Yesterday, the New York Post reported on a NFL program where unruly fans who are ejected from stadium will now be required to complete an online course costing, in most cases, $75, to return to the stadium. The program got underway at MetLife Stadium with Danny DeLorenzi, stadium security and safety services director, according to this earlier article from Sports Business Journal.
DeLorenzi’s “anti-knucklehead” unit roams the stadium undercover looking for troublemakers. He also came up with the idea for completion of a course before an ejected fan can return for future games. As proof that it pays to be well-placed on Google, he found Dr. Ari Novick, a licensed psychotherapist specializing in anger management and alcohol awareness. Novick had this comment on his website:
“Often the spectators who become violent about others who don’t support their team is because they have over identified or objectified with the team in an unhealthy way. I’m almost thinking the professional sports motto in general should be something like “Like us, but don’t love us”. Liking a team is much easier and doesn’t come with all the emotional baggage that love has.”
You can say that again. Of course, fans who merely like teams don’t pack out stadiums as much, and devote not only the game time but four hours before drinking and cooking in the parking lot and buying $10 beers.
Novick and DeLorenzi worked together to design a course of questions for offenders to complete. Entering this season, it is now “best practices” for the NFL stadiums, and the majority will use it in some form.
The test, though, isn’t exactly grueling. Individuals who were kicked out for rude behavior and drunkenness need to merely be able to figure out how to answer true/false questions about whether rude behavior and drunkenness is appropriate. The Post includes some sample questions:
TRUE/FALSE: Behaving badly towards other fans, such as fighting, swearing or threatening them, is OK as long as they deserve it.
TRUE/FALSE: Every fan has a right to like any team they wish. Using abuse language towards fans who support teams you don’t like will not be tolerated.
(I’m assuming several of our commenters have already had to take this exam, so let us know some of the other fun questions in the comment section. If you still need to register, here is the link)
[photo via Getty]