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An independent, student-run newspaper serving the Virginia Tech community since 1903

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

COLLEGIATETIMES 107th year, issue 29

News, page 3

Features, page 4

Opinions, page 5

Sports, page 2

Classifieds, page 6

Sudoku, page 6

Bubble bursts again MICHAEL BEALEY sports staff writer With its NCAA Tournament bubble burst on Selection Sunday, the Virginia Tech men’s basketball team will regroup and return to Cassell Coliseum Wednesday night to host the Quinnipiac University Bobcats in the first round of the National Invitational Tournament. The Hokies enter the NIT as a one-seed this year after boasting 10 Atlantic Coast Conference victories and barely missing the NCAA Tournament for the thirdstraight year. The Bobcats, on the other hand, enter Wednesday’s game as an eight-seed after winning the Northeast Conference in regular season play, but failing to make the NCAA Tournament after falling 52-50 to Robert Morris University in the NEC Championship. While Hokie fans and the basketball team alike may have been disappointed with the team’s postseason destination after hearing the news Sunday, Tech head coach Seth Greenberg realizes the importance of moving on.

“It’s tough when there’s uncertainty,” Greenberg said. “It’s just the way it is; it’s the nature of the beast. There’s only a certain number of spots and when spots start disappearing ... it wasn’t easy. That is the reality of the NCAA Tournament. “We’ve got a chance to play,” he continued. “We have a chance to go to New York and cut down the nets. That’s going to be the vision we’re going to sell to our team and you know, we’re playing against a team that won 23 games so you know, we’re playing against a team that’s used to winning. We’ve got to get ourselves ready to play and that’s my job.” Last season, the Hokies missed the NCAA Tournament, settling for an NIT bid in a similar bubble-bursting fashion after finishing with a 19-15 record and defeating No. 1 Wake Forest on the road to boot. Tech was awarded a No. 2 seed in the NIT and beat No. 7 seed Duquesne in a 116-108 double overtime thriller in its first-round game. In the second round,

however, the Hokies were unable to advance further in the tournament, falling to the No. 3 Baylor, 84-66. Tech will look to improve on its performance last year by preparing to face Quinnipiac immediately. The Bobcats enter first-round play featuring two of the Northeast Conference’s premier scorers. Senior guard James Feldeine averages 17.1 points per game and junior forward Justin Rutty averages a double-double with 15.1 points and 11

rebounds per game. Sophomore guard James Johnson, who hails from Queens, N.Y., also looks to be a threat, leading the team in threepoint shooting and assists. “They’ve got a 17-point-a-game scorer who is a senior, they’ve got a point guard from New York ... who’s a tough dribbledrive guard,” Greenberg said. And it’s not just scorers that could threaten the Hokies Wednesday. Quinnipiac is coached by Tom Moore, who was hired in 2007 after spending the previous 13 years as a member of the coaching staff at the University of Connecticut. Moore was an integral part of building the 1999 and 2004 Huskies’ National Championship teams, learning under the tutelage of legendary coach Jim Calhoun — one of only eight coaches in NCAA Division I history to have 800 wins.


more basketball inside


-fill out an NCAA bracket, page seven -see a photo essay of the ACC Tournament, page eight


Hokies guard Dorenzo Hudson puts up a hotly contested shot in the lane during Tech’s loss to Miami. After earning a bye in the ACC Tournament, the fourth-seeded Hokies lost to the ACC’s worst regular season team.

Ironically, if the Hokies win against Quinnipiac, Tech could potentially meet Calhoun’s Huskies in the second-round of the NIT. Connecticut, a four-seed, takes on Northeastern University, a fiveseed, Tuesday night. “We’re obviously in the process of collecting as much information as we can on Quinnipiac,” Greenberg said. “I know they won 23 games, I know that coach Moore is a disciple of Jim Calhoun which means they’re going to play really hard, I know they’re athletic.” “I think they play really hard and that’s kind of all (coach Moore) knows from the number of years he spent with Jim (Calhoun).” The Hokies will have to shoot well

from the field if they want a shot at advancing in the NIT. Tech took a giant leap backward in the ACC Tournament fromits strong shooting performance against Georgia Tech the previous week, where it shot 51 percent from the field and 52.9 percent from beyond the arc. In their opening game of the conference tournament against Miami, the Hokies shot 38.1 percent from the field and 25 percent from three-point range. Junior guard Malcolm Delaney will also need to get back in the rhythm of Tech’s offense. Delaney managed only seven points against Miami and shot three for 15 from the field, after leading the ACC in scoring throughout the regular season. He also missed on all eight of his three-point attempts after torching the Yellow Jackets with four three-point baskets. Tech also suffered a blow to its bench Sunday after freshman guard Ben Boggs suffered an ankle injury in practice. Boggs was averaging 2.2 points per game in 8.6 minutes of action per contest. “Ben Boggs had a severely sprained ankle, grade-two ankle sprain,” Greenberg said. “They thought it was broken, but it’s not.” The Hokies will look to win their third straight opening round game in three years when they begin NIT competition Wednesday. They will also be seeking their third NIT banner, after winning the tournament in 1973 and more recently in 1995. As a No. 1 seed, the Hokies are guaranteed to host their opponents, if they continue to advance, until the semifinal round. The semifinal games and final round will be played at Madison Square Garden in New York City on March 30 and April 1. Wednesday’s game will not be televised locally, but tip-off is set for 7 p.m.



