2B Wednesday, October 5, 2011 // The Statement
I Wednesday, October S 01 / Te taemn
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random student interview by kaitlin williams
Welcome to the randomstu-
dent interview, where we
ask complete strangers to
validate their lives.
There's a lot of pressure on me
for this to be funny...
Yeah. So first off, do you think
Already? You don't even need to
hear the rest of the interview?
Yeah. You're a very animated char-
So I'm not real. I'm an animated
character. What would the name
of my show be?
Your animated show ... hmm ... have
you ever heard of "The Ugly Truth?"
It's a show about the ugly truth of
what men usually find in a relation-
Oh OK, wasn't that an awful
movie with Katherine Heigl and
They're not animated. So how do
I feel like you'd be directing another
woman's perspective on that.
Oh, OK. And you got all that from
the beginning of the interview?
So, what's your favorite coffee
I like "Crammin' Caramel" from
(Bert's Cafe in) the Ugli.
OK, what's in that, other than a
shit-ton of caffeine?
(Laughs) Yeah, that's the important
part. There's caramel, white choco-
late, milk. It's not really healthy, but
that kind of stuff.
So what does that cost you?
No, it costs I think it's three. It's
totally worth it.
Yeah that's really cheap. Who
needs food when you can get
something like that?
So, it's warmtoday. Shocker. How
do you feel about sunbathing in
the Diag? Is it appropriate to sun-
bathe in this weather?
Know what? I wouldn't put it past
some students here. I wouldn't.
There's going to be someone.
Where are you from originally?
20 minutes away.
Oh, so are you feeling a bit regret-
ful about staying in Michigan for
No, I love Michigan. And I love my
OK, but if you could, hypotheti-
cally, move your entire family,
where would you go?
Where in Europe? Europe is pret-
I think maybe, maybe France. I feel
like that's a sexy country.
It's sexy? Like how? Is it just the
Do you know any French?
Yeah, I know some. I have a couple
of friends from France.
Are you happy about the trees
Yeah. My mom says, "Tree alert," so
whenever I see a tree I'll say, "Tree
alert!" And I'll be by myself under a
OK, that's great. Do you get
strange looks when you are doing
Yeah, I do.
Do you ever worry about the
squirrels attacking you? I'm a
little afraid of the squirrels here.
They're a bit too up-close-and-per-
sonal for me.
What do you think about hunt-
Hunting. I think it's gross. I don't
think people should hunt.
Are you avegetarian?
No? Then, if you had to, what
would you do to survive? Let's
say I dropped you in the Upper
Peninsula and you had to fend for
I feel like I would talk to the animals
first, tell them I was sorry, and then
I'd kill them.
Don't you think that would scare
Quietly. Well, hopefully it would
scare them off so I wouldn't have to
So you'd have to subsist on ber-
ries and twigs?
Yeah. Besides I don't really have
time between Ugli sessions to go out
and shoot deer.
How did your library session just
It went well. I just went in and got
a water. I have class, and I forgot a
Well I hope I'm not making you
late. Are you late for class?
Oh, no. I actually have a break.
Well if you are late it'd be a good
excuse to say you were doing a
random student interview.
Tell your professor it was my
fault. I'm famous, you know.
- Melanie is an LSA freshman.
conditions, she's often had to travel alone
because her partners backed out at the last
But Day has never once considered cancel-
ing a trip.
"There have been several times where
I've gone, 'Eh, this is not going to be fun,' but
there was never a doubt whether I was going
to go," she said confidently.
These days, she still greets the team on the
road at their hotel. And while all she gets is
a "hug and a hi," she fondly remembers the
days she stayed up late in hotel lobbies, play-
ing cards or backgammon with the players.
She considers herself close friends with
many former players and coaches, including
former men's basketball coach Steve Fisher
and former football star Jarrett Irons.
There was also the day when former
men's basketball coach Bill Frieder called
"He called me in one day and asked if I
would mind sitting in the first row behind
the bench because he needed someone that
would make some noise and said that the
guys wanted me to sit there," she recalled.
For nearly every game since, Day has
sat or stood with the Maize Rage, behind
Day's attendance isn't perfect, but she's as
close as they come.
The man behind the mask never miss-
es a chance to watch his maize-and-blue
adorned heroes on the field, ice or court. But
to some on that ice, Jeff Holzhausen is their
The man forever known as the original
"SuperFan" considers himself just a fan, but
you'd be hard pressed to find many who've
helped the Wolverines in the way Holzhau-
"I've had parents of (hockey) players come
up to me and say, 'Hey, you're one of the rea-
sons my kid came to Michigan,'" Holzhau-
sen said. "That happened again at the Frozen
Four this past year.
