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Monday, May 1, 2017

Fresno State’s Award-Winning Newspaper



Daniel Avalos • The Collegian

Gina Rodriguez, star of the CW network television show “Jane the Virgin” speaks to The Collegian’s arts and entertainment editor in the lobby of the Frank W. Thomas Building after a talk and Q&A on Friday, April 28, 2017.

Actress. Activist. Feminist. Gina Rodriguez, star of the hit CW network television show “Jane the Virgin,” uses her celebrity status to represent people of color, underrepresented cultures and fight for women’s rights. Rodriguez came to Fresno State on April 28 to talk to students about self-love, empathy and her journey as a Latina woman. “Life is much more enjoyable when you uplift and give love,” Rodriguez said. “Self-love is what is going to fuel activism.” Rodriguez’s talk was cen-



By Jessica Johnson

By Jessica Johnson

tered around a mantra her father taught her: “Today is going to be a great day. I can and I will.” She told the audience her story of how her father made her repeat this phrase every day when she was a child, and she is still repeating it 17 years later. The words “I can and I will” have inspired Rodriguez to create her own production company, which will focus on properly representing Latina women on screen. She focused on the importance of watching programs with a Latino cast. “Girls like me were never the lead in TV shows. [Because of that] I didn’t believe I could suc-


Hmong culture spreads Campus celebrates 200 years of Deaf Education throughout university @iamjesslj

Music, history, language and traditional clothing were shared with the campus community April 28 as Hmong culture was brought to life at the University’s Speaker’s Platform in honor of Hmong Day. “Here at Fresno State, we do serve a large population of Hmong students,” said Justine Cha, education chair for the Hmong Student Association. Cha said Hmong Day is usually celebrated in May, but they wanted to celebrate it at Fresno State during diversity month. Although their association serves approximately 70 students out of the entire Hmong student body Cha said, they are still there for a resource. She hopes the event showcased their outreach efforts on campus. “We are here. This is who we

See HMONG DAY, Page 6


Christian Ortuno • The Collegian

Junior Kinesiology exercise science major, Alexander Danes poses for a picture during Hmong Day at the University’s Speaker’s Platform area on April 28, 2017.

Deaf Education’s 200th anniversary was celebrated on April 28 by more than 400 people dedicated to the educational experience of learning what deafness is and how communication barriers can be broken down. “Our 200th Anniversary of Deaf Education event will be the largest event on the West coast,” Dr. Janice Smith-Warshaw, director of the deaf education programs, said in a news release. Since 1817, when the first American School for the Deaf opened in Hartford, Connecticut, 200 years have passed and the intersectionality of deaf education has grown. A two-hour lecture on “The Silent Garden” shed light on the many facets of growing up deaf, communities that are affected by deafness and how to aid them. Dr. Paul Ogden, professor emeritus of deaf studies and author of “The Silent Garden: Raising Your Deaf Child,” said through his translator, “I wrote

a book in 1982, a reference book for parents of deaf children, and I gave a copy to my mother – it was my first book ever, and I was a kid back then.” Ogden said his mother, who raised two sons who are deaf, “burst into tears” when she received the book. “She said ‘I felt alone in that. There was nothing out there for me,’” Ogden said. Thirty-five years later, in 2016, the third edition of the book was published – with more research and information. “I thought to myself, the garden is a place where we all value each other. You’re very special to us and we value how much you care about communication [and] how you partner with the deaf community,” Ogden said. Ogden announced that this fall, Gallaudet University, the only university in the world that was specifically established for deaf and hard-of-hearing students, will publish a Spanish version of his book – helping to inform and break down communication bar






