The student voice of Midwestern State University
The Wichitan page 4 ‘Rivals’ brings laughs MSU Theatre’s production of ‘The Rivals’ brought the audience comedic relief.
page 5 Steeler Six Pack
The Steelers sealed their NFLrecord sixth Super Bowl title with the 27-23 win over Arizona.
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 4, 2009
Nursing shortage creates challenges for profs Jody Smith For the wichitan
It’s four o’clock in the afternoon on a Tuesday and it’s just another day at the office for Robin Lockhart. Although it’s getting late, the organized jumble on Lockhart’s desk hasn’t become smaller. Lockhart is just one of 24 professors at the understaffed Wilson School of Nursing. Two others, Mary Jo Distel and Joyce Bedoian, sit and joke with her about the day. They’re all assistant professors in the department and their day is just beginning. “I put in about 60 hours a week,” Lockhart confessed. Last semester, she said, was her hardest. “And I’ve been here 15 years.” “Sometimes we will work up to 15 hour days,” Distel added.
Not only do they teach classes but they also have committee work, administrative tasks and board reports to complete. Unlike other majors, nurses don’t pursue advanced degrees to teach. Many, in fact, don’t want to teach. They can find better opportunities in administration, research and consulting. Currently, MSU’s nursing school is short two full-time professors and a department chair. Lockhart said she cannot remember a time when they haven’t run ads in nursing magazines for faculty and staff. “This is a major issue,” Lockhart said. “Students are complaining that they want more time with the faculty because there isn’t enough time in the day.” On average, most nurses make $20,000 more working in a practice. Salaries at MSU range from
Photo by Peter Hiatt Crowded nursing classes are commonplace in MSU’s nursing department. A nationwide shortage of nurses has made faculty difficult to come by.
$30,000 to $60,000. “There’s no money in teaching advanced nursing,” Bedoian
said. “It’s hard to recruit because they’re making more money elsewhere.”
Dr. Susan Sportsman, dean of the College of Health Sciences and Human Services, is serving as temporary chair. “It’s an issue that’s across the country, not just here,” Sportsman said. Demand is high for nurses who work in intensive care units, labor and delivery, and emergency and operating rooms. Today, people are not only living longer but more complex diseases have increased nursing demands. Nurse-wise, the attrition rate is increasing every year as more baby boomers in the field have begun to retire. “There’s not much faculty out there,” Lockhart said. “The old ones are getting worn out.” Meanwhile, colleges and universities across the country are struggling to expand enrollment levels to meet the demand for nurses. It’s a problem MSU has
already addressed. “We admit about 80 students every fall and spring,” Sportsman said. “Overall, we’re up in enrollment and we’re admitting more every year.” From 2000 to 2006 the enrollment of entry-level students shot up from 29 to 142. This year, the department received 179 applications for the upcoming spring semester. In addition to teaching full time, most of the professors work at a practice to keep up their clinical skills. The department has hired several adjuncts to oversee students in their clinicals. “We’re looking for good clinicians but also good caring teachers,” Sportsman said. The nursing department has a rich history at MSU. It began
to come up with the remaining 62 percent on its own. The Annual Fund, since its inception in 2003, has raised approximately $1.5 million for the university. The funds finance the various academic colleges and provide scholarships for students. Through its main fundraising machinery, Phonathon, the Annual Fund has encouraged parents of students and alumni to make donations to the university. Kristal Amador, director of the Annual Fund, said the goal for the year is $425,000. While hopeful, she is tentative in her expectations of meeting that goal. “Definitely people are mentioning it. People are all talking about the economy,” she said. “The university itself is suffer-
ing from some economic problems as well.” Donations overall are down, she said. “But I don’t think that comes from our (regular) donors. It comes from people we haven’t brought on board as yet. They aren’t coming on board so quickly.” For the year, the Annual Fund has already raised about $100,000, one-quarter of the total goal that must be met by Aug. 31. Keri Goins, head of Phonathon and assistant director of the Annual Fund, said that the Phonathon has so far been unscathed by the financial crisis. “We have exceeded our goals
group. They will meet for the first time Tuesday in the Clark Student Center, Caddo Room at 2 p.m. Right now, the 19-year-old is unsure exactly what the group will be doing. One idea Spangler has in mind is to volunteer at the Clay County Animal Shelter, which she believes to be understaffed and under-funded. Other projects include reading advocacy, she said. MSU requires a club to have eight members who are current students, a charter and a staff adviser. Since the club is international, members had to get permission from the national office to start a chapter at MSU. So far, the organization is still in the planning stage. On the international level, the Alliance has raised $14,000 since 2007 to protect the underprivileged in Burma and Darfur. The organization also champions civil rights and environmentalism. “I just want to help people,” Spangler said. “Working this out is going to be trial-and-error and we’re not worrying too much about
the big-scale stuff. But I’d also like to make it about hanging out and having fun.” Spangler plans on holding some meetings where members just discuss the books or have a movie marathon. “Sometimes you just have to kick back,” she said. There are parallels between the real and the wizard world, Spangler said. Some characters in the book regard muggles, half-breeds and giants as second-class citizens simply because they’re different. Spangler relates this to people judging others based on race or sexual orientation. “There’s definitely some commentary on prejudice there. It’s definitely a big theme in the books,” she said. On a related note, the group uses Harry Potter as a metaphor for things going on in the world. One example, she said, is what she calls a ‘muggle mindset,’ where people are concerned only with their own lives and not with the struggles of
See NURSING page 3
Economic troubles make donations harder to find Kyle Christian For the Wichitan
With the economy on everyone’s mind and as economic turbulence in the country and the world at large worsens, Midwestern State University’s endowment may be threatened. In 2008 several universities including Harvard, University of Texas, University of Chicago, and Dartmouth reported decreases in their endowments as a direct result of the financial crisis. While these universities had big investments in the volatile stock market, real estate and private equity, smaller universities such as MSU depend heavily on private contributions. Despite what the name suggests, MSU’s expenses are subsidized by the state only 38 percent. That leaves the university
See ECONOMY page 3
Potter fans hope to conjure results from activist club Chris Collins Managing Editor
Bolin family donates replica of Liberty Bell Heather Preston For the Wichitan
An exact replica of the Liberty Bell has been added to the MSU lawn, donated by Aurora and Phil Bolin. “It is an honor for this family to have chosen the MSU campus for the location of this bell. It represents so much about our country’s patriotism
and should bring a number of people to the campus to see it,” said Janus Buss, director for public information and marketing. Buss said she has already seen the bell admired by groups of students from other schools. The bell had a long journey before reaching the MSU campus from the Paccard
Fonderie Des Cloches in Annecy, France where it was cast. The bell is 44.5 inches in diameter, 42 3/16 inches in height, and weighs 2,050 pounds. On either side of the bell are bronze plaques, one with the Declaration of Independence and the other with See BELL page 3
“The weapon we have is love.” That’s the slogan of the Harry Potter Alliance, an international social activism organization that compares real-world problems to the popular fantasy novels by J.K. Rowling. Bringing the Alliance to Wichita Falls was the brainchild of MSU freshman Samantha Spangler, an avid fan of the British-born series. For her, the formation of the chapter was a dream come true. Spangler came up with the idea after speaking with Dr. Millie Gore, professor of special education. Gore had recently spoken at a conference about the Harry Potter Alliance. Gore is in the process of becoming faculty adviser for the group. “We started browsing the Web site, and thought, ‘This is really cool!’” Spangler said. “Between the two of us, we just decided to start it.” Spangler describes the club as a Harry Potter fan-based activist
See POTTER page 3
Sweepstakes Winner 2006 Texas Intercollegiate Press Association
Finalist 2004 Associated Collegiate Press Pacemaker Award
Hold the Holds Is it too much to ask to get holds off your record? Apparently, it is. The idea of holds is understandable. If a student does not pay his or her tuition or has fines from the school they are restricted from viewing their transcript, registering for classes, graduating on time and who knows what else. The problem, however, is that these holds seem to consistently show up on students’ records who do not deserve them. Every time the problem is discovered, you have to hike over to the Hardin building only to be told that yes, the unnecessary holds have been removed. The next day, WebWorld shows the dreaded stop sign that mocks you as you are blocked yet again from viewing your transcript. These holds seem to be causing prob-
Bong hits for... Michael Phelps? It’s the same story we’ve heard time after time: a seemingly well-behaved superstar turns out to be not-so-innocent. News about drug, alcohol and sex related incidents involving celebrities ranging from Lindsay Lohan to Macaulay Culkin to Miss America cover the glossy pages of People and US every week. You would think that if you were constantly under the public eye you would learn the obvious lesson: Don’t do anything you don’t want spread across the cover of a magazine. Michael Phelps didn’t catch on to this idea. The super-athlete, Olympic champion, swimming guru, American hero should not be categorized among the Britney Spears’ of the celebrity world, but British paper, News of the World, says otherwise. On Feb. 1, the paper published a photo of the 23-year-old Olympian inhaling from a bong. Even though the picture is just now surfacing, News of the World reports that the picture was taken in November 2008,
lems rather than alleviating them. They were created to make students aware of financial issues, but instead they are now just a common false alarm that is not taken seriously. The solution should be to just put the holds on records that require them. That’s the goal, isn’t it?
