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Three “The Jungle Book” cast members prepare for this week’s performances, 6B.


February 5, 2010

Vol. 85, No. 20



text safe

Call of Fame A car pulling people around a parking lot drew attention

State nears ban on texting while driving


Campus Voice Student asks, shouldn’t charity start at home?


Get to Know Tennis junior Mason Johnson


Casey Thornton

use Mobile Data Computers for transmitting information as well as other communication dev ices, Legislation to ban text messag he said. ing while driving as well as all cell Guge said banning the use phone use by minors while of drielectronic devices to police offe ving approaches a realization rs for would deprive them of equipm Kentucky drivers. ent necessary to their jobs. House Bill 43 passed through Experts suggest that texting the House Transportation Com while driving presents as mu ch or mittee Tuesday with a vote of 18more danger than driving und 7, and now moves to the er full the influence, DeVoss said. house. Both offenses endanger oth er Sgt. Tracy Guge of the Murray drivers, passengers and ped estriPolice Dept. said although the law ans, he said. has not fully passed, she has “I try not to text and drive as already heard about it. it is, so it shouldn’t affect me, perGuge said the ability to enforc e sonally, very much,” Caina Lyn this law poses the greatest ch, comsophomore from Fulton, Ky., said. plication for the police force. Lynch said, she hopes she will Officers will treat it like all have less of a chance of being other laws, which means they involved in an accident. will have to see the driver Other students say the legislatext messaging in order to tion will not make a difference . enforce this law, Guge said. “I try to wait until I’m stopped The legislation does not at a red light or waiting to ban adults from checking turn,” Chris Collman, junior global positioning systems. from Bethalto, Ill., said. Checking a cell phone “Honestly I’ll probably requires more attention than keep doing it, but I hope operating a GPS, Guge said , that it at least gets people especially when replying to a text to think about distracmessage. tions while driving.” A GPS usually rests above the He said he doubts the dashboard and requires less time legislation will successfully to operate than a cell phone, she eliminate text messaging said. while driving. Text messaging poses the mo st Similar bans have passed in threat when driving, Guge said 19 . other states, and the Distric t of The proposed legislation Columbia, according to the Govexempts emergency personnel in ernors Highway Safety Ass ociathe performance of their dut ies, tion. Director of Public Safety Dav id Contact Thornton at casey. DeVoss, said. Many emergency responder s Staff writer

Media Review You don’t want to see “Planet Hulk” when it’s angry

WHAT’S INSIDE: Police Beat Calendar Editorial Just Imagining Sports Column Hot Shots Sudoku Review

2A 2A 4A 5A 2B 5B 9B 9B

Chris Phillips/The News

Professor honored for civic dedication

WHAT’S ONLINE: • Full print edition • Sports Recaps • Video: How did Murray respond to the weekend snow? • POLL: Is Valentine’s Day overrated?










Partly Cloudy



Katie LaBeef Contributing writer

Retirement fund issues raised in Faculty Senate Casey Thornton Staff writer

Youth and Nonprofit Leadership professor Roger Weis recently received the 2009 Distinguished Member Award from the National Society of Collegiate Scholars for his outstanding commitment to scholarship, leadership and service. “No one told me I was nominated,” Weis said. “I was honored to receive the award because a student group nominated me. That means a lot.” Weis founded Murray State’s Center for Service Learning and has been the director of the American Humanics/Youth and Nonprofit Leadership program for 21 years. According to Weis, the AH/YNL program began with about 50 students, and now more than 500 students are enrolled in the program. Weis also founded the Murray/Calloway County Big Brothers Big Sisters Program, serving as the fundraising coordinator for 11 years. Weis’ involvement with many local nonprofits has aided in the development of course curriculum and has given students the opportunity to give financial support to these organizations. Shannon Gearhart, former president of Murray’s NSCS chapter and a past service learning student under Weis, said Weis’ commitment to service in the community encouraged her to continue volunteering. She said he instills in his students a desire to serve the community. American Humanics/Youth and Nonprofit Leadership minor Jennie Dickerson said Weis’ dedication shows in the classroom. “He is very knowledgeable and is always willing to do whatever is needed to help a student succeed in his classes and in their work with the community,” Dickerson said. “He is excellent at communicating both his expertise and his passion in the classroom.” His past professional career experience includes serving as Virginia’s Leukemia Society of America Chief Executive Officer and the Director and Program Director of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America in Norfolk and Virginia Beach, Va. Contact LaBeef at

In Faculty Senate’s Tuesday meeting, the diminishing vitality of Kentucky teacher’s retirement funds struck a chord with many. The state of Kentucky owes the Kentucky Teachers’ Retirement System $562 million, thus creating this strain, Jay Morgan, professor and vice chairperson on the KTRS Board of Trustees, said. “In addition, $800 million will be added to the debt over the next four years if we do not make a change in our current system, which comes to a total of $1.3 billion,” he said. In the current system, there are three operating funds going toward teacher’s retirement. These include a $13 billion pension fund, and medical and life insurance funds. The medical insurance trust fund does not have enough money to pay all medical benefits for retired people until they go into Medicare, Morgan said. “It is hitting a red danger zone,” Morgan said. “We must aim to make this trust fund a stable, stand-alone trust fund in the future for people up to age 65, which means no longer borrowing from the pension to pay for healthcare benefits.”

The KTRS board must take money out of the pension trust fund and put it into the medical trust fund, which brings down the medical trust fund’s balance, Morgan said. The Board is trying to avoid this financial train wreck by making a new plan, Morgan said. With the current plan, all Kentucky teachers pay a fixed percentage to their employers, which is then matched by both the employer and the state, MorJay gan said. Morgan This plan conKTRS tains a shared Board of responsibility Trustees among the three vice entities, Morgan chairperson said, instead of Murray State paying everything in order to keep the medical fund from borrowing from the pension fund. “We have three main goals with this, including getting a pension obligation bond to pay back what the state owes, stabilizing the medical insurance plan and to stop borrowing money from pension plan to pay health care benefits,” Morgan said.

In his Jan. 19 two-year budget proposal to the General Assembly, Gov. Steve Beshear included the Pension Obligation Bond, which would eventually repay the monies owed by the state to the KTRS. “We are grateful the governor has addressed this important issue,” Board Executive Secretary Gary Harbin said. “This is a step in the right direction that will return redirected contributions to the fund, further securing the retirement benefits for all retired teachers in Kentucky.” At the root of this issue is the gap between the age at which one retires and the age at which one becomes eligible for Medicare, Ann Beck, associate professor and chair of the university insurance and benefits committee, said. Teachers cannot avoid the problem by simply buying individual health coverage because it becomes very costly, Beck said. The KTRS serves 72,700 active members and more than 39,300 retirees in Kentucky. Public universities served include Eastern Kentucky University, Kentucky State University, Morehead State University, Murray State University and Western Kentucky University. Contact Thornton at casey.

News Editor: Laura Cash Assistant News Editor: Crystal Akers Phone: 809-4468


This week •


•7:30 p.m. “Throw Down Your Heart”; Cinema International, Curris Center Theater, free •7:30 p.m. Lovett Live presents 2010 Student Showcase; Curris Center Dance Lounge, free

Campus Briefly Sunday


•9 a.m. Rifle hosting OVC Championship; Pat Spurgin Rifle Range, free with Racercard •5:15 p.m. Women’s basketball vs. Austin Peay; RSEC, free with Racercard •7:30 p.m. Men’s basketball vs. Austin Peay; RSEC, free with Racercard •7:30 p.m. “Throw Down Your Heart”; Cinema International, Curris Center Theater, free


•11 a.m. The Journey Church service; Curris Center Large Ballroom



•9:30 a.m. “The Jungle Book”, a play by Vera Morris; Lovett Auditorium, free with Racercard, $2.50 without •Noon “The Jungle Book”, a play by Vera Morris; Lovett Auditorium, free with Racercard, $2.50 without •4 p.m. Leadership workshop series: Emotional Intelligence; Curris Center Ohio Room, free •5 p.m. CAB meeting; Curris Center Tennessee Room; open to the public

•10 a.m. “The Jungle Book”, a play by Vera Morris; Lovett Auditorium, free with Racercard, $2.50 without •Noon Pet therapy; Curris Center Rocking Chair Lounge, free •2:30 p.m. Europe in Transition Professional Development Information Session; CTLC classroom •5 p.m. SGA meeting; Curris Center Barkley Room; open to the public •6:30 p.m. “The Body Image Project”; Wrather Museum, free

The News February 5, 2010

•12:30 p.m. Self-Defense Class: Learn to Kick Butt; Carr Health dance studio, $2.50 •5 p.m. RCA meeting; Curris Center Ohio Room; open to the public •7 p.m. Black Women: Bold, Beautiful, Brilliant; Wrather Museum, free •7:30 p.m. “The Jungle Book”, a play by Vera Morris; Lovett Auditorium, free with Racercard, $2.50 without

Coming Up •Feb. 12 Lovett Live presents Béla Fleck and the Africa Project; Lovett Auditorium, $24

Photo courtesy of

Thursday •2 p.m. Europe in Transition Professional Development Information Session; CTLC classroom •7 p.m. “The Vagina Monologues”; Wrather Museum, $5 with Racercard, $8 without •7:07 p.m. Baptist Campus Ministry service; Baptist Campus Ministry building •7:30 p.m. “Sin Nombre”; Cinema International, Curris Center Theater, free

If you would like an event to appear in the This Week section, fill out a form in the Murray State News office at 111 Wilson Hall, fax to 8093175 or email information to Please submit events by noon on Wednesdays. We cannot guarantee all items received will be published.

Feb. 11-13 “Sin Nombre”; Cinema International, Curris Center Theater, free

Photo courtesy of

Police Beat Jan. 28 12:05 p.m. A caller from Alexander Hall reported a parked vehicle blocking traffic. The owner was contacted and asked to move the vehicle. 4:16 p.m. The residence director from Springer College reported a student requesting Emergency Medical Services. The student had a severe migraine and was transported to the Murray-Calloway County emergency room by Emergency Medical Services. 6:09 p.m. A caller from College Circle reported a raccoon running around between Franklin and Hart Colleges. Central Plant was notified.

Jan. 29 11:16 a.m. An officer spoke with an individual at Public Safety about a stolen boat. The officer took a report for theft by unlawful taking under $500. 11:08 p.m. A caller from the

Curris Center reported people dumping snow from a trashcan onto the road from the pedestrian bridge. The individuals were gone on officer arrival. No damaged vehicles were located. 11:24 p.m. A caller from Elizabeth College reported people pushing each other in shopping carts. The individuals were gone on officer arrival.

Jan. 30 4:57 a.m. A caller from Franklin College reported an intoxicated individual in the 2nd floor hallway. Officers located the individual and assisted him to his room. 3:43 p.m. A caller reported individuals being pulled behind a vehicle in Stewart Stadium parking lot. An officer gave the driver a verbal warning for reckless driving. 7:29 p.m. An officer issued a citation to Loman Bogard, nonstudent from Murray, for reckless driving in Franklin College’s rear parking lot.

