Colonial Army drops the ball

It’s been a disappointing season for many fans of the men’s basketball team. But for members of the Colonial Army, the team’s largest fan group, it’s also been a ripoff.

More than 100 students paid $15 for membership in the organization this fall – a fee that usually pays for barbecues, T-shirts and other events. But with the season complete, they have received almost nothing.

Colonial Army co-president Victor Danau told the Hatchet on Feb. 19 that he and co-president Becky Wilson “let the group down,” but intended a relaunch that would include a renewal of pregame cookouts and a delivery on the promise of shirts. Several members said this weekend, however, that none of that came to fruition during the season.

“We basically got nothing for the money we paid,” said senior Terry Mullan, a member since his freshman year. “I was unbelievably devastated at what the Colonial Army did this year.”

Danau said in an interview on Sunday that the T-shirts were not delivered because of a mix-up with Maryland Athletics, the vendor the group used to order them. The order was placed shortly after February’s Hatchet article, Danau said.

The group’s members also criticized Danau and Wilson for failing to attend games this semester, which Danau attributed to working weekends and a busy midweek schedule.

“The last time I’ve seen Victor in person was the BB&T (Classic),” said senior Chase Carpenter, referring to GW’s Dec. 7 game against Maryland. Danau and Wilson “didn’t even come to Senior Day.”

The Colonial Army’s shortcomings are made all the more disappointing, Mullan said, by the strong precedent set by past leaders such as 2005-2006 president Frank Dale. Mullan said in the past members were sent “countless e-mails” alerting them about upcoming games and member benefits.

“There was a lot of back and forth,” Mullan said of the dynamic between Colonial Army leadership and members during the 2005-2006 season. “This year, there was no communication at all.”

Danau said Colonial Army shirts could be picked up by members at the group’s Marvin Center office and that plans were in the works to make up for the lost season with a postseason brunch or luncheon event. T-shirts would be distributed at the event, Danau said, and both the men’s and women’s basketball teams would be invited in an effort to create a new tradition and “rebuild the Colonial Army brand.”

If the group is able to accomplish such plans, perhaps it will be able to redeem themselves in the eyes of its scorned members.

“I want to get something,” Mullan said. “I paid something for nothing basically.”

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