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University of Wisconsin-Madison
Marrack’s heroics in Wisconsin’s ﬁnal set give Badgers a much-needed victory
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Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Martin appoints campus leader as chief of staff By Erin Banco THE DAILY CARDINAL
DANNY MARCHEWKA/THE DAILY CARDINAL
The Brink Lounge, 701 E. Washington Ave., held a Valentine’s Day hip-hop party Feb. 14 at which four patrons were arrested. A physical confrontation between a police ofﬁcer and a woman also occurred.
Complaints ﬁled saying MPD used excessive force at Brink Lounge By Lauren Piscione THE DAILY CARDINAL
Three people have ﬁled formal complaints against Madison police regarding police intervention and alleged excessive force during the arrests of four patrons at the Brink Lounge Feb. 14. After a ﬁght involving several individuals broke out, the Brink Lounge owner contacted police ofﬁcials, who
then reported to the scene. The call drew more than a dozen ofﬁcers. Robert Franklin, a local hip-hop artist and one of the arrested patrons, and Shay Newman, a local disc jockey who attended the event, both conﬁrmed having ﬁled complaints. According to a 77 Square interview, Newman agreed that the police had used excessive force and unnecessary pepper spray during the arrests.
The Feb. 14 incident led to a physical confrontation between one ofﬁcer and Michaela Machicote, 22, resulting in a scratch on the ofﬁcer’s face and Machicote suffering swollen lips. Machicote was taken to a local hospital and treated for a facial injury. Dexter Patterson, a fellow hip-hop brink page 3
STIMULUS UPDATES Optimism at the Capitol After meeting with President Obama Monday, Gov. Jim Doyle said in a conference call he is optimistic about the effect stimulus money will have in Wisconsin. Obama spoke to governors Monday about states’ shares of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, including $25 billion to be spent on states’ Medicaid funds. Doyle said Wisconsin is likely to beneﬁt from stimulus money going to medical research because the state is already a major recipient of such grants. Several Republican governors have said they would refuse stimulus funds, but according to Doyle, criticism from Republican governors focuses on a small part of the package.
Wisconsin stimulus beneﬁts • State will compete for $8 billion available for passenger rail and more than $17 billion for scientiﬁc research • $55.9 million in Wisconsin’s State Energy Program and $151.5 million for making Wisconsin homes more energy-efﬁcient • About $36 billion nationally to extend unemployment compensation • $25 billion nationally for Medicaid • $883.2 million for State Stabilization Fund to provide adequate funding for education Source: feingold.senate.gov/recovery
DANNY MARCHEWKA/THE DAILY CARDINAL
Midwest Rail Initiative Gov. Jim Doyle said Monday he is hopeful that stimulus funds will go toward the Midwest Rail Initiative, which aims to connect major Midwest cities by a high-speed rail system. Doyle is traveling to Spain this week to meet with a major manufacturer of passenger railcars to try to convince them to do business in Wisconsin. According to Doyle, the ﬁrst step of the initiative would be to improve the rail line between Milwaukee and Chicago. He said the broader plan is to connect Chicago, Milwaukee, Madison and the Twin Cities with a passenger rail system.
The Office of the Chancellor will welcome a new staff member March 2. Becci Menghini, currently a senior development ofﬁcer at the Morgridge Institute for Research, will become Chancellor Biddy Martin’s new chief of staff. Menghini, who received her degree from UW-Madison, said her ﬁrst steps in the new position will be dependent on the chancellor’s initiatives. “I am there to make sure Chancellor Martin’s vision is supported and carried through. I will work hand in glove with her,” she said. The new position will require Menghini to become a liaison for internal and external entities. She will also serve in the chancellor’s cabinet. “Becci brings sound judgment, a quick intelligence, knowledge of our campus community and the leadership skills to help advance our goals and agenda,” Martin said in a statement. “She is a strategic thinker and a problem solver.” Menghini, who learned about
her appointment last week, said she applied for the position after becoming a staff member at the Morgridge Institute in August 2008. She applied for the position because she is a “diehard fan” of the university. “I am excited about the leadership that Chancellor Martin brings to the table and the way she has set forth a vision for the university, and I was eager to be a part of that team.” Menghini will ﬁll the position previously held by Casey Nagy, who served under former Chancellor John Wiley. Nagy left the university in November 2008. “I want to thank Casey Nagy for his dedication and his help during my transition. I appreciate his willingness to stay on and provide the ofﬁce with continuity,” Martin said in a statement. During the previous two years, Menghini served as the executive director of the University of North Carolina-Greensboro Alumni Association. Before working at UNC-Greensboro, Menghini also served as an administrator for the Wisconsin Alumni Association.
