If you’ve ever attended an Auburn football game, you’ve heard "Bodda Getta."
The first time I ever heard it, I was terrified. If it wasn’t the synchronized, almost cult-like chanting by the whole student body that got me, it had to be the cheer itself.
As a student who had never been exposed to Auburn football culture, I had no idea what the cheer meant. As I gradually became part of the Auburn Family, I began to learn the cheer and before I knew it, I was another loud voice in the crowd carrying on the tradition. But, I still had questions; Where did this tradition come from? What does it mean? How long have students and fans been chanting these iconic words? I did some digging, and here's what I found:
"Bodda Getta" originated from several band members at Robert E. Lee High School in Montgomery in 1962, according to Kelly Kazek’s book “Hidden History of Auburn.” They were tasked with creating a chant for their high school and this is what they came up with:
Botta geeta, botta geeta, botta geeta, bah!
Rah, rah, rah!
Sis, boom, bah!
Push 'em in the mud, Big Red!
Wonder where a few of those students headed after graduating from Robert E. Lee High? Of course, it was Auburn University. At Auburn, these former high school band members were tasked with creating yet another cheer for the University band as RATs (Rookie Auburn Tigers). Naturally, they used the cheer that they already had, adding a few key modifications of course, and that cheer became our beloved "Bodda Getta."
Bodda getta, bodda getta, bodda getta bah,
Rah, rah, rah,
Sis boom bah,
War Damn Eagle!
Kick 'em in the butt, Big Blue,
Although the words seem to be rhyming gibberish, some phrases such as “Rah Rah Rah, Sis Boom Bah” can be traced back to a chant created by the Auburn class of 1898. So next time you hear the words, “Alright Auburn fans, get your hands up for Bodda Getta," maybe you can tell the guy or girl sitting next to you a few things about how this tradition came to be.
Be well, Auburn.
Photography: Jack P.
Mark is from Dallas, Texas majoring in industrial design with a marketing minor. If he isn’t in studio, he can either be found at The Rec or at the intramural fields. He is passionate about the outdoors and trying to get people to laugh at his jokes.
As a member of a large family, he loves being in the middle of the action. As an ESTJ, Mark shares personality traits with his favorite TV character, Dwight Schrute.
Mark is always juggling multiple commitments which include involvement with the Catholic Student Organization, whatever intramural sport he can get his hands on, working for the Auburn Rec marketing team, and working on his hair.
Mark peaked his freshman year when he lost big man on campus. It was all downhill from there.