Overpriced festivals are hardly worth the hype

By Amber Carpenter @shutupambs

Dust-filled air, desert temperatures and crowded campsites aplenty – that is the glory of music festivals like Coachella or Stagecoach. Glory to some, probably. But for me, it’s a hard pass. The thought of all the artists that I love being in one place has appeal. But not at the cost of $400 and my dignity. The picture of me after a weekend at Coachella or any other festival of the like remains consistent – sunburnt, broke and unsatisfied. Sure, Coachella or Grizzly Fest have the upper hand with local art exhibitions or gimmicks like giant Ferris wheels, but to me, it seems like another opportunity to watch crowded concerts from half a mile away and eat from a slightly mediocre and overpriced food truck buffet. Additionally, the $400 refers only to a general admission ticket – not the cost of staying on site or at a hotel a few miles away from the venue. So why invest the time and money into music festivals? The lineups seem picturesque and the Instagram post alone might be worth it, but is it really worth the long hours waiting for performers only to watch shorter sets? Especially when you could pay a fraction of the price for a set twice the length with a quarter of the audience. At this point, the celebrity factor is what keeps music festivals relevant. Followers clamor the feeds of Kendall or Kylie Jenner to see what they’re wearing, who they’re seeing and what their Snapchat filters of choice will be. Media outlets gain more from advertising who wore what than writing about what actually happened. Beyonce, who was slated to perform at Coachella, didn’t even show up. Granted,

The sun sets over the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival on April 21, 2012, during the 2nd day of the festival’s 2nd weekend

she’s pregnant with twins who will eventually be co-presidents of the United States, but still – Queen Bey didn’t want in. There is nothing appealing about hanging out with a bunch of strangers on assorted drugs waiting around for artists who are going to play short sets. There is also nothing appealing about rushing from stage to stage hoping to catch the next set in time. Paying so much money to maybe see favorite artists just doesn’t seem worth it. Why not just wait until they go on tour near you and pay a sliver of the price to see a longer set from them and only them? The thought of a festival like Coachella is anxiety-inducing to me – not only because the thought of my body being covered in

dirt wigs me out on another level, or because the ticket is almost a month’s rent, but because it seems overwhelming in the worst way. I’m sure people thrive in the festival atmosphere. Adventurous extroverts everywhere rejoice at the chance to meet new people and see all of the acts they’ve always wanted to watch in one place. But aside from flower crowns and boho fringe, what makes it so different from seeing a regular concert? The opportunity to camp under the stars while being lulled to sleep by Lady Gaga seems enticing, but nothing in me believes I would survive at any music festival. I love sleep, air conditioning and Kraft mac and

Jason Persse • Flickr

cheese too much. Though I am a concert junkie and will seize any opportunity to venture elsewhere and see my favorite bands or artists, I doubt I will ever give Coachella a chance. I’d have to sell one of my kidneys to even afford a ticket to attend, not including the campsite, food or emotional suffering. Coachella diehards can keep the ironic vintage metal tees, fringe jackets and thighhigh moccasins. I’ll be sitting in the comfort of my own home, lounging on my couch and waiting for reasonably priced tickets to go on sale for the next show that will take place in an air-conditioned venue with a quarter of the people than I would find in Indio Valley.

Jordan Bradley • The Collegian

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MONDAY, MAY 1, 2017



‘Blue Mind’ author discusses water and the human mind By Hayley Salazar @Hayley_Salazarr

The third-annual Reading About Water student showcase ended April 27 in the Peters Education Center with author Wallace J. Nichols’ talk on his book “Blue Mind.” The lecture centered around the importance of water from a neurological point of view and the emotional and the psychological benefits it has on humans. “The questions I like to ask people, including strangers on an airplane, is: ‘What’s your water?’” Nichols said. “I kind of leave it at that, kind of vague, kind of open-ended. What is the first thing that pops into your head?” Nichols posed the question to audience members who all began sharing their “waters,” from purified drinking water, showers, their pools, the ocean, groundwater and more. His goal: help audience members understand the emotional connection they had to their water. “For some people, the answer is very simple, very direct. [Water] is for hygiene or hydration. It’s a way of life. For some, water is infrastructure, it’s rest and relaxation,” Nichols told the audience. Nichols was introduced to his water by his father when he first learned to swim as a child. “When I think of my own life, and I think of my water, I think of my dad. I remember the experiences we had [at] Deep Lake in

Wyoming. I remember what it smelled like; what it tasted like; what the grass between my toes felt like; how scared I was at night when I heard the wolves howling. I also remember thinking this is the best I’ve ever felt, [being] outside,” Nichols said. Nichols shared his establishment of a marble project in which he gives lecture-goers a blue marble as a reminder of the importance of Earth and all its beings. “That marble also reminds us that everything we do matters. The big things, the little things, the good things, the bad things; things that go incredibly wrong and things that go incredibly well. It all matters,” Nichols said. The Fresno State Water Cohort created the campus reading event to help continue the conversation of water conservation. The program was designed for campus departments pertaining to water to focus on their water literacy, said David Drexler, a Water Cohort member and faculty member with digital services in the Henry Madden Library. “Making sure students understand the issues that surround water, especially here in California because it’s more complicated than it is in other places,” Drexler said. “So they know where their water comes from and why it’s important to conserve it.”


