Hundreds of students, coaches and athletes gathered at Pease Auditorium as a community Tuesday night for Jock Jamz, which was entertained by ten varsity athletic teams as they showed off their dancing and lip synching skills.
Women’s Track and Field/Cross-Country, Women’s Swimming, Wrestling, Rowing, Women’s Soccer, Men’s Swimming, Softball, Baseball, Gymnastics and Cheerleading all took to the stage to entertain and put smiles on the faces of the audience members.
Student-Athlete Advisory Council President and Eastern Michigan University swimmer Dan Proctor realized one of his goals were fulfilled as the event showed that student-athletes are like any other college kids.
“I think this really showcases that athletes are just like anybody else on campus,” Proctor said. “There were a lot of faces here that weren’t athletes and I think seeing them here is a good start to uniting everyone as one.”
Over $900 was raised to help Ypsilanti Community Foundation Schools.
Foundation president Hank McQueen also sees this as an outstanding step forward in bringing the area closer together.
“It’s a two-way thing and I think it is important for older and younger people to be on the same page,” McQueen said. “It should not be a one-way thing in which college students and middle-aged adults are doing different things.”
The most entertaining moment of the night came from infielder Nick Rotola when in a playful manner, failed to give judge and athletic director Heather Lyke a rose while lip synching to the Backstreet Boys’ song, “I Want It That Way”.
However, Lyke mentioned after the performance in a joking manner, “I really hope you guys play baseball better than you dance.”
The crowd fed off the joke and simultaneously laughed as one.
Lyke, along with Sports Performance Coach Randy Young, Student Body President Desmond Miller and Eastern Echo Managing Editor Al Willman judged the event.
Emcee Bilal Saeed kept the crowd entertained by having raffle ticket giveaways in between performances and reading tweets from selected audience members.
After two and a half hours of spectacular performances, the judges selected the top three teams.
Wrestling finished in third place to the dismay of some team members after performing a medley that included a reenactment of the Robin Thicke/Miley Cyrus dance from the Music Television Video Music Awards.
Softball placed second after using a medley of various sports drills in an eight-minute long performance.
However, men’s swimming would claim the trophy and title of Jock Jamz champions after wooing most of the crowd with a medley, which ended with every member wearing Speedo swim trunks.
Even with the win, swimmer Chris Cutter puts his teammates before himself.
“It was every single guy’s idea in the group to come up with the winning routine,” Cutter said. “We all managed to fit our ideas in and it worked.”
In all of the fun and glory, Proctor wants to get more of the community involved on campus when it comes to giving back.
“Our overarching goal is getting people on campus and more of the Ypsilanti area involved,” Proctor said. “Very soon, we want to see everyone at the athletic events as one community united.”
Follow Eugene Evans on Twitter @GenoSportsguy.
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