The art of bracketeering: A look at various strategies I’m

too depressed to fill one out this year. Such was my sentiment as the shower water streamed down my tearful face, after the clock radio said it again wasn’t so for the Hokies. How do I get out of bed knowing Virginia Tech went from near-lock, to falling against the last-place team in its conference, to getting booted out by the NCAA tournament selection committee in just three days? During the past three Selection Sundays I’ve wondered if these Big Dance bouncers held a grudge over Tech’s coach saying critics were certifiably insane not to pick the Hokies back in March 2008. It’s certainly another culprit; if strength of schedule told the committee to jump off a bridge, they’d probably do it. Either way, I’ve since built up a stubborn dedication to expecting the worst, and am actually now at homeostasis. My mental state can, however, quickly shift to euphoria with one incredible run through a March Madness pool, with my bracket by my side. A bracket brimming with wonder and promise, destined for greatness. A bracket crafted by the most skilled of artisans. Unfortunately, these goals have gradually eroded since I turned about 13, with my more recent efforts falling short of “genius,” “greatness,” “beating my roommates,” “not losing to my mom,” “not crying in the shower”

and so forth. That’s why, before setting that pencil to printout — and without discussion of any gambling intentions — I made sure to gain advice from a few acclaimed basketball experts. “I’m afraid I know squat about (basketball) outside of my uncanny ability to quote Bill Murray’s lines from Space Jam,” offered John Boyer, geography professor. Being a Sporn Award winner and expert on the movie Space Jam, starring Michael Jordan and Bugs Bunny, Boyer does check off both the “acclaimed” and “basketball expert” boxes. However, my study soon veered in another direction, as it turns out Boyer knows little about basketball when it doesn’t involve man-cartoon interaction. But that’s OK, I will need multiple perspectives to humiliate my friends this year. My bracketeering then found people who’ve authored basketball books or served as announcers for DivisionI college ball. Bill Roth, the voice of Hokies basketball for ISP Sports, has seen a lot of games this year. “I’ll be honest, I’ve probably seen just about everybody play, probably, of the 65 teams,” the iconic play-byplay man said. “... So, I use that, obviously having watched it, but there are a lot of really good Web sites out there. You can study teams by the


on the web

Lsten to The Experts’ Lounge podcast on bracketeering at


official Web sites of the individual schools. I think the various major media services do a very good job breaking things down.” Roland Lazenby, who’s basketball biography, “Jerry West: The Life and Legend of a Basketball Icon,” recently hit the L.A. Times’ bestseller list, also prepares for the tournament with a little literature. “For years, I’ve always bought a copy of USA Today,” Lazenby said. “(And I) have my folded copy of USA Today that I take with me through the tournament.” Of course, this staple of Big Dance preparation now faces competition that has exploded in recent years. “They used to do it a different way. We didn’t used to have anything but the preseason magazines and some newspaper stuff,” Lazenby said. “Of course today, we have instant information on the Internet. ESPN is sort of the catch-all there for me, but it has changed dramatically because you do have so much information.” In this kaleidoscope of insight it can be a bit daunting to decide — based on the tournament at hand — which great theory of yours still applies.

“Every year there is something that is going to disprove it,” Lazenby said. Roth relies heavily on his dearth of experience announcing Atlantic Coast Conference basketball. “Wake Forest was really struggling going into the NCAA tournament last year and they got beat by Cleveland State,” Roth said. “But I think a lot of us that had seen Wake play in the ACC tournament last year at the Georgia Dome ... picked Cleveland State to win that game. So I think if you’re at a lot of the games and you have a sense of who’s not playing well and who is playing well, sometimes that will carry over.” On the flip side, finding the contenders remains equally critical. “Hopefully there’s a feel for who is playing really well right now and who might be seeded a little bit low,” Roth said. “Example: This year Marquette is a team that played really well down the stretch and should have a great run. There are four or five teams that you look at and you go “Woah, that’s a team that can do some real damage.” Conference tournaments present a weird tension for the brackteering, because of the variation in necessity for victory of the teams participating, and the fact that conference tournaments serve as the most recent results. Last season North Carolina rested Ty Lawson, who was recovering

from injury at the time, and lost in the ACC semifinals. After receiving a one-seed anyways, the Tar Heels would leave only scorched earth in the NCAA tournament, doling out one of the most dominating performances since Sherman’s March to the Sea. Maryland, projected to be a No. 4 seed prior to this year’s tournament, sleepwalked through the first half of the ACC quarterfinals against Georgia Tech, who had to win to go dancing. Georgia Tech would win and make the NCAAs, while Maryland lost and received a four-seed. If you still take stock in Maryland in the NCAAs, and diagnose Georgia Tech a pretender, shouldn’t you dismiss what happens in this type of conference tourney situation? Lazenby disagrees. “I think there are teams that don’t play well in their conference tournament and then they get hot later and I think there are teams that — it always matters. And they tend to win conference tournaments, or at least they advance. “I think there are also a lot of teams in college basketball that really don’t know how to play a tournament yet. It takes a while to learn that and so I tend to look at teams that probably know how to play a tournament. ... Those kinds of teams can get on a run even if it’s the NCAA tournament. A team like Ohio State, they’ve got some veteran folks.”