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Event sheds light on growing up deaf

Khone Saysamongdy • The Collegian

Dr. Paul Ogden, professor emeritus of deaf studies, welcomes guests to the Silent Garden in North Gym 118 on April 28, 2017.

EDUCATION from Page 1 riers for Spanish speakers. Laura Lee Hasso, a deaf and hard-ofhearing teacher, said she was inspired to pursue a deaf education credential upon realizing a large percentage of the deaf population was lacking educators. Lee Hasso said that within the last three to five years, from kindergarten to the age of 22, the deaf student population has ranged from 14,000 to 16,000 students in California. “Whether those students are going to regional deaf education programs, residential schools, or are receiving mainstream classes or oral schools for the deaf – there are at least 15,000 students right now,” Lee Hasso said. “In that population, it ranges from 50 to 65 percent Latino population.” Lee Hasso said that according to the California Department of Education, there is no data available about deaf education teachers, but what is known, Lee Hasso said, 60 to 65 percent of all educators in the state are white, hearing women. She added, “Why we are here to today is to talk about that connection – or discon-

nect.” The language, Lee Hasso said, is not the only thing that affects the deaf Latino community. Cultural barriers come with the oral aspect of language that the deaf community must learn in different ways. Irma Sanchez, founder of Deaf Latinos y Familias and a mother of three sons who are deaf, said when she found herself as a Latina mom raising sons who are deaf, she initially had no idea what it entailed. “I had no support whatsoever from my family, [or] my husband’s family,” Sanchez said. “I had no idea what the culture [was] or what [American Sign Language] was.” Sanchez persevered. She learned the culture and the language, giving all credit to Ogden’s book. “That book, it was like my lifesaver, my life boat. Everywhere I went, I would carry that book with me,” she said Sanchez’s favorite quote from the book: “For you, everything has changed – for your deaf child, nothing has.” Ogden said the silent garden doesn’t need to be a quiet place. He said it is a place where “we can all enter and have complete communication accessibility.”

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MONDAY, MAY 1, 2017

Fresno growls for Grizzly Fest


By Marina McElwee | @MarinaMashelle

Two words come to mind when rock and roll, vibrating basslines, food trucks and graffiti art come together: Grizzly Fest. This year, the festival attracted thousands of music fans to Chukchansi Park for an evening of reggae, rock, rap and electronic music. From local bands and rappers to international superstars, Grizzly Fest’s lineup did not disappoint.

Fashawn If there is one thing Grizzly Fest is known for, it’s Fresno pride. This showed most when local artist Fashawn took the stage. Accompanied by local DJ Kay Rich, Fashawn had the crowd singing along to every word. The rapper talked about his love and pride for the city and Grizzly Fest, and the audience replied with roaring applause.

Lupe Fiasco Rapper Lupe Fiasco was the most bass-heavy and intense performance of the day. The speakers vibrated throughout the venue when he came on stage, and the audience screamed in excitement before he even said a word. The rapper taught the audience which ways to wave their hands for each song, and played all of his hits for his first time performing in Fresno. Bringing a Grammynominated artist with multiple gold and platinum records to Grizzly Fest was a huge feat and the highlight of the event.

Thee Commons Thee Commons was a perfect midday set for the festival. The band’s rock and reggae vibes had crowds dancing and singing and even chanting “Otra” – requesting another song. Thee Commons was fun and interesting, sporting wolf masks and jumping into the crowd to crowdsurf. The guitarist even came down into the crowd and started a conga line with the audience. Khone Saysamongdy • The Collegian



