PGS. 5 & 8 torch photo/ nicole valente
Les Miserables The Torch reviews the musical blockbuster Lifestyle Pg. 12
â€œThink Outside. . .â€?
Photo of the Week
Managing Board XC
Michael Cunniff, Editor-in-Chief Nicole Valente, Managing Editor Jessica Lise, General Manager
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anthony o’reilly Entertainment Editor News Editor mitchell petit-frere marion gendron kristen farmer Co-Chief Copy Editor Photo Editor Sports Editor sarah yu jim baumbach diamond watts-walker Special thanks to Richard Co-Chief Copy Editor Advisor Art Director Rex Thomas for assisting in the design of the Torch kieran lynch
Features Phi Alpha Delta The largest pre-law fraternity comes to St. John’s.
Lifestyle Pg. 12
Music Trouble Man The Torch reviews T.I.’s newest album, Trouble Man.
Lifestyle Pg. 11
Sports Rematch The Johnnies face off against the Scarlet Knights today, Jan. 23
Sports Pg. 16
opinion pg. 7
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Torch Photo/Diana colapietro
Amir Garrett goes for the layup during St. John’s game vs. Rutgers on Jan. 9 at Madison Square Garden in a 58-56 defeat. The two will meet again tonight.
Class back in session Briefs Manhattan campus reopens after Sandy damage Torch
Compiled by Christopher Brito Assistant News Editor
Adjani Shah Staff Writer After being closed for several weeks due to damage sustained from Superstorm Sandy, the Manhattan campus has been reopened in time for students to return to classes for the Spring 2013 semester. On the day of the storm, Oct. 29, 2012, the building’s infrastructure suffered massive flooding. The building lost all power, permanently damaging all electrical, air conditioning and heating systems, due to the rain and salt water that Sandy brought, according to Brij Anand, vice president of campus facilities and services. Anand visited the campus shortly after the storm and said the water in the basement reached up to five to six feet. “I wasn’t expecting to see that,” he said. Anand said repair planning began soon after the storm and within a week, the repairs had already started. After pumping out the water, contractors from AKF assessed the damages and then provided a scope of what needed to be done, and electrical workers from ACT started with the actual repairs. All electrical and heating system repairs were completed by the third week of December; two weeks ahead of schedule, according to Anand.
Prof. featured on NBC
photo courtesy of External Relations
The Manhattan campus will welcome back students for this semester
“It was a great team effort...to get this up and running,” he said. Anand said, in addition to the repairs, improvements were made in case Mother Nature decided to strike again. All electrical equipment was relocated to a higher level, as the building’s basement is described as being a “half basement”, where one level is below ground and the other
above street level. According to Anand, a final figure on the cost of damage to the building has yet to be figured out. “We don’t have the financial numbers yet,” he said, adding that the school is working with their insurance company and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. “It’s a whole mixed bag.”
Family of Sandy vic to sue city Anthony O’Reilly News Editor The family of a University graduate student who died during Superstorm Sandy has filed a notice of claim intending to sue the city of New York, according to multiple media outlets. A tree that fell during the storm killed Tony Laino, who was 29 at the time of his death. According to multiple media outlets, Laino was in his bedroom at the time the tree ripped through his house. Laino was one of 43 city residents who died during the storm. The Laino’s family lawyer, Rosemarie Arnold, told the Wall Street Journal “unlike some of the other storm fatalities, Mr. Laino’s death cannot be considered “an act of God” because that would require circumstances that were “unforeseen.” The lawyer filed the claim on January 2, according to multiple media outlets. Arnold declined several interview requests by the Torch. According to the Queens Courier, the family will sue the city for “emotional, mental distress and
monetary damages, including funeral lawyer. “We recognize that this incident and burial expenses.” involves a loss of life, which is tragic,” Bobby Laino, the older brother of the spokeswoman said. Tony, told the Courier that he’s “been Rev. Donald J. Harrington, C.M. telling [the city] President of the to take down University, told this tree for 20 the University Unlike some of years.” community of the other storm The Courier Laino’s death in an also reported email sent two days fatalities, Mr. Laino’s “according to after the storm. death cannot be Arnold, the “I am saddened Lainos’ house to report our considered ‘an act deed shows community did of God’ because the tree was on experience a great city, not private, loss in the stormthat would require property.” related death of circumstances that “There’s so one of our own,” were “unforeseen.much wrong Harrington wrote. with this picture “Anthony Laino Rosemarie Arnold, that it was was a 2004 St. Laino’s family lawyer, basically an John’s graduate accident waiting and an outstanding to the Wall Street to happen,” graduate student in Journal Arnold told the the Tobin College Wall Street Journal. of Business Risk Arnold claims that several 311 calls Management Program, and son were ignored or that the city only ever of Carol Laino, a longtime employee pruned the tree, which, Arnold claims, of the University. I hope you will only made the roots more unstable. join me in remembering Anthony A city Law Department and the Laino family in your thoughts spokeswoman has said that they will and prayers during this very difficult evaluate the claim filed by Laino’s time.”
Dr. Diane J. Heith, Associate Professor and Chair of Government and Politics at the University, spoke to NBC40.net about President Barack Obama’s second inaugural address last Tuesday. She said she was surprised at how much the past campaign had influenced the President’s speech.”This is a continued effort to contrast with the Republican view that government produces dependency rather than Obama’s view of a community taking care of itself,” Heith said. “And some will likely think it was also a bit of a shot at the Republican - Romney - who put that belief out there so baldly.”
Commuter Week 2013 Commuter Connection Committee will be hosting its welcome reception at the D’Angelo Center in Room 128 from 8:30a.m.-9:30 a.m. on Thurs., January 24. There will be free continental breakfast and commuter friendly giveaways. Students are also given the opportunity to meet fellow commuter students and offered useful giveaways. These giveaways items range from round trip metro cards, planners, pens, bus/subway maps, NY City guides, water bottles, first aid kits, hand sanitizers and more.
Black History Month events Black History Month will kick-off on Monday, Jan. 28 at 5 p.m. in the D’Angelo Center. The kick off includes educational and interactive displays from all of the African American student organizations on campus.
Judge throws Ball suit out of court
Anthony o’Reilly News Editor
A Queens County Supreme Court judge ruled last month that the University acted within its legal rights when it suspended a student for an off-campus incident last year. In dismissing the now former student’s lawsuit against the University, Hon. Judge Roger Rosengarten stated in court documents obtained by the Torch that St. John’s did indeed follow the guidelines of the Student Code of Conduct with the suspension. “The University is pleased with the court’s decision to dismiss the Article 78 proceeding,” said Joseph Oliva, the University’s general counsel. “We believe that the decision is consistent with well established law in New York State.” The lawyer for the former student, James Ball, responded to the judge’s ruling by stating her intention to appeal and file a motion to reargue the case. “I am making the motion because the text of the decision indicates to me that [the judge] may have overlooked a salient part of my papers on St. John’s burden of proof,” Ball’s lawyer (and
mother) Ann Ball said in an email. Ball’s lawsuit accused the University Ball was suspended toward the end of giving preferential treatment to the of last spring other student, who, semester after according to several another student court documents, A determination accused him of addressed the as to the credibility “very serious conduct board via an crimes,” according unsworn email that of the parties is for to the lawsuit. “contained obvious determination by the Ball was errors.” conduct board panel arrested in his offThe judge, campus apartment however, disagreed, members who heard on April 27, but writing in his ruling and saw the evidence the Queens District dated Dec. 21 that Attorney decided he was convinced and credibility is not not to pursue that no preferential a matter for judicial charges and had treatment was given the files sealed. to the other student. review by the court,” The Torch has “A determination - Honorable Judge Roger decided to not as to the credibility Rosengarten ruling on the identify the other of the parties is for student named in determination by the case of Ball v. St. John’s the lawsuit because conduct board panel of the nature of the members who heard allegation. and saw the evidence Ball, who at the time of his suspension and credibility is not a matter for judicial was a sophomore, argued his case in front review by the court,” the judge wrote in of a University disciplinary board last his ruling. July to try to be reinstated as a student, “No lawyer likes an adverse ruling, however the board ruled to suspend him but I have the utmost respect for the for another semester, according to the Court,” Ball’s lawyer, Ann, said in an lawsuit. email about the ruling.
Speaking exclusively to the Torch last October after the original lawsuit was filed, Ann Ball said they were suing the school to have James reinstated and for financial damages. She now says James is attending a different school. University officials named as defendants in Ball’s lawsuit included Rev. Donald J. Harrington, C.M., President of the University, Dean of Students Danny Trujillo, Associate General Counsel Kathleen McElroy and Director of Student Conduct Jack Flynn. The lawsuit identified McElroy as the chair of the conduct board panel, that included five anonymous school representatives that determined Ball’s suspension. According to the Queens Supreme Court’s website, the two sides will meet again in court on Feb. 25 regarding a separate lawsuit filed by Ball.