Jan. 31 3:15





Regents College requested officers check an intoxicated individual. An officer located the individual and determined there had been an assault between acquaintances. The officer took a report for 4th degree assault. 4:38 p.m. A caller from Regents College reported items had been hung from ceiling tiles. Officers located five phones hung from the ceiling. Two phones were placed in their original Regents College location. The other three were taken to Public Safety. 11:21 p.m. A caller from Springer College requested officers check the welfare of an individual. Officers located the individual and determined she was not a danger to herself or others.

Feb. 1 1:06 p.m. A caller from Stewart Stadium parking lot reported an altercation between two individuals. Officers arrested Jason Stanley, nonstudent from Murray,

for 4th degree assault and violation of a domestic violence order. 4:14 p.m. A caller from College Circle requested someone check on a vehicle with a cat inside. The owner was contacted and verified the welfare of the cat. 11:40 p.m. Four Rivers Behavioral Health notified Public Safety of a medical emergency in the 900 block of College Courts. Officers and Emergency Medical Services responded. The individual refused transport to the hospital. An officer transported the individual to Four Rivers Behavioral Health.

Feb. 2 12:13 p.m. Health Services requested assistance transporting an individual to Murray-Calloway County emergency room. An officer responded and determined Murray State police could not transport the individual due to the medical condition. Someone from Health Services called a cab. 7:48 p.m. Murray police

Jan. 29 9:21 p.m. An officer checked a vehicle at Stewart Stadium parking lot. The drivers were pulling individuals behind the vehicle. The officer gave a verbal warning for reckless driving.

requested assistance attempting to locate a possible abducted female at Hester College. Officers helped locate the female and determined she was not abducted or in any danger. 9:33 p.m. A caller from James Richmond College requested to speak to an officer about possibly being followed. An officer spoke with the individual and took a report.

speak to an officer about a substance, possibly marijuana, found in a sink. An officer recovered the items and took a report. 10:52 p.m. A caller from Hart College requested an officer for an individual who was upset about a water leak and causing a disturbance. An officer contacted the Housing professional staff and Student Affairs to assist the individual in changing rooms.

Feb. 3 12:15 a.m. An officer checked on an individual staggering while walking at the Five Points intersection. Thomas Strachan, nonstudent from Murray, was arrested for alcohol intoxication. 9:27 a.m. A caller from Franklin College requested to

Motorist assists - 0 Racer escorts - 0 Arrests - 2

Assistant News Editor Crystal Akers compiles Police Beat with materials provided by Public Safety. Not all dispatched calls are listed.

Ralph Woods Memorial Award Established to honor students who have made an outstanding contribution in service and leadership to the University campus. Criteria: 1. Must be a December 2009 or May 2010 graduate. 2. Must be a person whose campus activities indicate leadership. 3. Must be a person who promotes change. (Can accomplish goals and is of service to students and faculty.) 4. Grade point average is of no consideration.

Applications are available in the Student Government Association office. Three letters of recommendation (from peers, instructors or whomever you like) validating the nominee’s leadership capabilities must be submitted by NOON, FRIDAY, MARCH 5, 2010.

Sponsored by SGA

214 N. 15th St. Across from Pogue Library




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The News February 5, 2010


Students present research to lawmakers Laura Cash

a Murray State student from the College of Education presented a poster. Cofer said Posters-at-the-Capitol started with Murray State, which was also the first school in the region to have an Office of Undergraduate Research and Scholarly Activity. “It’s a high-impact method of learning,” Cofer said. “It’s one of our academic jewels. We are a leader of the pack and we have to continue supporting it to stay ahead of the game.” Lauren Allard, senior from Paducah, Ky., and a firsttime presenter, showed two posters at this year’s Posters-at-the-Capitol. Her first poster, “An Analysis of Employer Provided Health Benefits and Gender Discrimination in the Labor Force,” earned interest from a Kentucky lawmaker. “One state senator said she appreciated what I’d done and wanted me to contact her further about the project,” Allard said. Allard said she looked at both young and mature women in the work force to compare health care benefits in Kentucky. Economics and finance professor Martin Milkman advised the project. She presented her research with fellow student Jeremy Long, senior from Benton, Ky. Economics and finance professor David Eaton advised their project, titled “Economics of Food and Policy.” Allard said she encourages everyone to participate in Poster-at-the-Capitol. “Everything has an equal chance,” she said. Contact Cash at

News Editor Even as undergraduates, students may still hold the power to challenge issues around them through time, research and even posters. Thirty-four Murray State students participated in the 9th annual Posters-at-the-Capitol Jan. 28 in Frankfort, Ky. About 200 undergraduate students from Kentucky’s eight public universities and the Kentucky Community and Technical Colleges presented research to state lawmakers with posters during the event. “Who can lobby better than students who can say, ‘Look, this is my project. This is what can be done better’” Jody Cofer, program specialist for Undergraduate Research and Scholarly Activity, said. Cofer is also a coordinator of Posters-at-the-Capitol and has helped with the event for the past five years. He said it gets more competitive each year. “We have a ceiling of 120 different projects, but this can incorporate many students,” Cofer said. Interested students submit abstracts of their research projects in October, and then a committee, which consists of one representative from each campus or institution, selects the projects to be presented before Kentucky lawmakers. He said submissions grew 51 percent from last year. “They look for a wide variety of interests,” Cofer said. “They try not to let one discipline dominate.” He said there are usually many projects from Murray State’s College of Humanities and Fine Arts, but this year there were not any. Instead, for the first time

Derek Miller/The News

University President Randy Dunn speaks to Jeremy Long, senior from Benton, Ky., about his research presented at the 9th Annual Posters-at-the-Capitol in Frankfort, Ky., Jan. 28.

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February 5, 2010

The News

Opinion Editor: Jodi Keen Phone: 809-5873

Opinion Winter wasteland

Our view

Where there’s snow, there’s ... no snowplow The staff editorial is the majority opinion of the editorial board of The Murray State News.


et it snow, let it snow ... it snowed! On Friday, children celebrated early school dismissals, “survival” supplies flew off store shelves, students spent all night zooming down snowy hills on makeshift sleds and those without cars thanked whatever higher power when they didn’t have to clean a mountain of snow and ice off an automobile the next morning. If only the revelry could have survived a cold snowball of unsafe streets. All across town, barelysnowplowed roads posed a threat to the drivers who dared to leave their homes even a full 24 hours after the last snowflakes fell. Along 12th Street - the most traveled road through town, mind you - snow was scraped from both northbound and southbound lanes ... and then pushed into the left-hand turning lanes. Because who needs to turn left, really? And this doesn’t even begin to describe the hazardous state of campus roadways. The residential college circle parking lots, under University care, were an absolute wreck; in most spots, the 15 mile-per-hour speed limit was treacherous. Waldrop Drive, which is already narrow and has shoulders on only portions of the street, was downright unsafe. While Waldrop is under city jurisdiction, it’s possible University crews got to it first because it is lower on the city’s priority list - even though Waldrop is usually clogged with cars. Even the part of 16th Street running directly through campus was hazardous. The northbound lane was semi-clear, while the southbound lane was slippery all the way up the hill by Alexander Hall. Adding salt to the wound (figuratively, of course), areas of Murray such as Canterbury featured clean pavement the day after the storm. By this, is the city suggesting neighborhoods like Canterbury are a higher priority than one of the main drags through a university campus? That logic is almost laughable - almost, if it weren’t involving drivers’ safety. If 16th Street - a major traffic artery through Murray State - was not deemed important enough to send a snowplow down more than once or twice, the local road departments’ clean-up attitude sorely needs a reality check. Likewise, those who overtook campus for snowy fun should have heeded their mothers’ old adage and picked up their playtime debris - a rule obviously unfamiliar to the revelers who littered the Curris Center hill with broken plastic lids, beer cans and discarded pieces of cardboard. You’re old enough to know better, folks - grow up and pick up your trash. The News understands the city’s clean-up tasks are many, but it asks cleanup crews and Murray citizens to wise up to their respective responsibilities. The local highway departments are charged with keeping our roads in safe, working conditions, and in turn, residents should clean up after themselves.

Campus voice

Haiti has problems, but shouldn’t charity start at home? Just as there are Hollywood trends in clothing, hairstyles and music, there also seems to be s t r o n g trends in Zane Gamin the area of Sophomore from charity. Lakewood, Ohio. Every so often you hear of the new thing everyone is helping with, but it never lasts long. Right now, that certain cause is helping people in Haiti, and previously it was adopting children from obscure countries, as shown by Angelina Jolie. Don’t get me wrong, I do agree these are both excellent causes, but I also believe there are just as many things to worry about on a continual basis here in the United States. Poverty is rampant, with 13.2 percent of Americans classified as such in 2008, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Kentucky ranked even worse on the national scale, with 17.3 percent of its residents with incomes below the poverty level in 2007.

That is a crisis in itself, and it is here in our own country. We’ve all seen the commercials on television about sending only a dollar a day or some similar amount to children in Third World countries who need a home, but where are all of those advertisements for the estimated 123,000 children waiting for adoption or foster care here in our own country? Homeless men, women and children live on our streets as we speak. The need for shelter and food is there, but no one seems to be thinking about them. Those people need help just as desperately as anyone else. Besides, of those dollars sent to the needy overseas, how much is actually going to the right place or the children? I would be willing to bet that not many people know. Instead of sending money overseas for a picture of a child that you supposedly helped, why not volunteer at a local soup kitchen or homeless shelter? In this tight economy, every dollar is powerful, and actions often mean more than writing a check. Instead of church groups taking mission trips to remote areas, why not have them organize groups such as Habitat for Humanity that build houses for

those in need? There is no reason it can’t be done; it only takes willpower. What you take away from a hands-on project or selfless act such as those is infinitely more powerful and invigorating than sending a few dollars away to a charity you hope is using the money as you requested. As our government sends tax dollars overseas to fund the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as relief efforts in Haiti, questioning where that money comes from is not unreasonable. Since 2001, $915 billion has been appropriated for the Middle East, and our national debt has risen to more than $12 trillion. How can we support economies in multiple areas of the world while still drawing from an empty bank account, and why isn’t that money going toward our own nation? Contributing to charities is a generous and noble thing, but if you plan on participating, pause and think about where your money is going and if you can make an impact in other ways as well. Sometimes you can make a huge difference in the life of someone who is close to you just as easily, and you’ll see the effects personally.

What do you think ...

Kerry Krawetz • San Francisco, Calif. sophomore

“No, I don’t have time to watch T.V. and I had too many tests to study for.”

“I did not get to see it, but I heard and read some reviews. I plan on looking it up and watching it this weekend.” Alice Rogers • Lexington, Ky. senior Contributing photographer Karie Mikel

*All events are free and open to the public, unless noted otherwise. For more information and events, visit page 2a.