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Top Left: Fashawn performs at Grizzly Fest 2017 in Chuckchansi Park on April 29, 2017. “Thank you Fresno for letting us have an event like this,” said the hip-hop artist from Fresno. “It really means more to me than you know.” Top Right: Lupe Fiasco performs at Grizzly Fest 2017 in Chuckchansi Park on April 29, 2017. The bass from his performance shook the card city stage and performed hits such as, “Kick Push,” “Hip Hop Saved my Life” and “Superstar.” Bottom Left: A member of Thee Commons crowd surfs at Grizzly Fest 2017 in Chuckchansi Park on April 29, 2017. The band interacted with the crowd as much as they could, including a walk through the audience and leading a “train” of people. Bottom Right: E-40 performs at Grizzly Fest 2017 in Chuckchansi Park on April 29, 2017. The Bay area rapper had the crowd pumped as he performed songs from the 90’s to more current times. WATCH: For video on this story, visit our website:

E-40 One of the most highly anticipated artists to hit the stage was E-40. The rapper who has been producing since the ‘90s drew a crowd of all ages. Known as one of the founders of the “hyphy movement,” E-40 knew exactly which songs the audience wanted to hear and did not disappoint. Audience members could be seen dancing from across the venue to every song. E-40 may be an old dog to the rap game, but his energy was unmatched by other performers.


MONDAY, MAY 1, 2017



Student-written play celebrates Filipino culture

Members of the Magkaisa Filipino Club bow after their dance performance during Filipino Culture Night in the Satellite Student Union on April 29, 2017

By Eric Zamora @TheCollegian

Fresno State’s Magkaisa Filipino Club presented its Filipino Culture Night on April 29 in the Satellite Student Union to an audience full of friends and family. Magkaisa, also known as ‘MGK1,” presented “Katipunan,” a play written by members of the club. The play had two acts and featured cultural dances between the scenes.

Prior to the play, Magkaisa President Clarissa Baldoz welcomed everyone. She said she became close to all the members of the club and encouraged all students from different backgrounds to join the club and learn more about Filipino culture. Baldoz invited ABC30 journalist Dale Yurong to the stage to speak to the audience. He talked about his work as a journalist and how much the Filipino community supported him. “Growing up, I noticed a certain dis-

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connect in our community,” Yurong said during his speech, and later added that the younger generation of Filipinos in the community have found a way to unify everyone though clubs and organizations like Magkaisa. The play was directed, written and edited by Ralph Letim, one of the co-vice presidents, and Kikoh Cabigao, another member of Magkaisa. “It took us almost 2 ½ months [to prepare for the night] and a month prior to that just planning and writing the script and all of that,” Letim said. “Everything is all student-based, and everything’s from scratch and from our own pockets and a little bit of ASI funding, of course.” The play was inspired from the play performed the previous year and personal experiences from each of the writers. The actors in the play were oftentimes

Khone Saysamongdy • The Collegian

the dancers between the scenes as well. The members had a few minutes to change into elaborate and colorful attire that vividly complemented their dancing. One of the more striking dances was from the “Cordillera Suite” at the beginning of the play. The dances were first performed by the indigenous people who lived in the mountainous regions of the Philippines. Due to hot and humid climate, minimal clothing is worn during the dance featuring intensely percussive music. “I really like how it’s coming along,” Leann Tonuu, a first-year forensics major from Fresno City College and a member of the club, said during the intermission. “I never come to any of the club events, so this is my first club event of the semester, and I like coming back and seeing everybody from last semester.”


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-ceed,” Rodriguez said. “If you want to see yourself, support yourself.” Many young women in the audience asked Rodriguez questions about becoming successful. Mostly, her response to them was to understand being a woman, and a person of color, is a strength – not a weakness. “I get fueled by the idea of solution versus problem,” Rodriguez said. “Right now, you think you’re the problem, but, on the contrary, you are the solution. You are a strong badass woman.” Multiple times throughout the speech, Rodriguez talked about dealing with rejection. “Positivity, solution, power. You own all of them. It’s your journey, make it what you want it to be,” Rodriguez said. “One person’s ‘no’ is not the end of your

journey. Try and fail and try again.” In a one-on-one interview with The Collegian, Rodriguez said young women should not be scared of the job search that comes after college graduation. “I think the exciting thing about getting out of college and getting into the real world is that you actually start to craft the life that you want,” Rodriguez said. “It can be intimidating, but so is college and you handled it just fine. Rodriguez promised “the real world” is more fun. “So get out there and start making your dreams come alive.”

