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tuesday march 24, 2009 blacksburg, va.

Tech to receive $17.3 million in stimulus money PHILIPP KOTLABA

ct news staff writer Virginia Tech is to receive $17.3 million a year for the 2010 and 2011 fiscal years in federal stimulus money. The university plans to use these funds, part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, to help offset the loss of more than $26 million in state support for its general budget. Details of the funds’ implementation are not yet available.

what the qualifications are for how monies are going to be spent. They might have strings attached,” Hincker said. “In the end, it is the General Assembly that really decides with the proviso ... of how those monies are going to be spent, and that’s the reason why we’re not really going to know exactly for sure in what way the monies are going to be spent until the General Assembly” reconvenes, Hincker said. Because the stimulus funds will only be offered for the next two fiscal years, the university cannot afford

“To a certain extent, it’s meant to plug a hole from the budget reductions, but the actual implementation (into) the budget plans is still in process,” said Larry Hincker, university spokesman. Perhaps most importantly, university leaders are awaiting clarification on stimulus fund stipulations from the Virginia General Assembly when it reconvenes for its special veto session on April 8. “The biggest problem everybody’s got with the federal monies, not only here but everywhere, is ... you don’t know

Steger lobbys in Richmond PHILIPP KOTLABA

Budget allocations for higher institutions and Tech

ct news staff writer Recent trips to Richmond by President Charles Steger helped Virginia Tech receive $17 billion in stimulus funds, more so than any other higher education institution in Virginia. Tech is technically a state agency, and Steger, as the agency head, is expected to represent the university to both the legislative and executive branches of state government. As such, an important slice of his schedule each year is spent in Richmond, representing the university to state lawmakers. Most recently, Steger was presSTEGER ent at the General Assembly Feb. 19 and before that, Jan. 27-29. In the course of his journeys, Steger testifies before legislative committees, meets individually with committee heads and does what is necessary to convey the consequences of lawmakers’ proposals on Tech. “It’s part of his job to understand the impact of either rule-making or proposed legislation on the university and then convey ... what the impact might be,” said Larry Hincker, university spokesman. Explaining that requires meeting with heads of staff, house appropriations, senate finance and education committees and other legislators “who are responsible for saying ‘yea’ or ‘nay’,” Hincker said. “That gets — of course — real hot and heavy during the General Assembly season when they’re in session, but President Steger of course goes back and forth to Richmond throughout the year.” The university plane — which also

Type of money Stimulus money Financial aid money Eminent scholars program

VA Higher Institutions Total

What Tech received

$126.7 million $10.8 million $4 million

$17.3 million $510,000 $385,000 SARA SPANGLER/COLLEGIATE TIMES

sometimes acts as a shuttle for larger university delegations — usually serves as the preferred mode of transportation, although Steger occasionally drives as well. Last year, President Steger made four expeditions to Richmond across a total of nine days, staying five nights. He flew in the university plane each time, with an average cost of $800 per round-trip flight, totalling $3,200. Lodging and meals averaged $200 a night. Altogether, the university spent $4,500 to fund the visits. The trips themselves vary depending on the circumstances. “He’s here year-round as needed,” said Laura Fornash, director of state government relations in Richmond. “It just varies as the year and what initiatives are going on.” The General Assembly meets annually beginning in mid-January for 60 days in even-numbered years and 30 days in odd-numbered years. “It’s a very short time-frame,” said Ralph Byers, executive director of government relations. For the first three weeks of the General Assembly’s annual session, Steger will regularly spend “a couple of days a week making rounds” in the state capital. Then, six weeks after the session adjourns, the General Assembly reconvenes to exam-

ine the governor’s proposed changes and possible vetoes on legislation. Steger generally revisits lawmakers toward the end of the special session, “Just to close the loop on some of the things that have happened,” Byers said. This year, Steger’s trips have been all about the budget. “We were trying to make the case that Virginia Tech and higher education should not get a cut or receive any additional cuts, and we were successful with that message,” Byers said. “We’re usually down there trying to get an increase in that; this year, we’re just trying to ward off any additional decreases,” Byers said. This is especially important to Steger as he maintains that the university has done its fair share to address budgetary constraints. For example, last year, the state asked public universities to increase their in-state enrollment, and Tech accepted more than 2,000 additional Virginia students than usual. “The president was saying, OK, guys, we’ve done our part, and we’d like to get the appropriations to fund these additional students,” Hincker said. Depending on the issues at hand, the frequency of Steger’s trips varies

considerably. In the past, when the university was involved in massive pieces of legislation that directly affected the university, “He was down a lot more then,” Byers said. For example, in 2005, the General Assembly passed the Higher Education Restructuring Act, giving more autonomy to public institutions of higher learning. “The legislation for that alone was 70 pages,” Hincker said. “The president spent a lot of time ... working with state government and with legislators” to provide Tech new authority. Steger’s trips occasionally take him to Washington, D.C., to talk with Virginia’s representatives in the federal government. The university holds a reception for Virginia’s congressional delegation, although current economic circumstances led to the cancellation of this year’s event. One of the major recent accomplishments has been securing $59 million in funding for the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and Research Institute in Roanoke. Other successes from years past include approval for expansion of the Corporate Research Center and reforming state intellectual property — allowing university faculty to retain IP from their research and license or relinquish it as seen fit. “He was intimately involved in all of that calling on legislators, the negotiations with the executive branch, with the staff; I mean, he was really in the middle of all of that,” Byers said. “These things go across several years.” “The issue ... might pop up one year and then you have discussions with government leaders, and then they don’t even address it until the following year,” Hincker added. Byers added that occasionally it can take years to get one item through.

‘Clothesline Project’ offers outlet for abuse victims

to rely on them to solve long-term shortfalls.“That’s why they’re taking a short and long-range looking at this thing,” he said. Additional factors, such as increased energy expenses, new university initiatives, and other investments are also unresolved. Consequently, “it is too early to say yet” what the upcoming university budget will look like, Hincker, said although it is expected to come together in the next “month or two months.”