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Mangione appointed new permanent provost
Christopher Brito Assistant News Editor
After more than thirty years of roaming the halls as a pharmacy student, professor and dean at the University, Dr. Robert Mangione will serve as permanent provost overseeing the academic sector of the University. A unanimous vote by the University trustees on Dec. 12, allowed Dr. Mangione to shed his interim title. Mangione says he plans to continue on the Vincentian tradition at the school. “I think the most significant thing we need to do is celebrate our Vincentian culture of academic excellence and to also cultivate that,” Dr. Mangione said. “To me, that’s where we need to be and that excites me.” His four-month stint as interim provost came with some unforeseen obstacles including Superstorm Sandy that shut down the Manhattan campus, caused partial power outages to the Queens campus and cancelled classes for a week. Once classes resumed, Mangione faced the challenge of fulfilling state education department requirements by photo Courtesy of External Relations making up missed class time. Mangione sent an internal memo to Dr. Robert Mangione will direct the academic sector of the University. University faculty and staff. After the Torch broke the news on Twitter, many students wondered why they weren’t degree in Pharmacy and Masters the University to his time as a college in Pharmaceutical Sciences at the student at St. John’s. Mangione said he notified as well. “I entrusted it to faculty, that way University, and later his Doctorate desired to stay at the University after there’s no gaps in communication and in Educational Administration and graduation and become a professor. Supervision. A couple decades later and he’s right students can give feedback,” he said. In 1979, he became a faculty member where he wants to be. “I gave faculty full legitimate “I’m here to serve the students and authority to comply with the state and progressively moved up the ranks to become the Dean of College of Pharmacy the students are here to learn and improve education requirements and students’ and Health Sciences in 1999. their life as people and that’s why I came needs, I take full responsibility.” Dr. Mangione credits his love for to St. John’s as a student.” Mangione earned his Bachelor’s
Besides working as an administrator, Mangione is also active in his field of study. Currently, he along with Dr. Somnath Pal, Dr. S. William Zito and the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness are working on a project funded by the Food & Drug Administration to find out how much and which over-the-counter and prescription medicines have gluten content, an instigating agent that directly affects people with Celiac Disease. This condition, according to WebMD.org, attacks gluten when it is absorbed by the body and makes it difficult to intake nutrients because it harms the small intestine. Mangione’s interest in studying this, he says, roots from his own experience with this “fascinating disease” and he says he wants anyone to feel comfortable asking him about it because he wants to help others with it. Mangione credits everything he’s achieved to the people he’s surrounded himself with, from his wife Janet to his late professor Dr. Charles Jarowski. Mangione calls them the reason for his growth and success. “I’ve been very blessed with great parents, great life, great family, great friends, so they are sitting next to me,” Mangione said. “I may have provost under my name but I’m standing on their shoulders and I want to do my best to never disappoint these great people and the students.” Follow the Torch on Twitter for live updates @STJTorch
What you may have missed over break: Sandy Hook Cuomo declares shooting flu emergency
Compiled by Christopher Brito, Assistant News Editor
On December 14th, after killing his mother, Adam Lanza shot twenty children and six adult staff members at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Before the first responders arrived to this heinous crime, Lanza committed suicide by shooting himself in the head. This incident was the second-deadliest school shooting in United States history. "Each time I learn the news I react not as a president, but as anyone else would -- as a parent. And that was especially true today," Obama told the press that same day.
President Barack Obama signed off on a legislation that prevented the “fiscal cliff“ on Jan. 3. The bill will boost taxes on the wealthiest American on the upper echelon of the tax bracket and remain intact for most American, middle-class households. It also extends expiring unemployment benefits, prevents cuts in Medicare reimbursements to doctors and halts spending cuts in defense and domestic programs.
Lance Armstrong admitted to Oprah Winfrey in two-part television interview last week that he used performanceenhancing drugs throughout his record breaking streak of seven Tour de France titles. Armstrong was stripped of the titles and has been banned for life from cycling and from competing in athletic events sanctioned by World Anti-Doping Agency or the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency. He was also stripped from Olympic Bronze Medal he won at the 2000 Sydney Games. A panel investigating the links between International Cycling Union, cycling’s governing body, and Armstrong will have its first hearing this Friday.
Manti Te’o, duped?
NFL prospect and Notre Dame linebacker Manti T’eo was involved in a “catfish” scheme where he was dating a woman online that never existed and allegedly didn’t know physically. Lennay Kekua, the fictitious girlfriend in T’eo’s life, was a creation by Peter Tuiasosopo, the 22year old man behind the hoax. He communicated with T’eo via fake social media accounts and telephone. After more than a year of “dating”, he was told in September that Kekua died of her battle with leukemia. On Dec. 26th, the Heisman Trophy runner-up notified Notre Dame officials that his girlfriend did not exist.
On Jan. 12, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo declared a Public Health Emergency for all of New York State in response to an influenza outbreak in the area, according to the governor’s website. The executive order permits pharmacists to administer flu vaccinations to patients between six months and 18 years old. Typically, pharmacies are only allowed to give vaccinations to adults 18 years and older, while younger patients must go to their pediatricians. “We are experiencing the worst flu season since at least 2009, and influenza activity in New York State is widespread, with cases reported in all 57 counties and all five boroughs of New York City,” Governor Cuomo said in a statement.
According to the New York State Department of Health, there have been 23,501 cases of positive laboratoryconfirmed influenza this season as of Jan. 12, 4,153 of which resulted in hospitalization. Only 4,404 cases were reported in the 2011-12 season, with 1,169 hospitalizations. The governor’s release advises that people experiencing flu-like symptoms such as a fever, cough, or sore throat, should call their doctor before heading to the hospital. One should only go to the hospital if a doctor advises them to do so. The public health emergency order is in effect for 30 days before it automatically expires. (Kieran Lynch, Features Editor)
All photos courtesy of Wikimedia Commons. Graphic courtesy of New York Department of Health
After a three-day hostage crisis conducted by a multinational group of terrorists at a gas complex in Algeria, at least 81 people including three Americans--Victor Lynn Lovelady, Frederick Buttaccio, and Gordon Lee Rowan--were confirmed dead with numbers expected to rise. Responsibility was claimed by militants of the Al-Qaeda linked Mulathameen group, who said their actions was triggered by the arrival of French forces seeking to block a jihadist takeover of neighboring Mali, according Bloomberg.com
Editorial Board XC
MICHAEL E. CUNNIFF Editor-in-Chief
NICOLE VALENTE Managing Editor JESSICA LISE General Manager ANTHONY O’REILLY News Editor
FLAMES OF THE TORCH
Beginning of the end
As we’re on the downhill of our tenure at the Torch, we wanted to remind the readers, and ourselves, what we have to look forward to in the 116 days until graduation, not that we’re counting or anything It happens every year around this time — seniors arrive on campus for their last semester with growing feelings of nostalgia for the place they’ve called home for the last three and a half years. These years are filled with mistakes (too short haircuts, sleeping through midterms, trusting the stuff that looked like beef in the cafeteria) and triumphs (starting a snowball fight in the res village, earning that A in Metaphysics, getting the hot girl from the second floor’s number). We’re no different here at the Torch. Except we don’t get any phone numbers. There are things we’ve certainly not been proud of and there are things that we hang on our grandmothers’ refrigerators. After a semester that was full of breaking news, whether it’s lawsuits or suicides, we’re ready for a calmer semester where we can roll out our vision for the Torch of the future. Follow us? Like us? Klout us? (What do you do on Klout anyway?) This year we’ve been making a concerted effort to be bigger on social media. We know that’s what everyone’s laptop is doing open during class, we want to be right there with you. Find something we say interesting? Retweet us please! We ALWAYS follow back. The Jason Lapin Section, also known as Lifestyle (both are pretty accurate), is brand new. We put our features and entertainment sections together for a more cohesive reading experience. This is the stuff you want to read. Whether it’s Barber Wars, Barber Wars: the Response, the Hunger Games review or figuring out this whole flu situation, Lifestyle has you covered.