"That means the world to me. It's where
you really feel like the 12th man and you're
really having an impact on the continued
excellence of Michigan athletics."
Holzhausen, or 'Holz,' graduated from
Michigan in 1996 and has since returned for
two master's degrees. The 37 year old lives
in nearby Chelsea, where he was raised as a
For every home game on Saturdays, Hol-
zhausen's dad would blare tracks of former
Michigan announcer Bob Ufer to wake up
his kids before the family headed to Ann
Arbor to tailgate.
His first time being a crowd favorite came
as his high school mascot- the Chelsea Bull-
dog. But that was just the beginning.
Midway through his freshman year at the
University, a cheerleader at a football game
tabbed him as "SuperFan" because of his
unique costume: a Michigan flag as a cape, a
megaphone and his signature accessory - a
winged-helmet and maize-and-blue Batman
"I've always been a big Batman fan," Hol-
zhausen said, laughing. "I love the look of it,
and it fit right in with the SuperFan, super-
hero design. It's been with me ever since."
He added a new piece to his outfit at Yost
Ice Arena: a cowbell. Today, seeing cowbells
at a Michigan sporting event doesn't draw
any double takes, but 20 years ago they were
That all changed with Holzhausen who,
along with two friends, introduced the cow-
bell to Wolverine fans at Yost. The SuperFan
then brought the instrument and its "go blue"
cheer to Crisler Arena and the Big House.
He was also the first to dance to the Bluse
Brothers' "Can't Turn You Loose" at Yost,
where you can still find him dancing in his
blue Grand Poobah, or water buffalo, hat.
Even the NCAA has taken notice of Hol-
zhausen. His picture is part of a longtime
exhibit in the College Football Hall of Fame,
and many of the infamous curse-filled chants
at hockey games - which also caught the
NCAA's attention - have Holzhausen and
his pals written all over them.
"I think you try wherever you go to leave
the place better than what it was when you
got there," Holzhausen said. "College foot-
ball and college sports are all about tradition,
and I had a hand in starting a few."
Foam fingers hang in his room - a con-
stant reminder that Michigan is number one.
Not that Patrick Brown needs it.
Brown, a senior in the School of Kinesiol-
ogy, is this year's SuperFan - SuperFan XI.
"If you would've asked anyone, like my
parents, they'd say I've been a Michigan
SuperFan since I was 5 years old," Brown
said. "So to be distinguished as someone like
that, it shows my dedication to the school
and the sports."
Today, the Michigan SuperFan is a posi-
tion elected by the members of Maize Rage
who choose the most diehard upperclassman
fan on campus.
"To be the SuperFan, you have to go above
and beyond your typical fan," Brown said.
"I definitely didn't get into the Maize Rage
to become the Superfan. I did it because I
love basketball. For my peers to decide that
for me, among everyone else in the Maize
Rage, it was very humbling. It was really
Brown joined the Maize Rage during his
sophomore year, when he became a sec-
tion leader in the student section at Crisler
Arena. You can find him in the front row
wearing his infamous maize-man morph
suit, which got him plenty of notoriety that
"If you asked the Maize Rage, they'd
say I'm a media whore," Brown laughed.
"They know me as 'CBS,' because there was
a game during my sophomore year against
UConn where (CBS) production manage-
ment took me on their bus and told me to go
crazy because they wanted to feature me as
the "super fan of the game."
"At every TV break, there was me going
crazy," he recalled. "They asked me to go
crazy all game."
The position comes with perks. Brown
was sent to the annual Big Ten Sportsman-
ship Conference by the University's Ath-
letic Department, which also gives him
front-row tickets to every football game.
Past SuperFans pay for Brown to attend
each away game and supply him with the
SuperFan uniform: a cape, cowbell and a
No. 11 football jersey - signifying his title
as Superfan XI.
Along with football and basketball
games, Brown can be found at hockey,
women's basketball, softball, baseball and
volleyball games and is always trying to
publicize the Maize Rage.
Brown's room is covered in Michigan
paraphernalia. Posters decorate the walls,
commemorating the Wolverines' national
"It's definitely a SuperFan-esque room,"
And then, there are those foam fingers.
Though they may say, "Michigan is No. 1,"
it's Brown who's the campus's current num-
ber one fan.
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