Board shelves tuition decision until April PHILIPP KOTLABA

ct news staff writer Donation of university land for an elementary school, the creation of a new professorial rank, and the relocation of agricultural facilities topped the agenda at yesterday’s Board of Visitors meeting. The only thing missing at the March 23 meeting was the one thing on everyone’s mind: tuition. “Because there’s so much uncertainty with respect to funding from the state, the university did not set the tuition which they would normally do at the March meeting for the coming year,” said Larry Hincker, university spokesman. “They delegated to the executive committee the authority to set tuition levels right after they come out of the General Assembly session (in April),” Hincker said. This has happened once before, Hincker said, “back when we had severe budget reductions in the early part of this decade, and there was a lot of uncertainty at that time.” The Board did discuss how approximately 20 acres of university land were donated to Montgomery County. The property, located south of Prices Fork Road, will serve as the location for a new elementary school. A new, non-tenure “Professor of Practice” position was approved for use to recognize practitioners in fields such as architecture and engineering. Departments will have discretion in the position’s appointment. Administrative and professional faculty will join academic faculty in receiving overload pay for going beyond the scope of their regular workload to teach credit courses. The board also discussed several building initiatives. A central chiller plant to serve future development along Prices Fork Road will be built with an estimated $3.8 million. An $18 million addition to the Jamerson Center will sustain football and Olympic sport programs. Preliminary plans for a two-story Visitors and Undergraduate Admissions Center at the main campus entryway were reviewed along with a new academic and student affairs building and renovations to Owens Food Court and West End Market. Finally, the board approved the initial phase for a long-range relocation of agricultural research and teaching facilities to Kentland Farm from property along Route 460 bypass. The university budget will be discussed and approved at the June meeting. “They got a little briefing about what’s going on in the legislative session,” Hincker said. Overall, Hincker said, the board meeting went as expected. “The only difference was ... they weren’t able to set the tuition.”

GSA Symposium celebrates anniversary



ct news staff writer

ct news staff writer

Womanspace and Montgomery County National Organization for Women hope to bring the issue of violence against women out in the open through a display on the Drillfield on Wednesday, March 25, and Thursday, March 26. Through the Clothesline Project, the two organizations are able to visually display the impact that violence has had on women in the New River Valley with the support of The Women’s Center at Virginia Tech and the Women’s Resource Center of the New River Valley. Faculty and students of both Virginia Tech and Radford, as well people from Roanoke and surrounding areas, have contributed shirts they’ve decorated with their experiences. The two primary purposes of the project are to raise awareness about violence against women in the community and to offer victims a chance to share their stories. “Creating a shirt aids the survivor in his or her healing process,” said Susan Anderson, assistant coordinator for Montgomery County NOW. The shirts are color coded: yellow or beige for women who have experienced physical abuse; red, orange and pink for victims of rape or sexual assault; blue and green for survivors of incest or sexual abuse as a child; and purple and lavender for women who have been attacked because of their sexual orientation. Black and white shirts represent women who have been handicapped or killed because of abuse, respectively. According to Womanspace club President Nicole Faut, the Clothesline Project began nationally in the fall of 1990 in Massachusetts. Anderson said that the project began at Tech in 1994. Volunteers at Tech for the event are mainly students from women’s studies classes and members of Womanspace, a club that focuses on women’s issues, such as domestic abuse and women’s rights. There are currently 450 shirts on the line

Starting Wednesday, some of the best graduate researchers at Virginia Tech will descend upon the Graduate Life Center to present and discuss their work. The day will mark the silver anniversary of the Graduate Student Assembly’s Research Symposium. With more than 170 projects, the symposium is the largest it’s ever been. With over 60 more submissions than last year, GSA President Joe McFadden says that some presentations will have to be set up in the hallways of the GLC to accommodate all of the researchers. McFadden is thrilled by the growth of the event, now in its 25th year. “The GSA’s main priority is to give (graduate students) a chance to showcase their work,” McFadden said. One of the key factors in making WILLSON the event work is the diversity of the audience. “We get grad students, faculty, undergrads, and we even get some administrators to stop by,” McFadden said. “It’s a wide range of individuals.” The size of the symposium is not the only record-setting aspect of the event. The $500 first prize is the highest in the history of the symposium, McFadden said. Second- and thirdplace finishers will receive $400 and $300 prizes, respectively. The winners, who will be chosen by a committee of two faculty members and one graduate student, will receive their prizes a week later at the Awards Banquet on April 2. At the banquet, at which McFadden estimates attendance over 175 people, Grant Willson of the University of Texas will present the keynote speech. The general chair of the symposium’s organizing committee, Ashish Ranjan, says Willson, a highly regarded researcher in chemistry and chemical engineering, will discuss his journey to becoming a scientist and some of the work he has done in the field. Michael Perfetti, a master’s student in chemistry, is enthusiastic about Willson’s speech. “It’s a broad talk; you don’t need a Ph.D. to


Lauren Rode, then-freshman biology major, admires shirts on display for the Clothesline Project in March 2007. from previous years, and each year generally adds between 20 and 50 new shirts to the line. Montgomery County NOW provides the blank T-shirts, fabrics, wood and other materials for the project.

To make a shirt, stop by the Women’s Center at Virginia Tech at 206 Washington St. anytime between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. until Friday. In case of rain, the display will be located in Squires Student Center. Donations aid in the purchase of the items, as does money raised by selling feminist buttons, which can be purchased at tables during events such as Take Back the Night on March 26. “My hope is that people would view the shirt and that it would stir them in wanting to help lessen the violence in our commu-

nity,” Anderson said. Students can help end violence against women by volunteering or donating money to organizations that aid victims, she said. They can also make a difference by speaking out about verbal and physical abuse they witness in the community. The planners hope that the display on the Drillfield will make a powerful statement about the frequency of abuse in Blacksburg, Radford and the surrounding areas. “Each shirt represents a person who has been harmed by violence, and I think that when you see shirt after shirt after shirt you realize that violence happens everywhere in the world, including our own community,” Anderson said. Anyone wishing to make a shirt can stop by the Women’s Center at Virginia Tech at 206 Washington St. anytime between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. until Friday of this week. In case of rain, the display will be located in Squires Student Center.

Key Dates & Times WHAT: Research Symposium DATE: March 25, 2009 TIME: 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. WHERE: GLC Multipurpose Room and Auditorium Room B, C, D, F, G WHAT: Awards Banquet DATE: April 2, 2009 TIME: 5:30 p.m. - 7:15 p.m. WHERE: GLC Multipurpose Room WHAT: Keynote Speech DATE: April 2, 2009 TIME: 7:30 p.m. WHERE: GLC Auditorium SARA SPANGLER/COLLEGIATE TIMES

understand what he’s talking about,” Perfetti said. “He’s a great public speaker and actually a really funny guy.” Adding to the field of researchers who will be in attendance for the symposium will be bio-engineering firm Novozymes. Tech alumnus Shawn Semones will represent the Roanoke branch of the firm. Semones is the senior research and development group manager in the BioAgricultural applications division. Semones and his colleague Lois Davis will host a panel discussion on corporate responsibilities concerning the environment from noon to 1 p.m. at the symposium on Wednesday. The symposium is very diverse in the fields and areas of study represented. Though Tech has a reputation as an engineerladen school, the symposium will showcase research from all of the academic colleges at the university. The College of Science leads the way with 29 percent of the submissions, and the Colleges of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Engineering both come in at 25 percent. Submissions from social science majors will cover 18 percent, with architecture rounding out the field.