Alyssa Edson Op-Ed Editor
just a few months after Phelps’s success at the Beijing Olympics. Although it’s obviously not the first time the media has unveiled the secret behaviors of a household name, the picture of Phelps drawing what seems to be marijuana from a bong is still unbelievably shocking. I am a firm believer that everyone makes mistakes. Yes, even celebrities. I can see past a few situations celebrities have been caught in, but Michael Phelps’s situation just seems completely different. Phelps had one of the most amazing years an athlete could have in 2008 with eight new Olympic gold medals, the title of the U.S. Olympic Committee’s sportsman and that of the year and AP male athlete of the year. I’m guessing 2009 won’t be as great, considering this start. Yes, people make mistakes every day. But when you are Michael Phelps or anyone else who has fans all over the world, why would you put your image on the line so carelessly? The thing that sets Michael apart from the rest of the celebrities who have been caught making poor decisions is that just
last week his name brought feelings of American pride. I just think that this was the most disappointing tabloid news I’ve seen in a while. Just a few months ago I was in front of the television screaming for him to swim faster (I don’t even watch sports, but this guy had me jumping up and down in anticipation ) and now I’m reading about how he is willingly accepting bongs while visiting a friend at college. Even his apology was pretty lame. “I promise my fans and the public it will not happen again.” Really? Nothing deeper than the average 5-year-old’s promise that it won’t happen again? Like I said, lame. I still am a “Phelps phan” and consider the guy to be extremely talented, but am completely taken aback by this story. Phelps has maintained the image of a role model and could have thrown it all away with just one decision. Maybe from now on, Michael should consider keeping the highs coming from the adrenaline rush he gets in the pool.
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3410 Taft Blvd. Box 14 • Wichita Falls, Texas 76308 News Desk (940) 397-4704 • Advertising Desk (940) 397-4705 Fax (940) 397-4025 • E-mail WICHITAN@mwsu.edu Web site: http://wichitan.mwsu.edu Copyright © 2008. The Wichitan is a member of the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association. The Wichitan reserves the right to edit any material submitted for publication. Opinions expressed in The Wichitan do not necessarily reflect those of the students, staff, faculty, administration or Board of Regents of Midwestern State University. First copy of the paper is free of charge; additional copies are $1. The Wichitan welcomes letters of opinion from students, faculty and staff submitted by the Friday before intended publication. Letters should be brief and without abusive language or personal attacks. Letters must be typed and signed by the writer and include a telephone number and address for verification purposes. The editor retains the right to edit letters.
Editor-in-Chief Brittany Norman
Managing Editor Chris Collins
Entertainment Editor Jamie Monroe
Reporters Richard Carter Josh Mujica Lauren Wood
Op-Ed Editor Alyssa Edson
Photographers Loren Eggenschwiler
Photo Editor Patrick Johnston
Advertising Manager Jody Smith
Sports Editor Bobby Morris
Copy Editor Patrick Johnston Adviser Randy Pruitt
The Wichitan Feb. 4, 2009
POTTER........................................................................................................continued from pg. 1 others. She hopes the Alliance will help others with their struggles, as well as helping her deal with her own. Spangler was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome, a mild form of autism, when she was 15. She said she relates to the character Neville Longbottom in the Potter series, a figure that may symbolize a person with a learning disability. “Neville seemed really friendless, like he didn’t have anybody
to hang out with,” she said. “He hung out with Harry and Hermione sometimes, but he wasn’t really involved. He was on the outskirts because he was an outsider. Sometimes I feel that way,” she said. Spangler thinks there are some common misconceptions about people with learning disorders. “If you know one person with autism,” she said, “you know one person with autism. Even with something like this it can manifest differently every time.”
“The conceptualization of disability affects how people are treated,” said Gore. “If you think of a person as a non-human, you say, ‘Let’s just cut off their feeding tube.’” Gore has dedicated her life to social activism. The Alliance has grown out of the last project she and special education students spearheaded, the Autism Support Program, which gives academic support and housing to autistic students. Spangler, who is organizing
the club, is part of the ASP. The program may have given her the confidence to start the club and make a difference. Gore said she plans to support the program in every way she can. She hopes students who aren’t involved in social activism will start because of the Alliance. “This is for the social improvement of others and of the group itself. You can’t help others without helping yourself,” Spangler said.
NURSING......................................................................................................continued from pg. 1 in the 1970s with an associate’s degree in nursing. A bachelor’s degree was added in 1990 and in 1994 a graduate program was instituted. In 2001, it was named the Wilson School of Nursing. The college is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate
Nursing Education or the CCNE. Its mission has inspired the professors to carry on even during these hard times. “We’re concerned with quality, not quantity,” Bedoian said. “If you’re a caring nurse, you won’t quit the profession.”
Not many other professions can boast that same devotion. At 4:35 p.m. Distel and Bedoian leave Lockhart’s office. Lockhart sighs and looks down at her desk. “I have a work report assignment in the department so right
now it’s a work overload,” Lockhart said. As a rule, nursing professors are assigned 12 teaching hours. They receive overload pay for any extra tasks they acquire during a semester. Lockhart is one of the many.
BELL.............................................................................................................continued from pg. 1 the U.S. Constitution. Architects Staley-BakerMonson designed the setting for the bell, which includes the bell’s resting-place on a block of
granite. The placement in front of MSU on the east side of Hardin required that sidewalks be remodeled. The total cost of the bell and its display was approxi-
mately $220,000. The Bolin family has made several contributions to MSU including the Bolin Fountain and the Bolin Chair of Piano.
Mr. and Mrs. D. Houston Bolin were also honored by having the Bolin Science Hall named after them.
