Ole Miss Cardinal Club makes a comeback

Posted on Sep 30 2016 - 8:01am by Samantha Whittle

The Cardinal Club has dated back to Ole Miss history since the 1930s and has been on and off campus, but new members are trying to foster school spirit.

The club is a branch of the Associated Student Body that allows students to become more involved with different sports and promote school spirit at the university.

Current President Payton Klatt said he took over this school year because he wanted to improve the connection between the student body and lesser-known sports.

“I think it is important to have mediation between the athletic office and the student body,” Klatt said.

Rather than hosting events, members of the club will be recruited by the athletic office to staff sporting events.

Klatt is trying to plan a Rebel Road Trip to the football game against Vanderbilt University on Nov. 19 in Nashville, Tennessee. The trip will give availability to students who would not normally go to away games.

“A lot of people hesitate to go to away games for multiple reasons, so we are trying to make it inclusive for them,” Klatt said. “It gives you a group of friends to go with, a place to stay, a way to get there and, of course, your ticket.”

Freshman accounting major Stephanie Green said the club offers ways to get more involved with both the student body and with Ole Miss athletics. Green said Cardinal Club gave her a chance to impact both groups in a positive way.

“In this club, I hope to help increase school support for all Ole Miss sports teams,” Green said. “[I hope] to just be a part of making all game days the best they can be, whether that’s setting things up ahead of time or just bringing a little extra excitement to the event.”

Senior finance major Trenton O’Malley is a member of the club. O’Malley had been a fan of the University of Alabama for the majority of his life but turned into a Rebel after enrolling at Ole Miss.

Due to his love of sports, O’Malley was automatically interested in joining the Cardinal Club.  

“Our athletic program took me from being a casual fan of two schools to a dedicated, lifelong fanatic of the one school I can now call home,” O’Malley said. “I want to do something to help another student find a way to care as much about their new home as I do, and I think Cardinal Club is the best way for me to do that.”

The club is named from the first official colors of the university, true navy and cardinal red. In 1893, the team colors changed the football colors to the navy blue of Yale and the crimson of Harvard, colors that were later adopted overall by the university. 

It has made its mark on students’ lives as well as university history.

The 1936-38 club members donated a lantern statue to the university, which sits near the circle and George Peabody building. This lantern is a dedication to the university with a simple plaque telling the club members of that time.