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2 features

editor: bethany buchanan email: phone: 540.231.9865 office hours: w 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., f 1:30 - 2:30 p.m.

march 24, 2009

With new location, Eats offers convenient, organic grocery options MARY ANNE CARTER

ct features reporter After sophomore biology major Hannah Findlay decided to adopt the diet of a vegetarian for Lent, she went to the local organic grocery store, Eats Natural Foods, to stock up on supplements and tofu sausage. “They have a really wide range of interesting food and things to try. I love trying all the different nuts and fruit and bulk stuff,” Findlay said. “And I like that so much of it is fresh and local, too, because in the spring I just go to the Farmers Market, but since it is closed in the winter I really rely on Eats. It’s nice to have the option of buying organic things for the same price as generic brand things at grocery stores.” Offering an extensive collection of

hard-to-find organic produce, allnatural groceries, brewing supplies, specialty spices, cheeses, loose teas and bulk items, Eats “serves to provide the Blacksburg community with the highest quality food at the lowest possible price,” said manager Sam Davis. Boasting that it’s been “doing it naturally since 1974,” Eats celebrates its 35th anniversary this year with its new location and expansion. Formerly located on South Main Street in a space shared with Oasis, Eats moved in late January to 708 North Main St. with Bike Barn, Davis said. Eats was located on South Main Street for about a year and a half following a fire of undetermined cause at its original location, also on North Main Street. Since the move, Davis said the store has been continually expanding, add-

ing new products on a daily basis. The majority of the newest merchandise is by the request of customers. “If a customer wants to see something in the store, they can write it down on a list up at the register, and we will carry it,” said Davis. “We get more and more orders every day.” Graham Wynnings, a sophomore English major at Virginia Tech, finds the cordial environment reason enough to shop at Eats. “I don’t even eat vegetarian or organic or vegan or anything specific,” he said. “I really just go to support a great local business.” Such customer loyalty and support has helped ease the transition to the new space, Davis said. “It has really been a community effort — over a hundred customers helped with the move,” Davis said. “They just

showed up and drove. We really appreciate the customer help.” Its customer base has continued to grow since the move, its downtown location attracting walk-ins and students the store could not reach as easily on South Main Street. “The new location is more convenient for me; I don’t have to climb uphill on a bike,” Wynnings said. “It’s easier to get to, and since their stuff is so affordable, I’d rather go there than another store.” “We’ve started to carry general grocery items like all-natural wax paper and Band-aids, things people need that you can’t get anywhere close,” Davis said. Regardless of the product — especially since the store just recently started to carry general grocery items like Band-aids — Eats maintains an effort to sell only products with the fewest

chemicals and harmful ingredients as possible, employing a hands-on approach to selecting only the highest quality companies to work with and keeping up with new developments in product safety. “We are constantly weeding out items as information comes out that it might be harmful,” Davis said. “Our customers don’t have to guess what is organic or what is harmful.” Eats carries all organic produce and as many other organic products as it can find and sell, many of them available in bulk, Davis said. A system of large containers filled with colorful dried fruit, nuts, grains, spices, teas and trail mixes, the selection of bulk items allows customers to buy as much or as little of an item as needed at prices significantly lower than prepackaged goods.

“People tend to forget, but we have over 100 organic spices available in bulk at prices lower than a grocery store,” said Davis. “You can buy just a teaspoon full, so if you are making a recipe that calls for something unusual, you can try it out without buying the whole thing.” A plentiful stock of cosmetic testers, generous supply of cheese samples and option of buying a single cup of tea while you shop further this reflect this mission, familiarizing customers with the products before they buy them. In addition to its extensive collection of bulk items, Eats provides another set unique products: brewing supplies for beer and wine. Eats began selling the supplies after a customer, who couldn’t find them elsewhere, requested it. And, Davis said, “(Eats) continues to be the only place around you can get it.”

Though different in approach, artists create satisfying, fun and complementary music Hello. My name is Peter. (Hi, Peter.) And I’ve been a Kelly Clarkson fan for years. It feels good to get that off my chest. While I never saw PETER her on “American VELZ Idol,” resistance is futile in the face multimedia of pop jams such reporter as “Since U Been Gone.” As such, reviewing a Kelly Clarkson album is irresistible. Where else can I use inane slang like “natch” (as in “naturally”) without being judged by the harsh gaze of my peers? So how do I maintain what little indie cred I have while also reviewing her latest, “All I Ever Wanted?” Easy. I’m simultaneously reviewing Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ latest, “It’s Blitz!” Both CDs were released over spring break and both indicate a morphing identity for their respective artists. With the electronic-infused “It’s Blitz!,” YYY continues crafting a niche for their Brooklyn-branded rock while simultaneously honing a more commercially-viable sound. Their fame following the success of the single “Maps” was unexpected, forcing the otherwise distant band into the spotlight. Their strong 2006 follow-up, “Show Your Bones,” failed to garner any major hits, but “It’s Blitz!” may buck that trend and

“All I Ever Wanted” Grade: B

“It’s Blitz” Grade: A-

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might end up on several critics’ yearend, best-of lists. Kelly Clarkson marks her return to her star-making confectionary pop following the commercial stagnation that was her 2007 album, “My December.” While generally well-received by critics, the introspective and hard-to-market album was a sales disappointment. Thus we have “All I Ever Wanted,” henceforth known as Clarkson’s artistic compromise with her record label. The differences between her new and past albums are apparent right from the covers. Whereas “My December” featured a dark and brooding shot of Clarkson in a blood-red gown worthy of an Annie Leibovitz “Vogue” cover shot, “All I Ever Wanted” is aesthetically closer to “Tiger Beat,” complete with splashy colors and Photo-shopped sparkle-glints. Musically, however, Clarkson man-

ages to be fun and memorable. Radioready hits pepper the album including the catchy, if unfortunately titled, “My Life Would Suck Without You.” Equally awkward, but even more fun, “I Do Not Hook Up” is poised to be her next hit. Penned by cherry ChapStickloving Katy Perry and recently added American Idol judge Kara DioGuardi, this gem features such empowering lines as, “I can’t cook, no, but I can clean — up the mess she left.” You can almost hear the “Since U Been Gone” songwriting gears clicking into place — and there’s nothing wrong with a song formula when the formula works this well. Likewise, the album’s title song sets the bar high by featuring a baseline so simple and effective that the Greek god of music Apollo himself must have taken three minutes out of his day to strum it out. Additionally, the upbeat and retro