ECONOMY.....................................................................................................continued from pg. 1 despite the economy.” who deal with contributors economy is bad or they lost will weather the econom Goins said she expects the on a daily basis are reporting their job.” ic storm. “People want Phonathon to reach its goal an increase in constituents According to the Bureau to believe in a strong posiof $105,000 despite the hard using the economy or unem- of Labor Statistics, national tive cause and the university economic times. ployment as a reason for not unemployment at the end of is one of those things. In a “A whole lot of our donors being able to donate. 2008 stood at 7.2 percent, up bad economy, we see more are from the Wichita Falls “Compared to last year, it 2.3 percent from the same people going to school and area and Wichita Falls hasn’t is much more frequent now,” period in 2007. In Texas, un- that’s more people in need of been hit that hard yet. So (it said one senior caller who employment has risen from scholarships,” she said. “Peodepends) on how the econo- wished to remain anony- 4.2 percent in 2007 to 5.7 ple are still willing to give. my stays in the area. We will mous. “In about three or four percent at the end of 2008. Our donors who believe in us just have to wait and see.” of every five calls you make, Amador, however, remains aren’t making a change.” Senior Phonathon callers someone says either the hopeful that the university
Wednesday • Part-time job/ Volunteer Fair in CSC Comanche at noon.
Thursday • Kinesiology Student Organization Spring Kickoff at Sunwatcher Plaza at 3 p.m. • Museum Lectures: the Works of Artist Jerry Bywaters at the Wichita Falls Museum of Art at MSU at 3 p.m. • Foreign Film Series: Bloody Sunday at the Kemp Center for the Arts at 7 p.m.
Friday • Museum Bus Tour to the Dallas Arts District at 8 a.m.; $45 charge • Auditions for student-directed oneact plays on the Fain Fine Arts main stage at 6 p.m. More auditions to be held Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon.
Monday • RHA Blood Drive in the CSC at 10 a.m.
Competition to get into colleges may be intensifying Gene Traynor MCT
FORT WORTH – People seeking new skills in a slow economy and a near record number of high school seniors are expected to make the competition fierce for coveted spots in U.S. colleges and universities in the fall. Applications to elite private schools are expected to continue climbing. But university officials suspect that state schools in particular could see a spike in interest as some cash-strapped families look for tuition breaks. Even if students get into a desired school, they might not get into the programs they want. “What this means to students is that it’s going to be more competitive to get into a state college than before,” said Kristen Campbell, director for college preparation programs for Kaplan Test Prep and Admissions in New York City. The application process, which began in the fall with early admissions, is expected to peak in the coming weeks as essays, letters of recommendation, standardized test scores and synopses of extracurricular activities are compiled and sent. “It was really hard,” said Sandra Alvarez, a senior at Fort Worth’s South Hills High School who applied to several schools. “You have so many things to do, you don’t know where to start.” Taylor Breen, also at South Hills, recalls getting a call during physics class from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology asking for her father’s income records. “You have to turn it in tomorrow, so figure it out,” Breen said, quoting the admissions officer. She plans to attend Columbia University in New York City. College admission officials say there’s no surefire way to get into a first-choice school, though they agree that good grades, high standardized test scores and athletic or other talents help an applicant rise above the competition. “At the end of the day, colleg-
es want students who are passionate,” Mike Moyer, author of “How to Make Colleges Want You,” writes. Students who don’t excel on the playing field or who have average grades might consider making a movie, writing for a local newspaper or running a political campaign, he said. “They want students who have real interests and go out of their way to pursue their interests. If you are engaged in an activity in which teenagers don’t typically engage, you are someone who will bring a new point of view to a college classroom and a person who will inspire others to follow their dreams and interests. Colleges love this more than anything!” Here’s what students can expect at a range of schools:
Top public universities
Texas has three: the University of Texas at Austin, Texas A&M University in College Station and Texas Tech University in Lubbock. With a desire to grow to 40,000 students and an enrollment that averages about 28,000, Texas Tech has room for qualified applicants. The competition is a bit fiercer at UT-Austin and A&M. About 71 percent of those who applied for UT-Austin’s fall freshman class in 1998 were admitted. For the 2007 freshman class, 51 percent were admitted. Figures for A&M follow a similar trend. Texans who rank in the top 10 percent of their high school graduating class automatically get accepted into a state college or university, including UTAustin and Texas A&M. But they may not get into the program they want. At UT-Austin, the competition for spots in the university’s business, communications and nursing schools is fierce, said Augustine Garza, UT-Austin deputy director of admissions. For the most competitive programs, 75 percent of the slots
are reserved for top-10 percent applicants. But of those students, often only the ones in the top 1, 2 or 3 percent get in; the rest must compete in the general applicant pool for the remaining slots, Garza said. Students who don’t get into a desired program are considered for their second choice. If that falls through, they become liberal arts majors but can reapply later to their first choice, Garza said. At UT-Austin, students who did not graduate in the top 10 percent of their high school class are evaluated based on academic and personal characteristics, Garza said. At A&M, students in the top 25 percent of their high school class are admitted if they have a combined SAT math and critical reading score of at least 1,300, with a score of at least 600 in each section. Those taking the ACT need a composite score of at least 30, with a score of at least 27 in math and English. Students must also take the writing portion of each test to be considered. Tech admits students in the top 25 percent of their high school class if they also have a composite score of 25 on the ACT or a combined score of 1,140 on the critical reading and math sections of the SAT. Those ranking at least in the top 50 percent can get in with an ACT score of 28 or an SAT score of 1,230. Top private schools Competition is also tough for some private schools, but officials warn against inflating resumes with extracurricular or volunteer activities. Instead, they say they are looking for applications with focus on and passion for an area. And you might think twice before have a consultant or parent write essays or handle the application. Both should be authentic, officials said. “Elaborate on those things that you care most deeply about,
so we’re not distracted about something that you tried one year and didn’t return to,” said Julie Browning, dean for undergraduate enrollment at Rice University in Houston. “We’re imagining how you’re going to use your free time at Rice.” Rice, which ranks among the country’s most selective institutions, accepts about 22 percent of applications, said Chris Munoz, vice president for enrollment. Rice typically looks for students in the top five percent of their graduating class and with a combined SAT score of 1,450 on math and critical reading. After that, the university looks at a student’s characteristics. “Are they involved?” Munoz said. “Are they active? And do they demonstrate leadership qualities?”
Closer to home
State schools such as the University of North Texas and the University of Texas at Arlington typically have more flexible admission standards than some private schools and Texas’ flagship universities. UNT accepts students who ranked in the top 25 percent of their graduating class and had a combined SAT score of 950 on the critical reading and math sections or a composite score of 20 on the ACT. UT-Arlington has no testscore requirements for students in the top quarter of their class. At UNT, students who rank in the top 50 percent of their high school class can get automatic admission if they have a combined SAT score of 1,050 or a 23 on the ACT. Admission officials review applications from those who don’t score that high. UT-Arlington Provost Don Bobbitt said 75 to 79 percent of applicants are accepted. The 25,000-student school still has room to grow to 28,000 to 30,000 students. Texas Christian University in Fort Worth worked to limit
this year’s freshman enrollment to about 1,600 students after receiving a record 12,200 applications. About half of those applicants were accepted, but typically some students choose other schools, said Ray Brown, dean of admissions. A typical TCU student is in the top 20 percent of his high school graduating class and has a combined SAT score of 1,781 (writing, critical reading and math) or an ACT composite score of 26.8. The university also looks for musicians, actors, athletes and others to help create an interesting campus environment. Tarrant County College, which has 40,000 students and is the region’s fastest-growing institution, accepts local residents as long as they’re not on suspension from another university, said Cathie Jackson, associate vice chancellor for student development services. A high school diploma or a GED isn’t necessary, she said. But students may have to take remedial classes to meet standards. Sometimes, simple perseverance pays off in the college admissions game. Conrad Holub, 22, of Burleson said he neither was in the top 10 percent of his class at Burleson High School nor took any Advanced Placement classes. He said that he got accepted to other schools but that his goal was to attend the University of Texas at Austin. So he attended
Austin Community College for a year, where he achieved a perfect 4.0 grade point average. He then transferred to UTAustin but was not accepted into the business school. So he was a government major for two years, earning a 3.56 average. And that got him into the business school. Holub will have to spend five years at UT-Austin, but to him it’s all been worth it. “I had a goal set, and I did what I needed to do to achieve it,” he said. Admission officials typically say they look at students holistically – grades, test scores, extracurricular activities and community involvement. To increase the chances of getting an acceptance letter, here’s what admission officials and experts recommend:
Moffett Library is looking for its next poster boy or poster girl. Picture yourself in an “MSU Reads” poster hung to celebrate National Library Week from April 12 to April 19. The contest is open to all students and staff. The only requirement is to tell the library in 50 words or less why you deserve
to be photographed for the poster, which will be hung around campus and post ed on the flickr. com Web site. Deadline for all entries is Feb. 20. They can be turned in at the Moffett Library circulation desk or e-mailed to Associate University Librarian Andrea Williams at firstname.lastname@example.org.
