At the University of Michigan, game day Saturdays are debatably the most important day of the week. If the team wins, you win, which means the following 24 hours are a celebration; if the team loses, the following 24 hours are full of frustrated tears and sleep. For those that are not actually into the game itself, but rather the social parties and tailgates, your focus becomes about making those hours before the game the best. With that being said, some say when you look good, you feel good; therefore, what is the proper attire for game days?
Whether you are male, female, in a sorority, fraternity, on the chess team, or just doing your own thing in the library, fall Saturdays are the one day that the entire student body comes together and unanimously can agree on one thing, go blue. That being said, there exists a campus wide “unofficial” schedule: wake up at 6 am, dress in your best University of Michigan attire, and cheer on the football team that in one way or another, has contributed to everyone’s overall experience at UM.
On game day, it is almost impossible to look ridiculous- that is, of course, unless you are not wearing maize and blue- because if that is the case, you may be in for a not-so-pleasant-experience and we wish you the very best of luck.
People go from mild to extreme on game days and I think it’s safe to say that the more extreme you are- the better. This is the one day that no one will look at you strangely if you are wearing pigtails on the top of your head with pom-poms coming out of them or if you have a shirt on as a dress, a fanny pack around your waist, or body paint covering you from head to toe- because in reality all of that is unashamedly normal.
For game days, being ridiculous and looking the part is half of the appeal. If you are in a sorority: fanny packs, snap backs, shirt-dresses, and bows are a common necessity. In a fraternity? Two options are to be had: a jersey or body paint- and if the body paint is the outfit of choice typically you’ll see less artful pieces and more just smears of maize and blue paint – but hey, A for effort.
Another unique outfit option is the classic maize and blue striped overalls. Those who pull these off are in one of the most spirited and comfortable game day outfits. Some choose to go one-strapped-overall- or two but either way they offer a laughably great apparel option.
According to my experience at UM, on game days, the apparel and “pre-games” mean as much as the football game to the majority of the student body. Arriving to the game on time for kickoff offers a poor showing of students. Yet, halfway through the first quarter the student crowd shows up and the pom-poms, Mohawks, and body paint- along with high-spirited fans- are more than apparent. You cannot beat the outrageousness of the apparel at UM and you probably can’t out-rage us beforehand either.
About: Madelaine Moeke
My name is Madelaine Moeke and I am a Junior at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. I am currently enrolled in the Sport Management program and am specifically interested in game-day operations within the professional leagues. Being involved in an industry that has both global importance and relevance is a compelling objective, and one of which I hope to further explore.