AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) – More than a dozen students were arrested at UMass Amherst after the New England Patriots lost the Super Bowl in 2012. To prevent on campus rioting this year, UMass gave students a new set of rules for the night.
UMass student, Brendon Dealmeida, told 22News the he didn’t think new restrictions could stop students from rioting. “Maybe them trying to restrict us so much makes it a little worse. Maybe if they just gave us the freedom it wouldn’t be as bad because kids just like doing something that they’ll get some excitement out of,” he said.
By kickoff, UMass police were staking out every residence hall, and state police were called in to help monitor the crowds.
UMass also sent out a brand new student force in hopes of deterring any bad behavior. Stefan Herlitz is part of the student group called ‘Team Positive Presence,’ he said they might not be able to break up crowds, but they can still make a difference. “Realistically, the purpose of Team Positive Presence is just to help keep anything from getting to a bad level where the police have to be involved,” he said.
Not only did UMass Amherst increase patrols to try and prevent rioting, they also wouldn’t allow students to sign guests into residence halls. The students who lived on campus were restricted to their own building.
Most students were predicting a riot regardless of UMass’s efforts, and some students, like Danielle Avilla, left campus for the night to avoid getting in trouble. “I mean, I’m not going to go back to campus because I don’t even want to know what it’s going to look like. They sent us a lot of emails about behaving ourselves so it’ll be interesting to see how all of the campus reacts,” she said.
After the game was finished, hundreds of students stormed the commons outside of the Southwest Residential Complex to celebrate the Patriots victory.
A loudspeaker announcement ordered the students to leave around 11:30 p.m., and shortly afterwards, the commons were empty.