Ultimate FSU Football Fans: The Garnet and Gold Guys

HCorrespondent IOctober 28, 2008

There are two kinds of football fans: those who wear T-shirts, hold signs and wear a little face paint, and then there are those who go all out, showing their school pride from head to toe.

Two Florida State individuals cover their bodies with paint and glitter and do just that. They're at home games, in Facebook albums and constantly being asked, "Can I get a picture with you guys?"

Fans, students, alumni and even MTV want a piece of "The Garnet and Gold Guys."

In 1998, two FSU freshmen, Josh White and Kevin Fulmer wanted to show their Seminole Pride during the Duke football game. The two ran up and down the stadium stands, one in garnet, the other in gold, cheering on the team, and getting the crowd enthused for the game.

White and Fulmer intended the paint and glitter to be a one-time thing, but after the audience's positive feedback they kept the tradition going. When graduation arrived, they passed the ritual on.

"It started as a grass root effort," director of student activities David Pittman said. "It wasn't university-driven. It was started by two students who literally bled garnet and gold. I think it's great that the tradition has carried on through the generations."

Since their debut, "Garnet" and "Gold' have served for two years each. Each season, one is in his second year, while the other is in his first.

"It was handed down," Garnet said. "I was asked by the previous Garnet and Gold Guys."

They are also chosen within the Baptist Collegiate Ministry, a common interest of the G&G founders.

"There was a short list of people," Gold said. "Because I was friends with Garnet, he was like, "Hey, he's shown an interest in it - what do you think about him?""

Game days require two hours of preparation. The supplies cost about $40 for each guy per game, including a total of 14 bottles of glitter. It has been rumored that they use glue or super glue, rub it on, spray paint, wear tights or that what they're wearing is really a suit.

"I heard the way that they get ready for the games is by putting paint in a kiddy pool, and just rolling around in it," FSU freshman Alyna Ohanmamooreni said. "That way it goes on everywhere."

The mystery of how they prepare remains, but apart from method and materials, it takes an hour and a half to remove.

While the guys walk to the games, people ask them to pose for pictures; handing off digital cameras to bystanders. In more than one instance, after the first picture gets taken, a line forms shortly after.

"The Garnet and Gold guys have become a legend at the games," FSU sophomore Joan Isaac said. "I always see them far away, and today is my time to take a picture with them. Today is my lucky day."

Some fans who took photos with the "Garnet and Gold Guys" made faces, various groups of girls flashed the hand signs of their sororities, and alumni smiled with their families.

"We have pictures of our youngest son, starting when he was about three, with the Garnet and Gold Guys all the way up each year," 1969 FSU alumni Bob Burris and wife Laura said. "We think it's great."

Even at the less populated Rice game, the boys posed with 298 people before entering the stadium, and over 550 within the first 90 minutes of leaving home.

Today "Garnet" and "Gold," both 20 year-old juniors, are collectively involved in BCM, Intramurals, IM reffing and an up-and-coming Christian fraternity, Kappa Upsilon Chi.

Previous to their debuts, the two knew a lot of pictures were taken, but didn't realize how many and how frequently they appeared on the Internet, specifically Facebook.

"Just the other day, my roommate pulled up a picture and was like, "Hey do you guys remember taking this picture?"" said Gold. "I think it's cool."

Seminoles aren't the only ones who love the glittering guys in garnet and gold.

"My mom is 110 percent behind it," said Garnet. "She sends me glitter; that's how she helps out."

MTV was at the Sept. 23 game to document the guys in action. The footage is expected to air the week of Oct. 9.

"I think they are the absolute best," FSU senior Melissa Schwartz said. "I think without traditions like this at FSU it wouldn't be the same. We have to have people like the Garnet and Gold boys to make FSU what it is."

This article was originally published by FSView

Issue date: 10/9/06 Section: Arts and Entertainment


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