The News Editorial Board Mia Walters Editor-in-Chief • 809-6877 Laura Cash News Editor • 809-4468 Jodi Keen Opinion Editor • 809-5873 Charlotte Kyle Features Editor • 809-5871 Elizabeth Johnson Sports Editor • 809-4481 Shannon Stafford, Advertising Manager • 809-4478

Molly Fender • Murray freshman

•SGA accepting nominations for various awards, through Feb. 26, contact SGA office for details •”Black Women: Bold, Beautiful, Brilliant,” 7 p.m., Monday, Wrather Auditorium •Pet Therapy, noon, Wednesday, Curris Center Rocking Chair Lounge •History Research Forum: “Western Women in Agriculture, 1900-1950,” 4 p.m., Thursday, Faculty Hall room 505 •”The Vagina Monologues,” 7 p.m., Thursday - Feb. 13, Wrather Auditorium, $8 public, $5 with Racercard

2609 University Station Murray State University Murray, Kentucky 42071-3301 E-mail: Fax: 809-3175

What was your reaction to President Obama’s State of the Union address? “No, I didn’t watch (it), but I was able to listen to clips of it on NPR. I like the president’s stance on health care reform and fully support it.”


Elijah Phillips Online Editor • 809-5877 John Vaught Chief Copy Editor • 809-5876 Misty Hays Photography Editor • 809-5878 Joe Hedges Adviser • 809-2998 Katelyn Swift, Production Manager • 809-5874

Write to us! The News welcomes commentaries and letters to the editor. Letters should be 300 words or less. Contributors should include phone numbers for verification. Please include hometown, classification and title or relationship to the University. Commentaries should be limited to 600 words. The News reserves the right to edit for style, length and content. No anonymous contributions will be accepted. All contributions should be turned in by noon on Tuesday of each week via e-mail or

The News strives to be the University community’s source for information. Our goal is to present that information in a fair and unbiased manner and provide a free and open forum for expression and debate. The News is a designated public forum. Student editors have authority to make all content decisions without censorship or advance approval. The paper offers a hands-on learning environment for students interested in journalism. The campus press should be free from censorship and advance approval of copy and its editors should develop their editorial and news policies. The News is prepared and edited by students and is an official publication of Murray State University. The first copy is free. Additional copies are available for 25 cents at 111 Wilson Hall. From the front: Flag photo by Derek Miller/The News, cutout by Chris Phillips/The News; texting graphic by Chris Phillips/The News; (sidebar from top) Call of Fame graphic by Chris Phillips/The News; Campus Voice photo by Jodi Keen/The News; Sports photo: file photo; Features graphic courtesy of; weather graphics by Chris Phillips/The News; weather information courtesy of

The News


February 5, 2010


Ice Storm 2010 becomes snow-pocalypse Last weekend, we saw an onset of panic and fear throughout Murray. At the very mention of ice, the entire town went into apocalyptic preparation mode. Humans are very interesting animals because of our ability to Amanda learn and grow with our LaPradd experiences. Junior from The ice storm crisis Dawson Springs, Ky. of 2009 taught us all to fear winter storms and prepare for the worst. Anyone who attempted a trip to Walmart or Kroger last week knows exactly what I am talking about. These stores were stuffed full of long lines, frustrated customers and weary workers. Many supplies arrived to fill store shelves, but we were all ready. Each one of us waited, and almost hoped, to see the snow, ice and panic of last January’s storm. Yet after all the little squirrels stored their nuts for winter, they only had a three-day snow. The weekend turned out to be a winter vacation for many students, teachers and part-time workers. The roads were not in a safe driving condition Friday night or the entirety of Saturday, so most people I know stayed home and played in the snow.

It is amazing how much snow changes people; it is my philosophy it brings out our inner child. Murray State University was transformed into a sledding resort for its students. An overwhelming number of Murray State students chose to sled down the Curris Center hill. It was a sight to see, and if it snows again, be sure to hit the hill. It looked like amazing fun. Many sledders did not even buy a sled, though. Almost everyone just grabbed whatever they could sit on and slid down the hill on garbage can lids, plastic containers and pieces of cardboard. I must admit, though, the most incredible sight I experienced during the winter weekend was my neighbor’s hand-made igloo. A group of college students actually spent their Saturday building a comfortable-sized igloo. It survived the sun up until Tuesday, I might add. The panic and fear felt all over town was immediately relieved by sledding, snowball fights, igloos and snowmen. The weekend seemed to be just what we all needed after last year. Maybe we can all learn to love winter with the expectations of beautiful, glitter-covered grounds and crystallized trees, instead of dreading bad roads, black ice and power outages. It is good to be prepared for the worst, but do not let the fear consume you. Enjoy the season for all it has to offer for the present and the future, not for what it has been in the past.

By the numbers Topic: Winter preparedness With anywhere from 3 to 10 inches of snow predicted last weekend, many Murray residents were on the edge of their seats in anticipation of the weekend weather. But would the community be able to withstand a fierce winter storm - or more? The News asked its online visitors if Murray was prepared for another snow-pocalypse:

No (76*)

Yes (24%)*

* All results as of noon Thursday; from

letters • letters • letters • letters Letter misses citizens’ responsibility to Haitians (In response to the letter “Why help Haiti, when we need help at home?” in The News’ Jan. 29, 2010 issue) Tim Garrett’s letter asks, “Why help Haiti?” One answer that comes to mind is that we can. Another is that it is the Christian thing, the right thing to do. Why blame the Haitian general population for the government’s corruption? Furthermore, your government is not going broke by helping Haitian victims. That’s a drop in the bucket. You don’t have to be an economist to know huge amounts of dollars flow minute by minute in support of a contrived and senseless war. No one measures rampant corruption soaking up U.S. dollars in desert “democracies” and making U.S. contractors rich in the process while sacrificing American young men and women. Yes, there are many things that need fixing here. We do have serious problems, but helping Haiti is not one of them. Garrett’s comments, if typical, would make it appear, however, that attitude is one. Geraldine Mellon Hazel, Ky.

University students can aid Haiti organization Owing largely to my experiences at Murray State - truly an incredible place to spend your formative undergraduate years - I left college with a desire to contribute positively to the


global community in which we all live. This philanthropic urge, I believe, is endogenous to the very fabric of the Murray State campus and community, and is a trait all successful Murray State students learn throughout their experience at this institution. This alone speaks volumes to the central role Murray State plays in creating globally conscious citizens. In light of the recent disaster in Haiti, I felt the urge to tell you about an outstanding group of people, the St. Louis-based non-profit organization Meds & Food for Kids, which is doing incredible work in Haiti, and with whom I have a very personal connection and experience. Two summers ago, I did some work in Haiti with MFK, primarily a nonprofit public health and development organization, which was founded by Patricia Wolff of the Washington University School of Medicine. MFK treats malnutrition through the use of a Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Food called “Medika Mamba” (which is Haitian Creole for “Peanut Butter Medicine”). One of the greatest features of the mission MFK pursues in Haiti is its dedication to be more than simply a reactive entity, merely treating the ills of the nation of Haiti - though it certainly does that and more - while avoiding the deeper questions that impact the public health and development of the Western Hemisphere's poorest country. MFK’s goal is to train workers, managers, nurses and public health workers - all of whom MFK helps fund

through their efforts - while they help their own communities. Not only is “Medika Mamba” a miraculous treatment for malnutrition in children, it is also used to treat malnutrition among adult sufferers of HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and other fatal diseases. More importantly, it serves the general population of Haiti, which is now without the bare essentials necessary for human life. For the nation of Haiti, MFK is a beacon of hope during even the best of times. Now more than ever, Haiti needs MFK, and MFK needs us. I urge anyone and everyone to consider the work of MFK should they feel moved to donate to efforts being made to assuage the suffering of Haiti's most vulnerable people. Let’s keep MFK and other organizations like it in our thoughts and prayers. Most importantly, let’s keep the people of Haiti in the forefront of our minds and remember to consider our own good fortunes. On a personal note, I can say the work and mission of this organization permanently changed my life, outlook and world view. I would love the opportunity to discuss my experiences and MFK’s work with any and all willing to listen. Please feel free to contact me at any time. C. Kevin Taber, Bloomington, Ind.

*Editor’s note: More information about MFK can be found by visiting To read Taber’s entire letter, visit

Cheers to ... a weekend of tons of snow and very little ice. It was an ice storm anniversary we wanted to celebrate. Jeers to ... the litterbugs who sledded on the Curris Center hill. Have some fun, but good grief, clean up your stuff! Cheers to ... our rifle team for being stellar enough to host the OVC rifle championships this weekend.

cheers & jeers

Jeers to ... artists in Detroit for wasting water on creating an ice house for housing awareness. Cheers to ... a 2007 financial act for potentially lessening the burden of paying back student loans. Jeers to ... PETA for wanting to replace Punxsutawney Phil of Groundhog Day fame with a robotic rodent.

by Trevin Holder

Check it! The News’ online opinion selection: • The News attacks! Videos, links, previews and sports updates - what more could you ask for? • Web exclusives! Be sure to stop by to get your daily fix of Associated Press stories and find out what’s going on in the world. • The News’ Facebook opinion forum: Did you think Murray’s post-snow clean-up was well done or totally lazy? Give us a holla.

Just imagining Lions, tigers, bears ... wait, feminists? Oh my I can’t speak for all editors, but I know for sure I am one who does not enjoy making people angry. So you can imagine how my stomach twisted into knots when I learned I had severely pissed Jodi Keen off several feminist Opinion Editor “bears” (my words) on campus with my Nov. 20 anti-feminism column. The editor who doesn’t like confrontation … had poked the bear. To my surprise, I wasn’t called names or thrown to the wolves in any formal response, but that doesn’t mean the writers held back. They asked why I would make fun of something I obviously didn’t understand. (Sure, I’m not an expert.) They wanted to know why I chose to criticize feminism instead of study it for clues. (Good point.) Most poignantly, they called me out on making a sweeping generalization of feminists, when as a journalist, I am trained to do the opposite. (Ouch – that one’s true.) One reader suggested my column’s point was so unclear, it must have been written against a deadline with little time to spare. While truthfully, deadlines run my entire life, I agree my column could have used more than one rough draft. My points weren’t completely fleshed out; in fact, I’d meant for my column to just poke fun at feminism and myself. It had a much more serious tone than I had originally intended, however, which is where the additional drafts would have come in handy. While I stand by certain points I previously made, I’ve had more opportunities lately to openly discuss my opinions with self-described feminists, and they in turn have asked me to explore feminist issues. A starting point has been my participation in Murray State’s 2010 Vagina Monologues. We’re addressing women’s issues that are incredibly commonplace and yet never publicly discussed. It blows my mind things so important to a woman’s total well-being are still considered too taboo to speak of in public. The actresses have shown me not all those believing in feminism are brutish, forceful bears. In fact, one letter writer helpfully pointed out I wouldn’t even have the opportunity to be an editor without the generations of women before me who fought for equality – a point driven home recently while listening to ‘60s and ‘70s newsroom stories from a respected Murray State journalism professor, Ann Landini. I sat in class as she told us of making roughly half of a male journalist’s paycheck when she first started out as a journalist and not being allowed to drive a work car or even leave the newspaper building to go to lunch – all because she was female. Listening to those stories, I honestly couldn’t imagine saying the words of that column to the face of a woman who had to endure the kind of ignorance then that I displayed now. It’s got to be even worse coming from your own gender. As long as I’m leveling with you, though, I’m going to issue a rebuke of my own. I’ve mentioned the students who were kind and bold enough to respectfully give me a piece of their mind. What about the rest of you? If you were so offended by what I said, why did I get next to nothing in response? My column was a discussion topic in one humanities class the day it ran, but from the heated banter in that class, only one voice made it a point to carry over to my desk. In fact, that is why the commentary spot on page 4a is called “campus voice.” It’s specifically set aside each week to declare your voice, but at times it seems the writers have developed a case of laryngitis. When we say we welcome and even encourage feedback of any kind, we mean it. The News exists to serve the University, but when members of that community greet each issue with silence, it cuts us off at the legs. So in the future, please don’t take for granted this entire twopage spread dedicated to you. Read it, utilize it and fill it up with your thoughts. Learning is a two-way street, so why don’t we all take a drive together?