“Ready” is immediately hummable and serves as the best showcase of her vocal prowess. Clarkson’s signature voice — approachably airy, though smartly subdued — has never sounded better. She can belt out the vocal flourishes with the best of them, but unlike some singers (read: Christina Aguilera), Clarkson can effectively restrain herself. Otherwise forgettable and typical ballads like “Cry” and the piano-driven “Save You” are likeable, if only for her strong vocals. On the YYY’s side of things, enigmatic lead singer Karen O largely downplays her screechy and occasionally off-putting voice to allow for a softer and more aurally-pleasing sound. Additionally, glam-rock production values of “It’s Blitz!” make it a must-have. “Zero,” the album’s stunner of an opener, bubbles with unmatched intensity. Karen O never lets her delicate voice fade behind the thrashing drums and synth-laden melody. Her personality also beams through all the musical theatrics: “You’re zero,” she belts, “What’s your name? / No one’s gonna ask you.” Zing! Comparisons to vintage Blondie are almost too obvious to make. Almost. Equally brilliant, “Heads Will Roll” is an engagingly simple dance floor anthem. Initially leaked on Kanye West’s music blog (so you know it’s good), you can’t help but

surrender under Karen O’s domineering bravado as she commands to “dance, dance, dance till you’re dead.” If Lady GaGa’s “Just Dance” wasn’t already insipidly puerile, then it certainly has lost all relevance in the face of Karen O’s bombastic declarations to boogie. “Soft Shock” and “Skeleton” complement each other with an ethereal rhythm, and a drum-line beat on the latter makes it one album’s best songs. Lyrically, “Hysteric” seems a spiritual successor to “Maps” with its chorus, “Flow sweetly, hang heavy / You suddenly complete me.” And it certainly has the potential to achieve that song’s success if released as a single. The Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs rarely hit a sour note on the album, but some songs feel undercooked, like “Shame & Fortune” despite its blaring baseline. Fortunately, “Little Shadow” ends the album on a high note, shattering all doubt that “It’s Blitz!” is a necessity for any alt-rock fan. Comparing the two albums highlights the differences in the creative process of making music. The Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs worked with only two producers: Dave Sitek of TV on the Radio and Nick Launay, who has notably worked with the Talking Heads and INXS. Clarkson’s disc conversely has six different producers (including herself) on top of nearly 25 songwriters. Guess which one sounds more cohesive and controlled, and which is a scattershot of songs striving to be singles.

Getting back to Clarkson, some of her songs seem uncomfortably familiar. “Already Gone,” for example, sounds vaguely Coldplay circa 2002. Coincidentally, Karen O has accused Clarkson of lifting the guitar riff from “Maps” for use in her “Since U Been Gone.” Then there are songs such as the annoyingly cheery “I Want You.” Lazy songwriting (by my calculations, the three words of the title make up 60 percent of the lyrics) combined with its throw-away tune makes it a low point on an otherwise good disc. And “Whyyawannabringmedown” follows in the vein of Beyonce’s “Diva”: a song so bad and out of place that it’s possibly ... good? No, it’s just bad. I encourage Kelly fans to give “It’s Blitz!” a chance, and YYY fans maybe can appreciate the perfectly manufactured sugar-pop fun found on Clarkson’s “All I Ever Wanted.” Think of “It’s Blitz!” as a delicately assembled eight-course meal, with nuanced flavors but delivered in tiny portions. It tastes great, but it may leave you ever-so-slightly underfed. “All I Ever Wanted” then is that indulgent chocolate sundae leaving you happily overstuffed. And just like food, moderation is essential. And how do you practice musical moderation? Be adventurous and don’t limit yourself to one specific genre, natch.


opinions 3

editor: laurel colella email: phone: 540.231.9865 office hours: mw 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.

march 24, 2009


Clothesline Project provides avenue for women to share story This Wednesday and Thursday, Womanspace and the Montgomery County National Organization for Women will set up their annual display on the Drillfield. Known as the Clothesline Project, the initiative is an attempt to raise awareness about violence against women and offer those who are victims the chance to share their experiences. Women who have been victims create shirts in a variety of colors based on their personal experiences. Each shirt represents a person who has dealt with the effects of violence at some point during their life. This project is always a positive event in that it opens up the community to something that is normally kept quiet. Many victims of violence are often either too ashamed or scared to open up and share their experiences and personal stories with others, and this project gives them that opportunity. The unique aspect of the project is that each year new shirts are added to the line, along with the other hundreds of shirts that have been displayed in previous years. Adding their own T-shirts to a clothesline with shirts of those from years past provides victims with some sort of solidarity in letting them know they’re not alone. The courage of one small group of people to make their personal stories known is what inspires others to open up about their own experiences with abuse. “Sexual Assault goes underreported” (CT, Feb. 5) presented statistics from Tech’s Clery Act report, reporting that there

were 11 reported cases of sexual assault between 2006 and 2007. The story goes on to note that a report issued by the National Institute of Justice and the Department of Justice estimates that approximately 35 of every 1,000 female college students are assaulted each year. Based on this statistic, the report makes the number of sexual assault cases reported at Tech each year seem much lower than one would expect. A large number of sexual assault cases go unreported each year and those who are victims need to know that there are a variety of options available to them, including counseling and the women’s center. Victims of sexual assault should never have to suffer in silence, especially because it’s never their fault. Sexual assault, however, is not the only kind of abuse victims endure. The Clothesline Project also gives those who are victims of physical abuse the opportunity to shamelessly share their stories. Those wishing to make a shirt are encouraged to do so at the Women’s Center up until this Friday. Even if you’ve never been a victim of physical or sexual abuse, you likely know someone who has. This week, take time to recognize the victims of abuse, whether sexual, physical or emotional, and give them the courage to no longer live in shame. The editorial board is composed of David Grant, David Harries, Laurel Colella, Jenna Marson and Alexandra Kauffman.