WATCH: For video on this story, visit our website:



MONDAY, MAY 1, 2017

‘We are here. This is who we are. This is what makes us special’

Christian Ortuno • The Collegian

(Left) Hmong attire is put on display for anyone to try on and wear during Hmong Day at the University’s Speaker’s Platform area on April 28, 2017. (Right) Junior Kinesiology exercise science major, Alexander Danes is fitted to try on Hmong attire during Hmong day at the Free speech area on April 28, 2017.

HMONG DAY from Page 1 are. This is what makes us special,” Cha said while looking at the history and culture that was displayed on the association’s table. Aside from traditional clothing displays a “try-on station” was available for anyone curious about what wearing Hmong clothing is like. Cha said the clothing was made available so that people could learn about why and when it’s worn. A scrapbook was available for people to look through and see photos of past events and how the association has grown. They also had on display an award the association received the same day from Assemblyman Joaquin Arambula celebrating Hmong Day on campus.

By sharing the historical background and Shamanistic religious practices of the Hmong community, Cha hopes her peers at the university who are not Hmong can gain a better sense of what the community represents. Association member Kevin Lor said he wanted to inform people about the history of the Hmong people and how they immigrated to various parts of the world. “For me, [this] is important because Hmong people have been in the United States, and spread out in the world, for more than 40 years, and not [many] people know about what Hmong is and who are the Hmong,” Lor said. He said the day has a special significance because he gets to help promote the culture, traditional religious beliefs, clothing and

IN BRIEF Food historian to share research Dr. Jeffrey Pilcher, a food historian will present his research on Tuesday in a lecture titled “Dos Equis or Five Rabbit? Beer and Taste in Greater Mexico.” The event, part of the Chicano/Latin America Studies Speaker Series, will be held in Henry Madden Library Room 3212 at 11 a.m. Pilcher is the author of numerous books pertaining to food around the world. The event is co-sponsored by the history and anthropology departments.

MCJ department to showcase student work The department of Media, Communications and Journalism will host its “Showcase of Excellence” on Wednesday. The event will be held in North Gym, Room 118, from 5 to 7 p.m. Students will receive awards from the five options offered within the department, including: print, broadcast, multimedia, public relations and advertising. Student submissions were judged by media professionals in the respective categories.

University High awarded with multiple honors University High was awarded multiple titles for this year’s academic achievements and was ranked seventh-best high school in

California by U.S. News and World Report. It was also awarded the California Honor Roll and identified as a California Gold Ribbon School for 2017. University High, opened in 2000, is a charter school located on Fresno State’s campus. Reading room to be dedicated to Levine Philip Levine, the late U.S. Poet Laureate, Pulitzer Prize-winning author and Fresno State professor emeritus of English, will be honored with the opening of the “Philip Levine Reading Room.” The dedication will be held at the reading room on May 5 at 2 p.m. in the Henry Madden Library in the room that overlooks the University’s Peace Garden. The room will also be used by the Master of Fine Arts Program in Creative Writing for special events and readings. Catered Cupboard to notify free food opportunities The Fresno State Catered Cupboard encourages catered events on campus to notify it when they have leftover food. Event organizers can call the Catered Cupboard and report the time, date and location of the food. Catered Cupboard will then notify students of the free food through the Fresno State app. The project is one of many ways the university is combating food insecurity for students.

the history. “I hope Fresno State students and faculty know that we are also here and that they see we are here, we also contribute and we are also Americans,” Lor said. He added that although some identify as Hmong-American, it is important to maintain the culture and belief systems. “I hope Fresno State accepts us, our culture and what we believe in,” he said. Keng Vang, member of the association and president of the Hmong Language Club on campus thinks students on campus don’t don’t know much about the Hmong people. He said the club, was created to support the newly created Hmong minor that is now available for students. “We’ve been having Hmong language tutorials, tutoring sessions, events, work-

shops to improve Hmong language skills and create awareness about the culture,” he said. Vang said the celebration helps create diversity on campus and shows the “beauty” of culture and community. Vang said he is often mistaken for Chinese, which furthers his belief that the community does not know what Hmong history is and what it represents. “Chinese and Hmong are totally different,” Vang said. He added that it may happen because there isn’t a specific country where the Hmongs are from. “We came from Laos, then we went to Thailand, from Thailand refugee camps we went everywhere around the world,” he explained. “We are somebody.”


