Freshman Forum’s third annual Hoopcoming — similar to Homecoming in the fall, except centered around the basketball season — was held Monday, Feb. 20, and Thursday, Feb. 16, for the women’s and men’s games, respectively.
Justin Mischeler, a senior marketing major from Tallahassee, Florida, was crowned Hoopcoming king at the Troy Men’s basketball game on Monday, Feb. 20. He was the Alpha Gamma Delta fraternity’s nominee, and therefore, all the funds raised throughout the week will be donated to the Backpack for Kids Foundation.
Freshman Forum Director Gus McKenzie, a sophomore communication major from Monroeville, said that Freshman Forum coordinated the event with athletics.
“We do a lot of collaboration with athletics, working out the game time, logistics and which game would work best,” McKenzie said. “They actually write the script for the game – talking about the breaks and what they say during the breaks.”
McKenzie said that any campus sponsored organization can nominate a Hoopcoming king candidate, and that the candidate can represent a philanthropy of their choice. He said multiple people can represent the same philanthropy.
McKenzie discussed how a candidate becomes king.
“It’s a winner-take-all type event,” McKenzie said. “Each of the guys that are running for Hoopcoming king choose a philanthropy, and the one (candidate) that has the most money combined with the most shares from their individual picture on our Facebook page, they (the candidate) get all the money (raised) toward their philanthropy.”
McKenzie said that the money donated to each candidate accounts for 60 percent of the total and Facebook shares accounts for 40 percent.
During half time, there were events for the candidates to participate in, including a relay race for a $100 book scholarship
Ian Henderson, a freshman marketing major from Eufala, said this was his first Hoopcoming and thought it needed to be more inclusive.
“It’s fine,” Henderson said. “They really need to involve more people.”
Amber Pugh, a sophomore athletic training major from Birmingham, said that she enjoyed the event.
“It definitely made my Monday better,” Pugh said.
McKenzie said he hopes that Hoopcoming becomes as “big” as Homecoming.
“Homecoming is huge,” Mckenzie said. “People come back for homecoming.
“We hope, eventually, Hoopcoming is that big, to where people come back and support our basketball team.”