LETTER TO THE EDITOR Soldiers choose to fight because of dedication to freedom In response to “Protest on sixth anniversary of Iraq Invasion,” (CT, March 19), there is no draft. Soldiers fight today because they are dedicated to our freedom, not to the combat benefits as implied by the article. Supporting our troops means helping them protect us by showing them respect so that we can live our peaceful and easy lives. Soldier suicides are on the rise because their homecomings are not filled with warmth and appreciation, but cold shoulders. That weight is on us, the civilians. America is the luckiest nation in the world. Pearl Harbor and September 11 are the only times an attack has been made on American soil. We have the opportunity to live exactly how we please every day without worry of bombs or attack. Why? Because our soldiers protect us (from abroad) from countries that would

love to ruin our blissful existence, Iraq being one of them. Maybe we shouldn’t have gone there in the first place, who knows, but pulling out now will only increase the likelihood of American soil being invaded again. To address the statement about the number of Iraqis killed thus far, those numbers do not differentiate between Iraqis killed by American soldiers and Iraqis killed by other Iraqis. Soldiers are under orders to only take shots on people who pose threats to uninvolved Iraqi citizens and the soldiers themselves. Iraqis kill more Iraqis than soldiers do. I understand that the Iraq war is controversial, but everyone, soldiers, politicians and citizens alike, are doing all they can to resolve it. Dropping everything is not the answer, so do your part and support your amazing country. Idle protesting just reiterates what we’ve already heard. Thinking of a solution to the conflict would be more productive.

Tech administration should retire zero tolerance policy KRISTOPHER REINERTSON guest columnist I would like to raise awareness of the lack of celebration for the 20th anniversary of the enactment of our university’s zero tolerance drug policy — a policy that our administrators would be wise to retire. In the fall of 1988 we welcomed President McComas to Virginia Tech. On his first day on the job, he held a meeting with the deans and provost expressing his concern for students’ quality of life outside the classroom. March 17, the next semester, Virginia Tech enacted the zero tolerance drug policy while students were absent on spring break. There was not even a mention of this policy change in the Collegiate Times the entire year. Why no celebration? Well, first of all, there is no evidence the policy has worked. Drug use rates have increased, and more than 30 percent of current students have reported using marijuana. Since fewer students were using drugs before zero tolerance, it is hard to believe that kicking students out of school for a year for first-time possession has had the deterrent effect that proponents of the policy sometimes claim. Despite the draconian mandatory minimum sentencing laws and the fervid public support for coming down “hard on drugs” in the late 1980s, drug use was at a low across the country. This did not stop politicians from calling crack an “epidemic” and using the issue for political expediency. The “hard/soft on drugs” rhetorical dichotomy has always undermined productive discussion of the issue and citizens act wise to give politicians who use it the deaf ears they deserve. The reality is that we have kept a profit-turning market in the dark, attempting to distance ourselves from the millions of Americans who use drugs by calling them criminals while pretending these people are not our daughters, sons, cousins, brothers, sisters, aunts and uncles. When the parental instinct to protect our youth becomes the groupthink that politicians seize to get elected, our best intentions have paved the way for our worst nightmares. Innocent Mexicans are being killed and decapitated by drug cartels that terrorize for greater market share and access to trade routes, an unarmed college student was raided and shot by the police in Michigan for possessing a few tablespoons of marijuana, and Rachel Hoffman — a member

of Students for Sensible Drug Policy and student at Florida State University — was killed after police gave her the ultimatum to go undercover or go to prison for buying marijuana. As well-intentioned as the ideal of a “drug-free” America may be, these policies have proven unsuccessful because they lack the reality that our politicians eventually came to acknowledge in passing the 21st Amendment repealing alcohol prohibition: Americans will use drugs and prohibition only creates an unnecessary culture of crime. We left Al Capone and speakeasies in the past, but now we twiddle our thumbs pondering why drug cartels are keeping us from enjoying spring break in Mexico.

“Why should Virginia Tech suspend students for a year for first-time possession of drugs when the majority of our students have never received effective drug education?” “Drug violence” is “drug prohibition violence,” and the “War on Drugs” is a “War on People.” Alcohol is a drug, but we don’t see Miller and AnheuserBusch killing each other and terrorizing in turf wars. We regulate the market, ban television advertising (for tobacco), ID users and strip the licenses from businesses that violate these practices. We can and should do the same with marijuana. If there is something good that is coming from our economic recession, it is the chance to end ineffective policies just as Prohibition was ended after the Great Depression. Our new Attorney General said that medical marijuana dispensaries will no longer be raided, and there is a bill in California calling for the state to legalize and regulate marijuana. Also, President Steger joined 134 university presidents in signing the Amethyst initiative, calling for national debate on lowering the drinking age — or as some call it, ending the failed alcohol prohibition on 18 to 20 year old adults. I hope Steger and our faculty and administrators will join students in encouraging Gov. Tim Kaine to continue pushing to release non-violent drug offenders from our prisons. The tax-dollars spent on building the new Western Virginia Regional Jail could have been spent keeping our tuition reasonable, professors tenured

and salaries more attractive to recruit potential staff. We are spending between $40 billion and $65 billion each year waging our so-called War on Drugs. One would assume that with a price tag that hefty, taxpayers might see some return on their investment. Yet, the overwhelming majority of Virginia Tech students have never received effective drug education from the state. Implemented in 80 percent of our nation’s school districts, D.A.R.E. was found to be ineffective at deterring drug abuse and may actually increase the prevalence of drug use among suburban children — verified by the U.S. General Accounting Office and the Justice Department-sponsored study by Research Triangle Institute. This leads me to the following question: Why should Virginia Tech suspend students for a year for first-time possession of drugs when the majority of our students have never received effective drug education? It is a wasted opportunity when the alternative is to provide the drug education and counseling we have on hand. If we assume students have educated themselves about the harms of drug use, can we not also assume that some students have come to the realization that marijuana, especially in edible or vaporized form, is safer for both the individual and certainly for society than getting drunk and driving? While both of these acts are currently a crime, our university drug policy allows students caught for the first offense of driving drunk to go to class the next day, while students caught for the first offense with marijuana are suspended. When administrators and students respond to this dilemma, we may feel more willing to return to the dichotomous “hard on drugs” “solution” and argue to kick students out of school for drunk driving. If this is the direction our policy is to take, then some students will continue driving drunk and our attrition rate (number of students who drop out) will climb, a factor that would potentially cause our university ranking to fall. A more effective solution would be to create a Blacksburg Designated Driver Co-operative and to adopt a drug policy that allows for more discretion while utilizing our educators and counselors, rather than waging another 20 years of intolerance. Kristopher Reinertson is the president of the Virginia Tech Chapter of Students for Sensible Drug Policy.

