December 16, 2010
One of the most recognizable figures at a Colorado State basketball game shows up each night clad in a suit and tie rather than a jersey and high tops.
He is marching band graduate teaching assistant Joe Spina, otherwise known around the Colorado State campus as the school's "dancing band man."
Each time the Colorado State band plays Green Day's "Holiday" at a men's basketball home game, Spina performs a crazy dance, wildly swinging his arms, shaking his hips and even whipping his jacket or tie over his head. Over two seasons, the cheers and applause from Colorado State fans have grown to the point where the band makes sure to play the song at the final media timeout of the second half during each game.
"It's great because the fans just hear the tune start and they know what's coming," Spina said. "Everybody gets on their feet and we just all have a great time together. People have told me they've never heard Moby Arena so loud before."
Spina has only been at Colorado State for two years, but his outlandish dance routine dates back to his days as a high school student in New Jersey. With his school's team trailing by 21 points and the home crowd almost totally silent, Spina stood up in the bleachers as the rest of the band played and performed what has now become his trademark dance to get the fans back into the game.
"I will never say it was because of me, but the team ended up winning that game after being down three touchdowns," Spina said. "From then on, it became something the crowd seemed to expect, enjoy and look forward to."
Count Colorado State coach Tim Miles among those who enjoy Spina's act. Miles Tweeted a link to a YouTube clip of Spina on Thursday, adding "I LOVE this."
That positive feedback from Miles is important to Spina.
"It really means a lot that he likes it so much," Spina said. "We're all here for him. I'm so glad he likes what we do."