High school courses
Four years of English, with courses that demand extensive writing. Four years of math, typically including two years of algebra, a year of geometry and a year of pre-calculus. Four years of science, typically biology, physics, chemistry and an advanced course in any of those. Three years of social studies, including world and American history. Three to four years of one foreign language.
Library poster contest deadline ends Feb. 20
The Wichitan Feb. 4, 2009
‘The Rivals’ unrivaled in banter, laughs
Jamie Monroe Entertainment Editor
Last weekend, the MSU Theater Department put on their production of “The Rivals,” a comedy originally written in the 18th century that follows the social circus in Bath, England. Captain Absolute, played by Trint Williams, is secretly Ensign Beverly (though this is revealed to the audience in the first scene of the play). The entire plot of the play centers on Captain Absolute’s dual identity, and the confusion it causes. Lydia Languish, played by Mary Okonkwo, becomes betrothed to Captain Absolute, but refuses to marry him, as she is in love with Ensign Beverly. The rest of the cast is equally colorful. Mrs. Malaprop (Samantha Pecor) is a long-winded, nosy woman who goes off into tangents using “educated” words incorrectly. Sir Anthony Absolute (Benjamin McKinney) is a selfish chauvinist. Sir Lucius O’Trigger is an old Irish drunkard with a love for fighting and a lack of people skills. Bob Acres (Adam Granberry) is a cowardly Irishman, desperate to be known and accepted by a social class that largely ignores him. Lucy (Shannon Dietz) is a maid that only pretends to be stupid so that she can intercept everyone else’s gossip and make a profit from it. And oh, is there gossip. Everyone is either fighting, court-
ing, having an affair, or seeking personal profit, all the while Captain Absolute deals with his biggest rival- himself. Most of it is hilarious. As usual, the sets and costumes were spectacular. The Fain Fine Arts main stage was convincingly transformed into an English city square, complete with cobbled streets and upper-class houses. Set transitions were seamless, with many funny props. Costumes, as well, were very well done. Mrs. Malaprop’s huge skirt not only created laughs, it helped keep with the period and parody the fashion choices of the upper-class. Bob Acres’ costume in the second act, a satin leprechaun suit, was hysterical. Not once did any of the costumes detract from the performance, they only added to it. And, of course, the acting was great. The cast had lots of chemistry and excellent lines, but most importantly, spot-on timing. However, the second act outshone the first, both in laughs from the audience and in energy from the cast. Dialogue-heavy scenes in the first act were hard to follow. And the English accents, while very good, occasionally
Right: Sir Lucius O’Trigger (Matt Griffin), Lydia Languish (Toya Mary Okankwo), Captain Absolute (Trint Williams) and Acres (Adam Granberry) (Top left)) Sir Lucius O’Trigger (Matt Griffin) and Captain Absolute (Trint Williams) Bottom: Mrs. Malaprop (Sam Pecor)
muddled dialogue and language that was already confusing to begin with. Overall, though, “The Rivals” was extremely well-presented and sent its audiences home grinning. If you missed this productiondon’t miss the next.
Museum film series puts spotlight on Texans nursing home after a 20 year coma with a broken hip. The story is that he switched places with an Elvis impersonator to live a quieter life. He then missed his chance of switching back after the impersonator suffered a heart attack, causing the “death” of Elvis. Now, Elvis’ only friend is an old black man who insists that he is John F. Kennedy, and that his skin was dyed black after the “assassination.” The two friends find themselves trying to protect the people of the nursing home from a 3000-yearold mummy, dressed in country western attire, who they suspect is killing their neighbors. Bubba Ho-Tep, along with many of the other films that will be a part of the Texas Film Se-
ries, can be found in the MSU Library. WFMA’s director Con Drennan cleverly gave the motto “Only in Texas” to the film series about Texas and Texans. He says it is important to show movies in Wichita Falls that are about Texas, were shot in the area, and bring a new perspective to Texans. This film series accompanies the exhibition of the Jerry Bywater’s lithographic prints and paintings about the Southwest. His artwork, which will be on display until March 14t, portrays the everyday people and places of Texas and the Southwest. Drennan said he has picked movies that show the everyday and not so everyday happenings of Texas and the Southwest for the film series, which will also run
Jamie Monroe Entertainment Editor This time last year, Britney Spears was rushed to the hospital for psychiatric treatment. The year before that, she was shaving her head as horrified assistants and staff looked on. But after bouncing between rehab centers and settling her divorce, Spears has almost made a complete career turnaround. She’s had two hit singles released off of her “Circus” album, acclaimed music videos, and is poised for a sellout tour promoting her newest album. But it’s her third single, “If You Seek Amy,” that is stir- Britney Spears ring up controversy. (At least you get to the chorus. this time it’s actually about her “Love me, hate me, say what music, and not Spears’ personal you want about me, but all of life.) the girls and all of the boys are The song looks innocent begging to if you seek Amy.” enough in print. The line itself doesn’t make The lyrics open asking, sense- unless you say it fast “Have you seen Amy tonight?” enough to spell out something and for all intents and purposes, explicit. And while some people it seems to be a song about just that- a girl named Amy. Until would never notice unless it was
pointed out, many parents have caught on and are demanding radio stations to pull the song. However, many radio stations have refused, arguing that the song is just innuendo, and that most songs on the air have sexual references in one way or another. But Spears’ song isn’t subtle enough to be innuendo. It’s clever wordplay- an upgrade from high school name games, but to call it just a passing sexual reference is an understatement. If the lyrics made any kind of sense otherwise, that might make for an argument. Except that it’s pretty clear that the message in the song is intentional, and it’s likely that the controversy surrounding it was intentional as well. In any case, congratulations Britney on your new hit single. Kids may not be allowed to listen, but people are talking about your music again.
Meredith Humphreys For the Wichitan
An Elvis Presley impersonator? Seen that before. Elvis isn’t really dead, he’s still alive. Heard that before. But, how about Elvis is still alive in an East Texas nursing home with a broken hip and ready to save his elderly friends from a 3000-year-old Egyptian zombie? The 2002 film Bubba Ho-Tep, directed by Don Coscarelli, tells the untold story of what really happened to Elvis. The strangely funny movie is just the first in the Texas Film Series at the Wichita Falls Museum of Art. The movie begins as an elderly Elvis, played by Bruce Campbell, wakes up in an old East Texas
through March 14t. He hopes to give Wichitans the chance to view Texas films they most likely won’t ever be able to see in a movie theatre. The films are played Thursdays at 5:30 p.m. and Saturdays at 3 p.m. at the museum, with a new film showing each week. This week Drennan has chosen Bandits, Bootleggers, and Businessmen: A History of the Big Bend, Texas, 1848-1948. The hour-long documentary tells about the men and women who called Big Bend home, and dives into the rich history of the region. Admission to the Texas Film Series is free, and a schedule of films can be found on the museum’s website: www.mwsu.edu/ wfma.