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Everyone deserves right to necessary medical treatment Most people in the United States would agree that the president’s economic policy is the most important issue to be concerned about right now. As a 2009 graduate and someone searching the scarce job market. I would have to agree this is a valid point. However, there are many areas that are closely tied to the struggling economy that are very crucial to American citizens, and President Barack Obama is not overlooking them. He has been criticized for trying to do too much, too quickly, but if he doesn’t start programs in several different areas, important issues will get lost or will worsen before he can get to them. Health care is one of the issues I think is most important. Health care costs in the United States have grown to $2.5 trillion

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Katie Samsen junior; biology, animal science

annually, leaving 46 million people uninsured. In addition, compared to other developed countries, the United States consistently ranks lower in preventing and treating many diseases, such as diabetes. Now that people are losing their jobs, they are also losing their health insurance coverage. High medical costs cause many families every year to fall into bankruptcy and lose their homes. In a speech to Congress, Obama pointed out that in the last eight years premiums have grown four times faster than wages, and in each of these years one million people have lost health insurance. Clearly, this is an issue that cannot wait to be acted upon. Already our new Congress has enacted a law to provide health insurance to children whose parents work full time. Other aspects of health care on Obama’s agenda include finding a cure for cancer, a disease that has touched

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many of our own lives. Reasons for health care improvement and wider insurance coverage appear everywhere in everyday life. On a recent mission trip I took to Appalachia, a man we were helping stayed inside for days fighting a horrible toothache, putting off going to an expensive doctor for as long as he could. His wife had been injured in a car accident a few years before, and their family would not have survived without the disability money she received from the government. Perhaps many of us take going to dental appointments or yearly checkups for granted, but many people can’t afford these services. Not to mention what happens when the unexpected hits. I watched my grandmother lose her life savings to pay for medical expenses when she got Alzheimer’s disease and had to be supported by her children. Not everyone is lucky enough to have family members to

fall back on. One area where health care issues are obvious is in the still struggling Ninth Ward of New Orleans. Hurricane Katrina hit several years ago, but only 19 percent of the Ninth Ward’s population has returned. A woman named Patricia Berryhill donated her former home to be gutted and house a health clinic in the area. The clinic now has more than 1,300 patient files, and 95 percent of the people who go there for help have no health insurance. The clinic asks that patients pay a $25 “co-payment,” but they don’t turn people away who can’t afford it. It financially survives based on a grant from the Bush administration, which runs out in 2010. There are many poor areas in the United States such as the Ninth Ward that have this problem of large percentages of uninsured people. Imagine a woman not being able to take her sick child to the doctor or get a vaccination because she can’t

afford it. Or a man who can’t afford treatment because he lost his job and feeding his family is his priority. But it’s not just the traditional poor who will struggle with health care during this economic collapse. Middle-class citizens who used to get coverage through their employers will run into trouble when benefits are cut or they lose their jobs. When wallets are tight and entire families aren’t covered, people think twice about going to the doctor, which many of us take for granted. The right to get the best health coverage possible and to live a healthy life is one that should be available to all Americans, even in hard times. I hope the Obama administration keeps this issue near the top of the stack and continues to work to help Americans afford health care, because all people should be able to get medical treatment when they are sick, no matter how wealthy they are.

Collegiate Times Phone Numbers News/Features 231-9865 Sports/Opinions 231-9870 Editor-in-Chief 231-9867 College Media Solutions Phone Number Advertising 961-9860 The Collegiate Times, a division of the Educational Media Company at Virginia Tech, was established in 1903 by and for the students of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. The Collegiate Times is published every Tuesday through Friday of the academic year except during exams and vacations. The Collegiate Times receives no funding from the university. The Collegiate Times can be found online at Except where noted, all photographs were taken by the Student Publications Photo Staff.The Collegiate Times is located in 365 Squires Student Center, Blacksburg, Va. 24061. (540) 231-9865. Fax (540) 231-9151. Subscription rates: $65 semester; $90 academic year; $105 full year. The first copy is free, any copy of the paper after that is 50 cents per issue. © Collegiate Times, 2009. All rights reserved. Material published in the Collegiate Times is the property thereof, and may not be reprinted without the express written consent of the Collegiate Times.


4 sports

editor: thomas emerick, brian wright email: phone: 540.231.9865 office hours: w 12:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.; t 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

march 24, 2009

sports in brief RECORD EIGHT WRESTLERS HEAD TO NCAA EVENT To cap off a record-breaking season, Virginia Tech wrestling sent a program-best eight individuals to the NCAA Championships in St. Louis this weekend. Sophomores Chris Diaz and David Marone enjoyed the most success, making it to their respective rounds of 12 with Diaz at 141 pounds and Marone at 285 pounds. The two began the event with a first round loss but continued to win three back-to-back consolation rounds before bowing out. The championships began this past Thursday when freshman standout Jarrod Garnett and sophomore Tommy Spellman were the only two Tech wrestlers to win their first matches. Both Spellman and Garnett went on to lose their second rounds against No. 3 seeds, entering them into the consolation sessions to stay alive, where Diaz and Marone joined them. Garnett made it through one consolation round before being ousted by Oklahoma State’s Obe Blanc, and Spellman saw his season come to an end in his first session against Virginia’s Rocco Caponi. Marone took over the same mat Spellman had just lost on, beating an unseeded, yet heavier, Benjamin Berhow of Minnesota, 6-4. He later took on Cleveland State’s Rashard Goff, winning 7-4. At about the same time, Diaz was on a different mat defeating another Oklahoma State wrestler, Jamal Parks. They were each one win away in the round of 12, yet neither could complete the upset. Freshman Pete Yates was pulled from the tournament when he re-injured the knee he hurt during the ACC championships, eliminating him with a scratch. Freshmen Jesse Dong and Anthony Trongone and sophomore D.J. Bruce were eliminated early. – Lindsay Faulkner

GEORGIA TECH CLAIMS BASEBALL WEEKEND SET For the second week in a row, the Virginia Tech baseball team hosted a top-five, nationally-ranked opponent in Georgia Tech.