Last year you may not have known that there was a cross-country team at St. John’s or that our fencing team was sending two of their own to London to compete in the Olympics. But this year, we’ve expanded our coverage on athletics to include even some stuff off the beaten path. We’ve looked at Keegan Bradley and his successes on the PGA Tour, the absolute disintegration of the Big East as we know it and observed Connor Lade’s meteoric rise from captain of St. John’s men’s soccer to a tryout with La Liga’s Sevilla and the U.S. men’s national team like proud parents. In everything we’ve written in the Torch this semester, we’ve tried to put you, the St. John’s student, in mind. We’ve tried to write about things that interest us as students, like the price of “dollar slices” at Vincenzo’s increasing to the curiously opaque accounting at Student Government, Inc. Obviously, we want to try to continue to strive to fulfill that mission (and to stop using so many infinitives, damn!), because we certainly haven’t been perfect. Just like the time you passed out drunk in your dorm when your dream girl was waiting expectantly for you to swipe her in, we’ve “epic failed” more than once – just ask Olympians Daryl Homer and Dagmara Wozniak (sorry again). That’s what happens at a college newspaper — it’s a big learning experience. In fact, it’s a microcosm of college life in general. We come in, slightly naïve to the ways of the world (or, in our case, of journalism), make our fair share of mistakes along the way and emerge from it smarter, more mature and worldlier. We’re not done yet, however. Seniors still have four months, and we still have seven issues of our editorial board. Seniors, live it up – we’ll do our best to cover it the best we can.
Editorials are the opinions of the Editorial Board of The TORCH. Columns are the opinions of the author(s) and are not necessarily those of The TORCH. Opinions
expressed in editorials, columns, letters or cartoons are not necessarily those of the student body, faculty or administrations of St. John’s University.
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TORCH ILLUSTRATION/ STEPHEN SALIBA
Throwing the Bash to end all Bashes In the aftermath of my beloved Patriots’ stunning loss to the Ravens on Sunday, I was a little down. I was a little upset that Joe Flacco had outplayed Tom Terrific (yet again), that Bernard Pollard had killed the Pats’ season for the third time in the last five years and that ESPN would be saturated with features on the insufferable Ray Lewis. But after that, I was hit with another realization – I have no idea what I’m going to do for the Super Bowl. See, the first Super Bowl I really remember was Super Bowl XXXI, in January 1997. The Pats were in that one, against Brett Favre . They’ve been in five more since, meaning that more than one-third of the Big Games since I’ve started watching football have featured my favorite team. And in the other 11, I generally found some sort of rooting interest in the game, whether it was Tampa Bay when my dad’s friend was the strength and conditioning coach,
Arizona and its inspiring quarterback Kurt Warner against Pittsburgh and its lowlife signal caller Ben Roethlisberger or Anybody vs. Peyton Manning. But this year? I’d just as soon watch highlights of Tottenham’s 2010-11 Champions League campaign, or St. John’s 2010-11 NCAA Tournament run (or even its 1984-85 exploits under Lou Carnesecca) than watch Terrell Suggs try to stop Colin Kaepernick. But I’ll still watch it, of course, because the Super Bowl is as much a social event as it is a sporting event. Which brings me to my next issue – I’ve never been to a real Super Bowl party. I’ve always tried to watch the game with small groups of like-minded people who are there to see the game, with maybe a couple pizzas and some Pepsi. Now, I want to make up for lost time, and throw the Super Bowl Bash to End All Super Bowl Bashes™.
Except I don’t know where to start. Does one provide beer at a Super Bowl party to promote the football theme, or other beverages to placate the non-fans (and non-drinkers)? Bean dip or spinach dip? Potato or tortilla chips? Pizza or wings? The choices are endless. I plan on making a bunch of home-cooked appetizers and finger foods, which raises another issue – I can’t cook. Or, more accurately, the sample size of my cooking is far too small for anybody to really determine whether I can cook. I am determined to try though, even if it takes me all week to figure out how to turn my stove on, or what a cast-iron skillet looks like. This Super Bowl is going to transform me into Guy Fieri, minus everything about Guy Fieri that makes Guy Fieri Guy Fieri that’s not his cooking (which
This Super Bowl is going to transform me into Guy Fieri, minus everythng about Guy Fieri that makes Guy Fieri Guy Fieri, minus his cooking.
has been called into question lately as well). There’s so much to do between now and a week from Sunday, I’ll have to start planning right away, maybe even skip class. I’m not sure if anybody is reading this right now, but if you’re out there Mom, I need ideas. What’s the best Super Bowl party you’ve been to, and why? I can tell you exactly what makes a good college party, or Christmas party or birthday party. Super Bowl party? I’m as clueless as Manti Te’o on Facetime. Come to think of it, this is the most excited I’ve been for a Super Bowl in years. I’m almost glad that the Patriots lost. Well, let’s not go too far, but now at least I see the appeal of being a Jets fan…
Michael E. Cunniff is a senior journalism major who is really looking forward to hearing your party ideas. Like seriously, he’s gettin an apron and everything, and might even get his friend and roommate Nathan Holmes to brew some homemade beer, even though it’s probably too late to do it in time for the game. He can be reached at torcheic@ gmail.com, amd at @Mike_Cunniff.
Problem-solving, not politics, please Business community needs real leadership from elected officials in D.C. QUINN ROCHFORD Business Columnist
On Monday, President Barack Obama touched his left hand to the Lincoln Bible and raised his right hand with honor, swearing an oath of office of the President of the United States for a second time. But will the President swear to spend his next four years in cooperation with Corporate America and the millions of citizens it affects? Though the economic state of the nation is in better position than it was early in Obama’s first term, many of the business leaders across America would have preferred a new face chosen in November, regardless of the alternative. Yet here we are, scribing the first pages of the newly-unveiled chapter of the 237-year-old running narrative that we call the democratic United States. Our nation – most notably the business community that drives it – has as many problems as ever. Uncertainty still hovers over taxes, investing, the deficit, and regulation all threaten the fragile economic recovery. There are countless significant business issues left unresolved as Obama’s second term commences. Budgetary disagreement, a nearly
8 percent unemployment rate, and the vaguely settled “Fiscal Cliff” leave us with a taste of ambiguity after the President’s reelection. Dissention between Obama and Congress has fueled the prevention of the timely agreement of numerous matters. Early in 2012, the two sides wavered on the trail to a debt ceiling resolution to limit government spending. More recently, the President and freshly reelected House Speaker John Boehner halted at a stalemate as the ball dropped and the nation closely avoided a proverbial tax increase cliff tumble. We all know the deficit is too high and expenditures are too pervasive. We all wanted to rip up our 1040s and W-2s in frustration (okay, not really). We’ve seen young children agree on sandbox tool sharing systems in a more orderly manner. What will Obama and Congress have to change now to avoid a continuation of this, well, immobility? The answer seems simple – make business and other national concerns less of a political, partisan deadlock and more of a problemsolving action. The reality is that business leaders frankly don’t care about political party division or preconceived agendas. All they want is to be taken care of, to be treated fairly, and ensure that the necessary actions are
taken that most appropriately solve these overbearing issues, one by one. “The partisan rancor, negative rhetoric and perpetual gridlock must come to an end so that we can begin to heal this country and get it moving again,” said National Small Business Association chair Chris Holman, via the Washington Bureau, shortly after Obama’s reelection. America stared down its option to elect its most corporate-minded candidate ever in Mitt Romney, and chose the prolonging selection. That they did so shows confidence in the status quo to lead the economy’s progression towards stability. Let’s keep something in perspective. Obama has carried out beneficial, at times life-saving, acts for the business world. He provided the necessary stimulus package, he reregulated Wall Street with Dodd-Frank, he revamped the United States auto industry, and he’s invested in renewable technology. His second inauguration this week didn’t provide Obama with a clean slate. What has been left undone still needs attention from both he and Congress. Like managing a company, promoting cooperation, teamwork, and problem-solving will get you a long way. Business owners have questioned if the President’s first go-round was a success
The United States doesn’t have much choice. These next four years have to be an overt success – for business and for Average Joe to get back to prosperity. Quinn Rochford is a junior accounting major and the nephew of Features Editor Kieran Lynch
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5 things to look forward to in 2013
From Springsteen to Cera, what to watch for in entertainment this year PETER LONG
Entertainment Editor A lot of crazy stuff has happened so far in 2013. Already, we’ve seen Lance Armstrong confessing to Oprah that he took steroids, Armstrong’s PR people planting Manti T’eo’s “dead” girlfriend and Bill Clinton, once again, making creepy faces — this time in Kelly Clarkson’s direction at President Obama’s inauguration. Believe it or not, there is still a lot to look forward to. More music, movies, TV and creepy Bill Clinton faces for the entire country to enjoy. Here is a list of five things I’m looking forward to in 2013. The Strokes new album - Alright, so The Strokes last release, Angles, wasn’t all that great; a few decent tracks, but not great like their freshman and sophomore albums, Is This It? and Room on Fire. We’re not even going to count First Impressions of the Earth. This record, still untitled and scheduled for a late 2013 release, is somewhat of a make-it-or-break it record
for Manhattan’s finest rock n’ roll band. Is This It? was monumental and set off the garage rock revival period of the early 2000s that included The White Stripes, The Vines and The Hives. Room on Fire was great, but it didn’t live up to the hype like its predecessor. First Impressions of the Earth and Angles were okay. Now is the time for Julian Casablancas and company to step up and deliver a crop of concise rock songs with the melodic twist that their first and second albums contained. “Arrested Development’s” fourth season – Long story short, “Arrested Development” (featuring an all-star cast that includes Jason Bateman, Will Arnett and Michael Cera) aired for three seasons on Fox, won multiple Emmys and massive amounts of critical praise before it got the axe; cut down in its prime, gone too soon. Late last summer though, a contract was signed between the show’s producers and Netflix to exclusively stream “Arrested Development’s” fourth season, consisting of 14 new episodes. It just goes to show that most television executives are mindless numbskulls, and the ones that aren’t all work at Netflix.