In the end, discovering the champ dwarves all. Any sensible scoring system weights a correct championship pick colossally more than any games in other rounds. If you’re short on time for studying, it may be good to just find that juggernaut. “Sometimes there’s not a clear-cut best team, Lazenby noted, “But I think this year Kansas is clearly the best team. But if you’re a die-hard bracketdamus, the sheet isn’t complete without the upsets. “Then you look for potential spoilers. ... If you have a team of veteran guards who have a lot of skill and experience, that’s really good,” Lazenby said. “If you have a team that has been there before that’s not brand new to all of this, and I always think you have to acknowledge coaching.” Before kicking yourself all month for not picking the obvious champ, missing out on the genius dark horse selection, or neglecting a contender, heed this advice. And keep your mortgage out of this.

THOMAS EMERICK -sports staff writer -senior -communication major

sports 2

editor: alex jackson 540.231.9865 COLLEGIATETIMES

march 16, 2010

NCAA pools now part of national culture CHIP SCOGGINS mcclatchy newspapers

MINNEAPOLIS — Steve Guild doesn’t consider himself an avid college basketball fan. He figures he might watch three games all season. “I literally couldn’t tell you from one week to the next who’s doing well,” said Guild, a 38-year-old who works in International Merchandising at Best Buy. That, of course, matters little this time of the year because March Madness makes experts of us all. Or so we pretend. The NCAA men’s basketball tournament is upon us once again, bringing with it an annual rite of spring. Millions of college hoops junkies and casual fans such as Guild will pour over their brackets, plunk down $5 (or more) to enter an office pool and hope against hope that their No. 14 seed upset special actually comes true. This yearly event has become part

of our national culture. Death, taxes and March Madness office pools. You can’t escape any of them. So how did we arrive at this point where seemingly everybody either enters an office pool or knows someone who has the Saint Mary’s Gaels doing some serious damage this year? Several long-time college basketball observers said it’s impracticable to try and pinpoint an exact date when office pools started, but they trace the roots to the early 1980s, when key changes to the tournament fueled the rise in its popularity. Malcolm Moran covered college basketball for nearly 30 years for several newspapers, including the New York Times, USA Today and Chicago Tribune before becoming Knight Chair in Sports Journalism and Society at Penn State. Moran cites two key developments in particular: In the early 1980s, CBS obtained broadcast rights to the tour-

nament and ESPN televised earlyround games. In 1985, the tournament field expanded to 64 teams. “You have increased exposure and with the expansion to 64, now all of a sudden you have more corners of the country that are involved on an annual basis,” Moran said. “What that (64-team field) served to do was to eliminate the need for byes so now you had a symmetrical grid that I think people could identify a lot more with than not knowing who the secondround opponent is going to be for the No. 1 seed.” Dick (Hoops) Weiss of the New York Daily News has covered college basketball for more than 40 years. Both he and Moran said they also believe the success of the Big East Conference in the 1980s sparked enthusiasm in New York City that helped raise the tournament’s national profile. “You have all these factors coming together at the same time,” Moran said.

“The expansion of the field, the symmetrical bracket with no need for byes, New York City getting excited about it.” Office pools became part of that national excitement and now are as synonymous with the tournament as its upsets. “It’s a social thing,” said Jerry Palm, who predicts the tournament field on his website “It’s kind of like the Super Bowl. A lot of people don’t watch the NFL but they all go to Super Bowl parties. Well, this is a like a month-long Super Bowl party. Everybody gets a chance to fill out a bracket, and it’s this social interaction thing. This gives you a way to kind of watch the tournament and enjoy the tournament on a different level.” One’s interest in college basketball the other 11 months carries little significance, either. Some people act like amateur bracketologists, studying RPIs and strength of schedule and quality

wins, before filling out their bracket. “It appeals to all of the above,” Moran said. “You can have your hardcore guys that by Valentine’s Day they’re breaking down whether Delaware should be a 9 or 10 seed. They think they know what they’re talking about. Then you’ll have people who will pick Gonzaga because they like blue. And they wind up winning all the money by the way. So it offers something for everybody.” Guild, a diehard football fan, does some research and reads a few articles before filling out his bracket. His formula? “You do the typical 5-12 upsets and you grab maybe a 13 or 14 seed just so you’re not doing chalk across the board and hope you get lucky,” he said. That’s the beauty of it. One doesn’t need to be a college hoops savant to monopolize on the luck factor. And heaven forbid you sit next to the guy/ gal who actually wins your office pool. You’ll never hear the end of it, right?