Quote of the week: “Who so neglects learning in his youth, loses the past and is dead for the future.” - Euripides Song of the week: “Come So Far (Got So Far to Go)” - “Hairspray” soundtrack Contact Keen





The News February 5, 2010

Alumnus donates property to farm Meredith Freeland Staff writer With a donation from a University alumnus, the School of Agriculture will dig into funds for further research and a new laboratory farm. Bill Garrett, a 1949 Murray State graduate, donated property in Eufuala, Ala., to the School of Agriculture after the property was appraised at nearly $670,000, Bob Jackson, associate vice president for Institutional Advancement, said. In conjunction with the University’s Capital Campaign for students, the money raised from this land will be used as “seed money” to fund a new research and laboratory farm, he said. Because of Murray State’s goal for student enrollment growth, the donation comes at a pivotal time, Jackson said. “The School of Agriculture has grown tremendously in terms of students, programs and laboratory needs,” Tony Brannon, dean of the School of Agriculture, said. “We now have over 715 students, an overall 7.66 percent increase in 2009 alone. “Our equine program has expanded in recent years and this has necessitated a change in our agronomy and forage land requirements in support of student education and faculty and agricultural industry research,” Brannon said. This expansion in the School of Agriculture has required more farmland to support plant and animal agricultural programs, he said. “The present University farm laboratories are being utilized to the maximum,” he said. There is no room for growth and this has become a limiting factor,” he said. The School of Agriculture aims to provide students with experience leadership development, growth and success, Brannon said. “This past summer our faculty, staff and students had over 100 research trials and over 2,000 research treatments on the farm,” he said. “As a result of these trials through the years, new varieties of crops and available chemicals have been developed on our farm thereby providing economic benefit to Kentucky and

Courtney Crain/The News

Money acquired from selling a land donation will fund a new research and laboratory farm. Pictured above is the current University farm. the regional economy. “In support of this need, the University has included the research and laboratory farm as one of the specific endowments to support academic excellence in the ‘Hold Thy Banner High’ campaign for the students of Murray State,” Jackson said. “We are extremely grateful to Mr. Garrett and all of our alumni and friends for joining us in pursuit of this goal,” Brannon said. Brannon said a new campaign was formed in order to ensure the donation is used to its best advantage.

“To support the donation and in conjunction with the Office of Development, we have designed the Agricultural Campaign for Research and Education of Students (ACRES),” he said. “This campaign will provide the funding mechanism for the purchase of the necessary acreage. “Because of this initiative, future students will benefit from the expanded opportunities afforded them as Murray State and the School of Agriculture continues to be ‘green and growing,’” he said. Contact Freeland at

University pay incentive promotes exercise Crystal Akers Assistant News Editor

Jordie Oetken/The News

Brian Clardy, associate professor of history, works out at the Wellness Center. He is considering the Healthy LIFE Incentive Plan.

Murray State is amping up its employee wellness program by introducing the Healthy LIFE Incentive Plan. Amelia Dodd, wellness coordinator for employees, said employees have previously been encouraged to take advantage of healthy options, but the prospect of earning may inspire more people to join. “We are excited to begin this incentive program,” Dodd said. “It will be interesting to see how many may enroll now with the incentive.”

In the three different categories included in the Healthy LIFE Incentive Plan, employees can earn reward money if they meet a number of qualifications. Dodd said employees will receive a packet through campus mail in late February containing more information. Employees may begin step one, however, and once the requirements are met, employees will receive $50 on their quarterly pay stub, Dodd said. She said the plan is beneficial and risk-free. “We want to ensure that everyone knows all informa-

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will be little or no raises,” Beck said. Brian Clardy, associate professor of history, said the money is a helpful incentive, but there are others that should be just as inspiring. “Just the money piece aside, if we look at the larger health care issue, one of the things that President Obama has talked about is preventative care, and that’s a great incentive,” Clardy said. “To lower health care costs and promote overall health, to stop smoking, to read our labels before we prepare something to eat, to be reasonable in our portions and to use the facilities that are

in place to work out - nothing but good can come of that.” Clardy said making healthy choices seems like common sense, but the University is doing a good service in promoting them. “I think this is a very novel approach that the University is taking,” Clardy said. “This is to be applauded.” The Spring Employee Health Fair will present more information on the Healthy LIFE Incentive Plan. The fair is 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. March 10 in the north gym of Carr Health. Contact Akers at crystal.

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tion if strictly confidential and is used only for the incentive program,” Dodd said. “It will in no way influence employee status and insurance rates.” Several universities, such as Western Kentucky University, have employed the use of similar health and wellness programs. Ann Beck, associate professor of government, law and international affairs, said Murray State is keeping in stride with other employers’ healthy living programs. “It’s great for faculty and staff for learning new things and putting money into their pockets in a year when there


“Exchange” with other schools for up to one full calendar year Pay Murray State University’s tuition to attend participating schools throughout the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico and U.S. Territories KENTUCKY RESIDENTS can use KEES funds to pay for tuition at Murray State University and exchange to another college or university Choose which school to attend from 190 different colleges and universities Scholarships and financial aid may apply toward tuition Full-time status and a 2.5 GPA are required at the time of application

The application deadline for Fall 2010/Spring 2011 is FEBRUARY 26, 2010. For more information, contact: Murray State University Career Services 210 Ordway Hall Murray, KY 42071 (270) 809-3735


The News February 5, 2010

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JIM BAURER OUTSTANDING STAFF SERVICE AWARD For recognition of a staff member who has gone above and beyond the call of prescribed duty and shown exceptional dedication with regard to the students of Murray State University.

PLEASE COMPLETE THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION I,__________________________________________, would like to nominate____________________________________ for the award. 1. What area does the staff member work in? ___________________________________________________________ 2. What qualities do you feel this staff person has that would qualify him/her for this award? ___________________________________________________________

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Health Services serves as a place for the Murray State community to receive acute care services in an outpatient setting. We stress prevention and wellness. The clinic is staffed with professional nurses, nurse practitioners and a part-time physician. What to Expect When Visiting Health Services: Health Services requests that everyone complete a Health History to be included in the chart (see sidebar). First time visit-complete the front of the chart that includes basic demographic information. Everyone will be seen on a drop-in basis for primary health care in an outpatient setting. Waiting times will vary from none to an hour.

To speed the process of your first visit, go to Health Services Web site to download and print your health history. Bring the completed form with you.

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Plan of care developed by a professional nurse based on protocols OR referral to the Nurse Practitioner or Clinic Physician. Referral to local health care provider for clinical health issues or issues beyond our scope of care. Services available to the Murray State Community are: Physical assessment for illness or injury. Crutches are available on loan basis. Referrals as needed.

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The News February 5, 2010

Let it sn ow

Derek Miller/The News

A blanket of snow whitened College Circle Friday and Saturday. Although the University did not close because of the snow, many students took advantage of the five-inch accumulation.

Staff report Just three days after the one-year anniversary of the ice storm, Murray experienced another winter storm. This time, though the results were not as catastrophic. Initial predictions stated the area would receive seven - 10 inches of snow from Thursday night through Friday morning. When students awoke Friday morning, though,

there was not a flake of snow in the air. Alex Dodd, meteorologist for the National Weather Service for the Paducah, Ky., office, said dry air moved ahead the storm and caused its delay and lessened its predicted load. Murray’s snow accumulation reached more than five inches by Saturday, Dodd said, which was enough for some students to enjoy a white campus.

Misty Hays/The News

A waterway is outlined by the snow that fell throughout the region Friday and Saturday.

Derek Miller/The News

Megan Perry, senior from Paducah, Ky., sleds down a hill on campus Friday night.

Disc golf charity tournament raises funds for Need Line Casey Thornton Staff writer The Chains for Charity Disc Golf Ice Bowl is assembling disc golf players to overcome frigid temperatures and raise money and canned goods for Murray-Calloway County Need Line. The event occurs Saturday and Sunday in Murray Central Park. “I hope the weather on these days is absolutely freezing and terrible for the disc golfers playing,” event coordinator PJ Robinson, said. “There is a reason it says, ‘No wimps, no whiners.’” Communities across the nation hold The Ice Bowl to raise money for local charities, Robinson said, and the creators wanted the event set in cold temperatures. For Murray, Chains for Charity bring back memories of last year’s ice storm, Robinson said. “I find it significant that this event takes place a few days after the anniversary of the ice storm in 2009,” Robinson said. With the added pressure of last year’s ice storm, providing for the community became a challenge. To help Need Line this year, Chains for Charity encourages contestants to bring as many canned goods as possible along with their entry fees, Robinson said. Robinson said he expects 35 to 50 participants in the event, which will total a profit of approximately $1,200.

The majority of the profits, along with the collected can goods, will go directly to Need Line, he said. The tournament consists of three different brackets for various playing levels: beginner, intermediate and advanced levels, Robinson said. Sponsors, such as the Big Apple Café and Terrapin Station, have helped with the event by funding prizes for the winners, he said. The first 25 players to register receive Ice Bowl merchandise, which comes directly from the Ice Bowl organization, he said. Joe Spinks, senior from Pewee Valley, Ky., said the Chains for Charity Ice Bowl sounded like a fun way to raise money for a local charity. “I saw the flyer for it, and I am really considering signing up to play in the tournament,” Spinks said. Spinks said many people play disc golf, and this seems like a great way to get those people involved in the community. Robinson said the whole community should enjoy this family event, and he hopes to see many students having a good time there. The event puts less emphasis on actual winning and on raising money for charity instead, he said. “I really hope this event will serve to bring everyone’s attention to the need for help within the community,” Robinson said. Contact Thornton at casey.thornton@

Jordie Oetken/The News

Discs like the ones above are used in disc golf tournaments like the one on Saturday.

February 5, 2010

Sports Editor: Elizabeth Johnson Assistant Sports Editor: Greg Waddell Phone: 809-4481

Section B

The News


The men’s basketball team participates in a pregame huddle at the RSEC. The Racers defeated Tennessee State 76-54 Thursday.

Photos by Derek Miller/The News

Sophomore guard Jewuan Long (left) and Donte Poole attempt to block an Eastern Illinois shooter in the Jan. 10 matchup at the RSEC.

Junior forward Jeffery McClain checks the scoreboard in a game earlier this season at the RSEC.