‘If You Seek Amy’ doesn’t bother to be subliminal
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The Wichitan Feb. 4, 2009
Spotlighting the music of Gavin Degraw Courtney Foreman For the Wichitan
Gavin Degraw’s catchy tunes are not new to the music scene. His hit songs like “I Don’t Want To Be,” and “Chariot” put the soul singer at the top of the charts in the U.S.. And although he is successful today with his brand of personal and heartfelt songs, this talented artist didn’t receive his success with ease. Gavin Degraw began to break through in early 2003 but had already started work on his original sound many years before. Degraw found himself playing music at home and studying piano at age 8. After learning the basics of piano, the instrument that landed him where he is now, he played in a cover band with his older brother and sang and wrote his own songs. After his short stint as a member in a band, Degraw decided to take on the Big Apple and try his luck in New York City. Degraw would play in any place that would take him.
Bars, restaurants, even afterhour spots weren’t off limits to him as he tried to make a little noise and get started on his journey to the top. It wasn’t long before Degraw started to attract crowds and began to gain a fan base.
As his name began to appear in columns and best-of lists in newspapers around town, the buzz reached record labels that left them anxious to sign the talented musician. Instead of jumping into a contract too soon, Degraw
took his time to secure his fan base and examine all the offers. Eventually, Degraw signed with Clive Davis and his J Records, home to artists such as Santana and Alicia Keys. Degraw released his debut album, Chariot, in 2003 and began the uphill progression of his success. Fans and critics alike felt a connection with his original sound. After earning platinum certification and selling over a million copies, his debut album earned three hit singles: “I Don’t Want To be,” “Follow Through,” and the debut title track, “Chariot.” If that wasn’t enough to start with, Degraw’s single “Chariot” was chosen to be the theme song for the popular television show, “One Tree Hill.” It set the tone of the show, and became a door-opening experience for the future of his success. After the triumph of his first album, fans requested Degraw release a stripped-down acoustic version of Chariot, which proved to be worth the wait when it was released in 2004. Gavin Degraw presents
‘Underworld’ prequel doesn’t disappoint
something that many artists cannot. Instead of playing only guitar or only piano, Degraw incorporates both instruments in his songs. As if that weren’t enough, his remarkable voice and honest lyrics leave fans hitting repeat and wanting more. Five years after his debut album, fans wanted more from Degraw. He began work on his second, self-titled album in 2006 and wrote many of his songs with only his guitar. It was released last year and lived up to the anticipation. Degraw describes this album by saying, “It’s about different relationships, my mindset in those relationships and just a poetic reflection of the stuff I’ve gone through.” Degraw released a statement on his official website to say, “Just to set the record straight, this album isn’t about one girl,” knowing that the question of that matter would present itself after listening. Degraw’s latest album does have more of a rock sound to it, but it doesn’t stray from his sensitive side that expresses
his feelings so clearly. “I’m In Love With A Girl” kicks off the album with an inyour-face look into a relationship that is perfectly in sync in all areas of love. “Next To Me” is another classic song that has listeners tapping their toes to the music and singing along to the lyrics of this lighthearted track. Songs like “Young Love” and “She Holds A Key” reflect Degraw’s softer side and allow the listener to be truly entranced by Degraw’s ability to pull his audience in and feel a true connection with his songs. Overall, Degraw has allowed himself to rise to the top with hard work, perseverance and raw talent in today’s music industry. Degraw’s knack for songwriting and obvious talent on the piano and guitar puts him above the rest of the artists in his genre and allows for only positive feedback. The self-titled album is in stores now. Degraw will begin touring again this month.
Third film in vampire series delivers plenty of bite
Lauren Wood For the Wichitan
Honestly, I’m not a fan of prequels. Usually they fail miserably and don’t give you any information you didn’t already know. Still, I loved the first two, so I figured I would give “Underworld: Rise of the Lycans” a try. I give it an ‘A.’ A for amazing! Despite Kate Beckinsale’s usual role as Selene was absent in the film, it still was done extremely well. Selene’s absence is necessary in order to tell the story of how the Lycans rose to power and how the “war” between the vampires and Lycans began. For those of you who haven’t seen the first two films, Lycans
are half-men, half-werewolf creatures. Michael Sheen stars the firstever Lycan, Lucian, while opposite his role is Bill Nighy, who continues his role as the selfish and creepy vampire Viktor. Both Sheen and Nighy perform remarkably, despite the six-year difference between the first film and this one. Beckinsale’s replacement, Rhona Mitra, portrays Sonja, Viktor’s strong-willed daughter who falls into a secret love affair with Lucian. Mitra’s role greatly helps the viewer understand why Selene reminded Viktor of Sonja. Most of the information given in the movie isn’t really new to the audience if you’ve seen it before, but it answers questions and provide insight
to the Lycans. Unfortunately, if you have seen the first two films, then you already know which characters will live, which will die and how it will end. However, I still found it very enjoyable, and still got attached to the characters, despite the fact that I knew what their fate was. Some characters are missing from the prequel, while others return, including Lucian’s close friend, Raze, from the first film and Tanis, the archivist of the vampire clan, who is visited in the second. The action in “Underworld” consists of many fights and dueling full of blood and gore, sure to satisfy fans of the series. Those who are expecting scenes similar to “Twilight” will be very disappointed.
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As a prequel, this film is great because it keeps the characters the same as we remember them in the first two films. It is rare to see films that have so many characters brought back with the same actors. If you haven’t seen the first two, it’s OK to see this one. It doesn’t ruin them for you. But if you did see them and didn’t like it, it’s probably not smart to see this one, because it’s pretty much the same type of movie. It’s not Oscar-worthy and won’t appeal to everyone, but it certainly will not disappoint the people who were uneasy about the idea of a prequel. “Rise of the Lycans,” like the previous installments in the Underworld franchise, does its job and does it well.
Get ready to be ‘Taken’ for wild ride “Taken” punched, kicked and blasted its way to the top of the box office this past weekend. Pierre Morel directed the neckbreaking, action-packed thriller that combines the kidnapping genre with high-gloss espionage. Liam Neeson plays Brian Mills, a retired Jason Bournetype, who has recently moved to Los Angeles to reconnect with his estranged daughter, Kim. Mills finds that making up for lost time is easier in theory than in practice as he is constantly upstaged by his ex-wife’s wealthy husband. When Kim (Maggie Grace) finally takes him to lunch it’s
for a reason: she wants to travel abroad. Mills must choose between keeping her safe or making her happy. Despite Mills’ better judgement, he grants Kim permission to travel to Paris sans parental supervision. But his worst fears become reality when Kim and her best friend, Amanda (Katie Cassidy), are kidnapped by an Albanian sex trafficker. With a 96-hour window to find his daughter alive, there isn’t a line he won’t cross to save her. Much like the Bourne franchise, once Mills hits Parisian soil the movie sprints into seamless and relentless action. There
is little pause as it demonstrates just how deadly papa bear can be when he happens to be an exCIA operative. Much of “Taken” exposes the underbelly of French society. The film offers brief glimpses of the atrocities inflicted upon the women in sex slavery, but little commentary as Mills moves through scene after scene with the singular focus of a locomotive at full steam. Clocking in at barely over an hour and a half, “Taken” is shameless fun. Audiences won’t walk away smarter but there are worse ways to spend $8.25.