You’ve seen it. Regardless of the size, everyone just wants to finish in the money in their office pool. Jeff Westervelt, a high school math teacher in the Twin Cities, has won his pool once but admitted, “it’s a lot of luck.” As a math teacher, Westervelt said he considers probability when making his bracket picks. “If you miss an upset, that part of your bracket is kind of blocked out,” he said. “It can kind of ruin your tournament. Every year if you look at it, one of the (No.) 12 seeds will win. But you have to pick the one game out of the four that’s actually going to happen.” Someone always does, whether it’s by luck or superior hoops knowledge. It doesn’t matter. All you need is a bracket, your entry fee and a friendly reminder that a No. 16 seed has never won a tournament game. “It’s just a crazy phenomenon,” Weiss said, “and it happens every March.”

news 3

new river valley news editor: zach crizer university editor: philipp kotlaba

march 16, 2010


Multiple events scheduled during Women’s Month AMANDA PASQUARIELLO news staff writer A celebration for Women’s Month, planned by Virginia Tech’s Women’s Center, is in full swing. A “Take Back the Night” rally on March 25 will feature speakers and survivors of sexual assault. At the end of the night, a march around campus is planned to honor victims of sexual assault. Additionally, “The Clothesline Project” will feature colored shirts designed by victims of domestic violence to represent different themes, such as red for sexual assault. Last year, 400 shirts were hung on the Drillfield in honor of these women. This year will be the Women’s Center’s 16th on campus and the center is encouraging students to challenge themselves to do 16 things to increase their awareness and educate others about women’s issues in “The Challenge.” “Every woman deserves to have confidence in herself,” said Kathy Loakle, director of the Women’s Center, “and the programs the Women’s Center has to offer provides that extra confidence boost.” The events aim to promote awareness of the experiences, achievements and diversity of all women and to stress wellness programs to increase women’s self-esteem. The events run through Virginia Tech’s cooperation with the Women’s Center, according to Anna LoMascolo, co-director of programming at the Women’s Center. According to LoMascolo, Tech presents a unique set of challenges for gender equality, including the gender gap in student numbers. The male-female ratio in student enrollment is 58 percent to 42 percent. Tech has historically been a maledominant institution. For example, women were not allowed to enroll as full-time students at Tech until 1921. “You have to look at the history of Virginia Tech before you can make any conclusions,” LaMascolo said. “Currently, Virginia Tech is maledominated, but the university is working to make the campus have a gender equivalence.”

Ashley Tomisek, a graduate student at Tech, never thought she would be involved with the Women’s Center on campus. It was a requirement to join for an “Introduction to Women’s Studies” class taught by two Women’s Center staff members. After her class was over, she ended up volunteering with Women’s Month and is still involved today. Tomisek’s favorite part of the center is “the closeness with all the women and their volunteer committees,” which conduct activities such as mentoring middle school girls, babysitting for graduate school students and focusing on abuse. “The Women’s Center is a great way to be involved on Virginia Tech’s campus and help the community,” Tomisek said.

Cuccinelli letter sparks discrimination debate GORDON BLOCK news reporter Employment discrimination “will not be tolerated,” according to an executive directive from Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell. Executive Directive 1, sent to state employees late afternoon on March 10, stressed a new “standard of conduct” that workplace discrimination is illegal based on federal and state regulations. An e-mail with the directive encouraged state universities to adopt the standards. The executive directive came days after protests arose due to a letter sent on March 4 by Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli. The letter advised schools to remove protections for gays from their non-discrimination policies to comply with Virginia law. Cuccinelli’s letter said authorization to add protections for gays would require approval from the Virginia General Assembly. “Discrimination based on factors such as one’s sexual orientation or parental status violates the Equal Protection Clause of the United States Constitution,” the new directive said in response to the letter. “Therefore, discrimination against enumerated classes of persons set forth

in the Virginia Human Rights Act or discrimination against any class of persons without a rational basis is prohibited.” Cuccinelli’s letter drew a firestorm of controversy and prompted a letter from Virginia Tech’s Student Government Association. The SGA letter, sent on March 8, called for “inclusivity…for all people not just for a select few.” “As the voice of the student body, it’s important for us to respond to issues on a national and local level,” said Paul Deyerle, a senior psychology major and Director of Equity and Inclusion for Tech’s SGA. The directive states that state employees found acting with discrimination would be subject to disciplinary action. “Civility, fair treatment and mutual respect shall be the standard of conduct expected in state employment,” the directive said. Aimee Kanode, a senior humanities, science, and environment major at Tech and president of Tech’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Alliance, said her e-mail inbox was flooded following the release of Cuccinelli’s letter. “I was tied to my computer,” she said. Kanode added that following the

release of Executive Order No. 6 from Governor McDonnell, which clarified non-discrimination policies for state offices without including sexual orientation, many “were already on a watchdog status.” Kanode feared many “would think twice” about coming to Tech if protections based on sexual orientation were not included. “To not protect that, it could bring about a brain drain,” Kanode said. The letter brought objections from students at other Virginia schools. A Wednesday protest at Virginia Commonwealth University drew about 1,000 people to the state Capitol in Richmond. Many protestors, away from classes for spring break, organized protests online. A Tech student created a Facebook group protesting the letter, which had 1,644 members as of Monday afternoon. A similar group at VCU boasts 2,287 members and a group from the College of William & Mary had 2,195 members. Deyerle said he was surprised to see the outpouring of online protest. “It was great that they were able to voice their opinion that way,” he said. Following the release of McDonnell’s

