Kendall’s Column: “Day-n-Nite” Tailgates

Kendall Hayes, Culture Columnist

During the months of December, January and February, it is a tradition that Villanovans head to Wells Fargo Center to watch Villanova’s men’s basketball team. A large part of the tradition occurs, not in the Wells Fargo Center, but right outside the stadium in its parking lot at 9a.m.

It is a strange experience to tailgate at 9a.m., because it means a departure from Villanova at 8:30a.m., and waking up around 7:30a.m. 

For those students who find it difficult to start the tailgating process at the humbling hours of 7a.m., this past Saturday was a nice change of pace. For the first time in years, the men’s basketball team had an 8p.m. start time at the Wells Fargo Center. 

We did not go to bed Friday evening with an alarm for 7a.m. Instead, we all got to sleep in and head over to Wells Fargo at the reasonable hour of 5p.m. An appropriate time, in my opinion, to begin the tailgating process. 

There was a definite difference between the night tailgate and day tailgates. For a day tailgate, a certain mindset has to be had. You take the night off before a morning tailgate and rest up for the mountain of a day that is ahead of you. But, as we all know, there is comfort in familiarity, and for Villanovans that comfort can be found at a 9a.m. tailgate. 

But, for those 21 and over, it is a fun change of pace to be able to stay after the game at XfinityLive during night hours instead of heading over to the NBC Sports Arena at a daunting 12:30p.m. 

The Villanovan asked Villanova students their thoughts on the change in tailgate time. 

Senior and fellow tailgate lover, Abigail Lukas, explained her thoughts on both tailgates. 

“Nothing beats a good day tailgate, in my opinion,” Lukas said. “Granted, everyone has a lot more energy at the night tailgates, and it was nice to do something different than our usual nights at Kelly’s.”

Villanova Sophomore Sofia Russo passionately expressed her opinions on both night and day tailgates. She was adamant that her heart lies with day tailgates, not night. 

“Don’t get me started on my dislike for the night tailgate,” Russo said. “The day tailgates go by so slow, but the night tailgate flashes by so fast. There’s traffic, cops ask to turn the music down, and you can’t find any of your friends. It’s not nearly as fun as tailgating in the morning.” 

“There’s nothing like starting your day with a morning tailgate,” she said. “Seeing everyone storm courts sets such a positive and exciting tone for the day. No one wants to be forced out of bed, but watching some basketball while spending time with some pals is what basketball and the whole Wells Fargo experience is about!”

Senior Elena Rouse had a similar view to Russo.

“I personally didn’t love the night tailgate as much as the daytime, but really it’s only because I am a grandma and don’t always appreciate late nights,” Rouse said. “However, I heard a lot of people thought it was very fun!”

Villanovans are passionate about the subject of tailgating. The overall consensus is that the night tailgate was a fun change, but, at the end of the day, there is nothing like waking up at 7a.m. for Villanova’s men’s basketball.