Racer men continue to soar Kyra Ledbetter Staff writer The men’s basketball team continued their winning streak Thursday with a 76-54 win against Tennessee State. The Racers let TSU know who they were dealing with early in the game with a 7-0 lead just over two minutes into the half. From there the Racers maintained control, keeping the Tigers scoreless for the first three minutes of the half. The Tigers did not threaten the Racers lead until only 11 minutes remained in the half. The Tigers pulled to within four points of Murray State, but could not tie the Racers, and remained at arms length until Murray State pushed their lead to an 11 point advantage. The Racers headed for the locker room with a substantial lead and a pack of Tigers not too far behind. Murray State started the second half the same way the first ended, by continuing to lead the Tigers. The Racers expanded

their 11-point lead to 18 before the first five minutes of the half had passed. The Racers continued to build their lead for the remainder of the game, leading by as much as 23 with just over three minutes left in the half. “We come out every second half like it’s 0-0,” junior guard B.J. Jenkins said. “We didn’t feel like we played that well in the first half anyway. So we needed to come out in the first four minutes and try to go extra hard. We haven’t been doing that lately, so I think we need to get back to that.” The Racers ended the game leading by 22, giving them their twelfth OVC win of the season, going undefeated in the league. “Like we said, everything’s a challenge,” sophomore forward Ivan Aska said. “Anybody can win any day. When you start thinking that teams aren’t challenges, that’s when you get upset.” Jenkins led Murray State in points, amassing 17 total for the game with senior forward Danero Thomas falling behind him with 12 and freshman guard Isaiah Canaan coming in with 11.

In rebounds Aska led the Racers with seven while Thomas and junior forward Jeffery McClain were close behind with six each. Junior guard Isacc Miles brought five total assists to the game. Teammate Thomas added four and both Jenkins and sophomore guard Donte Poole tallied two. “We created some turnovers that didn’t convert,” Head Coach Billy Kennedy said. “I thought we went too fast at times. That’s something were going to have to clean up. But I thought for the most part we had a solid effort in a tough situation against Tennessee State who played all zone because they had to. I have to give them credit, they competed.” Contact Ledbetter at

76 54

Women trample Tigers 67-59 in conference play Kyra Ledbetter Staff writer

Derek Miller/The News

Sophomore guard Rachael Isom drives toward the lane in a game earlier this season at the RSEC.

In a back-and-forth volley between the Racers and Tennessee State, Murray State was able to defeat the Tigers 77-69 Thursday at the RSEC. In the first half of play the Racers stuck close to the Tigers, remaining either tied or two points behind TSU, rarely gaining a lead. With 6:30 remaining in the half, freshman forward Jessica Holder garnered a one-point lead for Murray State, one of the few leads the Racers would manage in the first half. A foul shot by TSU’s senior forward Obiageli Okafor tied the score at 26 points, and a shot by junior guard Meredith Stafford put them back in the lead. A two-point shot in the paint by senior guard Kayla Vance and two foul shots by senior guard Mallory Luckett put the Racers back in the lead by a single point with sophomore forward Kristen Kluempers extending that lead to three. However, the Tigers tied the game again in a single shot with two minutes left in the half. After a TSU injury halted game play for nearly ten minutes, the Racers continued to fight TSU, exiting the half ahead by three at a score of 37-34. Coming out of the locker room, the Tigers quickly tied with a three-point shot. The Racers countered with two points by sophomore guard, Rachael Isom, and the chase was on again. “We were just hungry for a win,” Vance said.

“We knew we were coming back to our home court. We wanted to make up for how we played against Martin.” Murray State took a four-point lead two minutes into the half, keeping the Tigers at bay despite several attempts by TSU to regain control of the half. The Racers exited the game with an eight point victory and their fifth OVC win of the season. “Great thing about it is it puts us in a position where we take care of business and we’re moving close to being in a position to host a firstround game,” Head Coach Rob Cross said, “That’s still the goal. None of that will be decided til after the final game ends on that Saturday night before the tournament.” The Racers were led in points by Vance, Luckett and freshman guard Tessa Elkins with 20, 15 and 10, respectively. For rebounds, Luckett added nine to the team’s total with teammates Elkins and Kluempers adding seven and six, respectively. Luckett also led in assists with eight, nearly achieving a second tripledouble on her birthday, no less. “Tennessee State were picked to finish third in the league and they have that talent,” Cross said. “I’m proud of the way we finished the game because we did finish the game and it never got to the point where the couple of mental errors we made didn’t cause us to be in a position where the game was in doubt.” The Racers play at home against Austin Peay at 5:15 p.m. Saturday in the RSEC. Contact Ledbetter at kyra.ledbetter@

The News



February 5, 2010

Rifle takes aim at OVC title Kyra Ledbetter Staff Writer

The Marching Saints Unfortunately, Ricky is not gracing this column with his quirky words and insight this week, but I promise to do my best to fill in for the one and only. I cannot believe it’s Super Bowl weekend. Elizabeth It seems like just two Johnson weeks ago I was praySports Editor ing for the Braves to snag the National League’s wildcard spot. But I’m already having to stock up on chips and dip for an enjoyable Sunday dedicated to the NFL and, of course, some of the best commercials of all time. When it comes to football, I’m not a huge fan of just one team. Maybe it’s because I dedicate my life to the Atlanta Braves and Kentucky basketball, but I just don’t associate with a specific team. While I am a New England hater, more specifically a Tom Brady hater, a Peyton Manning fan and a so-so follower of the Titans, I found myself cheering for the Saints early on this season. I won’t call myself a New Orleans fanatic because that would be unfair to the team’s true followers, but every chance I got to watch a game this season, I took it. It may be the maternal softy inside of me, but there is something about cheering for the underdog. I find myself swayed by the Cinderella-like sports teams. One thing is for sure though, I am looking more forward to Super Bowl XLIV more than any other in the past few years. Yeah, last year was a close game with Pittsburgh edging Arizona out by four, but I hate Ben Roethlisberger (sorry). Eli Manning vs. Tom Brady? That was a good, close game. And obviously I was happy to see Baby Manning out Tommy Boy, but a score of 17-14? I need a highscoring game, which I predict to be quite possible this year. When Indianapolis defeated Chicago 2917, I gave up on the game for a craft project, literally. And the year before that? BORE FEST. Pittsburgh dominated Seattle in a 21-10 blowout. I regret the waste of those hours. But this year, it’s Drew Brees vs. Peyton Manning, two magnificent quarterbacks. The game will undoubtedly be an entertaining high-scoring game. In fact, I may have to take bathroom breaks during the commercials instead of the game as I have in the recent past. While the Saints ended the regular season on a sour note, breaking a 13-0 record with a three-game losing streak, they’ve looked strong in the post season against Arizona and Brett Favre’s Vikings. The Colts look great as well, after starting the season 14-0 and entering Sunday’s game with a 16-2 record. But for me, the game just means more to New Orleans, and that’s the deciding factor. After Hurricane Katrina devastated the city, residents bonded together to give the Saints the fan base it takes to win a national title. As people try to hash out what team they’ll root for, my decision is already made. The Colts, eyeing their second ring in four years or New Orleans, a team who has faced adversity and NEVER played in the Super Bowl? Why should you even ask? I’ll be on my feet yelling with the best of the Saints’ fans come Sunday. POWER PLAY: After recovering a fumble for a touchdown in Saturday’s Under Armour Senior Bowl, defensive end Austen Lane lands himself in the Power Play this week. PENALTY BOX: Dallas Cowboys fullback Deon Anderson goes into the Penalty Box after being charged with misdemeanor deadly conduct Wednesday. Anderson allegedly threatened a restaurant employee with a gun during a dispute Tuesday and faces up to a year in jail and $4,000 in fines. TWEET OF THE WEEK: Michael Dann, Sports Editor for The Murray Ledger & Times finds himself with another Tweet of the Week honor after mentioning his hopes for Thursday’s men’s basketball game. spydieshooter Don’t say anything, but with Tennessee State down to just nine players, there’s a good chance coach Kennedy might put me in tonight. Thursday from TweetDeck Contact Johnson at elizabetha.johnson@

Having ended regular season play, the rifle team takes on conference competitors, hosting the OVC tournament at the Pat Spurgin Rifle Range this weekend. Head Coach Alan Lollar said winning the title would be meaningful to the team, especially the senior shooters. “For Kasey (Meyer) and Harley (Jette), they’ve been through their career and not won one yet,” Lollar said. “I hope that we can get that for them. For the younger shooters, I want them to get started right. I want them to understand that this is something that we compete for every year. We haven’t won one since 2004. It’s time to show up and see if we can do it again.” Of the Racers’ four opponents this weekend, Jacksonville State poses the clearest threat, after posting a score of 4,616 points at the Newkirk Invitational earlier in the season. However, JSU has not remained consistent, shooting a much lower 4,582 last weekend in the Withrow Invitational. UT Martin also attended the Withrow meet, finishing in sixth place with a score of 4,523 points. The team is typically divided into male and female squads, both of which have posted better scores than those achieved at Withrow. Morehead State, which Murray State defeated earlier in the season, recently traveled to Lexington, Va., to defeat the Virginia Military Institute with a cumulative score of 4,553. Although it was not enough to beat Columbus State, Tennessee Tech most recently displayed a score of 4,544 against CSU, boasting a team-high 576 File photo/Nate Brelsford points of a possible 600 for junior shooter Austin Litherland. As for the Racers, the most recent action was at the Withrow InvitationSenior Kasey Meyer looks to lead the Racers to a championship Saturday. al, with the team beating their previous top score by eight points, tallying a total of 4,632 by the day’s end. For Lollar and the Racers, the goal of this weekend’s tournament is more than winning. No. 9 Jacksonville State “It’s basically a celebration of the year for all of the teams,” he said. “We’re going to try to put on a great championship for those in the conference and No. 10 Murray State all the teams that attend. Our primary goal is that the athletes feel like the No. 13 Tennessee Tech championship was for them. We all hope that we pull that off and that they feel like it was something really special.” No. 18 Morehead State The OVC tournament begins this weekend at 8 a.m. Saturday at the Pat No. 20 UT Martin Spurgin Rifle Range. Information courtesy of Contact Ledbetter at


File photos

Left to right: Juniors Renaldo Domoney and Jadir Semensin, senior Ben Clos and sophomores Jose Berardo and Jorge Caetano, along with the rest of the men’s tennis team travel take on the Missouri-Kansas City Kangaroos today in Paducah, Ky.

Racers look to rebound in road match Greg Waddell Assistant Sports Editor Ice storm round two? Well, maybe not. While last week’s run-in with a little winter weather was not on the same level as the ice storm of ’09, it did manage to throw a couple of kinks into Head Coach Mel Purcell’s schedule, including a canceled match and lots of snow. The Racers will finally get a chance to rebound from a loss to Louisville in the season opener as they travel to Paducah, Ky., today for a tussle with Missouri-Kansas City.