directive, Cuccinelli issued a statement. “I applaud Governor McDonnell for the tone he is setting for the Commonwealth of Virginia. I will remain in contact with the Governor and continue to work with him on issues important to Virginians,” Cuccinelli said. “I expect Virginia’s state employees to follow all state and federal anti-discrimination laws and will enforce Virginia’s laws to the fullest extent.” Tech includes protections based on sexual orientation in several university documents. Section 2.1 of Policy 1025, which covers anti-discrimination and harassment prevention policies, includes prohibitions on discrimination and harassment based on sexual orientation. Similarly, Tech’s Principles of Community, signed in March 2005, “rejects all forms of prejudice and discrimination,” including sexual orientation in its protections. Any change in regards to Tech’s nondiscrimination policy would come from the university’s Board of Visitors. While Tech’s non-discrimination policy is not on the agenda for the board, the group is scheduled to meet March 21-22 for its first regular meeting for the 2010 year.

4Techfeatures students cycle, saw their way across country

editor: topher forhecz 540.231.9865

march 16, 2010


RYAN ARNOLD features reporter Virginia Tech senior Catherine Atwood and sophomore Andy Reagan will spend much of the summer on their behinds, but laziness isn’t the cause. Atwood, a fifth-year architecture major; and Reagan, a chemical engineering, chemistry and mathematics major, will set out on a nearly 4,000mile bicycle ride as part of the Bike & Build program. Bike & Build is a nonprofit organization that helps send young adults ages 18-25 on cross-country bicycling trips. Cyclists pause in various cities to offer fundraising money and muscle for affordable housing projects set up by other nonprofits such as Habitat for Humanity and Rebuilding Together. Since its 2002 inception, Bike & Build has donated nearly $2.5 million and contributed more than 65,000 building hours. GREG WILSON/SPPS Atwood pursued the opportunity Andy Reagan and Catherine Atwood will be participating in the Bike & Build service project this summer. because of her older brother’s prior

Bike & Build experience. She said his enthusiasm upon his return convinced her to partake, though she needed his permission. “My brother and I have this sort of relationship where I try not to step on his toes,” Atwood said. Reagan began cycling in college and now competes with the Tech Cycling Club. He said a teammate’s personal cross-country journey inspired him, and another friend mentioned Bike & Build as a good way to follow through. The 2010 Bike & Build season boasts more than 250 participants. They are broken into smaller groups to travel eight different east-to-west routes, beginning as far north as New Hampshire and as far south as Florida. Atwood and Reagan will start in Virginia Beach and end in Canon Beach, Ore. But the two have several responsibilities before they pump the pedals. “There’s three things you have to do before the trip,” Reagan explained. “You have to raise $4,000, you have to

complete a 500-mile pledge, and you have to do sweat equity.” Reagan is approaching $2,000, while Atwood is at a slight time disadvantage. She was on the wait list after the October application process, receiving a slot just before Christmas. However, a February fundraising event in Lee Hall boosted her funds.


Atwood and Reagan worked with Kroger on South Main Street to set up a donation-based dinner. Store Manager Mike Witt said they prepared approximately $80 worth of spaghetti, sauces and garlic bread. Intended for 30 to 40 people, the meal didn’t last. “I had four pounds of noodles just laying in my room,” Reagan said, “and we bought two extra pounds of noodles and some sauce just as backups, and we ended up cooking all of that, too.” About 70 attendees gave a collective $400, which Atwood and Reagan split. The pair said another potential fundraiser is a “spin-a-thon,” where they’d cycle in place for an entire day, discussing Bike & Build with passersby. Otherwise, Atwood and Reagan plan to flood relatives’ mailboxes with letters seeking support. Once Atwood reaches $1,000, Bike & Build will send her a bicycle for the trek; it already approved one of Reagan’s own bicycles. While Reagan will easily surpass the 500-mile pledge with the cycling club, Atwood needs that bicycle — and the time — to meet the mark. “I’m a little nervous about it,” she said, “mainly because so much stuff is going on right now. I’m still trying to finish architecture and graduate and all that.” Atwood said she has little cycling experience, therefore Reagan suggested she shadow the cycling club to find a rhythm. “Monday and Friday they do a S.A.Y.G. ride,” he said, “which stands for ‘slow as your grandmother.’” Yet cycling is only half of Bike & Build. “They say trade in your bike for a hammer,” Reagan said. Atwood and Reagan must log eight volunteer hours, or “sweat equity,” for a local housing organization. In Jonesville, Va., Atwood spent a February day refurbishing homes with the Appalachia Service Project. “It’s stuff like taking out insulation in the attic and putting new insulation in and putting a tin roof over a trailer,” she said. Reagan said he hopes to assist Habitat for Humanity in the Roanoke Valley before the semester ends. The 10 projects they’ll ultimately assist throughout the country vary. Sharif Morad, a senior electrical engineering major at the University of Virginia, is one of four “route leaders” for Atwood and Reagan’s trip. He said it’s too early to know the tasks they’ll encounter after departing on May 19. However, Morad completed Bike & Build last summer, during which his team completed jobs such as shaping a wheelchair ramp in Asheville, N.C., and pouring a concrete foundation in Colorado Springs, Colo. After Morad’s team left Colorado, another Bike & Build team visited the same site. “They stayed there for a week,” Morad said. “And for that whole week they did a ‘blitz build.’ Every day they built, and they completed that house.” The eventual occupants of the homes are part of the efforts, Morad said. They, too, put forth sweat equity. “You would meet the people that were going to own these homes and they were so appreciative,” he said. Route leaders organize details including lodging, food stops and laundry locations. Hosts are often the local YMCA, churches, dorm rooms and campgrounds. Community members sometimes provide meals. “There are times that we don’t have everything we need,” Morad said, “but that’s just part of the adventure. That makes it better.” According to Reagan, a garden hose — or possibly a lake — could quench the riders need for a shower. He said Bike & Build isn’t an entirely grueling endeavor. If roadside water beckons for you, then hit the brakes and dive in. Teams have a loose 4 p.m. deadline to reach daily checkpoints, so leisure has its place throughout the more than two-month tour. “There’s some people on our trip that have expressed interest in finding the best cup of coffee along the route,” Atwood said. Reagan said he’s looking forward to an even simpler novelty: He’s never left the Eastern time zone.

