C'mon JSU -- Get Cocky!

The Blog for Get Cocky!, a fan store exclusively for Jacksonville State University fans and alumni!

Hatching — New Beginnings

I always have non-JSU friends laugh and ask me if I have issues with the fact that our mascot is a chicken.  I know it’s not the most ferocious mascot out there.  We’re not a tiger, lion, elephant, or a bear.  There are even more ferocious sounding bird mascots out there too — eagles, hawks, owls, or falcons. 

But no….we’re the Gamecocks…yes, that would be a chicken or a rooster to you —  thank you.

When you have a store like ours, you spend HOURS thinking of words and things having to do with chickens and roosters.  

The last 14 years, I have steadily worked for myself and created some really wonderful companies.  However, I will be the first to admit that the last 6 months have been some of the hardest I have ever faced as a business person.

You see while I love each business — they are apart of who you are — Get Cocky has been more special than the rest because Get Cocky was my dream for over 20 years.  I dreamed it while being a student at JSU.  I knew what I wanted it to be, I could see it, I could see the customer’s joy when they found a great shirt that they couldn’t live without, I could see the 1000’s of JSU students and alumni proud of OUR university enough to want to wear our colors everyday and not the apparel of one of those “bigger” schools.  It was there….in my mind….I could see it.  

But a dream was what it would need to remain as I didn’t have the experience, the money, or resources to develop it (not to mention we didn’t have the internet back then—what a difference that alone made!).  And so for 20 years, it stayed in my heart….waiting….just waiting for it to be the right time.

And 3 years ago, it became a reality.  First with an online store and in February 2010, we opened our own store on the square in Jacksonville.

Many business people will tell you — opening a business is simple…keeping it alive is the hard part.  Through a series of different things that were occurring at the store in my absence, I decided we had to close it and take a step back.

As a person of faith, I have taken the last 6 months to ask God to please show me what He wants me to do.  If I needed to close it, I would close it.  If I needed to re-open it, then please show me the way.

In God’s time, He didn’t answer me at first but then slowly started giving me glimpses of what we needed to do and reminders of that 20 year old kid so excited to break out of her shell to give the JSU community something it truly needed — cool shirts at a great price.

So we’re in the process of getting everything ready to be open in the fall with some of our best selling t’s and new merchandise to add to it to make Get Cocky bigger and better than ever!  In the meantime, keep watching our store online and you’ll start to see some of our wonderful merchandise (both new and best sellers) popping up there!

Like I said, being in this business you think of all kinds of things about gamecocks, chickens, and roosters.  They all begin as an egg….need a little time and God’s love to become what they need to be, and then they break out of their shell.

Yep! That analogy has been brought to mind and stuck with me and it’s exactly what we’re doing!  Just like any Gamecock, we all have to work to do and some of God’s love to get us there but the end result of breaking out of our shell is always an awesome creation — a very beautiful, proud CHICKEN!

Keep watching!

(Source: getcockyjsu.com)

It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of Year…

While most people would think of that title as something related to Christmas time….to anyone who has ever been a member of the Marching Southerners would have to agree — this time of year is the beginning of the most wonderful time of year and of our lives.

It’s hard to believe that 23 years ago, I packed up everything I owned in my 1983 Buick Skylark and headed to Jacksonville, Alabama to attend band camp with the Marching Southerners.  I still remember the nervousness, the freedom of moving away from home, the pride, and the anticipation of what was ahead.

My rookie year of Southerners was at a time when the upperclassmen could still haze.  While as I think back of it now, it wasn’t that bad being a newbie on campus…however, back then I was a little shocked of all that I had to do to become a member of this wonderful family.

Being a Trumpet “Slug”, we had to get a white t-shirt and put the word “SLUG” on it and wear it every single day of band camp without washing (for the record, I still have mine STILL unwashed and stored in a ziplock bag), wear a set of antennas on our heads, our mouthpiece had to be hung on a string, and we had to steal a salt shaker from a local eatery to carry in our pocket.  I got mine from McDonalds and being naive freshman, I was sure they were going to put me in jail for stealing it.

We would practice for hours in Mason, outside in sectionals, and outside on the concrete in front of the Pete.  Our tans were fabulous, the music was amazing, the first time we practiced in the stadium left me wided eyed, and the day I received my uniform was one of my proudest.

But nothing…absolutely nothing prepares a Southerner for the feeling you get the first time you step off onto the field and perform for the amazing fans of Jacksonville State.  To say you’re a rock star as a member of a several hundred person group is the understatement of a lifetime. 

