The University of Cincinnati Basketball team is proud of its rich history of being a national contender in the NCAA Division I ranks. The Bearcats have won the D1 National championship twice ('61, '62) and have made more than 25 appearances in the NCAA tournament. The Bearcats' storied accomplishments netted them an honorable mention in Bleacher Report's "College Basketball's 10 Greatest Programs of All Time," among other accolades. On top of that staggering history, Fifth Third Arena is a madhouse on almost any given gameday, having previously been described as one of the most hostile arenas in the nation. With the fans at their back, Coach Mick Cronin's squad always shows up to play an exciting match.
- Bring something! Homemade signs, "big heads," or costumes help to distract opposing players and make you look cool!
- Be early! Coach Cronin delivers Donatos Pizza to the student section 45 minutes before the game! Take this opportunity to shake his hand and tell him we've got the boys' back!
- When you find your seat, read the the News Record (the UC student run newspaper) that should be sitting there! It's got great campus news! 10 minutes before the game, make sure you rip up the paper into small pieces!
- Read "The Dirt!" RallyCats prepares an info sheet that has "Student Section 101" on one side and "The Dirt" on the other. Student Section 101 has tips that make sure everyone knows what's going on and what cheers we do, while The Dirt includes funny information about the opposing teams players, their social media accounts, and more!
- When the announcer is reading off the opposing team's players names we shout something different:
- Who's he?
- Who cares?
- So what?
- Big deal!
- GO HOME!
During the game, the student section has a variety of Basketball focused chants including:
- When the Bearcats score their first field goal (free throws aren't included) the entire student section throws their torn up News Records in the air! This tradition dates back to at least 1996, and has been featured in the News Record (online, thankfully!).
- When a Bearcat is stepping forward to take a free throw, be quiet!
- When the official passes the ball to the Bearcat, on the ball's bounce shout as loud as you can "Get 'em up cats!" and put your right hand in the air extending your pointer finger to the ceiling (like you're holding up the number one).
- If the shot is made, make a dunking motion, bring your hand down in a fist and pound your chest twice, then put your finger back up.
- If there is a second or third shot, do the same thing, but pound your chest and "salute" the number of free throws that the player makes.
- If an opposing player misses the basket, rim, and backboard entirely on a shot we chant "Airball, airball..." whenever they have the ball until that player scores again.
- When an opposing player commits a foul, shout "You, you, you, you, you, you, you, you, ahhhhhhh you, SUCK!"
- When an opposing player steps up to take a free throw point shot, the RallyCats call out what direction the student section will have their arms, then they move them the opposite way just before they player takes their shot. For example, you hear from the front row "Left!" so you put your arms up at a left angle while wiggling your fingers, then just before the shot you quickly wave our arms over to the right in hopes of making the player miss the shot.
- If the student section starts a "Bullshit" chant, the RallyCats hold up a Chicago Bulls shirt and chant "Bulls-shirt, Bulls-shirt..."
- The "I Believe" chant, a call and answer style chant popularized in college basketball by Utah State University.
- When an opposing player fouls out we sing "Na Na Na Na Hey Hey-ey Goodbye" and then "Left-Right" the player to the bench. In other words, when the player takes a left step we shout "left!" and when they take a right step we shout "right!" until they reach the bench, at which point we shout "sit - down!"
- For both halves of play, when the announcer says "1 minute remaining" the student section replies with "and Xavier still sucks!"
Bearcats fans ALWAYS stay to the end... and it's not over until the Alma Mater is sung!! If the 'Cats win, we sing "Cheer Cincinnati," then the Alma Mater. If we lose, we only sing the Alma Mater.