opınıons 5

editor: debra houchins COLLEGIATETIMES

march 16, 2010

The Collegiate Times is an independent student-run newspaper serving the Virginia Tech community since 1903


Your Views [letters to the editor]

Salman Rushdie fatwa is justified


his is in reference to Eric Wood’scolumn,“Remember the anniversary of the Salman Rushdie fatwa” (CT, Mar. 5). I deplore the insensitivity in the inane opinion of Mr. Wood. Ayatollah Khomeini’s fatwa was self-defeating, since it unfortunately changed the focus of the controversy. The crux of the issue is simply that no decent and cultured person would launch an unwarranted assault on the character of the founder of a great faith in the name of fiction and literature. No amount of fiction or notion of freedom of expression would justify, for example, anybody hurting the feelings of Holocaust victims. I believe that Dan Brown’s example in the col-

Letter from Seth Greenberg


irst, I would like to thank all of you for your support this season. The atmosphere in the Cassell has been second-tonone in all of college basketball. Although disappointed that we were not invited to the NCAA Tournament, we are still playing. AndwhenIsay“we,”thatincludes you! When I look at this year’s NIT field, it includes two teams that have combined to win four of the last 11 national championships. Two other teams in the NIT have made it to the championship game of the NCAA Tournament in recent years. This is an outstanding field. Despite being disappointed, this is a challenge for everyone who is committed to Virginia Tech basketball. I told our players, if we are who I think we are, we will come out and show the nation what Virginia Tech basketball is all about. Part of that includes the atmosphere in Cassell Coliseum. As a No. 1 seed, we have an opportunity to play three home games. The first is Wednesday. This program is built on absolutes and we clearly define how

umn is irrelevant, as Brown did not caricature Jesus Christ, but only the Catholic Church. I think that Mr. Wood only remembered the unjustified fatwa, but does not recall Rushdie’s false, indecent and hurtful representation of Prophet Muhammad. Instead of Rushdie, let us gauge Muhammad through the words of Mahatma Gandhi in his statement in “Young India” in 1924: ‘’It was the rigid simplicity, the utter self-effacement of the Prophet, the scrupulous regard for pledges, his intense devotion to his friends and followers, his intrepidity, his fearlessness, his absolute trust in God and in his own mission.’’

Syed Ahmad Graduate electrical engineer we win. Our absolutes include passion, energy, commitment, toughness and a competitive spirit. And one of the reasons we win is because of you. The best fans in the ACC! We need to get past the disappointment and move forward. I talked with coach Bob Knight last night and he told me to tell our players to go out, each and every night, on a mission to let all college basketball fans know just how good we are. And that includes you. Let’s show the nation what your ownership is all about. As we started the season we were in together and we will stay together. We need you now more than ever. Our players feed off of your energy and passion. Let’s do this thing together. Let’s work toward winning a national championship and cutting down the nets in New York. We will also hold another of our Chalk Talks on Tuesday at noon in D2. Come be a part of this fun and informational time that allows students great insight into our program. Thank you and Go Hokies!

Seth Greenberg Men’s basketball head coach

Junk food detrimental to health, should be taxed too W

henever I see people buying certain items, I always think to myself, “Don’t they know they’re killing themselves?” And no, surprisingly, this is not a rant about cigarettes. It’s about junk food and one of the prime agents of obesity. Some eating habits have contributed to the obesity epidemic we are currently experiencing and now obesity rivals cigarette smoking as one of the most preventable diseases. So, I have two questions. Why is there a federal tax on cigarettes and chewing tobacco, but not on Big Macs, which contain 29 grams of fat, or Starbucks drinks, which are known as liquid candy bars? Additionally, why do we walk on eggshells around the idea of someone being fat, but have no problem putting up “No Smoking” signs? Coming from an extended family of overweight individuals (and ignoring the obvious paradox that my heavily Christian family is blind to gluttony being a sin), obesity is something I’m used to seeing. However, I have not seen people actually addressing their own weight. I realize that it has become a societal taboo to openly address personal weight or even bring up the topic. I even find myself not saying things like, “Gosh I feel so fat” after eating a large meal in the presence of an overweight individual. The words people associate with smokers are “stupid” and “killing themselves,” but people who are overweight are described as “sad” and do not seem as self-destructive as smokers. Why is this? For some reason, smokers can be identified as “cool” and “rebellious,” but obese individuals cannot. This is likely because most people view being overweight as a direct