You are a SOUTHERNER and now a family member of something that bonds you with thousands of former and future Southerners to come. Only these individuals know what it’s like to go thru this process and to not only be apart of something magical on the field but be able to portray this magic to the fans in the stands.

Over the weekend, our newest members of our family arrived on campus to learn our traditions including “Salvation” and “Stars Fell” and the vets returned to campus yesterday.  The music is in the air…EVERYWHERE!

You can’t drive around Jacksonville without hearing the sectionals, hearing the metronome counting out the beat for the drum line, flags twirling in perfect motion, and ballerinas kicking without ceasing.  It’s wonderful!  It let’s you know that the Southerner’s season is almost here and while we’re at it, we’ll let the guys play some football too.

Why yes Virginia, the Southerners are back in town and it IS the most wonderful time of the year!  

(Source: getcockyjsu.com)

New Dawn For Volleyball!

 

It’s been a pretty well known fact that Jacksonville State’s Volleyball program has been on fire in recent years!  Fantastic finishes in OVC Championships and NCAA Tournament appearances to their credit — they resignate our cheer that “It is GREAT to be a Jax State Gamecock!”

Apparently even Auburn has been watching the JSU Volleyball program as this summer they hired our coach Rick Nold to lead the Tigers/War Eagles/Plainsmen to the promised land in the SEC.

So add a little more excitement with the hiring of Joseph Goodson to lead our Lady Gameocks and take us to the next level. 

Coach Goodson arrives here from coaching at University of Wisconsin — Green Bay but is actually from our neighboring state of Georgia.  A Graduate of Berry College, he has coached at Georgia Tech, Emory, and UGA.  We are excited about what he has to offer and what it will mean to continuing the explosion of our program in a national level!

Get Cocky! wanted to celebrate our Volleyball program as well so we have developed a new volleyball line that is available now online and in our store on the square!  This line is not only in our regular t-shirts but also in women’s cut t-shirts for our Lady Gamecocks!

So we would like to challenge all of our students, alumni, and friends to “Pack The Pete” this season and lets cheer our Lady Gamecocks all the way to the championship!

GO GAMECOCKS!

(Source: GetCockyJSU.com)

It’s Been How Long Since We Blogged?

Oh my goodness!  Time to start updating this thing more regularly!  Don’t worry we have lots to talk about in the weeks ahead!

(Source: GetCockyJSU.com)

NCAA Regionals — HERE WE COME!

Unless you’ve been under a rock…surely you would know by now that our Lady Gamecock softball team has won the OVC Championship and are heading to the NCAA Regional Championships in Atlanta.

Our first hurdle is playing Georgia Tech on Friday night at 8 pm.  Hopefully you’ll grab your best JSU Gear (Get Cocky Brand preferably—LOL) and head to Atlanta to cheer the girls on.  If you can’t make it to the field, check the game out on ESPN.

You heard those 4 letters right — our softball team is getting national exposure and it seems to be a continuous growing thing that Coach McGinnis keeps providing each year here lately!

I must say that while I am proud of the entire JSU Softball team — I am particularly proud of Coach Jana McGinnis and all that she has accomplished.

Coach McGinnis and her twin sister lived 2 doors down from me in Curtiss Hall my freshman year at JSU.  The two were incredible basketball stars on campus and you would think that having the popularity that they did a little freshman like myself wouldn’t even be a blip on their radar.  But as anyone who has met them would tell you — that simply just wasn’t their way.  They were both always so nice…always a hello…always warm…and if you weren’t a basketball fan, you probably wouldn’t even know that they were the dynamic duo that ruled the Coliseum and tore up any team they faced.

Coach McGinnis and her sister returned to coach at JSU after a stint coaching High School.  Dana coached basketball and Jana assisted her and then took on the softball team. 

17 seasons later — here we are on ESPN and winning the OVC Championship!  But even more than that, she’s developing her team into individuals who are just like she and her sister were in the dorm — warm, friendly, down to earth, a part of the JSU family and teaching how to be successful both on the field and off.

I’m always proud to call myself a Gamecock but I’m even prouder of what Coach McGinnis has accomplished and continues to accomplish to make our University and our students the best in the nation!

See you at Tech on Friday night — GOOOOOO Gamecocks!!

GRAND OPENING!

This week we had out Grand Opening Celebration — complete with Ribbon Cutting!

