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The New York Times: Who Made That? The Wave

The New York Times: Who Made That? The Wave

The New York Times: Who Made That? The Wave

The New York Times Sunday Magazine profiled Spartan Athletics most famous fan in “The Innovation Issue.” ”Expanding on our weekly column that asks ‘Who made that?’ we explore the genius of everything from BuzzFeed and the Brannock Device to gay marriage and low-carb diets,” the magazine’s editors said. Here’s the piece on “Krazy” George Henderson by Susan Dominus, posted June 7, 2013: 

Throughout the ’70s, ‘‘Krazy’’ George Henderson, a rabid fan of San Jose State’s football team, regularly took it upon himself to rouse the students at home games. At his bidding, the first of three adjacent sections would stand, shout, ‘‘San!’’ then quickly sit down. The next two would follow with ‘‘Jose!’’ and ‘‘State!’’ When Henderson became a professional cheerleader and was hired by the Colorado Rockies hockey team at the end of the decade, he taught four sections of fans to cheer, ‘‘Go!’’ in quick succession. He says one evening, spontaneously, a fifth section followed, and was succeeded by another and another, until the cheer made its way all around the stadium. Fans of the University of Washington claim they were doing something similar (a vertical wave) even earlier in the ’70s, but the world saw Henderson’s wave on Oct. 15, 1981, at a playoff game between the Oakland A’s and the New York Yankees. Henderson directed participating sections to boo those who didn’t join in, until everyone caught on and the wave rolled its way around the packed stadium, the f irst one caught on camera. Henderson, now 69, says, ‘‘The announcer was going crazy.’’