Tom Morello joining Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band for nine shows in Australia – You read that right. Former Rage Against The Machine and Audioslave guitarist Tom Morello will fill in for longtime E Street Band member Steve Van Zandt for nine April dates in Australia while Van Zandt films for his show Lillyhammer. Can you imagine Morello ripping through “Because the Night”? Or “Candy’s Room”? I’m drooling. With Morello in the band, the gigs down under will almost definitely be tied with this year’s Democratic National Convention as the most liberal stage show of the past 100 years. Monsters University – Easily, without a doubt, the most underrated Pixar movie is Monsters, Inc. Even though they’re obviously animated, the dynamic chemistry between Billy Crystal and John Goodman made for great comedic affect. The plot is charming, the characters are great — it has everything that every great Pixar film should have. Now, we have a prequel. Am I skeptical? Yes. Will I be disappointed? I hope not.
Prequels aren’t usually the best idea for any film, and the plot — Mike Wazowski and “Sulley” Sullivan meet in a frat in at Monsters University and become friends after being rivals — seems typical and lame. The best attributes of Monsters, Inc. were its originality and its creativity. If Monsters University can follow suit, it will be fine. One thing is for sure, it won’t be as bad as Cars. Nothing could be worse than Cars. Carrie Underwood in NBC’s remake of The Sound of Music – I chose this as one of the things I’m looking forward to this year solely because I know it will be terrible. It’s ill-conceived remakes such as this one that make me despise television, and specifically NBC, even more. You had to ruin “The Office” by keeping it on the air as long as humanly possible and sucking every last dollar from it, do you have to ruin a classic? Their answer? “Yes.” Peter Long is a junior journalism major. If you haven’t figured it out by now, he really likes Springsteen., but not as much as Chris Christie does. He can be reached at email@example.com.
STJ students deal with flu outbreak SHANNON LUIBRAND Assistant Features Editor
With a record flu season in full swing, people all across the country found themselves ringing in the New Year sick and St. John’s University students were no exception. Over winter break, many St. John’s students became some of the thousands that fell ill with the flu. Most of those who fell ill described their bout as, “the sickest I have ever been.” Sophomore Claudia Khouri spent her Christmas Day in bed, unable to move with severe body aches. “I had the flu Christmas morning,” she said. “The night before, I felt perfect like nothing was wrong, but [then] I woke up at 6am throwing up.” Khouri explained that Christmas this year was nothing like she expected. “I was pretty delirious for it being Christmas morning,” she said. “I hardly remember it. I was so tired and shivering with body aches, yet I was also sweating. It was the worst.” Senior Kerry Sullivan also spent her holiday in bed with the flu. Sullivan, a Massachusetts native, was unable to travel home from Queens because of an extremely high fever. “I couldn’t go home for Christmas because I was too sick,” she said. “ On Dec. 26, I went to the Queens Center Hospital emergency room because I couldn’t get my fever down.”
TORCH PHOTO/JARROD JENKINS
Students wait in line inside the Health Services office on the Queens campus.
Sullivan described her experience as miserable and scary. When the doctor at Queens Center Hospital left Sullivan with only a bottle of Ibuprofen, she felt desperate. “I tried to get the nurse at St. John’s to see me,” she said. “ But apparently she doesn’t work around Christmas time.” Both Sullivan and Khouri eventually recovered, but the same cannot be said for everyone that has come down with the flu this winter. “Students should come to campus prepared,” Pauline Tummino, Director of Health Services at St. John’s said via email. “The most important action you can take is washing your hands with soap and water frequently.” According to NBC, this flu season
has claimed an abnormally high amount of lives including that of 29 children. More than 5,000 people have been hospitalized because of the flu over the last few months. St. John’s has been trying to take the necessary steps to educate and protect students against this widespread flu outbreak. On Jan. 11, Dr. Kathryn Hutchinson, Vice President of Student Affairs, released a letter addressed to University students. This letter responded to the flu advisory the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene issued. “As the Spring 2013 semester is approaching,” she said, “We want you to be prepared so you can minimize your risk of getting the flu or other illnesses.”
The letter goes on to provide students with several steps to take to avoid getting sick. “If you haven’t already done so, please speak with your family and health care provider about getting a flu shot,” she said. Khouri says she regrets not getting a flu shot before she got sick. “I didn’t get a flu shot,” she said. “[It was a] stupid choice.” Even the flu shot may not be enough to protect people against the illness. Sixth year pharmacy student, Demet Ozdemir received the shot in early November and came down with the flu just two days later. “When you get the flu shot, there is still a two week period where you can still get the flu,” she said. “My pharmacy rotations were all in hospital settings and I figured I needed the shot. But I was too late apparently.” Ozdemir was sick for about a week. “Basically, I could not move at all the first four days,” she said. “It was almost to the point I needed to go to the emergency room.” “The University provided a flu shot clinic on the Queens campus in November,” Tummino said. “Flu vaccines are covered under most insurance plans, can be administered at local pharmacies, and are offered by state health departments in all states, sometimes free or low cost.” Hutchinson ends her letter to students with the statement, “Have a healthy and successful semester!” Something that all students are hoping for.
4 months later, T.I.’s Trouble Man finally released KORI WILLIAMS Staff Writer T.I.
OUT OF 5 STARS
Spending 11 months in prison can give a person time to reflect, assess where their life is going and, as was the case for Atlanta MC T.I., thinking about and writing new material for your next album. Thus we have Trouble Man: Heavy Is The Head, an album that addresses the inner-troubles of a man incarcerated, finding his way through life. Even though this is the highly anticipated follow-up to 2010’s No Mercy, T.I. has said that he wrote over 120 songs for the album and he plans to release a sequel titled Trouble Man II: He Who Wears the Crown later this year. From the very beginning, it’s clear that T.I. returned to the music of his childhood, 70s’ and 80’s R&B. The first track on the album, “The Introduction,” starts with a jazzy piano in the back-
ground layered under smooth vocals of an unaccredited male vocalist, perhaps inspired by Marvin Gaye, an artist who, as T.I. states in an interview with Billboard Magazine, partly inspired the album’s title. The nostalgic sound only appears and reappears throughout as many of Trouble Man’s tracks have that modern hiphop sound. “I’m Flexin’” featuring Big K.R.I.T, the album’s first single, lacks overall originality. The beat is typical and the lyrics, which talk about how much money he has, are banal and uninteresting compared to the rest of the record. With this being T.I.’s eighth studio album he has dabbled in a few different elements and sounds in his music previously. While nothing on this album sounds radically different than what we’re used to hearing from T.I., a pleasant surprise came from the song “Guns and Roses,” which features a unique collaboration with Pink. Instead of imposing Pink’s hard edged, rock approach on a hip-hop audience, Pink does a good job of just laying her voice out there while adding some necessary color to the track. What T.I. seems to do best, and he does it here on Trouble Man, is that he continues to put himself, his life experiences and his emotions
PHOTO COURTESY OF WIZNATION.COM
Trouble Man, the latest release from T.I., was finally dropped after a long wait.
into his music while making it very relatable on a personal level. It’s something that few artists can accomplish. Evidenced on the last track of the album “Hallelujah,” the narrator speaks of his struggles with Christianity, conveying that he believes in God and that he is devoted to Him, but he still, somehow, struggles with doing the right
thing. It’s this struggle that makes the album great. T.I. uses his experiences to teach others not to make the same mistakes he has. While some might miss such a message and get caught up in the talk of all his money and cars there seems to be an overall sense of responsibility that T.I. has to his audience.