As I have said before, this has been a 20 year dream and there has been so many amazing “firsts” along this path — the first design, first shirt printed, first sale, first time we walked into what is now our shop, first pieces of the wood floor put down, first day of “move in”, the first day we opened the doors….

But this was THE Grand Opening — the day we could celebrate that we did it — we took this from idea and dream to reality.  Filled with food, friends (both old and new), and fellowship and it was an awesome day!

President Meehan and Cocky himself joined our staff, friends, media, and customers for our Ribbon Cutting of officially opening the store!

While we enjoyed our cake (made by our good friend Sharon Alexander with Sweet Sensations of Newnan, Georgia) and chocolate fountain with lots of dippers (including red stuffed Oreos for the occasion!), Cocky ran outside and went up and down the square pointing our store out to drivers and pedestrians passing by!

We are so proud of our store, proud to be Gamecocks, and proud to be in Jacksonville!

Spring Break!!

It’s amazing to think that the year has flown by so quickly that we’re actually approaching Spring Break next week!  It’s been a fantastic few weeks at the store and we thank everyone for being so welcoming to us in Jacksonville!

Many of you have asked us about Spring Break hours — we will be closing on Friday, March 12th, at 3 pm and will reopen on Monday, March 22nd, at 11 am.

We will be open extended hours on Saturday, March 27th, for Spring Preview Day and hope all of those incoming freshmen and their families will come see us!

We will also be open with extended hours on Saturday, April 10th, for the Spring Football Game!  Lots of festivities going on that day as well as the baseball team playing!  It’s going to be a great day to be in Jacksonville so make sure you come too!  Things are really buzzing and if you haven’t been “home” in a while, grab the family and come make a full day of it!

Got questions or comments?  Let us know!  blog@getcockyjsu.com

We’re Ready For St. Patty’s Day!!

That’s right!  With a little bit of the Irish, we’ve created a fantastic t-shirt just in time for St. Patrick’s Day! 

This green tee declares you are LUCKY but with a little JSU to boot! :-)  And only at $15!

This t-shirt is available for only a limited time and only offered in limited quantities so order yours today online at GetCockyJSU.com or at our new store on the square in Jacksonville!

Yes, Sir! We’re OPEN!!

I’m so sorry for the delay!  It seems like forever since I’ve been able to blog about the store!  However, we’ve been renovating our new physical location and between it and our “sneak” campaign — we’ve either had to keep quiet or have been so physically exhausted our fingers couldn’t move!

We decided to “sneak” our way into Jacksonville — anyone can throw a “Coming Soon” sign in the window but that’s just not our style!  We started out with a “Hatching Soon” sign in the window along with a 4 foot tall egg with contractor paper blocking the view!  As the weeks of renovation would go by cracks began to become visible….then some feet…then some wings…and even a beak!

And then this week, the paper came down…the sign and the egg were removed and Get Cocky merchandise and signage adorned the windows and doors and we were so pleased to open our doors at 3 PUBLIC SQUARE EAST!

That’s right!  Get Cocky is ON the Square in downtown Jacksonville!  Right inbetween Romas and Java Jolt!

We’ve got our great selection in their now but so much more is following it!  So come in and see us but plan on coming back again and again and see what new things have come in so you too can “GET COCKY!” :-)

2009 Great Beginnings — 2010 Continued Firsts!

At the end of most years, most people are ready to be done with the year and move onto new beginnings.  With all that has happened in the world with the recession, I really can’t blame anyone for those feelings.  However, I must admit that while I’m really excited about 2010, I have to say that 2009 was filled with great beginnings for Get Cocky!

As I have already talked about in this blog, Get Cocky has been a 20 year old dream that I came up with when I was a student at Jacksonville State.  So having that dream come true was such an amazing experience! 

We opened up our web-based store in September this year and amazed at the huge response we received!  Apparently there were more JSU peeps wanting something different than just me!  2009 was a great start for Get Cocky!

But 2010 has great things in store as well — for JSU and Get Cocky!

JSU has great things in store — softball team gets to build on what they started last year, the addition to our football stadium, playing Ole Miss and Georgia State in Football season…the list goes on and on!

For Get Cocky…our product line is expanding, we are opening our physical location, and we are looking to growing our relationship with the students and residents.  2010 sounds so exciting we’re about bursting at the seems for it to start!

So thanks 2009 for a great foundation — and welcome 2010 for all the exciting things to come!

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