tied up from the moment you stand in line to get in. Take a few precautionary steps to ensure you have the best time possible:

• Get to Silent Night early to ensure that you get a good seat. Doors open for the game at 5:00 p.m. but it may be best to be in line at 4:00.
• It’s a very long night of waiting and dancing and you’ll never want to leave your seat at any point in the evening. Go to the bathroom as early as you can and don’t drink too much water that day. You may find yourself struggling by the second half.
• Bring snacks with you to wait in line. You may be skipping the entire dinner period at the Dining Commons, so it might be a good idea to grab Subway or a few granola bars before the game to munch on. You might try to go out to eat after the game but beware: every other Taylor student will be out at McDonald’s or Taco Bell as well. Eat after the game at your own discretion.

Athletics vs. Wing relationships

By: Gracie Fairfax and Kehlay Dunah

As a freshman, you arrive at your residence hall during welcome weekend. You’re introduced to new faces with hopes of making new friends.

If you’re an athlete, you’re introduced to your team pretty early on – sometimes before school begins.

Once everyone arrives on campus, you begin making all kinds of friends both on and off your wing. Then your sport season begins, practice and school work start picking up, and all of a sudden you find yourself trying to balance a social life with athletic commitments.

Athletics make wing involvement pretty tricky.

“When you come in, you want to do everything,” said Timmy Miller, a senior four-year soccer player at Taylor. “You don’t even think about balancing. Then after a month or so, you have to think about prioritizing. For me, however, soccer always came first.”

Taylor University takes pride in its close-knit community. Many programmed events allow students to interact and build relationships. Besides all-campus events, residence halls have traditional wing events such as wing worship, wing retreats, bro/sis events, pick-a-dates, and so much more.

“There came a time when I realized there are some things I just couldn’t do” Miller said.

Athletics may interfere with some wing events, but fear not – more than likely, you’ll be placed on a wing with other athletes. “A few other soccer players lived on my wing,” Miller said. “My wing was always aware of that, and didn’t single us out.

Miller didn’t feel separated from his wing. The relationship he had with his wing looked different than other students’. “There is plenty of time in the off season to hang out with guys,” Miller said. “Everyone was pretty supportive and showed up at our games.”

Miller’s advice for incoming athletes is:
1. Don’t be too hard on yourself. There are expectations that you put on yourself and you think people put on you,
2. Don’t over-complicate things. Sometimes the biggest thing you can do is just walk into someone’s room and say hi. You don’t have to be around 24/7.
3. Be ready to learn. Athletics played a positive role in my life. Coach has a high standard of excellence. That’s all very difficult to achieve, but you gain a lot in the process.