Phi Alpha Delta joins STJ DYLAN NUNEZ Staff Writer
Phi Alpha Delta (P.A.D.), a co-ed law fraternity, is one of the newest Greek organizations on campus to be recognized by Student Government, Inc. this spring semester. Founded in 1898 as Lambda Epsilon, the law fraternity was created in the wake of a legal controversy involving the Supreme Court of Illinois adopting a rule for admission to the Bar Exam. United together to fight for their rights, a student at the time formed the “Law Student League” to combat the unfair rule change. Today, P.A.D. is the largest pre-law fraternity with specific programs targeting the needs of pre-law students. Membership is open to all, with an estimated 20% or one in five lawyers being a member of the fraternity. There are almost 370 chapters in operation and 260,000 members initiated, implementing an online member database for networking. Junior Catherine Chin, president of the St. John’s chapter of Phi Alpha Delta, elaborated on the benefits. “Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity will greatly benefit the students by providing conventions in which the students can network with legal professionals such as
lawyers, judges, higher authorities, attorneys and many more,” she said. The organization plans to hold a panel discussion with law students as well as an alumni dinner, according to Chin. “Our chapter will be hosting the Phi Alpha Delta Pre-Law Leadership Symposia at St. John’s University, which is a one-day session consisting of workshops, seminars and speakers and it will be one of our biggest events this semester,” she said. When the organization first started as Lambda Epsilon, the restrictive nature of its expansion procedure to other law schools, led to it being dissolved on July 16, 1902 and Phi Alpha Delta was formed the very next day. The mission is, “advancing integrity, compassion and courage through service to the student, the school, the profession and the community” Another benefit that P.A.D. also gives its members is access to a variety of prep courses and study material for the Bar exam as well as the LSAT. They also host one of the largest mock trials for law students in the country. Can’t get enough of the Torch? Visit our Web site for online exclusives. torchonline.com
PHOTO COURTESY OF COLLEGIATELINK.NET
Phi Alpha Delta is the largest pre-law fraernity in the country.
Les Miserables: far from miserable EDLINE DYER
Contributing Writer For theater lovers, musical fiends, or just Anne Hathaway fanatics, there was no better way to spend Christmas night
than watching the highly anticipated release of the film adaptation of the classic novel and musical, Les Miserables. With a great cast, musical numbers sung live in one take and breathtaking cinematography, any dreams
PHOTO COURTESY OF COLLIDER.COM
Hugh Jackman displayed his musical and acting chops in Les Miserables.
of leaving the theater without shedding at least a single tear, were surely turned to shade. From the first word sung you are reminded that this film is performed live, as the sound of waves crashing against wood almost (but barely) drown out the sound of the baritone and tenor of the prisoners aboard the ship. An almost unrecognizable Hugh Jackman appears as none other than prisoner #24601 – Jean Valjean. Then the number slows down for the exchange between Valjean and his foe, Inspector Javert (Russell Crowe), and we are introduced to the musical talents of the grizzly exGladiator. It isn’t until later on in the film that we get a real sense of Crowe and his vocal abilities. While many, including most critics, thought his performance was underwhelming at best, I couldn’t help but have a soft spot for him. But, regardless, Crowe might want to leave the musicals alone for a while, but that doesn’t discount his amazing and convincing performance as the ruthless Javert. Having to portray the dramatic tenor of Jean Valjean is a feat in and of itself, but Jackman tackles the role with grace and confidence. Even though every note isn’t perfect, the raw emotion he delivers can sell his character to any audience who watches. It isn’t watching Hugh Jackman play Jean Valjean, Hugh Jackman makes you believe he is Jean Valjean. A darkness I was not expecting from Hooper’s adaptation of “Lovely Ladies” had somewhat prepared me for
the complete sadness of “I Dreamed a Dream,” sung by Fantine (Anne Hathaway). Hathaway is a master of control and delivery when it comes to singing. Her range and tone shakes everything in you as you are fully enthralled by her performance. Shot closeup in only one take, Hathaway proved that it’s possible to win a well-deserved Golden Globe in a mere 20 minutes of being onscreen. Monsieur and Madame Thenardier (Sacha Baron Cohen and Helena Bonham Carter), the comic relief of the film, are played to such a tee that it was as if they were made for these characters. In one of the best performances I’ve seen from him in years, Cohen makes every second he spends on camera worthwhile, leaving the audience in a roar of laughter. Some of the most remarkable performances of the film came from the lesser known actors. Eddie Redmayne, who portrays the student revolutionary Marius, is brilliant, honest and sweet. His tenor is the greatest by far of the film. Samantha Barks, a 22-year-old in her film debut, plays Eponine and immediately commands attention. Her petite frame shows off nothing of the vocal force that resides inside of it. Overall, the cast and crew of Les Miserables deserved every single award and nomination they received this year. The film is utterly gorgeous, the direction superb, and the acting/ singing is something so unique that you’ll remember it for ages, just like the musical.
TWISB: Oscars, Globes, JT Foxx and Waltz Hosts, Argo and Justin Timberlake MacFarlane and Stone Les Mis are returns from musical announce Academy triumph winners at Golden hiatus with Jay-Z for Award nominations, Globes “Suit & Tie” directors snubbed in Django
It was a ladies night at the 70th Annual Golden Globes this year with hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. According to Nielson, the Globes pulled in more than 19.7 million viewers. After years of mediocre hosts, Fey and Poehler stole the show with classic slapstick comedy and goofy monolougues. Argo was the talk of the night as they took home four awards including Best Director for Ben Affleck and Best Motion Picture. The another big winner was of Les Miserables, with awards for actor Hugh Jackman, supporting actress, Anne Hathaway and Motion Picture for Musical or Comedy. As for TV, Showtime’s hit Homeland received top prize for Best Drama Series. HBO’s Girls notched up wins for Best Television Series and Best Comedic Actress for creator Lena Dunham.
Seth MacFarlane and Emma Stone announced the 2013 Oscar Nominees on Jan. 10. This year’s nominations were full of surprises, including shutouts for Kathryn Bigelow, Tom Hooper and Ben Affleck for Best Director. Nominees for Best Picture included Zero Dark Thirty and Argo while the Best Actor category features Bradley Cooper for his portrayal of Pat Salitano in Silver Linings Playbook. In the Best Actress category, nominations went to Jessica Chastain for her performance in Zero Dark Thirty along with Quvenzhane Wall. Wall is the youngest actress to ever be nominated for the award for her performance in Beasts of the Southern Wild. MacFarlane, the creator and producer of the summer blockbuster Ted, will be hosting the 85th Academy Awards on Feb. 24.
Justin Timberlake is back and has broken the record for most radio plays in one week following the release of his new single, “Suit & Tie,” according to Billboard. The single, featuring Jay-Z, was released on Jan. 14 and clocked in 6,045 plays during its first week topping the former record-holder Lady Gaga when she released her single “Born This Way.” “Suit &Tie” also was the highest debut song by a male artist on the Billboard Pop Chart, coming in at number 14. JT is soon to release his album The 20/20 Experience later this year. The N’Sync alum has been M.I.A. in the music world since his album FutureSex/LoveSounds was released in 2006 to focus on his acting career. Timberlake was praised for roles in the romantic comedy Friends with Benefits and the Oscar-winning Social Network.
First Listen: Solange’s new EP AYANNA LONG
Contributing Writer SOLANGE True
OUT OF 5 STARS
Reintroducing you to the woman formerly known as Beyonce’s little sister is Solange Knowles’ most recent EP, True. The songstress has delivered to the world what can be described as the soundtrack of her evolution as an artist. Her progression is evident both stylistically and vocally on this seven-track compilation. Knowles teamed up with the talented British producer/musician Dev Hynes and, needless to say, her new, unconventional sound and sultry look suits this lady wonderfully. Solange takes us through a story of unrequited love, infidelity and heartache with her infectious lyrics and rhythmic beats that are reminiscent of post-disco and New Wave in the early 80’s. With sounds of handclaps echoing in the background and an upbeat tempo riding the track, “Losing You” introduces you to a whirlwind of romance and serves as the breakup song in this collection of songs about heartache. Upon mentioning that this EP is essentially a story of heartache, it’d be fair to assume that the singer would be
PHOTO COURTESY OF WIKIMEDIA COMMONS
Solange Knowles, looks to have finally stepped out of the shadow of Beyonce.
belting out her pain over a typical slow melody to express her sentiments. However, contrary to that belief, Solange somehow manages to embody a mellow sound on these tracks while still commanding everybody listening to jolt with dance moves. After revisiting moments in time with a lover and a recent breakup, the Knowles lets out a foul-mouthed plea to be left alone so that she can move on. This leads the listener into the second track, “Some Things Never Seem To F***ing Work”. In that same breath, she tosses between longing for love in “Locked in Closets” and begging her lover not to break her heart in “Don’t Let Me Down”. Earth, Wind and Fire’s brilliant bassist Verdine White joins the Hynes-Knowles
duo to sprinkle some of his funky flavor on the final track, “Bad Girls”. In the last few second of the song, Solange’s smoothed out melodic harmonies begin to fade, ending the confused love story. True marks Solange’s first release under Brooklyn indie record label, “Terrible Records, with the EP also being her first body of work in four years since her 2008 album, “Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams.” Due to the overall accessibility of this EP, it’s safe to say she has successfully broken into the indie-pop genre effortlessly.. If True is supposed to keep her growing audience interested before the release of her upcoming album this year, consider the world tuned in. Ms. Knowles, you’ve got our attention.
