A guide to UConn sports traditions, from Rentschler to First Night

Members of the UConn Goal Patrol chant during a UConn soccer game at Joseph J. Morrone Stadium. (File Photo/The Daily Campus)

Very few schools have as many athletic traditions as UConn. With championship-caliber programs comes a loyal fan base that gets behind both men’s and women’s programs as well as any school in the country. Let this article serve as an introduction to some of the most popular UConn sports traditions that every Husky can enjoy.

Goal Patrol

UConn boasts one of the best men’s soccer programs in the nation and their most die-hard fans gather for every game to form the UConn Goal Patrol. This group of raucous students stands behind the goal and cheers on the Huskies, while also doing their best to get in the opposing goalie's head. "Goal Patrol" meets outside of Gampel Pavilion before game time to collect free t-shirts, scarves, pizza and more, before walking over to Marrone Stadium for the game.

Tailgating at Rentschler Field

If you’re making the trip to Rentschler Field for a UConn football game make sure you show up early. Tailgating in the parking lot at Rentschler Field is always a good time for Husky fans of all ages. Bring a grill, a football, some friends and your favorite backyard games and have a blast.

Husky Run

The perfect event for anybody who loves both UConn basketball and running, the annual Husky Run is a 3.4-mile run around campus with the UConn basketball team. This marks the official end to preseason training and usually happens the day before First Night. Make sure to come this year to see if you can beat 7-footer Amida Brimah, the champion of last year’s event among UConn basketball players.

First Night

This is the official start to basketball season. Months of anticipation lead up to a night of festivities in Gampel Pavillion. The event used to feature a dunk contest and 3-point shootout, but changed last year to instead feature a Team Geno vs. Team Kevin scrimmage. It is great to see the men’s and women’s teams play on the same floor and celebrate UConn’s rich tradition as the “Basketball Capitol of the World.” 

Big Red Time

Nothing gets UConn basketball fans fired up like Big Red Time. When the men’s basketball team goes on a run and forces an opponent time out, every Husky’s favorite redheaded fan is shown on the Jumbotron to lead the UConn cheer. Big Red sits in the same seat for every game and always brings his A-game.

No matter what your favorite sport is, you will likely find some teams to really get behind at UConn. Take a break from studying and cheer on your favorite teams with your friends.


Aaron Esposito is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at aaron.esposito@uconn.edu.