For the Bacon’s entertainment crew, more famously known as the Sizzle Squad, it’s important to give fans a different experience than one they can get while sitting right at home.
“These days, fans don’t just come to watch the sport because you can do that from TV,” said Savannah Simpson, the lead intern for marketing and entertainment. “They come to be there in the stands, so when there’s nothing going on in the field, there’s always something going on with getting people involved so that they feel like they are a part of the game, and they are coming for the experience rather than just watching the sport.”
With plenty of games throughout the season, the Sizzle Squad keeps its best skits and scripts for weekend and rivalry games.
“We have a list of games we have done over the past few years, and we know what works,” said Ty Van Duyn, marketing and digital media manager. “We call it our A scripts, B scripts. We know what the best games are. We know the ones that may not be our best, but ones we still want to do sometimes. And if we have anything new, we’d like to try it on a weekday game and see how it works. If it goes well, we’ll bring it out to a weekend game, we got a nice full sold-out crowd, and the crowd usually loves it. We’ve had a lot of good skits this year.”
With COVID-19 affecting fans’ willingness to participate in hands-on entertainment over the last two years, this season has brought a revamped energy.
“Our fan engagement has gone up so much since last year when I was here. I started last year as an intern, and we would do stuff; some people would get into it, but it was never the whole crowd. And I think this year really showed with two of them. We did a stadium sing-off, and it was just echoing throughout the whole stadium; I was like, that sounds awesome,” said Van Duyn. “And then we started doing a congo line. We did our first one this year on a Thursday night game which usually isn’t a big one for us. When we finished our congo line at the start, we were walking out of the seating bowl; I turned around, and on the opposite side of the seating bowl, people were still filing into it, so it’s awesome seeing the fans engage for it and it’s really rewarding for us as well.”
And fans of all ages, if you want to get involved, the Sizzle Squad has one piece of advice for you.
“Come out and see us. If you haven’t seen any of our skits, you should. If you want to participate in them, find one of us in the blue polos or the Sizzle Squad shirts, we would love to get you in a skit. And if you want a pie in the face, just let us know. We’ll make that happen.”