Last night during Kentucky’s bludgeoning of Texas A&M, Ashley Judd waged war on Chick-fil-A for its in-game promotion in Rupp Arena. The promotion, which I believe is called “Fowl Shot,” gives away a free chicken biscuit to fans at UK home games if a player from the opposing team misses two consecutive free throws. It’s an awesome promotion because: a) everyone loves free food; b) everyone loves Chick-fil-A; and c) everyone loves when an opponent fails to put the basketball into the cylinder.
But Ashley Judd is not a fan of the “Fowl Shot” and she made that very clear to her 280,000 Twitter followers last night, when A&M’s Robert Williams missed two at the stripe midway through the second half. Judd tweeted, “Your promotion for fans to cheer against kids attempting free throws is tacky. Please find another in game promotion.”
Your promotion for fans to cheer against kids attempting free throws is tacky. Please find another in game promotion. @ChickfilA
— ashley judd (@AshleyJudd) January 4, 2017
This is where she lost me. Aren’t we at games to cheer for our team and root against the opponent? Shouldn’t we make noise every time an opponent is at the line? Shouldn’t we cheer when they miss? I would run out there and block a shot myself if I could. I want the opponent to miss every shot. I want them to play terrible basketball. That’s the entire premise behind sports. One team wins, one team loses. We want our team to be the winner by scoring more points. So what’s wrong with getting loud when a player on the other team is at the foul line? Does she have a problem with people waving their arms in the end zones, behind the baskets? I don’t get it. Ashley, of all people, should want Rupp Arena to be loud at all times. What happened to our “super fan”? And would she be complaining about this if it were a tie game with under a minute to go? No. You want the opponent to miss. That’s the nature of the game.
As for the promotion, I think it is a brilliant idea and in-game feature because it encourages fans to get off their feet (and Lord knows Rupp’s fans need encouragement) and get some energy going in the arena in the second half. I also think it is a great promotion because chicken biscuits are delicious.
That being said, the people sending personal attacks to Ashley are way out of bounds. Her mentions got pretty brutal, although she seemed to take them in stride with comebacks of her own. Criticize her for forgetting how sports work, but keep it all within the playing field. She is still one of our favorites and one of Big Blue Nation’s most loyal fans.
Moving forward, I think we can use this very small controversy to come together and promote real change, change that actually matters. Maybe, just maybe, if we come together and make our voices heard, Chick-fil-A will finally open on Sundays. That’s the real issue here.