UW shows support for budget plan’s domestic-partner beneﬁts UW-Madison released a statement Monday revealing its support for domestic-partner beneﬁts in Gov. Jim Doyle’s 2009-’11 biennial budget. Doyle’s budget includes a provision that would give health insurance to domestic partners of state employees. It would also grant domestic partners hospital-visitation rights and the right to inherit property from each other. According to a statement, UWMadison is the only Big Ten school that does not offer domestic-partner benefits. “We are heartened by the governor’s reintroduction of domestic-partner beneﬁts in this budget proposal,” Chancellor Biddy Martin said in the statement. “The ability to offer these beneﬁts will allow us to improve our competitiveness for faculty and staff.” Doyle has introduced domestic partner-beneﬁts in past budget cycles, but those provisions were eventually removed by the state Legislature. According to Mark Supanich, co-
president of the Teaching Assistants’ Association, members of the organization are “thrilled” to have the beneﬁts included in the budget cycle again. “We’re deﬁnitely hopeful and anticipating that it would be [passed]. We know that nothing is ever guaranteed,” he said. “We’re hopeful that the Legislature does the right thing and keeps it in there.” According to UW-Madison ofﬁcials, the university will support the inclusion of domestic-partner beneﬁts by creating a brieﬁng paper for the community and by conducting meetings with legislators. UW System student groups are in the process of planning a “Day of Action” on Library Mall March 25 to lobby individuals in the Legislature. Steve Stern, vice provost for faculty and staff services, said in a statement if members of the campus want to voice their opinions on the proposed budget, they should contact legislators using non-university resources. —Erin Banco and Megan Orear
VOTE ON THE ASM CONSTITUTION8
asm.uwsc. wisc.edu VOTING ENDS 9 P.M. TUESDAY
“…the great state University of Wisconsin should ever encourage that continual and fearless sifting and winnowing by which alone the truth can be found.”
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Tuesday, February 24, 2009
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KIERA WIATRAK taking kiera business
or different people, the end of winter means different things. For some, it’s the end of restricting clothing and the start of showing off (or admiring) those long legs in tiny, ﬂoral-print skirts. Others see it as being that much closer to a three-month hiatus from school. And then there are always the few who wake up from a long slumber and emerge groggily from the fertile soil. But those are mostly bears. For me, the end of winter marks one more icy season during which I haven’t killed myself or my loved ones in a fatal car accident. To say I’m a terrible driver would be a horriﬁc understatement. I’m not reckless by any means, I’m just overly careful. It’s like stage fright for driving—I take it so seriously that I trip up in places that come naturally to most. It’s not unusual for me to momentarily forget if the brakes are the right pedal or the left. I’ve been known to aban-
don the keys in a running car or confuse the seat warmer for a bomb and subsequently jump out of a moving car screaming, “I love my guinea pig!” You can trace my driving abilities back to my driver’s test. Or tests. I took four. Once I ﬁnally acquired my driver’s license, I thought all my driving problems were over. Obviously, no one had told me about the police. At 22 years old, I’ve been pulled over more than 10 times and have had two speeding tickets, two negligent driving tickets and an illegal left turn ticket. And those are just the ones I can remember offhand. The problem is I live in my own little world most of the time—creative geniuses usually do—and that becomes an issue when you’re doing something where it’s important to look in front of you rather than closing your eyes and chanting, “Who defenestrated my purple lawn gnome?” After the ﬁfth or sixth time getting pulled over, I learned there is an art to dealing with your accuser that doesn’t involve calling them anti-Semitic renta-cops. One summer, almost four years ago, when I was visiting an ex-boyfriend in a neighboring town, I got pulled over
Deer Cardinal, Can you tell me what the deal is with the construction in Library Mall? They’ve literally made no progress since November and I’ve probably wasted a full day of my life by now walking around it everyday. —Susan C. MonamulooWHAT Susan? Construction? What construction are you talking about, Susan? They ﬁnished the work on Library Mall in November. You sound like a practical person, Suz, so maybe your artistic sensibilities are a bit pedestrian (Pun!), but that “waste of life” you refer to on Library Mall is possibly the ﬁrst and deﬁnitely the most talked about example of what art buffs are calling “experiential art.”
