“Tiger Nation and Beyond” – Superfan Makes Presence Through Social Media

March 08, 2018 10:08 PM

(ABC 6 News) – On Friday night, the Stewartville Tigers and Byron Bears will both look to reach their first state girls basketball tournaments in each school’s history—and it’s safe to bet Stewartville, and Southeast Minnesota’s number one fan will be in Rochester to watch that game.

Adam Peterson, a Stewartville-native, became well-known in the community—but it wasn’t by word of mouth or become friends with new people, it was through social media.


“When I started these videos, honest to goodness, I had eight Twitter followers,” Peterson said.

Those videos on Twitter which Peterson talks about are a long string of video which has become increasingly popular throughout the 2017-2018 school year.

“The videos all started by just getting pumped up for football season,” Peterson said. “It just snowballed from there.”

In August, Peterson attended the Stewartville high school football opener, a game which the Tigers won over Dover-Eyota, 51-6—Stewartville ended the game by scoring 51 unanswered points, and Peterson couldn’t think of a better way to express himself than making a video on Twitter.

“I told my wife, ‘I got to get home, I got to make a video to recap this performance.’,” Peterson said.

Peterson doesn’t just “shoot from the hip” when he makes these videos—he’ll scribble down bullet-points and notes, and initially, they aren’t perfect.

 “If you think (the videos) are done in one take, you’re crazy,” Peterson said. “I can rattle things off like you wouldn’t believe, but I feel so bad for my wife because she’s sometimes had to listen to 20-30 takes.”

“I think for him he sees that high school sports are really pure,” Stewartville head girls’ basketball coach Ryan Liffrig said. “There’s a lot of excitement. There is no money involved; it’s just kids playing their hearts out.”

After a successful fall season of football recap videos, Peterson’s popularity sky-rocketed—before the winter season, Stewartville students reached out to him about putting recap videos from their games on Twitter.

“The girls' team and the boys' basketball players, they were saying ‘hey you’ve got to make a video for us, you have to talk about our season,’” Peterson said. “And I said ‘absolutely!’.”

The videos though have spread beyond “Tiger Nation”—since the Section 1 girls basketball tournaments opened play, Peterson is now making videos including surrounding teams.

“He’s taken it a step further with previewing the whole area,” Liffrig said. “To have a big supporter of girls basketball like that, it’s awesome.”

“He’s the most excited person about basketball,” Stewartville senior guard Lori Bailey said. “Like no one gets more excited more than him.”

“I think (the videos) are super funny,” Stewartville freshman forward Erin Lamb added. “I love watching them and the whole team gets excited.”

“I think for the athlete, it’s really cool to hear your name,” senior guard Julianne Waugh said. “I think that can give athletes on opposing teams some motivation as well. It’s nice to feel good about yourself, knowing that there are people talking about that.”

“All of these other schools, it’s so neat to interact with players that are tweeting at me or parents are stopping me at games when I go to them and say ‘hey I saw your video,’ that’s one of the coolest things for me,” Peterson said. “We all may cheer for different schools, but at the end of the day, we’re all on the same team.”

Peterson said he will be at the Mayo Civic Center on Friday night, not only to watch Stewartville face Byron for the 1AA title, but also the 1A championship game between Lyle/Pacelli and Hayfield.


Sean Tehan

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