Column: Can you top this?

By BobLa Gesse

Ann Arbor, Mich – The Orange Krush finally went too far.

The “overrated” coming out of its collective mouth was directed to the Illinois basketball team.

But Youth Action had no other choice.


So was Michigan when 110 Orange Krush members infiltrated Crisler Arena as a group of prospective students from Chicago.

Pure genius.

Diabolical pranks among college basketball student cheering sections is becoming vogue.

And the future Bam Margera’s and Johnny Knoxville’s can thank the Orange Krush.

Youth Action had its picture taken with Michigan Coach Tommy Amaker before the game. What if Amaker picked up on the prank?

There was no way Amaker could when some of the Krush took the time to learn the Michigan school song so people would think they were from Ann Arbor.

I want to see Maryland fans sitting in Cameron singing with the Crazies.

These pranks are more than just 20-year-old kids’ best impressions of Jackass. They require skill, thought and preparation close to that of a CIA tactical team.

The Krush ordered their tickets in October.

And when Michigan wouldn’t let fans from Champaign order tickets for a Michigan game, the Krush improvised.

Or morphed.

They turned from rabid Illinois fans into Youth Action, an innocent enough bunch of kids from Chicago. They just want to see the campus – then Krush it.

Everyone knew of Youth Action before the game.

An usher asked me why I was interviewing fans. I told him I was writing on Youth Action.

He knew who they were. “Those kids from Chicago, right?” he said.

He had no idea what was coming.

Neither did the Michigan student section.

They followed Youth America’s lead in several cheers before the game. Most didn’t notice the orange T-shirts, which were visible underneath their black T-shirts.

Nor did they notice the orange shoes. Or the posters in blue and orange ink.

Last year the Krush snuck into Carver-Hawkeye Arena in black T-shirts to blend in. Before tipoff, they ripped off their Hawkeye colors to show their true orange and blue love.

Later in the year the Krush filled up Mackey Arena in Purdue.

Now colleges are following the Krush’s lead.

Maryland recently infiltrated the Cameron Crazies. Terrapin students convinced Duke that Maryland forward Nik Caner-Medley’s girlfriend, named Myra, is nicknamed Piggy.

The Crazies hounded Caner-Medley with chants of “Myra Piggy”

Amazing how it sounds exactly like Myron Piggie, a Duke booster involved in the Corey Maggette recruiting scandal.

Duke never caught on. And ended up with mud on its face.

Was it funny? Yes.

The best? No. The Maryland fan was never in harm’s way.

Part of the reward is the risk of being caught. Plus Maryland’s prank doesn’t require acting.

Not too many fans would pretend to be a fan of another school.

Sneaking into opponent’s arenas is now becoming the trademark of the Krush. And it is going to be tough to keep topping themselves.

But the Krush is ready. And they have one more place they want to infiltrate this year.

The Big Ten has been warned.