‘The Royal Court’ Brings School Spirit to Cal Lutheran Sporting Events

Serena Zuniga, Reporter

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The Royal Court, previously known as the Purple Pit, is a club on campus currently rebranding itself in hopes of increasing fan engagement and school spirit at California Lutheran University.

When The Royal Court was called Purple Pit, they were solely known for being the spirit section for Cal Lutheran. However, with the help of their advisor Ken Steele, The Royal Court has implemented changes to increase fan engagement on campus, club President Andrew Reina said.

Reina said he believes sports at Cal Lutheran should have a larger impact and significance to students.

“I think a lot of us need to realize that we can be prideful in our school at Cal Lutheran just because you can go to games here,” Reina said.

According to the club’s constitution, The Royal Court is composed of two sections: “fan engagement and what the audience experiences while at an event” and “getting students and fans to the event with merchandise and school spirit.”

“Our advisor, Ken Steele, basically added on to the club and now we’re more fan engagement. So we do a lot of the background stuff in the games like the graphics and getting people hyped… so that people will get more engaged in the games,” Reina said.

The name change that came with this rebranding originated from a student suggestion. Reina believes the new name has more relevance and impact to the Cal Lutheran community than the previous one.

“It sounded more clean. It sounded more royal. It tied in more to the school’s history as far as our mascots,” Reina said.

Steele said the changes being made to The Royal Court have been long awaited. Director of Athletics Dan Kuntz has been wanting to make changes to the student section at Cal Lutheran for over 20 years, Steele said.

“No Division III school does this anywhere at all. So this is the very first where we’re trying to get this ball rolling to bring this type of thing,” Steele said.

Steele has experience in radio and sports and currently teaches public speaking and mass communication at Cal Lutheran. As advisor, he has taken responsibility for applying his past knowledge and experience to The Royal Court.

“A coach way to describe it is there are coaches for students on the court and I’m the coach for the ESPN of the school if you will,”  Steele said.

Ultimately, Steele hopes members of The Royal Court will learn from their positions and potentially work in the sports industry after graduation.

“It’s this that hopefully would inspire them. That’s my wish for them,” Steele said.

The students involved in The Royal Court have bonded over their passion for sports. Brian Schlosser, in charge of media for the club, said he believes these sporting events have the ability to strengthen the Cal Lutheran community.

“It brings people together when they’re at sporting events, like you don’t even have to know people to celebrate with them. So like, it is just a good environment for everyone to be in and it just helps them enjoy their time here more,” Schlosser said.

Reina hopes to establish this community atmosphere as a tradition for future generations of students to experience.

“Honestly, seeing the growing fan base for sports and the passion that students actually realize that they have for a school that they kinda deem as a commuter school, but they realize that they are gaining more passion and loyalty to a school that they actually go to,” Reina said.

The Royal Court encourages the Cal Lutheran community to attend sports games and to stay updated on the club by following its Instagram, @clu_royalcourt.

“The only way to make change at Cal Lutheran as far as the sporting events and what you want from it is by you going out and making the change yourself. So, being the change you want to see in the world,” Reina said.