New Field, New Tradition

Charles Lee


As Liam Murray cuts through the right corner and makes the first touchdown, the red and grey crowd screams with all their hearts.  Everyone follows along as the marching band starts to play the school song, which grows louder as our spirit does. This is the picture perfect moment of Red and Grey day, or so tradition says.

“I do not think the football team represents NT any more or any less than the other numerous sports teams,” Mattia David, senior field hockey player, said. “Other sports should also be recognized on red and grey day because they all represent North Toronto well.”

The staff and students of NT are challenging the tradition that football is “the Red and Grey day sport.” Perhaps it is time to move on from the past when football was the preeminent sport and overshadowed all others. Our world is much more diverse and students today enjoy soccer, rugby, and swimming just as much as more traditional sports of baseball, basketball and football.

“Sometimes as things get old, people just don’t seem to care for them as much as before. I think the student body should take a vote on which sport should be played during Red and Grey Day,” Ryan Sheridan, Sr. soccer player, says.

In order to be more inclusive and also to better represent other areas of sport teams, the Phys Ed department and the Administration decided to shake things up.

“Depending on the schedule, we may have the girls’ field hockey team or the boys’ soccer team take over the field on Red and Grey Day,” Mr. Smith said.

Mr. Gorenkoff agrees that times have changed and said, “although it’s important to preserve the tradition, it’s also important to move on and I think the new field reflects that.” 

On the other hand, there are still some such as Zachary Bader-Shamai, BAA from last year, who adheres to the tradition.

“There should never be another sport played on Red and Grey day aside from Sr. Football. Go to any university and I’ll wager their home coming is climaxed with a football game,” he said. “It is tradition and football at NT is only getting better and better.” 

 However, Mr. Dickstein sees the fundamental error in blindly sticking to tradition. 

“Just because they are traditional doesn’t mean that they’re good,” he said. “I mean we used to not have girls field hockey team. That’s a tradition, but that’s not necessarily a good thing.” 

Some people worry that if another sport is played, attendance will suffer, but previous field hockey games had ample people cheering the team. In addition, soccer games have glued students to windows much to the frustration of their teachers. 

Regardless of what team plays, students are eager to watch a winning game. However, one aspect that we can carry on from the traditional Red and Grey day is our love for our school no matter whether we win or lose. 

“Everyone loves a winning team, but the Red and Grey day tradition isn’t really about winning, is it? It’s about school spirit and supporting your peers,” Madeleine Cummings, 2009 graduate, said.