Purcell said he was disappointed the team couldn’t play Memphis but his team is looking forward to today. “I don’t really know what type of team they have,” Purcell said. “I think it’s a match that we possibly can win. Overall (the postponement) is just a little setback but it gives us a little more time to get ready for the doubles. We’re excited about playing and possibly getting a win this weekend.” Junior Luka Milicevic was one of the lone bright spots against the Cardinals, hanging with Simon Childs, the No. 84 ranked player according to the Intercollegiate Tennis Asso-

ciation, for two sets before falling 6-3, 6-2. Purcell noted however that because the season is still so young, rotations are still being worked out. “I have a team that all of my guys are about the same,” Purcell said. “I’ve got Ben Clos playing one. He’s a senior (so) I kind of put him up there for senior leadership and he’s got the big game too. But basically I’ve got six or seven good players that are going to be hard to get playing all the time. It’s a tough decision as a coach but it’s a good one.” Contact Waddell at gregory.waddell@

Get to Know Mason Johnson

Junior Tennis Player Hometown: Henderson, Ky. Major: Accounting Nickname: The Case

Q: What is a random fact about you? A: “I always put my left shoe on before my right.” Q: How has it been playing for Mel Purcell? A: “It’s a lot of fun, but productive at the same time. Never boring!”

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The News February 5, 2010

Pick ‘em


Each week, The News’ Elizabeth Johnson, Greg Waddell, Ricky Martin and Kyle Rogers, Pagliai’s owner Chuck Wynn, plus a guest will face off in a heated round of Pick ‘em.


Loving February Fishing

Basketball Elizabeth Johnson Sports Editor Last week: 4-2 Season record: 13-5

Greg Waddell Assistant Sports Editor Last week: 4-2 Season Record: 12-6

Ricky Martin Head of Sports Operations Last week: 3-3 Season Record: 11-7

Kyle Rogers Sports writer Last week: 3-3 Season Record: 13-5

Chuck Wynn Pagliai’s Owner Last week: 3-3 Season record: 12-6

Guest: Hilary Mason MSU Equestrian Team Last week: 2-4 Season Record: 7-11

No. 2 Villanova at No. 6 West Virginia No. 13 Gonzaga at Memphis No. 1 Kansas at No. 10 Texas No. 7 Purdue at No. 5 Michigan State Alabama at No. 3 Kentucky No. 14 Tennessee at No. 20 Vanderbilt

Women eye OVC rival Austin Peay Jeffrey Frye Staff writer Basketball is a simple numbers game: The team with the most points wins. It came as a surprise, however, when 4-15 overall UT Martin beat Murray State’s women’s basketball team 77-65 Saturday, dropping them to 9-12 overall. In their last two games, the women bowled a split, with a hefty win against Southeast Missouri State and a 12-point loss to UT Martin. The Racers participate in a scoring democracy, with five players averaging seven points or more a game. The main breadwinners include sophomore guard Rachael Isom and senior guards Kayla Vance and Mallory Luckett, who average 12.8, 10.8 and 9.9 points per game, respectively. Luckett also leads the team in rebounds and assists, averaging seven boards and 5.4 dimes per game. Austin Peay now stands as the Racers’ next opponent. The Governors held the No. 3 spot in the OVC, before heading to UT Martin Thursday, with a 7-4 conference record, going 10-13 overall. Murray State ranked sixth in the conference with a 4-6 OVC record going in to Thursday’s game against Tennessee State at the RSEC. “The conference isn’t decided,” Head Coach Rob Cross said. “Things aren’t decided until everybody has played everybody twice.” With the OVC tournament less than a month away, no game should be taken lightly. Morehead State shredded APSU Sunday to give the squad its first OVC home loss of the season. Eagles’ senior guard Chynna Bozeman sunk nine of 13 three-point field goals and finished with 37 points. The leading scorers for the Governors include junior guard Ashley Herring with 12.6 points, sophomore center Jasmine Rayner with 10.8 and senior center Nicole Jamen’s 10.3 points per game. Murray State plays host to the Governors at 5:15 p.m. Saturday at the RSEC. Contact Frye at jeffrey.frye@murraystate. edu.

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Not many people are fans of February. It’s the last month of winter and the weather can be downright miserable one day and absolutely glorious the next. It has fewer days than the other months and Steve leap years just confuse Miller Outdoor columnist me. But hands down, this is my favorite month to bass fish. February is when I catch my biggest sacks of the year. Bass begin migrating from their winter shelters in deep water to shallow spawning grounds this time of year. They stop at staging areas - usually a noticeable change in depth - along the way. The bigger bass lead this movement to guarantee the best pick of habitat. Find some brush piles along these migration routes and you have a productive spot from now until mid-spring. The first lure I pick up in February is a suspending jerkbait. These baits dive to a certain depth (depending on the model) and then suspend motionless. The best method for attracting fish is twitching it a few times and then letting it sit. Sometimes the pause between twitches is as long as 30 seconds. It all depends on the fish’s mood that day, but slow movements are necessary. Pick colors resembling a shad, the likely food source for late-winter bass. Once the water temperature flirts with the 45-degree mark, it’s time to start experimenting with faster baits like flat-sided crankbaits, spinnerbaits and jigs. Look for banks receiving ample sunshine with 8-12 feet of water covering it near spawning flats. Until the fish get serious about spawning, they are most comfortable in the mid-depth ranges that offer the cover of brush piles, stumps and rocks. The consistency of proven spots is another reason I love February fishing. Because fish are protected at this depth and along these banks, they are less affected by changes in water levels or temperatures. For disclaimer purposes I must say February is not my favorite time to fish because it is much too easy. You still have to work to find spots, change your presentation as conditions change and battle elements of winter, but once you find a few spots holding fish, you can revisit them day after day, year after year, and expect them to produce.


Karie Mikel/Contributing photographer

Left to right: Seniors Tony Easley and Danero Thomas and junior Isacc Miles take the bench for a breather in the Racers 86-49 win over SIU-E Jan. 27 at the RSEC.

Racers look to sweep regular season rivalry Ricky Martin Staff writer The road to perfection may get rocky this week for Billy Kennedy’s team, as they begin the final stretch in OVC play. Murray State’s biggest rival, Austin Peay, heads north Saturday for a 7:30 p.m. showdown with the Racers at the RSEC. Murray State (21-3, 12-0 OVC) defeated The Governors (13-10, 7-4 OVC) 69-53 a little over a month ago in Clarksville, Tenn., but Kennedy and his team said they are not going to rely on previous results this season for motivation. “We know that (APSU) is going to come in here to beat us, so we’re going to prepare for them like we prepare for everybody else,” junior guard B.J. Jenkins said. “The game we beat them in is behind us. It’s a whole new game, a whole new team. They’re coming in here hot. They’re just another team in our way.” Murray State will put the

nation’s second longest winning streak (12 games) on the line against the Govs, coming off of their 76-54 victory over Tennessee State Thursday. The Govs defeated Morehead State 56-55 last week, and are coming in as winners of four of their last five. The Racers enter Saturday’s tilt with Austin Peay ranked seventh in the Mid-Major Top 25 poll and are ranked among the top five in the country in several statistical categories including second in field goal percentage at 51.5 percent, fourth in steals per game at eleven and fourth in scoring margin at +19.0 points. Murray State is also chasing an OVC record, looking to match the 25-game win streak set by Western Kentucky from 1965-67. Murray State has won its last 19-conference games. But as Murray State fans know, Austin Peay always shows up ready to play against the Racers who still have a bad taste in their mouth after last

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year’s conference tournament in which Murray State fell to the Govs 50-67 in the semifinals. After their showdown with Austin Peay, Murray State hits the road for a two-game set against Tennessee Tech and Jacksonville State. Murray State defeated Tennessee Tech 88-66 Jan. 14 at the RSEC, but lost in their last trip to Cookeville, Tenn., 55-61 last season. Tennessee Tech enters Thursday’s matchup against the Racers ranked No. 5 in the OVC, while Murray State is No. 1. In their last matchup, Murray State put five players in double figure scoring, with sophomore forward Ivan Aska leading the way with 16 points and nine rebounds in 25 minutes. Murray State will have to contain forward Kevin Murphy and guard Elijah Muhammad, who scored 22 and 20, respectively, in their last outing against Murray State. Contact Martin at richard.

Poacher faces time in the pen: A Livingston County man faces time in jail and thousands of dollars in fines after conservation officers with the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources seized 34 illegal deer and two wild turkeys from his home Tuesday, Jan. 26. Officers charged David G. Ray, 32, of Smithland, Ky., with 36 counts of illegally taking deer or wild turkey. He is scheduled for arraignment in Livingston District Court Thursday. Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Sgt. Bill Snow and conservation officers Josh Hudson and Daniel Richardson executed a search warrant on Ray’s property after receiving information from a concerned citizen. The seized deer heads had been cut off at the neck or reduced to skullcaps. Twentyfour were still in velvet. Officers found 18 heads inside a freezer located in an outbuilding on the property. The remaining racks came from the residence and the back of a truck. Primetime for bone collectors: With mating season long behind the whitetail deer, bucks are starting to shed their antlers. Shed hunting is a great way to connect with nature as winter winds down. Any sheds I find are just icing on the cake during a great hike in the woods. It takes well-trained eyes to make out the racks because they blend so well with nature’s background. The moisture on the ground should help those looking for antlers because the tan bone will slightly glisten as the sun hits it. Hiking through history: A guided hike will be offered Saturday afternoon at Land Between the Lakes’ Fort Henry trails to commemorate the 148th anniversary of the Civil War siege of Fort Henry. Relive this historic event as you walk around the remnants of its outer fortification. For more information, directions or weather cancelations, call 270-924-2020 or visit Contact Miller at steven.miller@

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The News



February 5, 2010

Rookies, veterans seek to mesh at SIU-C meet Elizabeth Johnson

Third place finishers included freshman Taylor Utsey, who marked a long jump of 17’02.00”, and junior distance runners Katelyn Jones and Kayla Crusham. After tallying six top-five finishes in the indoor Eastern Illinois Jones clocked in just shy of 19 minutes in the 5,000-meter run, Mega Meet Jan. 23, the track and field team is ready for SIU-Carwhile Crusham marked a time of 10:33.27 minutes in the 3,000bondale’s McDonald’s Invitational today. meter run at the Mega Meet. Head Coach Dereck Chavis said the team “We’re showing progress,” Chavis said. of young athletes and seasoned veterans “Eastern (Illinois) is usually a very strong hope to make a good showing at the meet. team and is good to go up against.” With the young athletes “SIU is generally a meet with a few teams, Chavis said the team, consisting of four combined with the already many in our conference,” Chavis said. “It freshmen, eight sophomores, seven juniors should serve as a measuring stick to where proven veterans, I think we’ll gel and six seniors, has talented athletes across we are. There will also be some teams outthe board. well and make a great team. side of our league. These two mixes should The Racers are also looking to young memmake for a very competitive meet.” bers for an impact in addition to the strong –Dereck Chavis Murray State is ranked No. 4 in the conferperformances of the experienced upperclassTrack and Field Head Coach ence and is led by 2009 OVC Female Track men, he said. Athlete of the Year, senior middle distance “With the young athletes combined with runner, Taylor Crawford. the already proven veterans, I think we’ll gel well and make a In the EIU Mega Meet, Crawford claimed second place in the great team,” Chavis said. 800-meter run with a time of 2:22.34 and took fourth with a Following today’s meet, Murray State competes in three more 5:21.86-minute mile. invitationals before participating in the OVC Indoor ChampiWith a 1:39.50 time in the 600-meter dash, junior sprinter onship Feb. 26 and 27 in Nashville, Tenn. Amber Mills claimed second. Contact Johnson at Sports Editor

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Sophomore distance runner Bridget Stichnot competes in the steeple chase category during a meet last season.







