- The hype
- The blather
- The innocence soon to be lost
- Kids today are soft
Nah, I'm kidding, sorta. College ultimate has a lot going for it. In some ways it's a better sport than club ultimate, in that you have a fresh cast of characters each year, the players are less polished and so more prone to exciting greatness or disappointment, and they're not jaded by years and years of having to listen to the latest overpumped superstar who actually isn't that good.
I don't read the college sites (collegeulti and icultimate) too often, if at all, mostly because I'll never see any of these teams play, and I resolved this year to waste my time more productively. But the recent turmoil on rsd due to some critical comments at collegeulti reveals that we still have a way to go before we're really out there. (A similar turmoil ensued when Kenny D criticized the Ultimate History Book and some players.)
We're still an insular community that protects our own, even if they deserve it (rather, even if the criticism is correct) and even if they can protect themselves. Heckling from fans is ok, just as long as it's not too personal or too accurate. It's cruel but not unusual for fans of pro or college teams to make loud requests to remove certain players from the game for bad performance, but such action would (rightfully?) be considered out of line at an ultimate contest. Ultimate reporters rarely point the finger at players or even teams when they don't play well, and when they do name names, they too are regarded as uncool or harsh.