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their health issues. However, a problem with such an idea is presented: What is the cut off for foods deemed “high in fats?” This is beyond me, but I do know that some Chipotle burritos contain more than 1,000 calories and have 16.5 grams of saturated fats, or that a 12-ounce scoop of some ice creams at Cold Stone Creamery can contain 42 grams of saturated fats. I am not attacking foods that contain a few grams of fat, nor am I saying that someone should not be able to eat tax-free junk food. I am aware that sometimes the cheapest items are the ones that are high in fats. There are some foods that have no health benefits whatsoever and take away from cheaper, healthier alternatives – Starbucks versus regular coffee anyone? Being overweight can cause anything from cardiovascular disease to psychological problems, which make weight loss a huge moneymaking industry. Many individuals decide to seek medical help for their conditions as a result of their outstanding weight. There is nothing that says people cannot do this, but isn’t it a bit selfish to completely abuse your own body and rely on other people to fix it for you? Throughout our lives, we only have one body, and we must take care of it ourselves. How can a doctor be expected to help someone that cannot even help themselves?

JOSH TREBACH -regular columnist -sophomore -biology major

Celebrating the fifth anniversary of Tech’s Principles of Community A

What do YOU want changed?

hindrance to one’s attractiveness and acceptance in society. Most models and actors who society views as appealing are skinny and have incredible bodies. We cannot infer by looking at these celebrities if they are smokers, and thus, the determination on whether smoking is attractive remains neutral; however, we can infer that fat and attractive do not go handin-hand. Much like smoking, overeating is addictive and often can fill emotional voids. Although one’s genes, along with the environment, can affect how and where on the body weight gain occurs, the most important component is individual behavior. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention acknowledged that because the gene pool in the human population is not constantly changing, the rapid increase in obesity in the country must “reflect major changes in non-genetic factors,” or human behavior. The scary part is that the threat of obesity is real. Four years ago, the CDC ranked obesity as the number one health threat in America. The Washington Post reported in May 2008 that the life span of American children could be shorter than their parents. Could it be that we are actually eating ourselves to death? It is because of this that I propose that, like tobacco, we place a tax on foods that are exceptionally high in saturated or trans fats. Aside from the whole “getting used to” notion, placing a tax on such foods would be beneficial to American citizens. As seen with cigarettes, placing a tax on items that are detrimental to one’s health can curtail how much of the item is purchased. It may even motivate people to become aware of

n important milestone took place as everyone was coming back from spring break on Sunday. This milestone was the fifth anniversary of the signing of the Virginia Tech Principles of Community, which occurred on March 14, 2005. This anniversary provides an opportunity to take a closer look at the Principles: “Virginia Tech is a public land-grant university, committed to teaching and learning, research, and outreach to the Commonwealth of Virginia, the nation, and the world community. Learning from the experiences that shape Virginia Tech as an institution, we acknowledge those aspects of our legacy that reflected bias and exclusion. Therefore, we adopt and practice the following principles as fundamental to our on-going efforts to increase access and inclusion and to create a community that nurtures learning and growth for all of its members.” This opening paragraph is crucial because it helps to set the stage and to reaffirm whom and what Tech is all about. It includes an important phrase that deals with the reflection of Tech’s past. This reflection is a powerful acknowledgement of the institution’s experience with issues of bias but also is a commitment to learn from these situations. “We affirm the inherent dignity and value of every person and strive to maintain a climate for work and learning based on mutual respect and understanding.” This first affirmation helps to build the foundation by acknowledging the importance and value of each person. This helps to ensure that no one is purposely left out within the community. “We affirm the right of each person to express thoughts and opinions freely. We encourage open expression within a climate of civility, sensitivity, and mutual respect.” This second affirmation builds upon this framework through its commitment to free speech and the environment in which we express those thoughts, regardless of what they are about. This second affirmation is perhaps the most discussed

and most controversial of the statements because of how it can be interpreted. “We affirm the value of human diversity because it enriches our lives and the university. We acknowledge and respect our differences while affirming our common humanity.” This third affirmation is the most important because it acknowledges the value of human diversity, regardless of what that diversity is about. It emphasizes the impact of respect and how we need to respect each other within the community. “We reject all forms of prejudice and discrimination, including those based on age, color, disability, gender, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, and veteran status. We take individual and collective responsibility for helping to eliminate bias and discrimination and for increasing our own understanding of these issues through education, training, and interaction with others.” As the statement continues, we get into making a firm and deliberate stance against discrimination. While a number of categories are listed, it does not exclude other items that may arise. The listing of categories sends a powerful message of recognizing the differences that exist within our community. This statement also asks each one of us to take “individual and collective” responsibility. We ourselves play a key part in this area. The burden is not solely on the shoulders of the institution. The institution can set the standard and we as community members need to play our respective parts. “We pledge our collective commitment to these principles in the spirit of the Virginia Tech motto of Ut Prosim (That I May Serve).” This connection to the university motto is significant. Just as “Ut Prosim” reminds us of our responsibility to serve, the Principles of Community remind us of our responsibility to respect and value each person within our community. The road to the development of these Principles was not an easy one and required a lot work. It was a process that began in the aftermath of the March 2003 Board of

