Interviews decide homecoming court

Crowning the king and queen was no simple task during the extensive selection process of the University’s 2015 Homecoming Court.

This year’s king candidates included: Anthony Buzzacco Jr., Scott Munch, Luke Savot, Austin Flores and James Knippen.

The queen candidates were: Maren Legg, Rayia Gaddy, Alexa Woodburn, Alyssa Jenkins and Rachel Gerges.

On Oct. 17 Austin Flores was crowned the king and Maren Legg was crowned the queen at the University’s homecoming game in front of hundreds of students, fans and faculty. However, what is less commonly known is the lengthy process behind the curtains in which the winners are chosen to conquer the crown.

“First they would get nominated, and they have to be graduating seniors,” said Tulsa Fearing, Co-Chair for Royalty for the Homecoming Committee. “Everyone who was nominated gets emailed with the link to the application once the nominations close. They then fill out the application if they chose, and the judging panel, which this year consisted of eight faculty members, then goes through the applications and choses the top ten queen and king candidates based on a rubric.”

The panel looks for students who not only represent the University’s core values, but also have school pride.

According to the University’s homecoming website, “The Homecoming King and Queen, elected from this Court, will serve as ambassadors for the University.”

With high expectations for the winners, the committee goes to great lengths to make sure they are choosing the most qualified nominees.

“We just try to come up with a way that makes it fair, so there is some kind of showing to give the judges an objective when scoring,” says Fearing.

The judges then selected a court of five king candidates and five queen candidates, and all ten students nominated were interviewed by the judges, followed by the student voting.

The judges ask a variety of questions in the interviews.

“In the interviews, students got asked questions like: what is your favorite BG memory? How has BGSU impacted your personal life?” Fearing said. “They were also asked to describe an organization they are a part of, and not only how those organizations have helped shaped them, but also how they give back to that organization.”

Students were then encouraged to vote for their favorite king and queen candidates on, a campus engagement network for students. The voting closed on Friday, Oct. 16 at noon. The winners with the highest number of votes, Flores and Legg, took home the crowns at halftime at Saturday’s game.

Although choosing the king and queen can seem a daunting process in itself, much work also went into the production of the events that were held during the homecoming weekend.

Derek Goeglein and Molly Deraney are the overseers of the homecoming steering community, the group that planed all of the events for students during homecoming weekend.

“Me and Molly make sure everyone has the resources they need in holding everyone accountable, I’m not on the homecoming executive committee, I advocate the student prospective,” said Goeglein.

The events planned were: a barbecue cook-off, BG’s Got Talent Show, Falcon Fanfare, LOL UAO, the homecoming parade, the Flock Party, a mini pep rally and a carnival for students and visiting alumni.

“At the BG’s Got Talent Show, student organizations on campus were invited to perform after having auditions to make sure everything was appropriate,” said Goeglein. “And the University’s President Mazey even stepped in at Falcon Fanfare.”

This is Goeglein’s third year on the Homecoming Committee.

“I think that homecoming is one of the most exciting times of the year for students and alumni, where current students can interact with alumni, where there is a lot of good spirit and everyone is super excited.”

Goeglein said what excites him the most is “to see homecoming throughout the years and to see what has changed and what has stayed the same.”