ANNMARIE TURTON Staff Writer
Slavery, spaghetti westerns and laughter do not necessarily go hand-in-hand, but Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained made it happen. From a slave turned well-dressed bounty hunter played by Jamie Foxx to his partner in dysfunctional crime, a dentist turned bounty hunter, played by Christoph Waltz nothing is as it seems. From the very moment you sit down in the movie theater to watch this engrossing film you will be enticed and entranced. Slavery, along with Tarantino’s humorous take on the otherwise serious subject, is accurately portrayed in this movie. No one played their character better in the film than Waltz, who portrayed Dr. King Schultz. Dr. Schultz is sometimes a believable and insanely cruel man who definitely stole Foxx’s thunder several times in the film. As usual, Dr. Schultz did the convincing while Django worked to kill the man who had enslaved his wife, Broomhilda, played by Kerry Washington. That man was a wise crackin’, brutal plantation owner named Calvin Candy, played by Academy award-winning actor Leonardo DiCaprio. DiCaprio mastered the role which required the excessive usage of the N-word. He later revealed in interviews that he had to be forced to say the word by his AfricanAmerican co-stars who believed the film would be inauthentic if it wasn’t used the way it was during slavery. Some segments of the film depicted the most god-awful images of slavery that could make viewers wince in pain and turn their heads away from what once was a harsh reality in this country. DiCaprio clearly put his uneasiness aside to almost get the best of the conniving dentist and his slave bounty hunter. Regardless of what was said by the film’s detractors, the movie is worth every dime you pay to see it. The movie will leave wondering why your history teachers never made the subject as interesting as this movie. History is sometimes painful, but Tarantino’s take on it is amazing. Can’t get enough of the Torch? Visit our Web site for online exclusives. torchonline.com
Catching up on STJ bball
Lavin and Tartamella experiencing rollercoaster ride this winter MATTHEW WOLFSON Assistant Sports Editor Head coach Steve Lavin and the Red Storm started Big East play a day after the New Year, and just as this January weather has produced an unexpectedly warm temperatures in addition to frigid cold, so have the Red Storm. St. John’s (11-7, 3-3) has shown this month that they can run with some of the conference’s top team, gathering wins against a No. 14 Cincinnati team on the road and No. 20 Notre Dame at The Garden. But around those big wins, the Johnnies also suffered two heartbreaking losses to Villanova and Rutgers, and an embarrassing Saturday morning defeat to Georgetown. “We’re a work in progress,” Lavin said after the Notre Dame game. “Expect the unexpected and buckle up and enjoy the rollercoaster ride. This is a wonderfully young team that will, at times play maddening basketball. But they also balance it out with some brilliant play.” Sophomore guard D’Angelo Harrison, currently the Big East’s leading scorer, displayed some late game heroics against Cincinnati on Jan. 5, despite having an off night with his jumper. He seemed as though he would take the defending Titus Rubles into the lane, but instead stopped on a dime 15 feet from the basket and sunk a shot to give the Johnnies the 53-52 lead with which they would eventually win.
“My teammates believed in me, coach called it a great play, I got the switch I wanted, and I just pulled up right over him and it was a great shot,” Harrison said. “Coach could have called anyone’s number, and he called my number and I delivered.” The Johnnies also showed some versatility in their 67-63 win over Notre Dame, switching from their usual matchup zone to a man-to-man against the sharpshooting Fighting Irish. While the Johnnies were outrebounded 36-32 by Notre Dame, with Harrison leading the team with five boards, St. John’s limited their turnovers to just nine, and got an unexpected defensive contribution from Harrison in the clos-
ing seconds of the game when he rose up to block 6-foot-10 Tom Knight’s dunk to preserve the win. In between those wins were two home losses, a 58-56 defeat against Rutgers in which the Johnnies’ offense went cold, and a 67-51 blowout at the hands of Georgetwon that Sir’Dominic Pointer said left the team “embarrassed.” “You lose a couple of games and sometimes you feel like you’re never going to win another game,” Hoyas coach John Thompson III said after the game, referring to the losing streak his team had just snapped. He might as well have been voicing the feelings of the Red Storm, who fell behind 33-10 less than 14 minutes into
TORCH PHOTOS/DIANA COLAPIETRO
Phil Greene dishes the ball to a teammate against Rutgers.
D’Angelo Harrison and Phil Greene handling the ball against Georgetown earlier in the month.
the game and looked listless in front of a Garden crowd heavy with Hoyas fans. The team opened the Big East slate with a 98-86 overtime loss against Villanova, where there were flashes of good basketball from St. John’s, but they didn’t have all cylinders clicking at the same time. The Johnnies shot well against the Wildcats, but big men Maurice Sutton and Mouphtaou Yarou dominated them inside, fouling out Pointer, forward Chris Obekpa and Amir Garrett. Despite that, Harrison dropped a career-high 36 points to keep the Johnnies in it, including two free throws with one second left to tie the game and send it into overtime. But in the extra period, the Wildcats went on a 10-0 run to win going away. On the women’s side, before their blowout loss to Notre Dame, the Red Storm St. John’s had been victorious in their three previous Big East contests. After a close game on the road against Rutgers, edging the Scarlet Knights 4844, the Red Storm proceeded to blow out their next two Big East opponents. The Johnnies proved that the men’s team isn’t the only one to have two home courts, demolishing Seton Hall at The Garden and flattening Pitt at Carnesecca Arena, winning those games by a combined 55 points. Shenneika Smith continues to show that she is a dominant force in women’s college basketball, scoring a total of 50 points and collecting 20 rebounds in those three conference wins.
Rematch with RU looms
Johnnies prepare for second shot at New Jersey foe ANTHONY PARELLI
Assistant Sports Editor The St. John’s men will look to extend their two game win streak today as they travel to the RAC to take on Rutgers in a rematch from December. In the first matchup the Red Storm blew a four point halftime lead and
missed opportunities on late free throws en route to an eventual 58-56 defeat at The Garden. “I definitely think we should have beat them the first time,” said guard Deangelo Harrison. Harrison and freshman standout Jakaar Sampson both had an opportunity to convert on a three pointer late in the game but neither could get their shots to
fall. “It’s good that when you lose like that you get another chance to play them again,” Sampson said. St. John’s seems to be a different, more confident team than when the two teams last met, even though it was only a couple weeks ago. Their recent momentum started with a four point victory against Notre Dame followed by an im-
TORCH PHOTO/DIANA COLAPIETRO
Amir Garrett goes up for a block against Rutgers. in the first meeting between the two teams.
pressive 71-62 road win at Depaul bringing their conference record to 3-3. The biggest difference in recent games is transfer point guard Jamaal Branch, who has played in 6 games as a Johnnie now after sitting out a full year as per NCAA transfer rules. Branch had a career high 18 points while directing a productive fast paced offense against the Blue Demons. “He’s our general out there,” said Sampson. Recent teams have keyed on purely stopping Deangelo Harrison and because of that Branch has had the opportunity for open shots as well as being able to dish it to others with good looks. “We’re very cohesive,” said Harrison of the point guard. “I’ve known Jamaal since I was in 8th grade.” Branch, Harrison and Christian Jones all hail from Texas and are familiar with each other’s playing styles, giving the young team a much needed edge. One Johnnie who is greatly benefiting from the fast paced attack is Sir’Domonic Pointer, who posted his first career double-double on Saturday with 14 points and 11 boards. Pointer, who is a very good athlete and arguably the team’s best defender, was able to convert on many of his points after St. John’s would beat the press of Depaul and he would go strong to the rim. If Pointer can establish himself as another reliable offensive threat the team may be headed in a very good direction. “We’re on a bit of a roll,” said Head Coach Steve Lavin. “We’re young but they seem to be getting the system more as the season progresses so hopefully that continues.”
