Phi Delts, Phi Mu pull off Tug wins

Lindsey Thurman

Thick, wet mud covered the ground and cloudy skies cast a gloomy shadow over the crowd, but it wasn’t enough to keep Greek spirit down.

Western’s Greek community united as brothers and sisters and proudly waved the flags of their organizations Friday afternoon at the University Farm as they competed in Tug, one of the biggest, and messiest events of Greek Week.

“Our team has worked hard, and we’ve pulled in worse conditions before,” said Phi Mu sorority member and third-year tugger Sarah Long, a junior from Arlington, Tenn. “I’m more excited than ever about this year’s tug.”

Emotions ran high for the 15 teams as the brackets narrowed. The Phi Delta Theta and Phi Mu teams won the competition.

“Tug really has a more advanced technique than a simple game of tug-of-war,” said Bowling Green senior Heath Crawford, the Phi Delt coach.

Two teams compete head-to-head by pulling opposite ends of a rope three inches thick for fraternities, two and a half inches thick for sororities.

The teams are given five minutes to man their positions and kick footholds into the ground, often showering the crowd with splatters of mud.

The tug itself lasts three minutes and a winner is determined based on which team’s side the central bandana is on when the clock stops.

“There are a lot of distractions, but you have to stay focused,” Crawford said. “Our team knows what they have to do they just have to get it done.”

The Phi Mus said their technique was to pull with all their might and Sigma Phi Epsilon’s team said it was about getting a good feel for the rope.

“I think it’s more adrenaline than anything when you actually get out there,” said Kappa Sigma member Brett Pitchford, a junior from Mt. Vernon, Ill.

Charley Pride, director of student activities and organizations, said that Tug has been a part of Greek tradition at Western for more than 35 years and that it was an outlet for Greeks to display pride, prestige and teamwork.

Alvaton senior Logan Felts, a member of Farmhouse and co-chairman of Tug, agreed.

“Tug is about bragging rights, but it brings the Greeks together as well,” Felts said.

The feeling was similar Greek-wide.

“All of the late practices and hard work that started weeks ago has finally paid off,” Long said. “It’s an unbelievable feeling.”

Reach Lindsey Thurman at [email protected]