Visitor decisions, and was deliberate and inclusive through discussions at the 2005 Diversity Summit and dialogues within many groups. This is reflected in the signers of the original document. Today, the Principles of Community provide an affirmation of our values as an institution about the importance of diversity and inclusion. It is true that the Principles of Community can’t prevent all discrimination by members in the community, but it shows that negative behavior is not something that will be condoned or tolerated within the community. We can make sure that the community is aware of the Principles and that they are significant values. Incoming students, new faculty and staff need to know that the Principles exist and that this community values them. We must always provide reminders about the Principles and not assume that the community is aware of them. It is unfortunate when major campus programs take place and there is no acknowledgment of these principles. If anything, these efforts provide excellent opportunities to reinforce the importance of these values. This reinforcement is not indoctrination but rather a reminder of values reflected by the institution. It may be difficult when we encounter those in the minority that have ill feelings toward other members of the community, but we can be resolute in showing what these values really mean to us. As we mark this important milestone, I encourage you to reflect on the continued meaning and importance of the Principles of the Community. I am honored to have been one of the original signers of the Principles of Community through my role at that time as the Chair of the Commission on Equal Opportunity and Diversity.

RAY PLAZA -regular columnist -faculty adviser

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Lifeguards wanted for spring/ summer employment at local community pools (Foxridge/ Hethwood). The Hethwood Foundation has both FT & PT positions available with competitive pay and flexible scheduling. Positions require current certifications in Lifeguarding/ First Aid and CPR for the Professional Rescuer. Applicants may download an application at www. or can call (540) 552-5252 to apply in person. Interviews start March 29th until all positions are filled. APPLY NOW!! EOE. OFFICE ASSISTANT Blacksburg Insurance and financial office seeking help part time. Excellent organization and good communication skills are a must! Email resume to mlhenderson@ft.newyorklife. com to be considered. RECREATION ASSISTANT COMMUNITY CENTER TOWN OF BLACKSBURG The Town of Blacksburg is currently accepting applications for the position of Full-Time Recreation Assistant. For more information, please visit our website: www. An EEO Employer M/ F/ D/ V

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1 Kentucky 16 East Tenn. State 8 Texas 9 Wake Forest 5 Temple 12 Cornell 4 Wisconsin 13 Wofford 6 Marquette 11 Washington 3 New Mexico 14 Montana 7 Clemson 10 Missouri 2 West Virginia 15 Morgan St 1 Duke 16 Ark-PB/Winthrop 8 California 9 Louisville 5 Texas A&M 12 Utah State 4 Purdue 13 Siena 6 Notre Dame 11 Old Dominion 3 Baylor 14 Sam Houston St 7 Richmond 10 Saint Mary’s 2 Villanova 15 Robert Morris

16 Lehigh 8 UNLV

9 N. Iowa 5 Michigan St

12 New Mexico St 4 Maryland

13 Houston 6 Tennessee

11 San Diego St 3 Georgetown

14 Ohio 7 Oklahoma St

10 Georgia Tech 2 Ohio State

15 UC Santa Barb 1 Syracuse

16 Vermont 8 Gonzaga

9 Florida St 5 Butler

12 UTEP 4 Vanderbilt

13 Murray St 6 Xavier

11 Minnesota 3 Pittsburgh

14 Oakland 7 BYU

10 Florida 2 Kansas St

15 North Texas

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ncaa bracket 2010 march 16, 2010

1 Kansas


Follow your picks online at

march 16, 2010


NC State guards Javier Gonzalez and Farnold Degand needed to be restrained by referees during their game against Georgia Tech. Both coaches were told by officials that they would “let them play,” which led to a rough contest.

Duke junior Kyle Singler was selected the Most Valuable Player of the tournament. Singler scored 18 or more points in all three games.

Duke dodges desperate ACC field

The Duke Blue Devils defeated the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Sunday to take their 18th Atlantic Coast Conference title, surpassing North Carolina for the all-time lead. Duke has won nine of the last 12 finals.

Miami freshman guard Durand Scott took over late against the Hokies with 11 of the Hurricanes’ last 13 points. Tech lost 70-65.

North Carolina State point guard Javier Gonzalez drags Georgia Tech’s Derrick Favors down from behind in frustration after turning the ball over late in a tight game. Both coaches commented on the intense physical nature of the game.

Wake Forest seniors Chas McFarland and Ishmael Smith hang their heads after being benched in a 21-point blowout in the first round against Miami. It was their third straight ACC Tournament loss.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010 Print Edition  

Tuesday, March 16, 2010 Print Edition of The Collegiate Times