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The Wichitan Feb. 4, 2009
Mustangs take 10th-straight home victory over Wildcats, 84-73 Bobby Morris Sports Editor
An overpowering second half surge sparked by Craig Green led the Midwestern State Mustangs to their 10th-straight home victory over the Abilene Christian Wildcats 84-73 Saturday night. The junior from Keller dropped in 24 points and ignited a 13-0 MSU run midway through the second half that gave the Mustangs an insurmountable 72-56 edge with 7:20 left in regulation. Green hit a pair of 3-balls, combined with a pair of baskets from Nolan Richardson and a dunk by Michael Godwin to take
the commanding lead. ACU attempted to comeback throughout the second half but could never get closer than seven points. The three starting guards in the Mustangs’ backcourt paced MSU in their victory combining for 55 of the team’s 84 total points. Earl Rabb combined with Green in the backcourt as he filled the box score with 11 points, six assists and four steals. Richardson also chipped in 20 points after pouring in 8-of-10 shots from the free-throw line. The win brought the Mustangs record to 15-5 and placed
them into a three-way tie atop the Lone Star Conference South standings along with Texas A&M-Kingsville and Angelo State at 4-1. Four Wildcats scored in double-digits, while ACU dropped to 8-11 on the season and 2-4 in LSC South play. Dante Adams led the Wildcats with 22 points as Dejan Sencanski, Cameron Holson and Milos Klimovic scored 17, 15 and 14 points, respectively. The Mustangs will look to extend their home winning streak this Wednesday night as they host Tarleton State for an 8.pm. tipoff.
Patrick Johnston | The Wichitan Michael Godwin (3) drives past a defender for a dunk to help the Mustangs defeat the Abilene Christian Wildcats last Saturday. Charlie Logan (23) dives for a loose ball during the Mustangs game against Eastern New Mexico State University on Saturday, January 22, 2009.
Summitt still stuck on 999 victories Vahe Gregorian MCT
Before a national television audience and 12,552 fans at the Ford Center, with college basketball history on the line, the drama and intrigue extended into the last minute Monday night. But Oklahoma star Courtney Paris’ staggering streak of double-doubles ended at 112 games when she fouled out with nine points and 12 rebounds. “That’s the only thing that we did well, huh?” Tennessee coach Pat Summitt said afterward, mustering a momentary smile. The story line, of course, was supposed to have been about a different type of history: Could Summitt, already distinguished by her eight national championships, including the last two, win her 1,000th game? That’s why multiple balls were used in the game, each apparently destined for a different hall of fame or shrine. That’s why Brent Musburger and Bob Knight, the winningest majorcollege men’s coach with 902 victories, called the game. But that possibility had evaporated much earlier, in a flurry of Tennessee turnovers that left Summitt seething most of the second half as Oklahoma built an 18-point lead on the way to an 80-70 victory. “Trust me, I’m not concerned about a number for me,” she said. “I’m concerned about this basketball team investing in our system and not picking and choosing when they want to play hard. ... Some of those turnovers were just, quite honestly, ridiculous.” With four players in double figures and Danielle Robinson doling out 12 assists with her 17 points, the second-ranked Sooners did nothing to diminish Summitt’s pre-game assessment of them as a team with promise of reaching the Final Four in St.
Peter Hiatt | The Wichitan
Mustangs receive recognition Bobby Morris Sports Editor
Over the Christmas break many different Mustangs were honored from various sports. Whether it was postseason accolades for football or soccer teams or preseason honors for the softball team, many different Mustangs were highlighted this winter. FOOTBALL
Louis. But the victory by OU (192) also did nothing to diminish Summitt’s place in the game, even as she tries to come to terms with a 16-5, 12th-ranked team that features four freshman starters. OU coach Sherri Coale said Summitt’s 999-187 record was similar to Paris’ streak in that both are “incomprehensible.” Yet Summitt’s reach has been much broader, she noted, citing the crowd and national TV exposure as evidence. “We couldn’t be here,” Coale said, adding, “You don’t do that without somebody who’s grown this game. And that somebody would be her.” The loss, of course, only delays the inevitable for Summitt, whose singular place in the game long since has been assured. She was known as Trish Head when she was hired by Tennessee right out of college at Tennessee-Martin 35 years ago, initially daunted by the notion of what was supposed to be an assistant coaching job. Two weeks later, her trepidation intensified. Then-coach Margaret Hutson decided to take a sabbatical and Head was named head coach, leaving her
“absolutely overwhelmed and scared to death,” as she once put it. So much so that she didn’t object when Tennessee administrators shortened Patricia to Pat instead of the name she’d always gone by. But she burrowed in and began creating a program from the ground up, setting up chairs and sweeping the floors before the first game she ever coached, an 84-83 loss to Mercer on Dec. 7, 1974. Her first win came a month later. Within two years, they were flipping over like an odometer amid a streak of 32 straight 20-win-plus seasons, on course to roll over to a number no one could contemplate seeing again at this level. The victories, though, are only a hint of the impact and influence of Summitt, who took her husband’s last name when she was married in 1980 and has maintained it since being divorced. Among the other staggering figures that will be her legacy, Summitt has produced 111 graduates, cajoled 58 players to at least one championship ring and inspired 45 former players to become collegiate or high school coaches.
The 2008 version of the Don Hansen Football Gazette was released during the first week of the year and two Mustangs were honored on the All-Super Region Four Team. Senior defensive lineman Todd Zoglmann garnered firstteam honors after leading the nation’s third-best rush defense, allowing only 86.2 yards on the ground per contest. Zoglmann recorded 26 tackles, 2.5 tacles for loss, four quarterback hurries, a forced fumble and two fumble recoveries during the 2008 season. He was also named to the AllLone Star Conference South Division first team. The other Mustang honored was junior running back and return specialist BeeJay Mathis. Midwestern’s all-time leader in punt return yardage led the region for the second-straight season with an average 15.6 yards per punt return. Mathis was also named on the All-Lone Star Conference South Division first team. MEN’S SOCCER After making it into the national quarterfinals for the second-straight season, the men’s soccer team was sure to have multiple people honored when the postseason awards came rolling in. Ahmad Ihmeidan became the
second player in school history to be honored as a NSCAA AllAmerican twice in a career. Ihmeidan was named to the third team when the teams were announced in mid-December after leading the team with experience. Ihmeidan also scored eight goals and dished out 13 assists. Ihmeidan’s illustrious career ended with 21 goals and 64 assists. Fellow defender, Brian Martinez was honored as a Daktronics third-team All-American after helping Ihmeidan and the rest of the Mustangs’ defense garner the 13th-best goals against average and the nation’s ninth-best shutout percentage. Martinez was also named to the first-team Daktronics AllSouth Central Region and the All-Southwest Conference second team. Nine-year head coach Doug Elder raked in his fourth NSCAA Regional Coach of the Year award, including his thirdstraight year being honored. The well-honored coach has amassed a 139-34-12 record in nine seasons at MSU. WOMEN’S SOCCER Four Mustangs were named to the NSCAA South Central All-Region teams when they were released in early-December. Kari Bristow, Kelsey Hill, Kat Bernick and Kendra Clemons were all honored by the NSCAA after leading the team to a 14-7 record, which included a late-season eight-match winning streak. Bristow, who also was named a Daktronics Division II AllAmerica honorable mention player, joined freshman Hill on the second team, while Bernick and Clemons were both honored on the third team.