MONDAY, MAY 1, 2017



Defense shines in spring game By Nugesse Ghebrendrias @nugebear13

Fresno State head football coach Jeff Tedford’s first round of practices ended Saturday with the spring game in front of thousands. After 15 practices, the Bulldogs are on the right track, Tedford said. Staying healthy as a team along with competition between the offense and defense were definitive takeaways. “A lot of progress in spring ball, I’m really pleased with it,” Tedford said. “We came out injury free, which is great. You always have your fingers crossed on the last day to stay healthy, and we did that. I was really pleased today, actually. The offense got the better of it last [Saturday], and the defense rose to the occasion this week. It was really competitive and nice to see.” The ‘Dogs took part in a series of scenarios aimed at improving timing, accuracy and fundamentals. For the offense and defense, the presumptive starters and backups took part. The day was dominated by the defense which collected six sacks and forced two turnovers. Veteran defensive back Tank Kelly flashed his ability to get to the quarterback from the defensive backfield, while teammate Andrew Wright forced a big interception, something the ‘Dogs lacked all last season. The ‘Dogs’ defensive line showed promise after multiple defensive stops. Led by Nathan Madsen, Patrick Belony and Justin Green, the ‘Dogs tenacious line stopped the run on multiple occasions while also applying pressure on the quarterback. Although the defense flashed its potential throughout the afternoon, newly appointed defensive coordinator Orlondo Steinauer said improvement is the most important takeaway.

Christian Ortuno • The Collegian

Wide receiver Namani Parker (#87) runs with the ball as wide receiver Justin Allen (#13) blocks defensive back Ka’Lonn Milton (#27) on Saturday, April 29, during the spring game at Bulldog Stadium.

“I am happy with where we’re at, but not satisfied at all,” Steinauer said. “We have a long ways to go, but we are so much closer than we were when we started.” Steinauer said he wants his defense to consistently make timely plays, as well as force turnovers when the offense is backed up. Offensively, the ‘Dogs operated mostly in the shotgun formation, giving a hint as to what Tedford plans for the team in the fall. Incumbent quarterback Chason Virgil showed why he’ll likely get the job next season with a good showing. Backups Jorge Reyna and Christian Rossi also participated, but the amount of reps favored

Virgil. Reyna completed consecutive passes and orchestrated two goal-line scores with the second offense, but he has an outside chance to become the ‘Dogs’ starter next season. Virgil, on the other hand, ran with the first team and completed six of his first seven passes, two to Da’Mari Scott and a fourth-down throw to KeeSean Johnson that brought almost all of the 2,500 fans in attendance to their feet. Although the offense struggled at times, offensive coordinator Kalen DeBoer said the adversity is a learning opportunity. “You want some give-and-take on both sides of the ball,” DeBoer said. “I thought

there was a lot of plays that we made. We got out of our own territory, we did well with that. When you’re deep in your own territory, that’s a big deal to get a first down, and we’ve done that consistently.” DeBoer said there is a fine line when the offense is moving the ball and catching passes barely inbounds as opposed to catching the ball an inch or two out of bounds. The ‘Dogs wrapped up their spring program, and while the players get some much-needed vacation, the coaching staff heads off on the recruiting trail. The team returns in June for a strength and conditioning program for current ‘Dogs and future ones, as well.

Peck to the Packers Senior Fresno State football alumnus Aaron Peck became a Green Bay Packer over the weekend when the organization signed him as an undrafted free agent. The 6-foot-3 wide receiver said on his Instagram, “Thank you to the Packers organization for giving me this opportunity to be a part of something great!” The Riverside native had six career touchdowns for the Bulldogs in 34 games played with 93 receptions for 1,211 yards.

Darlene Wendels • Collegian File Photo

Wide receiver Aaron Peck running with the ball against the Wyoming Cowboys on Saturday, Nov. 1, 2014 at Bulldog Stadium.

Darlene Wendels • Collegian File Photo

Offensive lineman Justin Northern embracing wide receiver Aaron Peck on Nov. 22, 2014, against the Nevada Wolfpack in Reno, Nevada.