The piece, installed with the help of Findorff’s hole-digging team and at the direction of modern experiential artist Bruno Splantz, was funded by student segregated fees to the tune of $3.2 million and is the centerpiece of UW’s Campus Beautiﬁcation Initiative. Considered the state’s ﬁrst “walkable” work of conceptual art, “The Fenced-in Pit,” as it’s called by its designer, is supposed to convey a sense of irritation and “what-thefuckness” to its audience. “Students used to just walk through Library Mall, without experiencing any art at all,” explained Splantz. “But now they have to walk around the Pit. But whether they go toward the lake or toward the Pres House, they simply can’t avoid the message of my piece.” Rumor is, Susan, the Board of Regents has
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I had been staying with my grandparents, and Ann Arbor. I tried honesty this time, which although just as absurd, fared much better and ticket-free. “Where are you coming from?” the cop asked me. “West Bloomﬁeld.” “Then why do you have a Wisconsin license?” “I go to school there.” “Is that where your parents are?” “No, they moved to Tennessee.” “So where are you headed?” “Ann Arbor.” “Who were you talking to on your cell phone?” “My boyfriend.” “Where’s he?” “China.” “Have a nice night.” That was the last time I’ve been pulled over, meaning I’ve gone a year and a half without an incident. That could be because I’ve matured or because that summer was the last time I had my own car. Either way, spring is coming, which means one more winter down and only 70 or so more before I can go of natural causes, and not by my own hand at the wheel. If you need a ride, e-mail Kiera at email@example.com.
Life is hard. The Deer Cardinal is here to help.
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for going 30 over on the drive home. “Did you know you were going 85 in a 55 zone?” the cop asked me. I burst into tears. “I just broke up with my boyfriend!” This was cliché, I knew, but true. What I left out was that it was the fourth time we had broken up that week, and the reason I was speeding was so I could make it to my favorite restaurant before the hot bus boy ﬁnished his shift. “I’m sorry to hear that,” he told me as he pulled out that dreaded pink notepad. “You’re young, there are plenty of ﬁsh in the sea,” he added awkwardly. “But... but... I quit my job so I could visit him this week. And then he just broke up with me out of nowhere.” This was a lie. He gave me a “what can you do?” shrug and continued writing. ���I’m homeless!” The cop gave me a $250 ticket anyway, plus four points on my license, then escorted me to the nearest exit so I could calm down before I ﬁnished my drive to my home, which, as far as he was concerned, I didn’t have. Two summers later, I was pulled over for cutting someone off while driving between West Bloomﬁeld, Mich., where
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approved similar artworks to be installed in the main arteries of 15 additional pedestrian thoroughfares. Deer Cardinal, Is it still streaking if nobody sees me? —Nate N. Nate, Ah, the classic if a man streaks through a forest and there is no one there to see it question. The answer is no. Freaking people out who are scandalized by the sight of your naked body sprinting across campus is an integral part of the streak. If no one sees you might as well be watching cartoons naked on the couch. The UW used to be wise to this fact
and actually blocked off state street one day a year so people could get it out of their system. This not only ensured that someone witnessed each and every streaker, but also that only those who wanted to had to view the beauty of the human nude. Got a question for the Deer Cardinal? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Union committee reviews internal designs By Kelsey Gunderson THE DAILY CARDINAL