Bristow finished the season with seven goals and eight assists, including a 3-for-3 penalty kick percentage. Hill was the main offensive weapon for the Mustangs on the season, scoring 16 goals and assisting on three other goals. Bernick anchored the back line for MSU, while Clemons made the move up to midfield seamlessly, scoring five goals and assisting on a eight goals. CROSS COUNTRY Midwestern State’s best cross country season in school history came with multiple honors from the Lone Star Conference. First-year head coach Koby Styles was named the Coach of the Year after catapulted the program into the national picture after finishing 15th at the NCAA Division II Championships in November. Midwestern State University is the first school to capture the Lone Star Conference title without the support of a track program. Katie Stepp, Lindsey Pate and Kayla Hendrix were all named All-Lone Star Conference after leading the team. Pate and Hendrix are both freshmen and are expected to headline the program for years to come. SOFTBALL When the Lone Star Conference released its annual preseason picks, not many were surprised to see all-star pitcher Katie Peterson named the Preseason Pitcher of the Year for the LSC North Division. Midwestern State was picked to finish third in the division, as games are set to begin this week for the 2009 season.
The Wichitan Feb. 4, 2009
7 Coach Mike Tomlin celebrates victory with hearts of defensive unit, LaMarr Woodley (left) and Troy Polamalu (right)
Santonio Holmes celebrates gamewinning TD.
Steelers take home record sixth Super Bowl title with win over Cardinals Paul Domowitch MCT
This was Ben Roethlisberger’s team. This was his time. Three years ago, when the Steelers won their last Super Bowl title, Roethlisberger was just along for the ride. He played poorly in their 21-10 victory over the Seattle Seahawks, completing just nine of 21 passes and throwing two interceptions. But it didn’t matter. The Jerome Bettis-led ground game churned out 181 yards and the defense stifled the Seahawks and they won easily. But Roethlisberger vowed that the next time they got to the Big Game, it would be different. And it was. Roethlisberger completed 21 of 30 passes for 256 yards and threw the game-winning touchdown to Super Bowl MVP Santonio Holmes with 35 seconds left to give the Steelers a history-making 27-23 victory over the Cardinals. History-making because it was the Steelers’ sixth Super Bowl title, the most by any team. Kurt Warner and Larry Fitzgerald teamed up on a 64-yard score that gave the Cardinals a 23-20 lead with 2:37 left in the game. But then Big Ben did what Donovan McNabb failed to do two weeks earlier against this same team. He brought the Steelers back, engineering an eight-play, 78-yard game-clinching drive. He completed five of six passes on the drive, capping it off with a sixyarder to Holmes in the back corner of the end zone. “We’ve been in this situation six times this season and he’s done it every time,” Steelers offensive coordinator Bruce Arians said of Roethlisberger. “So I felt pretty good that he’d be able to take us down and win it. “He’s not the same player he was three years ago. He was just a young
kid then. Now, he’s this team’s leader. And he did what leaders do.” Holmes made an incredible catch on the touchdown pass. He had to get both of his feet down in bounds and gain control of the ball, and he did both. “We call that play ‘scramble left, scramble right, get open,’ “ joked a jubilant Roethlisberger, who spent much of the game dodging Cardinal passrushers, extending plays and making big throws _ most of them to Holmes, who finished with nine receptions for 131 yards and the TD. “The first read wasn’t open, the second read wasn’t open. Then I saw ‘Ton’ open in the corner of the end zone and tried to get the ball to him. He made a great catch.” The one and only negative in Roethlisberger’s performance Sunday night was a second-quarter interception off a deflected pass. And that didn’t end up hurting the Steelers. The Cardinals drove to the Pittsburgh one right after that, but then linebacker James Harrison stepped in front of a pass intended for Anquan Boldin, who tried to run a quick slant, and Harrison returned it 100 yards for a touchdown to give the Steelers a 17-7 lead at halftime. Roethlisberger came out firing. Completed seven of eight passes for 118 yards in the first quarter. The nerves that were so obvious three years ago against Seattle weren’t there this time. “It was a lot different than the last time,” he said. “I wasn’t nervous. I was nervous when the planes went over (after the national anthem). But not when the game started.” Roethlisberger’s numbers were not particularly impressive this season. He completed just 59.9 percent of his passes. Threw just two more touchdowns (17) than interceptions (15). But he always seemed to get it done
when this team needed him. “He’s a heck of a quarterback,” Cardinals defensive coordinator Clancy Pendergast said. “He did a nice job of standing in there and making some throws.” Including the last one to Holmes. “We were in a zone coverage,” Pendergast said. “They were in a clustertype formation. They made a heckuva play and we didn’t. It was a great throw and catch. It was something we anticipated. But, like I said, they made a play and we didn’t.” Said Roethlisberger: “I’m so proud of this group of guys. We hung through some tough times, some adversity. They talk a lot (negatively) about this offense. But you know what? I’m so proud of the way we responded on that last drive. I hope we silenced some critics.” DID YOU NOTICE? After giving up 10 catches to Eagles tight end Brent Celek in the NFC Championship Game, the Cardinals gave up three for 43 yards to Steelers tight end Heath Miller in the first quarter. Miller finished with five catches for 57 yards. The great push by Steelers right guard Darnell Stapleton and right tackle Willie Colon on Gary Russell’s one-yard touchdown run early in the second quarter. The excellent edge block by tight end Miller on Willie Parker’s 15-yard run in the third quarter. It was the kind of block you seldom see from the Eagles’ tight ends. JUST WONDERING Whether the Cardinals made a tactical error when they won the opening coin toss, but elected to defer rather
than give the ball to their explosive offense right out of the gate. The Steelers drove 71 yards on their first possession and took a 3-0 lead on a Jeff Reed field goal. THUMBS UP To Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald and quarterback Kurt Warner for nearly lifting the Cardinals to a Super Bowl win with impressive second-half performances. After catching just one pass in the first half, Fitzgerald had six catches for 115 yards and two TDs in the second half. Warner, who finished with 377 passing yards, threw for 224 yards in the fourth quarter against the league’s best defense. To the thousands of Steeler fans who descended on Tampa this week and jammed the stadium Sunday night with their “Terrible Towels.” I’m not sure this city would have survived an Eagles-Steelers Super Bowl. THUMBS DOWN To the zebras, for the lame roughingthe-passer penalty they called on Cardinals linebacker Karlos Dansby in the third quarter. Roethlisberger released the ball just as Dansby was about to hit him. And he pulled back as soon as the ball came out. BY THE NUMBERS Larry Fitzgerald, who had seven catches for 127 yards and two touchdowns against the Steelers, finished the postseason with 30 receptions for 546 yards and seven TDs in four games. All of those numbers are NFL playoff records. The Steelers held the Cardinals to 33 rushing yards on 12 carries. In three playoff games, they allowed just 121
rushing yards and held opponents to 2.5 yards per carry. They gave up more than 100 rushing yards just four times in 19 games this season. With the Cardinals winning the opening coin toss Sunday, the NFC now has won 12 straight Super Bowl coin tosses. Ken Whisenhunt won both of his replay challenges against the Steelers. Before that, he was just 3-for-13 in his career on replay challenges. The Steelers had 140 net yards in the first quarter, compared to 13 for the Cardinals. Cardinals tight end Ben Patrick’s one-yard TD catch in the second quarter was his first TD reception of the season. He had just 12 catches in the first 19 games. Ben Roethlisberger’s deflected pass that was intercepted by Cardinals linebacker Karlos Dansby in the second quarter was his 10th deflected pass of the season. He had another one later in the game. In his last 10 games, Roethlisberger threw just four interceptions, including one Sunday night. He had 12 in his first nine games this season. The Steelers had two takeaways against the Cardinals, giving them eight in their three playoff games. Roethlisberger, who had one TD pass in Sunday night’s win, had multiple touchdown passes in just five of the Steelers’ 19 games this season. Kurt Warner’s 1,147 passing yards in the Cardinals’ four playoff games set a league record for postseason passing yardage. His 11 TD passes equaled the NFL postseason record set by Joe Montana in 1989. Thirty-six-year-old Mike Tomlin became the youngest Super Bowlwinning coach in league history.