Conference frenzy continues KIERAN LYNCH
Features Editor When St. John’s students departed for the start of winter break, the school’s athletic programs were facing an uncertain future in the form of conference realignment. On Dec. 15, the seven Catholic and non-football members of the Big East announced that they would be departing the conference in the hopes of creating a new basketball-minded league. The schools involved are St. John’s, DePaul, Georgetown, Marquette, Providence, Seton Hall and Villanova. There is a prevailing feeling amongst the basketball-focused members that by remaining in a football conference, they were hurting their own development. “Our focus clearly has to be on basketball as our major sport,” Rev. Donald J. Harrington C.M., President of the University said on a conference call after the announcement. “It was more and more difficult to maintain that focus when many of the priorities of the conference were on football.”
One of the biggest issues with departure is gaining a TV contract for the conference. It has been reported that the “Catholic Seven” have been in talks with
NBC, CBS and Fox networks for possible coverage. Darren Rovell of ESPN.com reported in early January that the Catholic
schools were in talks with Fox for a deal that could net each of the original seven members around $5 million. Any team that joins the new conference would receive around half that number according to the report. There has yet to be a decision on what other teams would join the still unnamed conference, but likely choices include Butler, Xavier, St. Louis and Dayton. The schools can depart the conference without paying exit fees after a 27-month waiting period, but they may try to work out a deal to leave before then. “If we sit down with the football schools and we agree together its better to do it in 2014 or in 2016, [we’ll do] what’s better for all concerned,” Harrington said, while noting that 2016 wouldn’t be beneficial to either side. “We want to be good colleagues and want to leave that way.” As for the name of the conference, Harrington said that the decision will come after meetings with both sides. “St. John’s would love to keep the Big East name,” he said. “I would want to hear from the football schools as to how important it is for them.”
Holdin’ on in Chi-Town
Red Storm secure victory despite late DePaul surge KIERAN LYNCH
Features Editor The St. John’s men’s basketball team held off another late rally, this time from DePaul, as they defeated the Blue Demons 71-62 at Allstate Arena in Rosemmont, Ill. ST. JOHN’S DePAUL
PHOTO COURTESY OF DEPAUL ATHLETIC COMMUNICATIONS
JaKarr Sampson goes up for a block against DePaul.
The Red Storm (11-7, 3-3) had built a 17-point lead that began to dwindle down the stretch, getting to within three points at the 2:24 mark. While the late collapse was all too familiar for the Johnnies, the act that saved them was not, as they hit six free throws in the closing minutes to earn the win. “We played really well in stretches and then fell apart and played poorly in others,” head coach Steve Lavin said. “Part of that is because DePaul continues to fight and scratch and claw and they’re going to go on runs.” Stretches like that are nothing new for the Red Storm, who feature a roster almost entirely made up of freshmen and sophomores. The team lost a similar 17-point lead against UNC-Asheville in mid-December on their home court to end non-conference play. “Naturally, I would have liked to see the 17 point lead be salted away for a
20, 25 point victory,” Lavin said. “But because DePaul continued to fight, they were opportunistic, and got some steals, got some turnovers, some stops, made some big shots, and next thing you know it’s a 3-point game, a one possession basketball game.” Jamal Branch led the team with a career-high 18 points. This was only his sixth contest after a year on the sidelines due to transfer regulations. Since his arrival on the court, he has shown a propensity to run an offense that has rarely been seen on the Red Storm this season. “Branch is our most natural playmaker and ball handler,” Lavin said. “So we tried to give him some space with that high ball screen, and, similar to an option quarterback in football, let him make his reads.” Sophomore guard D’Angelo Harrison broke out of a scoring drought and contributed 15 points, while sophomore Sir’Dominic Pointer racked up his first career double-double with 14 points and 11 rebounds. “Usually I don’t take those shots, but coach Lavin says that I’m hurting the team by not shooting the ball,” Pointer said. While the Johnnies are known more for their athleticism than for their long-range shooting, the team’s lack of three-pointers was still abnormal. St. John’s became the first Big East team in three seasons to fail to score a single three-point basket. “They didn’t really stop our attack game tonight, so we didn’t need to shoot threes,” Pointer said.
Turnovers plague Johnnies in South Bend KYLE FITZGERALD
Staff Writer The St. John’s women’s basketball team was handed its first loss in Big East conference play following a 74-50 loss at Notre Dame on Sunday afternoon. The Irish (16-1, 5-0) out-classed the NOTRE DAME
Red Storm (9-7, 3-1), who were outrebounded 48 to 22 and committed too many turnovers to give themselves a chance to stay in the game. “We turned the ball over too many times which is something we were trying to avoid,” St. John’s head coach Joe Tartamella said. “They capitalized on the mistakes we made and we paid for it. We played a very good team who are worthy of their ranking.” The Johnnies fell behind early and never recovered, as Notre Dame went on a 24-9 run to start the game. While St. John’s was struggling to find its groove in the first half, Skylar
Diggins and Natalie Achonwa made easy work of the St. John’s defense. The two combined for 22 of the Irish’s 39 points in the first half. The Johnnies entered the interval shooting just 35.7 percent from the field, being outshot 30-10 in the paint. Achonwa continued to add to her stat line early in the second half, converting back-to-back layups following a defensive rebound, forcing Tartamella to call a time out. The Irish continued onto a 12-2 run, stretching their lead to 24 points. Notre Dame held St. John’s stars Shenneika Smith and Nadira McKennith to just 6-for-26 shooting throughout the game and held the Johnnies as a whole to 35 percent from the field. However, despite the loss being the worst of the season for Tartamella’s squad, the head coach believes his team has done a proficient job at dealing with the injuries that the team has been stricken with, including the loss of senior guard Eugeneia McPherson to an ACL tear. “We’ve been shuffling around our roster because of our injuries,” Coach Tartamella admitted. “The lineup’s been different because of injuries. But I feel we’ve been pretty good.” The Johnnies will look to rebound from the loss when they host Syracuse.
TORCH PHOTO/DIANA COLAPIETRO
St. John’s women’s basketball head coach Joe Tartamella
Q&A: Coach Jason Miller
After a breakout 2012 season, high expectations ahead for lacrosse team
T: You’re bringing back 27 players from last year’s team and bringing in 11 new recruits. How much are you relying on guys with prior experience to help out the new players?
Staff Writer After a 2012 season that saw the St. John’s lacrosse team post an 8-7 record and come within a victory against Syracuse from the Big East Tournament title, head coach Jason Miller will be leading his team into the season with winning on his mind. The Torch caught up with the seventh-year head coach over break to talk about the upcoming season.
JM: I’m going to be counting on the guys who have prior experience to help the younger guys. This is the first time in a while that the strength of our team is with the juniors and seniors of this team. The older players set the examples on this team and they’re going to have to take the younger guys under their wings and show them the ropes.
Torch: What are the challenges you and your team face playing in such a tough conference like the Big East?
T: How important are the scrimmages in gauging where your team is going to be when you suit up to play your first game at Holy Cross? JM: When we scrimmaged in the fall against Army and Harvard it was a chance for the coaches and I to evaluate the talent we had on this team. During the spring scrimmages we will focus on preparing ourselves to play Holy Cross. Each scrimmage is important because it allows the coaches and I to evaluate where we are as a team leading into the opener.
Jason Miller: The Big East is a very difficult conference to play in because of all of the top ranked opponents we have to face. We have to play teams like Syracuse, Georgetown and Notre Dame who rank in the Top 20 in the nation. It’s going to be very difficult for the team to get out of our own conference. T: What are you looking for your team to prove this year? JM: First and foremost, we want to prove that our success last year was not a fluke and we are a team that will be very competitive all season. As a team, we know we aren’t going to sneak up on anyone. Teams will be ready to face us and we must be prepared for every team giving us their best shot. T: Your team has been selected to play in the first annual Whitman’s Sampler Independent Classic against Syracuse. How do the players feel about getting a shot to play Syracuse, who beat you in the Big East Championship last season? JM: Syracuse is an exceptional lacrosse team and this game will be a test for our guys. It is a very important game because Syracuse is a conference rival. It’s also a big game for guys on the team who are from Philadelphia and parts of New Jersey who get to go back and be close to home where they played in high school. T: Is there any player flying under the radar that fans should take notice of? JM: Yes, one player that comes to mind is Chris Hughes, a freshman midfielder and local kid who played his high school lacrosse at nearby St. Anthony’s. Another young guy who has been showing us a lot is Ricky Cotton, a freshman midfielder from Connecticut. Also, sophomore Stefan Diachenko, an attacker from Ontario, Canada is going to be a guy we will count on this season. T: This year the NCAA added a new rule to try and speed up the play of the game: the 30-second shot clock. How is the team preparing for an increase in the speed of play this season?