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The News February 5, 2010


Each week, The News picks some of the top performances in Racer athletics. To submit a player for consideration in HOT SHOTS, contact Elizabeth Johnson at

Photo courtesy of Bill Starling

Photo courtesy of Don McPeak/WG Sports Photos

With a career-high 21 points against OVC foe UT Martin Saturday, sophomore forward Kayla Lowe marked her second double-digit scoring game as a Racer.


All-American defensive end Austen Lane helped the North to a 31-13 win over the South in the 2010 Under Armour Senior Bowl Saturday at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, Ala. In the second quarter, Lane recovered a fumble and ran it into the end zone for a six-yard touchdown.

Derek Miller/The News

Senior center Tony Easley recorded a career-high seven blocks in the Racers’ 77-45 win over UT Martin Saturday, putting the team at 11-0 in conference play.


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February 5, 2010

The News


The Water Cooler Information and photos from the Associated Press Compiled by Charlotte Kyle Cowell’s charity single gets first airing A star-studded British single to raise money for victims of the earthquake in Haiti had its first radio airplay. The cover of R.E.M.’s 1993 ballad “Everybody Hurts” made its debut on breakfast-time broadcasts Tuesday. Susan Boyle, Rod Simon Cowell Stewart, Leona Lewis, Kylie Minogue, Robbie Williams and Miley Cyrus are some of the artists featured on the track, coordinated by TV mogul Simon Cowell. R.E.M. agreed to waive royalties and the British government said the record will be exempt from sales tax. It goes on sale by download Sunday and will be in stores Monday. The song is one of several records raising money for victims of the Jan. 12 quake. Another is a re-recording of 1985 anthem “We Are The World” by 80 artists including Pink, Celine Dion and Kanye West.


National entertainment news to spice up your lunch conversation

‘Avatar’ tops $600 million James Cameron’s “Avatar” sailed past his blockbuster “Titanic” to become No. 1 on the all-time domestic box-office chart. “Avatar” climbed to $601.1 million domestically on Tuesday, putting it a fraction ahead of the $600.8 million haul for “Titanic.” With more than $2 billion worldwide, Cameron’s sci-fi sensation shattered the global box-office record of $1.84 billion, held by “Titanic,” last week. Jon Landau, Cameron’s producing partner, said he, Cameron and their collaborators have discussed sequel prospects but that nothing definite has been decided. Photos by Derek Miller/The News

Pageant attracts 4.5 million viewers A spokesman for cable network TLC said the Miss America pageant broadcast over the weekend attracted 4.5 million viewers. This is the largest number of viewers of any Miss America telecast shown on cable. Caressa Miss Virginia Cameron Caressa Cameron won the crown Saturday night. Cameron, 22, emerged from a field of 53 contestants after swimsuit, evening gown, talent and interview competitions. Saturday’s 4.5 million viewers was a million more than last year but far less than the 33 million who watched the pageant on broadcast TV in 1988. Bennett designs Jazz Fest poster Grammy-winning jazz crooner Tony Bennett is taking part in this year’s New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival — but he won’t be singing. A portrait Bennett painted of his late friend and fellow jazzman Louis Prima is being produced as this year’s official Jazz Fest poster. It depicts a laughing Prima with sunglasses perched on his forehead while he holds a trumpet and a jazz band plays in the background. Bennett, 83, said painting the portrait was one of his life’s biggest honors. “When you love someone, the love just flows out into the painting,” Bennett said in a telephone interview. “When you really have a great friendship and care for someone and you paint them, it just comes out. It’s easy.” The poster will be sold during Jazz Fest, which runs April 23-25 and April 29-May 2, and is available for pre-ordering online at and Celeb burglary suspect pleads not guilty A woman accused of leading the crew that burglarized the homes of celebrities has pleaded not guilty. Rachel Lee entered the plea Wednesday through her attorney Peter Korn in Los Angeles. Korn declined further comment after the hearing. Lee, 19, was charged in January with receiving stolen property and felony burglary after break-ins occurred at the homes of Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan and “The Hills” star Audrina Patridge. Lee and five other young adults are suspected of taking high-end clothes and jewelry from the homes.

Cast members rehearse animal movements, sounds for ‘The Jungle Book,’ opening Monday in Lovett Auditorium.

Actors go wild in new show Anna Taylor

to discover his inner roar. “I just get in the mind of Shere Khan and find out if he really wants to be evil,” Mercadante said. The Murray State theater department brings “I find that he wants to have everyone beneath out its wild side as it perform Vera Morris’ “The him; he wants to be in a position of power, and to Jungle Book” next week at Lovett Auditorium. do that he has to use fear.” The story tells the tale of Mowgli, a young boy The department produces a children’s show raised by wolves and reliant on his friends Baloo every February. the bear and Bagheera “The intended audithe panther to teach him ence is elementary the ways of the jungle. school children,” said Mowgli must stop Beth Ribar, stage managShere Khan, a tiger who er and junior from vows to destroy him, Louisville, Ky. “We have from taking over the junsome seventhand gle. eighth-graders that are Because portraying an coming but it is mostly animal is not a very comgeared toward first mon acting demand, the through fifth grade. The prowling cast has experishow is very high energy enced something most and the cast and crew young actors do not. are great, so I hope the Kristina Whitehair, kids enjoy the show.” junior from O’Fallon, Ill., After the show ends plays Rikki Tikki Tavi in each night, the cast will the production. get to greet the audi“I think I have it easier ence. Several cast memthan a lot of people since bers said they consider I’m a mongoose,” Whitethe children’s interprehair said. “I can move tation their favorite part however I want to just as about the February long as I’m energetic. It’s show. a challenge but it’s a fun “It’s just really cool to challenge, especially see the kids’ reactions,” Spencer Sickmann, freshman from St. Louis, Mo., growls when you get to research Mercadante said. it and see how (the ani- as Bagheera, the black panther, during rehearsal. “When the kids are mals) actually move.” really excited about Adario Mercadante, sophomore from Murray, things and are laughing, it’s really fun just to portrays the enemy, Shere Khan. entertain them and to make them happy,” White“I’m a theater major so any play I do I really hair said. enjoy,” Mercadante said. “‘The Jungle Book’ I The show opens at 7:30 p.m. Monday in Lovett grew up watching on Disney, so once I audiAuditorium. The show runs at 9:30 a.m. and noon tioned for this I wasn’t really going for anything Tuesday and 10 a.m. Wednesday and Thursday. specific, just any kind of animal movement would General admission is $2.50 and student admission be really fun to do.” is free with a Racercard. In order to act as the enemy, Mercadante had Contact Taylor at Staff writer

Chris Phillips/The News

The News


February 5, 2010


Event celebrates black women with songs, poetry Jamie Booth Staff writer Murray State’s Wrather Museum will fill with the sounds of poetry and music in a showcase celebrating black women on Monday night. The Women’s Center and the English Student Organization are collaborating to celebrate Black History Month and diversity with the “Black Women: Bold, Beautiful, Brilliant” event. Jennifer Minnis, junior from Memphis, Tenn., founded and helped organize the event. She said students from different backgrounds will come together to celebrate black women through song and poetry. “People should expect to be blown away by the level of talent that will be displayed,” she said. The event highlights the importance of black women and includes a slide show highlighting important black women of the past and present, Minnis said. Minnis said she came up with the idea while discussing upcoming events at a Women’s Center staff meeting. “I had a light bulb moment and suggested doing a spoken word event during Black History Month,” she said. “Jane Etheridge, director of the Women’s Center, said she loved it but wanted to put a spin on it. She wanted to celebrate women through poetry and music.” Minnis said the event holds importance for many reasons, but the main goal is bringing people together. “Not only will there be African-American students participating, (but) there will be students of different race s participating, as well as attending,” she said. “This alone is a sight that is worth celebrating every month, but especially during Black History Month.”

Portia Combow, freshman from Franklin, Ky., said she shares Minnis’ and Etheridge’s excitement. “I’m really interested in African-American heritage,” Combow said. “One of my best friends is black, and I would go over to her house and her mom would teach me all about African-American heritage. I always found it really interesting.” “I think African-Americans are obviously a minority, especially at Murray State,” Combow said. “For Murray State to have this event, especially since it’s dealing with women too, is really good.” Carrie Schmidt, freshman from Louisville, Ky., said she plans on attending because she enjoys being involved on campus. “I like going to events that involve things different from my own background,” she said. “There are a lot of boundaries here at Murray, and it’s nice to be able to reach outside of those.” Minnis stressed the importance of men and women from all walks of life witnessing the event. “It is important for individuals from all races to be exposed to the boldness, beauty and brilliance of African-American women,” Minnis said. “So many people from previous generations fought and risked their lives so that everyone could enjoy life together as people,” she said. “Not as black people or white people or Mexican people, but just as people and that makes this event and the atmosphere it will produce very important.” “It seems like an exciting time to be a bold, beautiful, black woman,” Combow said. “Black Women: Bold, Beautiful, Brilliant” is at 7 p.m. Monday in Wrather Auditorium. The event is free and open to the public. Contact Booth at

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At Monday’s ‘Black Women: Bold, Beautiful, Brilliant’ event, students will celebrate black women such as Maya Angelou through poetry and songs.

Los Angeles megachurch hopes to win Super Bowl ad contest Associated Press Pastors have long competed with the NFL on Sundays, but this season a hipster megachurch is turning the tables with a 30-second ad that could muscle its way into the holiest of sporting events: the Super Bowl. Mosaic, a 3,000-member megachurch, is one of six finalists in the Doritos’ “Crash the Super Bowl” challenge with a lighthearted spoof that plays off the resurrection of Jesus Christ. If the church’s ad, titled “Casket,” is among the top three vote-getters in an online playoff, it will air on Sunday during the Super Bowl. If the commercial ranks in the top three mostpopular ads among viewers, it could win its creators either $400,000, $600,000 or $1 million. For Erwin McManus, Mosaic’s lead pastor, the ad competition represents a chance to make his faith relevant to one of the largest TV audiences in the nation when viewers least expect it — and are least likely to tune out. The Los Angeles church, a congregation full of hip twenty-somethings who mostly work in the film industry and make short films for a

hobby, was careful to stick to the quirky, slapstick-style humor expected by Super Bowl fans. “We’re not trying to use Doritos to propagate a message, but I think we want people to know that we have a sense of humor, that it’s OK to laugh,” McManus said. “So much of what comes out of the faith community seems so dour and somber and we want to say, ‘Hey, we’re real people.’ You can be a person of faith and really enjoy life and laugh.” With its talent base in entertainment, the church is at the vanguard of a growing Christian movement focused on injecting faith-based themes into the plot lines of mainstream TV shows, Hollywood movies and video games not explicitly Christian, or advertised as such. Movies like “The Passion of the Christ” and “The Chronicles of Narnia” several years ago marked early successes, but the recent blockbuster “The Blind Side” — which wasn’t perceived as an overtly Christian film — really made Hollywood take note, said Phil Cooke, a Christian producer, filmmaker and author. The Doritos spot, while just 30 seconds, is part of that bigger push, Cooke said. The tongue-in-cheek ad opens on a funeral