Michaels, Madden commentary during game leaves more to be desired Both times NBC’s slowestmotion camera confirmed the touchdowns with Michaels and Michaels, Madden Madden pointing out just why Between them, Al Michaels they were indeed scores. and John Madden have what NBC gave what is certain to seems like a couple of hundred be the largest television audiyears of broadcast experience. ence of the year a solid, no-frills Here’s their analysis of the broadcast. Michaels and MadSteelers’ game-winning touch- den were all business. The final down pass to Santonio Holmes 5:30 of the 27-23 Steelers vicwith seconds remaining: tory over the Cardinals was al Madden: “Unbelievable.” most commercial-free. Michaels: “Incredible.” Michaels didn’t have a classic It was a reversal of sorts. On line at game’s end, nothing near the momentum-shifting 100- the “Do you believe in mirayard interception return for cles?” closer at the 1980 Winter a touchdown by the Steelers’ Olympics. But fans of the CowJames Harrison as time ran out boys, who have won five Super in the first half it went like this: Bowls, probably took note of his Michaels: “Unbelievable.” words at the end of the game. Madden: “Unbelievable.” Concluded Michaels: “And Michaels: “This is amazing.” the Pittsburgh Steelers become Michaels: “That was incred- the first franchise in history to ible.” win six Super Bowls.” Madden: “A guy makes a play like that, they have to give him a Five fab moments touchdown.” But really, what else was left 1) Bruce Springsteen’s reto say? On both plays. sponse to Bob Costas when Barry Horn MCT
asked pre-game why he finally consented to perform at a Super Bowl halftime: “I have an album to promote, dummy. It’s not rocket science.” 2) NBC’s Jerome Bettis, a Steelers icon, and Steelers coach Mike Tomlin admitting pre-game that they each rooted for the Cowboys against the Steelers in Super Bowl XIII. 3) Jennifer Hudson’s 2:13 rendition of the national anthem. 4) NBC camera work that overturned Ben Roethlisberger’s apparent touchdown on the opening drive of the game. 5) Michaels reminding that NBC’s halftime show would be “in the pirate ship, Buccaneer Cove.” Added Michaels, showing off his current events acumen: “Bob and the pirates, hopefully none of them from Somalia.” Three forgettable moments 1) Every single second inside
the “Super Suite.” Everyone who stepped inside to chat with Al Roker was selling something. “Dwayne this looks like a real hoot,” Roker told “The Rock” about his upcoming movie. It may have been the bit’s seminal moment. 2) The series of technical difficulties during the highly promoted Matt Lauer-Barack Obama White House interview. 3) NBC’s down-and-distance graphic never displayed the yard line. Ratings, ratings, ratings We’ll have to wait until today to see how low SteelersCardinals ranks on the all-time Super Bowl ratings list. Super Bowl XVI, which featured the 49ers-Bengals, is the champ at a 49.1. That means 49.1 percent of all the homes with televisions, tuned in on a freezing cold day around much of the country. There were those who believed that last year’s Giants-
Patriots’ game, with teams from a couple of top seven markets that went down to the wire, had a chance to challenge the gold standard. It didn’t come close, falling a whopping six ratings points short of the record. There wasn’t much pre-game faith that the Steelers-Cardinals might post anything approaching an impressive Super Bowl rating today. The game, however, gave NBC and viewers a terrific second half that certainly should help. The record-low? The much revered Super Bowl III played 40 years ago that featured the Jets-Colts at 36.0. Lopsided Super Bowl XXIV, which the 49ers won by 45 points over the Broncos, scored a 39.0 back in 1990. For Steelers vs. lowprofile Cardinals, anything over 40.0 will be a big win for NBC. Around the Horn Madden was emphatic that the Steelers did the right thing when they kicked a field goal on
fourth-and-inches from the goal line on their first possession. “A play you have to do,” he said. At halftime, studio analyst Mike Holmgren was certain the Steelers should have gone for the touchdown. . .. Michaels’ point about analysis of “composite” replays when a definitive replay was unavailable was something I had never heard previously. . ... Madden sounded smart when he said in the fourth quarter that the Cardinals “can still do business in the middle (of the field).” That was followed by a Kurt Warner completion to Steve Breaston and the goahead touchdown pass to Larry Fitzgerald. Best Madden line was on Ben Roethlisberger’s performance: “Did you do it when you had to do it, to win the game?’’
The Wichitan Feb. 4, 2009
On Deck this week... Wednesday February 4 Womens Hoops Tarleton State at 6 p.m. Mens Hoops
Tarleton State at 8 p.m.
Thursday February 5 Softball* Washburn at 2 p.m. St. Marys at 4 p.m.
Friday February 6 Softball* Incarnate Word at 1:30 p.m. St. Edwards at 4 p.m.
Saturday February 7 MSU Rugby Club Baylor at 2 p.m. Softball* Abilene Christian at 1:30 p.m. Womens Hoops @ Tarleton State Mens Hoops @ Tarleton State Womens Tennis @ North Texas * - Indicates games being played at St. Marys Tournament
Home Events are Bolded
Thompson overshadowed by 73-57 loss to Wildcats MSUMustangs.com For the Wichitan
Audrey Lively-Maxwell poured in a game-high 28 points to lead Abilene Christian to a 7357 win over Midwestern State in Lone Star Confernece South Division play at D.L. Ligon Coliseum. With the win, the Wildcats snapped a 19-game stretch in their series with MSU in which the home team claimed the win dating back to ACU’s 77-59 victory on Feb. 9, 1998. Midwestern had claimed nine-straight wins in Wichita Falls during the stretch. Abilene Christian raced out to a 26-12 lead after Maxwell-
Lively hit a layup with 8:06 remaining in the first half, but the Mustangs closed to within 33-26 after Cierra Thompson converted a steal into layup 54 seconds before halftime. Thompson, a 5-11 freshman from Llano, completed her first career double-double by scoring 16 points and pulling in 10 rebounds, but Thompson remained active on the defensive end with three steals. But the Wildcats pushed the lead back to 10 before halftime and would keep it there throughout much of the second half. The Mustangs managed a 9-2 run midway through the second half and pulled to within 56-48
on a pair of Jazman Patterson free throws with 8:49 to go. That’s as close as it would as Abilene Christian pushed the lead back to as much as 18. Andrea Buben, Rosy Ofoegbu and Regiane Araujo added eight points each for the Mustangs, who fell to 7-12 on the season and 2-3 in the LSC South Division. Jamie Meyer pitched in a double-double for the Wildcats with 13 points and 15 rebounds. Midwestern State plays host to Tarleton State Wednesday night at D.L. Ligon Coliseum. Tipoff is set for 6 p.m. Abilene Christian improved to 13-7 and 2-3.
Patrick Johnston | The Wichitan Cierra Thompson (23) drives by an opponent last Saturday evening. She recorded her first career double-double this Saturday in MSU’s loss. She had 16 points and 10 boards.
Mustangs Conference Standings Lone Star Conference
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