MONDAY, MAY 1, 2017


Series finale showcases ‘Fibber,’ 500 wins


Khone Saysamongdy • The Collegian

ESPN radio broadcaster Paul Loeffler presenting Satoshi “Fibber” Hirayama with his No. 3 retired jersey alongside head coach Mike Batesole and deputy director of athletics Steve Robertello on Sunday, April 30, 2017, at Pete Beiden Field at Bob Bennett Stadium.

By Jenna Wilson @fsjennawilson

The stars aligned for the Fresno State baseball team on Sunday afternoon as history was honored and then made at Pete Beiden Field at Bob Bennett Stadium. Former Bulldog great Satoshi “Fibber” Hirayama’s No. 3 jersey was retired and head coach Mike Batesole earned his 500th career win at Fresno State. “I love it when Fibber Hirayama and that era of guys are around our program,” Batesole said. “They aren’t just great baseball players, but they’re great people. To have them around our program and in our clubhouse is priceless.” Hirayama became the 11th Diamond ’Dog to have his number retired and was joined by his former teammates and coaches in the pregame ceremony before the Bulldogs defeated the San Jose State Spartans 16-8. “The people in Fresno, here, Exeter and [where] I played ball were just so wonderful to me. I’ll never forget that,” Hirayama said. Joined by 13 former teammates and coaches, Hirayama said they deserved to be standing where he was. “There’s a lot of people who deserve this a lot more than me,” Hirayama said. In attendance were Bob Bennett, the winningest coach in Fresno State history with 1,302 wins, and Bobby Jones, a former professional whose 10-year career was spent with the New York Mets and San Diego Padres. Bennett’s and Jones’ numbers have also been retired by Fresno State. Former teammate and Bulldog baseball hall of famer Jake Abbott said, “This is a tribute that is really well-deserved.” Abbott, a former Bulldog pitcher, said he always enjoyed seeing a flyball go out to center field because he knew “Fibb” was going to catch it. “He was a terrific centerfielder,” Abbott said. “He is definitely a Valley legend.”


Khone Saysamongdy • The Collegian

Junior pitcher Ricky Tyler Thomas shaking hands with Satoshi “Fibber” Hirayama, whose No. 3 jersey was retired on Sunday, April 30, 2017, at Pete Beiden Field at Bob Bennett Stadium.

At 12 years old, Hirayama, an Exeter native, and his family were relocated to Poston, Arizona as part of a World War II-era decree that relocated thousands of Japanese-American families to internment camps. It was there that “Fibber” played organized baseball as part of the camp’s 32-team league.

Hirayama played football and baseball for the Bulldogs from 1950-52. At 5-foot-3 and 140 pounds, Hirayama played halfback on the football team, but his record-breaking legacy at Fresno State was solidified on the diamond. Now 87, Hirayama was on former coach

Pete Beiden’s 1951 Bulldog team that went 36-4, the winningest team in program history. Hirayama etched 36 stolen bases that season, a record that would not be broken until 1987 by future big leaguer Tom Goodwin. He still holds the record for most bases stolen in a single game with five in 1951. Despite the still-standing record season, the Bulldogs, led by centerfielder Hirayama, did not see their first NCAA bid until 1952. Many of the Bulldog legend’s family and friends were in attendance, including his son, Brian. “It’s a very special day,” Brian said. “It’s really neat to see him be recognized like this. We really appreciate Fresno State doing this for him.” Brian said that his father’s number being retired may have something to do with Batesole getting his 500th win. “Maybe my dad is a good luck charm,” Brian said. Batesole’s 500th win lands him among Fresno State baseball greats, Beiden and Bennett. The trio becomes just the fifth Division I program with three coaches in the 500-win club. The head coach said that his success can be credited to the good people around him. “This isn’t just a baseball team,” Batesole said. “This is a program where there are lots of people in just about every area that you’d need help with and they can’t wait to help you. That’s the only way you can do things like that and throw out numbers like that.” The historical win allowed the Bulldogs (22-21, 11-10 MW) to win the series against Spartans (15-26-1, 8-14-1 MW) in a game that saw 19 hits. Junior infielder Aaron Arruda went 2-4 with a homerun and four RBIs. Senior infielder Jesse Medrano also had a home run and double with two RBIs and scored four runs for the ’Dogs. Batesole and the Bulldogs hit the road on Wednesday to take on the UC Riverside Highlanders.

May 1 2017  
May 1 2017