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scene and then cuts to a young man alive in a closed casket. His body is covered in Doritos and he is watching the Super Bowl on a tiny TV while chomping on chips as mourners sob outside. Two friends, who are in on the prank, snicker that by faking his death, their friend will get a week off work and an endless supply of his favorite snack. But the man gets excited when his team makes a big play and jostles the casket, which tips over to reveal him inside with a pile of crushed chips. After an awkward pause, his buddy jumps up and nervously exclaims to the shocked assemblage: “Aaaah! It’s a miracle!” If it wins, Mosaic’s ad could do more for the church after Super Bowl Sunday than it does in the 30 seconds of air time. Fans remember and recount their favorite commercials long after the clock runs out and the buzz around Mosaic’s ad could amp up because of its genesis, said Mark Labberton, a professor of preaching at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, Calif. Super Bowl ad prices have dipped slightly this year, with CBS selling them for between


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$2.5 million and $2.8 million per 30-second unit this year, down from an average of $3 million last year on NBC, according to TNS Media Intelligence. The prices are so high because the game is the most-viewed show on television each year, with viewers tuning in to watch the commercials as much as the game itself. Last year, nearly 100 million people tuned in. “We’re actually going to enter the scene ourselves, we’re going to become a player ourselves and we’re going to contribute to the landscape of how people talk about the Super Bowl,” Labberton said. “It could well become one of the most talked about commercials of the year.” The finalists won’t know if they’ve won until they watch the Super Bowl, said Chris Kuechenmeister, spokesman for Frito-Lay. “Nobody’s going to fall on their knees and accept Jesus as a result of this spot. But advertisers on Madison Avenue spend millions on a Super Bowl spot because they know it influences people,” Cooke said. “It might not get someone converted, but I think it will get someone to say, ‘Maybe there is something I ought to investigate.’”

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The News February 5, 2010

Kentucky author encourages aspiring writers Robin Phelps Staff writer Kentucky author Virginia Smith told the story of how she went from 143 rejection letters to ten published novels Tuesday night in the Curris Center Stables at the Student Government Associationsponsored lecture, “A Fireside with Virginia Smith.� After 20 years of working in the corporate world for companies like Lexmark Corporation, Smith said her career took a turn. “Some will tell you that their short story (began) when they were in elementary school,� Smith said. This was not the case for Smith who said that though she enjoyed reading books like “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe� and “Lord of the Rings,� she never wrote much in her younger years. Smith said the idea of writing came to her when reading a short story in a magazine. Smith said she thought, “How can they publish something like this?� When she decided to write her own short story, Smith said she found out writing was more difficult than she thought. “I did what everyone says you’re not supposed to do, which is quit your day job,� Smith said. With interest in the science fiction genre, Smith said she set out to write the next best-selling sci-fi novel. In her writing critique group, Smith said she learned how to write a publishable piece of fiction and soon began sending her work to publishers, but her queries did not land her a contract. “I decided at that point that maybe I was writing the wrong thing,� Smith said. In 2006, “Just As I Am,� a story about a quirky, pierced, purplehaired girl living in a southern Baptist community, became Smith’s first novel. While Smith’s various books fall into the categories of contemporary, romantic-suspense, chick-lit and mystery, Smith said her books are humorous, heart-filled and inspirational. Though Smith said she did not intend to write a Christian novel when she wrote “Just As I Am,� she said “the story really called for it. I try to create characters who resonate with readers,� Smith said. Throughout Smith’s lecture she read excerpts from three of her ten novels and included some tips for those aspiring to become writers as well. Although Smith said a smart writer who wants to get published should be aware of the market she also gave another tip: “You have to write what’s in your heart,� Smith said. With her stories of murder, romance, barbecues, performers, fashionistas and a purple-haired woman, Smith said her objective is to convey real life. “I wanted to write about issues that people really do encounter,� Smith said. Besty Banks, one of Smith’s nieces and sophomore from Frankfort, Ky., said her aunt’s lecture would influence aspiring writers. “She came from the corporate world, but she’s always had a love for writing,� Banks said. “She’s very inspirational for young and new writers.� Banks said Smith’s ability to write ten books in ten years tells a true story of perseverance. “You have to go after your dreams, even if it’s not necessarily something you’ve done all your life,� she said. The University Store sells copies of each of Smith’s books. Contact Phelps at

Karie Mikel/Contributing photographer

Author Virginia Smith reads from her novel “Just As I Am� Tuesday in the Curris Center Stables. Smith gave the audience tips for writing, suggesting they learn the craft by taking classes and studying business to understand the publishing part of the industry.




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The News



February 5, 2010

Movie Review

Astonishingly verbose Hulk still smashes Assistant Features Editor Cody Arant writes the movie reviews. To be honest, I’m not sure who started it, and I’m not sure that I care. This push to put out direct-toDVD animated features based on comic books is awesome. The latest title from Marvel, “Planet Hulk” hit stores Tuesday. Now, before we move on, there’s something you should probably know about me. I am a raging fanboy when it comes to Marvel. Don’t get me wrong, there are DC titles I enjoy, such as The Flash and the Green Lantern corner of the the DC Universe, but Marvel still puts out the most books that I enjoy. When I heard an animated adaptation of the Planet Hulk storyline was in the works, I was, as you can imagine, pretty excited. For nonfanboys, Planet Hulk was a story that ran in 2006 and began in a oneshot book called “The New Avengers: Illuminati,” written by Brian Michael Bendis. Some of Earth’s greatest heroes — led by Iron Man and including Reed Richards (aka Mr. Fantastic of the Fantastic Four), Sorcerer Supreme Dr. Stephen Strange, Professor Charles Xavier of the X-Men, Namor the Submariner, Prince of Atlantis and Blackbolt, king of the Inhumans — banded together behind the scenes to solve some of the world’s problems. One of those problems was Bruce Banner, aka the incredible Hulk. The story continued through “Incredible Hulk” issues #88-95, written by Daniel Way and later Greg Pak. The Illuminati decided that they couldn’t allow Hulk to bring destruction wherever he went, so they put him in a rocket ship and shot him toward a peaceful planet far from Earth. Long story short, they messed up, and Hulk wound up on a barbaric planet called Sakaar where he fought as a gladiator. The inhabitants of Sakaar believed the Hulk to be their prophesied savior. He also fought back against the corrupt ruler of the planet known as the Red King. Eventually, Hulk made his way back to Earth, quite understandably a bit pissed at the Illuminati, and declared war on planet Earth. That, however, is another story

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‘Hulk smash! Hulk also surprisingly adept with sword. Hulk fencing lessons pay off. Hulk also take night classes in communications.’ Hulk story. For one, Hulk actually speaks. Not much, but more than just growls or “HULK SMASH PUNY HUMANS!!!” For once, Hulk gets to become a hero, just by being himself. The people of Sakaar come to love him just for refusing to quit fighting, even when the deck is stacked against him. He comes to command his own group of gladiators, whether he wants to lead or not. Visually, the movie is stunning. It is very visceral. Hulk is doing more than just smashing tanks and robots. He is fighting things that can stand toe to toe with him, and make him bleed. Things are getting ripped to pieces, slashed apart with swords and impaled. Hulk caves heads in with his bare hands, getting covered in gore in the process. “Planet Hulk” is definitely worth watching, even if you aren’t a big

Zero stars: Save your cash One star: Only if you’re bored Two stars: Wait for the rental Three stars: See it immediately Four stars: A future classic

Editor’s pick


• Dave Matthews Band – “Live in Las Vegas” • Massive Attack – “Heligoland” • tobyMac - “Tonight”

• “A Serious Man” • “Couples Retreat” • “The Time Traveler’s Wife” Photos courtesy of

Remember when Pokémon was huge and we all wished we had a real-life Pokédex? Well, thanks to the Internet, that dream is practically realized in Bulbapedia. It may not be an actual Pokédex, but it’s an indispensable tool for any aspiring Pokémon Master. Photo courtesy of


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Check It Online: The CW’s “One Tree Hill” dedicated an episode to the late John Hughes. Austin Nichols as Duckie? Yes, please. Oh, and the last season of “Lost” premiered Tuesday, if you’re into that sort of thing. Doubt you’ve heard of it, though. It’s pretty low-key. Set Your DVR: The season finale of “Heroes” airs Monday. No word yet if this will double as a series finale, so don’t miss it. This could be your last chance to see Zachary Quinto’s eyebrows in action as the deliciously evil (but possibly good?) Sylar. Contact Kyle at charlotte.kyle@


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available Tuesday

comic book fan. It has a solid plot and interesting visuals. It manages to keep a coherent story even bereft of the months of context the books were steeped in. All in all, it is a fun, cool movie. “Planet Hulk” is not rated and has a runtime of 81 minutes. Contact Arant at cody.arant@

Awards show season is exhausting. I honestly can’t keep up with who is nominated for what, which awards air on what night and who is performing where. At this point I’m going to assume that Charlotte music awards will go Kyle to Taylor Swift, movie Features Editor awards to “Avatar” and all other winners will be determined by pulling names from a hat. Yes, I realize this is an unfair assumption, but it seems logical based on the Internet community’s response to things. During and after award shows there are so many Twitter and Facebook updates complaining that “so-and-so got robbed” that I almost want to avoid the Internet entirely. (I will, however, admit to contributing to the live Tweets, but only because The Lonely Island’s “I’m On A Boat” is fantastic and it would have been a hilarious win for the trio-plus-T. Pain.) At some point awards shows just feel meaningless. They aren’t necessarily based on talent or skill, but rather popularity and press. People can argue Swift is horrible at singing live, and while that is not an admirable trait, you can’t deny that she’s had massive amounts of success. Does that make her “Album of the Year” material? That’s not my decision to make. I understand that it’s a bummer when your favorite celebrities lose, but just because you like something doesn’t mean everyone else does. I thought everyone learned that at a fairly young age when arguing over which Ninja Turtle or Power Ranger was the coolest. It was Donatello and Trini, the original Yellow Ranger, if you were curious. I know we still have the Oscars to look forward to, but I think I’m going to check out early this year. In fact, I’ll give out my own awards instead. In my ceremony, “Star Trek” wins best use of lens flare and “Sherlock Holmes” takes best bromance. The little kid from “Up” can have best actor. On an unrelated note, I have decided to introduce a new feature to Channel Surfing. Each week you’ll find what you’ve missed and what you need to see. Enjoy!

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for another day. The “Planet Hulk” movie follows the plot of the books pretty closely. Some things are condensed to fit them into a 81 minute film, obviously. Things are also simplified a bit to make them understandable outside of the context the books were published in. All things considered, writers Greg Johnson, Craig Kyle and Joshua Fine did an excellent job adapting the material. The adaptation isn’t perfect though. One character possesses a mysterious power that is mentioned but never explained. There is a love story that feels incredibly forced. It’s just sort of shoehorned in at the very end of the movie. The movie also ends on a fairly vague note. Knowledge of the comics lets you know what happens next, but it is a sort of unsatisfying ending. “Planet Hulk” is a very different

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The News February 5, 2010

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