After two lopsided losses to No. 1 North Carolina last weekend, the Hokies played the No. 3 Yellow Jackets close all weekend. On Friday, Virginia Tech (13-8, 2-6 ACC) went into the ninth inning with a 9-4 lead behind a solid seven inning effort from redshirt senior pitcher Rhett Ballard. Junior Ben Rowen started the ninth for the Hokies, and the Georgia Tech (16-2, 6-1) bats finally woke up. Bowen recorded only one out before the Yellow Jackets rattled off four runs on four hits. Regular closer Jesse Hahn came in to stop the bleeding, but he then walked one and gave up the game-winning home run to Georgia Tech third-basemen Matt Skole, ultimately proving to be the difference in a 10-9 Virginia Tech setback. Saturday proved to be a better outing for the Hokies. Freshman Matthew Price pitched 6.2 innings and allowed five runs, though only one was earned. The Virginia Tech bats were led by catcher Anthony Sosnoskie and third baseman Ronnie Shaban, who each picked up three RBIs in the 9-5 victory. Tech continued to hit well on Sunday, but five errors and Georgia Tech’s offensive outburst was too much. The Yellow Jackets scored in eight of nine innings, and the Hokies dropped the rubber game by a score of 18-8. Tech will be at home again Tuesday to play USC Upstate at 5:30 p.m. – Joe Crandley

SOFTBALL DROPS TWO SATURDAY, WINS SUNDAY After dropping both games of a doubleheader on Saturday, the Tech softball team partially salvaged their series with Georgia Tech in a dramatic win on Sunday afternoon. Freshman Kristin Graham was instrumental in the Hokies’ lone victory. Knotted at 2-2, Erin Ota led off the bottom of the seventh with a double. Then Charisse Mariconda blooped a single to shallow right field. Ota was sent home, but the throw and tag beat her, preventing the clinching run. Two batters later, Graham singled up the middle. Mariconda slid into home safely, giving Tech a win in its first home series of the season. In addition, Graham, in relief of starting pitcher Kenzie Roark, threw

The women’s relay teams held their own as well. The relay team of Smith, Jordan McHorney, Medan Newell and Steffi Drechsel posted a time of 1:29.88 in the 200-meter freestyle relay, nearly breaking its top conference mark. The same group also swam the 400 free relay and tallied a 15th place showing in the event finals. Next weekend, the Tech men will take part in the NCAA Championships, where they will be represented by junior Mikey McDonald as well as freshman Charlie Higgins. – Ryan Trapp

points, sending the Hokies and Jackets into a 3-3 tie heading into doubles play. The Hokies came away with the overall victory after claiming two of three doubles matches. When the Tigers rolled into town on Sunday, Tech dominated with all of its six singles players, scoring wins as well as taking home the doubles point in unanimous fashion. The victorious Hokies included Yoann Re, Delgado de Robles, Jacques, Corace, Luka Somen and Patrick Daciek. Tech will head to Miami for a match Friday, then face No. 14 Florida State on Sunday. – Garrett Busic

LACROSSE DOWNED BY LOUISVILLE WOMEN’S TENNIS Coming off of a 21-3 loss to No. 5 Duke on Wednesday, the Virginia TOPPED BY TIGERS, Tech lacrosse team (4-6, 1-2 ACC) traveled to take on the Louisville YELLOW JACKETS Cardinals.


Charisse Mariconda and Jessica Everhart (right), along with Erin Ota (left), celebrate after Mariconda scored the winning run against Georgia Tech. five shutout innings and gave up just three hits. The previous day didn’t go as well for Virginia Tech. In the ACC opener for both clubs, the Yellow Jackets cruised in the first game of Saturday’s double-dip. Georgia Tech pounded out 13 runs and 13 hits, while the Hokies could only muster four hits in a shutout. Game two began much like the opener. The Yellow Jackets jumped out to a 4-0 lead before Tech would finally dent the scoreboard. With the bases loaded after three Hokie singles, freshman Marra Hvozdovic drew a walk to score Jessica Everhart. Then, Kristen Froehlich doubled down the right field line for two RBIs, cutting the Georgia Tech advantage to one. An inning later, Everhart tied the score with her fourth home run of the season. It would remain 4-4 into extra innings. In the ninth, the Jackets scored on a passed ball. Virginia Tech responded when a Graham two-out single brought home Ota. Georgia Tech, however, broke the tie in the top of the 10th with three runs, eventually closing out an 8-5 win.

Freshman Abbie Rexrode picked up the loss in 9.1 innings of work, throwing 159 pitches and giving up six earned runs on 12 hits. The Hokies host Radford for a Tuesday doubleheader at 5 p.m. – Brian Wright

SWIMMING AND DIVING WOMEN AT NCAA MEET The H2Okie women were in College Station, Texas, for the NCAA Championships. While California won it with an overall score of 411.5, Tech finished in 34th place. Sara Smith swam well for the H2Okies, posting a 22.12 time in the 50-meter freestyle and finished the 100 free with a time of 48.52, good for 11th and 20th place, respectively. Supporting Smith was standout freshman Erika Hajnal, who impressed in her first NCAA Championships showing. Hajnal set a new record in the 400-meter individual medley with a time of 4:11.74. She shattered her own record by nearly two seconds.

In this non-conference match-up, the Hokies were unable to stop Cardinal attacker Bergan Foley, falling 14-8. Louisville scored two minutes in, and although Tech managed to keep the game close for the majority, it was the Cardinals who pulled away at the end. Foley, who turned out to be the deciding factor in Tech’s loss, contributed six goals and an assist on the afternoon. The Hokies were again paced by freshman Jessica Nonn and senior Rachel Culp with four and three goals, respectively. Tech’s lone assist of the game came from Caitlin Wier. The Hokies will return home to Thompson Field on Wednesday to face North Carolina at 4 p.m. – Melanie Wadden

MEN’S TENNIS SWEEPS ACC MATCHES The No. 21 ranked Virginia Tech men’s tennis team continues to show its talent in ACC play. It took down both Georgia Tech and Clemson last weekend. The Hokies (11-3, 4-1 ACC) slid past Georgia Tech by a 4-3 margin on Friday and rolled past the Tigers in a landslide 7-0 on Sunday. Three Hokies came up with huge wins against the Jackets to propel the Hokies. Brandon Corace, Nicolas Delgado de Robles and Sebastien Jacques all picked up their singles