T: What are your expectations for this season?
PHOTO COURTESY OF ATHLETIC COMMUNICATIONS
Big East Preaseason Offensive Player of the Year Kieran McArdle.
JM: First and foremost, we have to be in very good shape and be able to get back on offense and defense very quickly. There is also going to be very limited stoppage time and this is going to result in the team having to increase the tempo we play the game at. We have been preparing in the off-season for this challenge by having the guys run more often.
JM: I think the chances of other teams taking us lightly or overlooking us this season is unlikely. We have to be prepared every game to play our best because every team is sure going to give us their best.
JM: We have very high expectations for our team this season after our strong performance last year. Last season we were so close to getting a bid to the NCAA tournament and so close to becoming Big East Champions. Anything short of playing for the Big East Championship this season would be a disappointment for all involved with this team. Follow us on Twitter for the latest updates on St. John’s athletics: @TorchSports
T: You’ve assembled a very tough schedule this season. Your schedule is compiled of four top-20 teams; why did you choose to make the schedule so tough? JM: A tough schedule like this will prepare the guys for what they are sure to face all season in Big East play, and that is tough teams who will give us everything they got. Having to face superior teams like what our schedule includes will help us recruit top players in the nation. This will allow them to see how dedicated we are here at St. John’s University to being the best. For our team to be the best, we have to beat the best and our schedule is set up that way. T: Last year, St. Johns Lacrosse wasn’t a well-known program. Considering that the team beat strong competition and advanced to the Big East Championship game last season, do you feel like the team will have a target on its back?
PHOTO COURTESY OF ATHLETIC COMMUNICATIONS
Jason Miller at last year’s Big East Tournament Championship Game.
Torch Sports torm Fencers take to the piste CSast 3 underclassmen represent STJ at junior competition
Leavin’ their Mark
ROBERT METRO Staff Writer
Three St. John’s fencers competed at the 2013 January North American Cup this past weekend in Louisville, Kentucky. 2012 Olympian and redshirt senior Darryl Homer wasn’t able to compete because competitors must be under the age of 20, as it is a junior
division event. No Red Storm fencers competed on the first day of action, which featured junior women’s foil. The second day of competition featured the junior men’s epee competition, which freshman Trevor Shepard competed in. He improved from his last outing by placing in 67th (placed 114th in December NAC). Sophomore Isis Washington be-
PHOTO COURTESY OF THE ST. JOHN’S FENCING TEAM
Members of the fencing team at the Brandeis Invitational.
gan her play later on the second day of competition in the junior women’s epee competition. She placed 33rd, a bit further back from the podium than she experience at the December North American Cup where she placed 16th. On the third day of play, freshman Margaret McDonald, who saw her streak of two straight top-16 finishes at Division I NAC events end at the December NAC, finished tied for 21st in junior women’s saber. “This season has been pretty tough for me because I switched coaches, but I think I’m handling it pretty well,” McDonald said. The Johnnies did not have any fencers participate on Monday, the last day of action. The Red Storm will be hosting the St. John’s Invitational at Carnesecca Arena on January 26, their first team event since sweeping the Brandeis Invitational in Waltham, Mass back in December. “I think it will be fun to compete with the team at home, and I’m really looking forward to it,” McDonald said.
Athlete’s worst nightmare Whether you call it earning an income or gettin’ guap [right now], money is the motive in this world. Considering this, imagine if your salary depended solely on your body’s physical performance… No really, take a second and imagine… instead of working 9-5’s in a cubicle, you’d be working 6-6’s in the weight room, on the track, or in the pool. That’s the life of a professional athlete. Whether it’s an athlete of the caliber of LeBron James or a fourth division footballer plying his trade on a muddied pitch in East Yorkshire, it’s not their head, but rather their shoulders, knees and toes that earn them that ever-important paycheck. And the only variable that can take away from an athlete earning their wages (barring any cases of extreme mental instability a la Ricky Williams circa 2004) is an injury. I’m, by no means, a professional athlete, but I’ve been dealt an injury in my day – a torn left anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) to be exact. So, since I’ve done that whole surgery + rehab + wondering if my knee will ever work the same again, I’m going to attempt to illustrate what Eugeneia McPherson has gone through since she tore her ACL in November.
McPherson isn’t one of the professional athletes I alluded to earlier, but she’s a Division I college basketball player who has seen her sport of choice award her opportunities that most will never experience. So, picking up an injury that has the ability to significantly alter her life is probably incredibly daunting. I’m not in any way saying that she won’t be back in seven months, ready to step back onto the hardwood; I’m simply stating that ACL tears pack a mean punch. And when I say punch, I’m talking Juan Manuel Marquez’s right hook to Manny Pacquiao’s jaw kind of punch...Reflect on that for a second As we move forward, try and forget the fact that Adrian ‘I could probably play football without ligaments in each of my knees’ Peterson came back from his ACL tear in a manner that has most doctors questioning whether or not he’s human – because mere mortals like myself need 6-8 months to fully recover. The months after lying on that operating table can be a bit grueling, sometimes more mentally than physically. Although Eugeneia is probably in the training room every morning preparing for hours filled with rehab, stretching and ice, her days also include lingering questions about her athletic future. The only reason I say that is because I had those same questions running through my mind. ‘Will my knee ever be the same? … Will I ever be the same?’ Those were the two queries that ran through my mind the most. You’d have to ask Eugeneia yourself, but I’d bet a pretty penny that she’s asked herself those two questions more than once.
There’s no doubt that by being a Division I athlete, she has immense confidence in her physical ability, whether it’s on the court or recovering from injury; but there’s always a sliver of uncertainty. I mean, it never crosses your mind that you just may tear your ACL, so just because you don’t anticipate that your rehab might go awry doesn’t mean that it won’t, in fact, happen. Despite all of the doubts, at the end of the day, all you can do is move forward. I, along with anyone else who has gone through a serious injury, has learned that. So, as Eugeneia erases from her mind that popping sound in her knee that signaled the end of her season, we’ll be watching as Shenneika Smith and Nadirah McKenith ride the ship for the rest of the year without the last member of Joe Tartamella’s Big 3. Although Eugeneia won’t be walking off into the sunset with the other two members of the Big 3 come spring time, she’ll be hard at work so she has a chance to grace the court of Carnesecca Arena in a year’s time. Whether or not she returns via medical redshirt next season, here’s to the hope that Eugeneia McPherson makes a full recovery. Mitchell Petit-Frere is a junior English and journalism major who firmly believes that Manchester United were cheated out of a victory this past weekend, Cristiano Ronaldo should’ve won the Ballon d’Or, and the Vikings would be in the Super Bowl if Joe Webb didn’t exist. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Track takes first at NYU Invite The St. John’s track team finished first at the NYU Invite this past weekend. The Red Storm finished with a score of 147.5, ahead of Cal St. Northridge who placed second with 122 points and The College of New Jersey who placed third with 63 points. The Johnnies took the top three spots in women’s weight throw with Danette Hinton placing first, Ann Dagrin placing second and Natasha Amazan placing third. The 4x800 relay team took first place. The team was comprised of Michelle Duffy, Veronica Thompson, Stephanie Van Pelt, and Kerri Butler. They finished with a total time of 9:28.63. The 4X400 followed suit by also taking first place with a time of 3:49.08. The team was comprised of Molly Ellis, Rikka Lovely, Claire Mooney, and Trudy-Ann Mclean. The Red Storm also placed well in the 200m with Lovely Rikka placing first with a time of 24.81. The Johnnies also took the top four spots in the woman’s 500m. Claire Mooney finished first overall, Shayna Presley finished in second, Trudy-Ann McLean finished third, and Natasya Rodriguez finished fourth. In the woman’s 1000m Michelle Duffy finished in second place overall. Molly Ellis took first place in the 400 m with a time of 55.55. The team’s next meet will be Jan. 24 at the Metropolitan Indoor Championship.
Blowin’ in the Wind
“I definitely think we should have beat them the first time.” -D’Angelo Harrion on Rutgers
Headin’ this Way Red Storm home games
Men’s Basketball: January 27
SPORTS 23 January 2013 | VOLUME 90, ISSUE 14 | TORCHONLINE.COM
MEN’S BASKETBALL AIMS FOR REVENGE IN SECOND TILT AGAINST RUTGERS TORCH PHOTO/DIANA COLAPIETRO
The men’s and women’s basektball teams experienced ups and downs during winter break.
The women’s basketball team fell to No. 2 Notre Dame in South Bend.