The No. 51 Virginia Tech women’s tennis team traveled south this past weekend to take on the Clemson and the Georgia Tech. The Hokies (10-6, 1-4 ACC) dropped both matches, losing a 5-2 decision to the Tigers and 7-0 to the Yellow Jackets. Entering the encounter with No. 13 Clemson, the Hokies jumped out to a quick start by taking the points in the doubles matches. The pairing of senior Jessica Brouwer and sophomore Holly Johnson came up with the biggest victory. They upset the No. 8 doubles pairing, Ani Mijacika and Keri Wong, by a count of 8-5. Also coming away with a win was the duo of sophomore Yasmin Hamza and senior Abbey Walker. Singles play, though, was dominated by the Tigers. Led by Mijacika, the No. 1 player in the country, Clemson took five of the six matches. Mijacika defeated senior Inga Beermann 6-1, 6-0. The lone singles win was by freshman Martha Blakely, 7-6, 6-4. The Hokies were thoroughly dominated by the No. 6 Yellow Jackets, who boast four players ranked in the top 50 nationally. Georgia Tech took the first point of the day by winning two of three doubles matches and then never looked back as it swept all six of the singles matches. Virginia Tech’s lone win for the day came from the doubles pairing of Beermann and Blakely as they won their match 8-7. The Hokies host No. 8 Miami on Saturday and No. 30 Florida State on Sunday. – Matt Costello



march 24, 2009


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6 sports

editor: thomas emerick, brian wright email: phone: 540.231.9865 office hours: w 12:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.; t 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

march 24, 2009

Baylor bummer ends year of Hokie heartbreak It is finally over. A season marred by heartwrenching losses and unfulfilled expectations came to a close early Saturday CALEB afternoon in FLEMING Cassell Coliseum as Virginia Tech news fell at the hands of editor the Baylor Bears, 84-66. But while the Hokies’ 18-point loss may come as a disappointment to the maroon and orange faithful, the second round defeat in the National Invitational Tournament was truly representative of the Heartbreak Hokies' season. Mistakes, impossible shots, comeback runs and an inability to consistently put points on the scoreboard led the Hokies into the consolation “Not Invited Tournament” and eventually led them out of that prematurely. From the start, in which guard Malcolm Delaney turned the ball over diving onto the scorer's table to save Cheick Diakite's tip, the Hokies made countless mistakes that led to their demise. Tech's top shooters struggled from the field. A.D. Vassallo had a slow start, missing all of his seven field-goal attempts in the first half, while Delaney made just one of his seven attempts. Combined, they were 4-for-21 shooting the three and 8-for-34 from the field. As a team, the Hokies started the game missing 17 of their first 18 attempts. They finished the game making just 32.4 percent of their field goal attempts compared to 61.7 percent for Baylor. “The biggest thing with us is that we have to contest shots,” said Baylor forward Kevin Rogers, who notched a team-high 16 points. “The biggest thing in the zone is contesting shots, especially on a guy like A.D., especially in his own gym.” Vassallo felt that Tech saw good enough looks, but that the shots simply weren't falling. “It just didn't want to go our way,” Vassallo said. “That demoralized the team.” Essentially, poor shooting ruined the Hokies’ chances at victory. They put up a grand total of 71 shots, 24 more than Baylor, and scored 18 fewer points. Transition points were hard to come by, and Tech had little success setting up a half-court offense.

But that's not all. Baylor's 2-3 zone defense was not the only thing that was too much for the Hokies to handle. The Bears were physically overpowering, something that Tech has not had much experience with in Atlantic Coast Conference play that typically houses smaller athletes than the Big 12. “Our inability to make a shot early really affected our ability to defend,” said Tech head coach Seth Greenberg. Even though Baylor's team is larger than the Hokies’, it's important to not overlook how well the Bears handled their size on the court. While Tech out-rebounded the Bears, at times it seemed like they were genuinely lost under the basket of their home floor with post players jumping over one another to grab rebounds away from their own teammates. More than a few times, Hokie big men fighting amongst themselves for the ball resulted in turnovers and squandered opportunities.

“We couldn't get transition and easy buckets. No matter how we are down we are still going to fight.” - MALCOM DELANEY GUARD With the team’s leading scorers struggling, no one was able to step up and fill the void. Baylor's lead grew bigger and bigger until it eventually became insurmountable. Shooting aside, while Delaney and Vassallo were struggling, the third member of the exclusive big three, Jeff Allen, finished with just nine points on 3-for-8 shooting. Allen only managed to pull down three rebounds while being whistled for three fouls in the second half. All three of Allen's fouls came from laziness. But then again, Allen has essentially followed the same general script all season. First, he will miss an easy inside shot or get out-muscled under the rim for a rebound. Then, instead of getting back into position and setting up on defense, Allen lazily hacks at the ball or man from behind and gets called for a foul. Allen has the potential to be great and is a valued player for Tech. But until he can establish consistency and learn to discipline himself, he will never cross the threshold from good to great.

Even though all followers of Hokie basketball have seen their fair share of close defeat, the run that Tech made midway through the second half is still memorable. After all, what basketball event in Blacksburg is complete without the traditional fall behind, comeback and eventually lose aspect? Down 28, the Hokies came charging back with nine minutes to go, just as they have done all season long. A 130 run, capped by a Dorenzo Hudson steal and slam, brought the Hokies to within 15. The Hokies came as close as 12, but ultimately it was too little, too late. Baylor's mental toughness suddenly reappeared, shots started falling, and Tech was never able to cut the lead to single digits. The Hokies never actually led against Baylor. Delaney said it the best. “We need to play like we played the last 11 minutes, every play,” he said. “We couldn't get transition and easy buckets. No matter how (much) we are down we are still going to fight.” While Tech was trying to find a way back into the game, Baylor head coach Scott Drew was struggling with the complete opposite. “It is different to play (with a 25-point advantage), because a lot of games when you get into conference play and the postseason, you don't get to that point,” Drew said. “I slowed us down too much. I probably should have been more aggressive and kept us aggressive.” As the Bears from Waco, Texas, move on to face Auburn in the NIT quarterfinals, Tech must now spend another off-season evaluating its shortcomings and preparing for a new year. The team will graduate just two seniors, Vassalo and Diakite. Vassallo, despite receiving praise from Greenberg, was far from enthused. “I wanted to leave Tech winning a championship,” he said. “I wanted to leave my mark. It just didn't want to go our way.” Such is life for all Tech fans. The everso-elusive run at a basketball championship in the NCAA tournament or NIT will have to wait another year. And if next year's team still cannot complement their defense with a disciplined offense that scores points more frequently, Tech fans could be in for another long season. “We are not where we want to be, but we sure aren't where we were,” Greenberg said. “We have a lot of work to do, but we have a good core group to work with.”


Tech’s Jeff Allen gets a face full of Baylor guard Tweety Carter’s right arm late in the second half. The Hokies lost to the visiting Bears, 84-66, on Saturday in the second round of the National Invitational Tournament.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009 Print Edition  

Tuesday, March 24, 2009 Print Edition of The Collegiate Times

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