Architects for the new south campus union revealed approved designs for a portion of the second-level interior to the design committee at a meeting Monday. According to Dan Cornelius, vice project manager for facilities planning, the interiors have been part of a process the committee has been working on since the beginning of the semester. Maria Cieslik, an interior designer from Workshop Architects, presented virtual images of the design, which was ﬁnalized last week. According to Jan Van Den Kieboom, programming design principal of Workshop Architects, the designers sent a visual preference survey to UW-Madison students to generate ideas for the design. “Our hope is that we can get as much input as possible from students and the rest of the campus community,” he said. Cieslik discussed the proposed color schemes and décor for the various spaces within the building based
on the results of the survey. She said the lounges, which will house the climbing wall, billiards tables and bowling alley, will have a warm color scheme, natural light and vintage Badger décor. The design for Badger Hall, a multipurpose conference room, will have a neutral light and airy feeling with elegant wood paneling with “grand entrance doors,” according to Cieslik. “We had to consider a wide variety of events for this room,” she said. “There are a lot of uses for this space, so we wanted a neutral palate.” According to Cieslik, the theater will be sleek, sophisticated and elegant with comfortable “Badger red” seats. “We thought it was a classic look, and the theater is good place to introduce the Badger red,” she said. Cieslik and Van Den Kieboom discussed plans for the information commons as well as the student organization area. Cieslik said the designers tried to stray from “plastic-looking” décor throughout the building by using donated sustainable salvage material as decoration.
LORENZO ZEMELLA/THE DAILY CARDINAL
Members of the new south campus union design committee met Monday to hear architects’ plans for second-level interior designs. Following the presentation, the architects provided the design committee members with physical samples of ﬂoor, ceiling and wall materials.
WID directors to narrow ﬁnalist search in upcoming months By Estephany Escobar THE DAILY CARDINAL
Directors of the Wisconsin Institute for Discovery announced Friday 12 ﬁnalists to possibly take part in thematic research after the building’s opening in 2010. Twenty-six UW-Madison faculty members submitted pre-proposals to WID last fall, and 12 of them were selected as ﬁnalists. Five of the 12 ﬁnalists will become a part of the institute after directors analyze ﬁnal proposals. John Wiley, interim WID director, said directors required the proposals to outline a research theme involving technology areas like information technology, biotechnology and nanotechnology. He said the institute wants at least one faculty leader from campus to lead each of the ﬁve research areas. Wiley said directors of WID did not have a preference regarding fea-
tured departments and what mattered the most was choosing the strongest ideas for the institute. Jean-Michel Ane, a UW-Madison agronomy professor and ﬁnalist, said the WID is a good idea because it fosters interdisciplinary research. “Hopefully we will be able to bring together from these different disciplines, people who usually don’t meet at the same place,” he said. WID will focus on the study of interdisciplinary research “that can be translated to practice beyond academia” and hopes to help the economic future of the state. David Schwartz, a UW-Madison law professor and ﬁnalist, said he thinks the unique infrastructure and the university’s leadership in human biology will create more jobs in the biotechnology industry. Other ﬁnalists derive from research
areas like chemistry, life sciences communication, chemical and biological engineering, mechanical engineering and psychology. The institution will operate under the UW- Madison graduate school and will pair with the private Morgridge Institute for Research. The two institutes will share the $150 million building in the 1300 block of University Avenue. According to Wiley, Gov. Jim Doyle included WID in the state budget, which will provide 15 new faculty positions, three for each research theme. The funding for the institute includes $8 million from Wisconsin’s budget, which will serve to “jump-start the research facility,” according to the WID website. For more information on the WID and ﬁnalists, visit www.wid.wisc.edu.
MPD ofﬁcer recognized for saving man after heroin overdose A 23-year-old man who overdosed on heroin was rescued after a Madison police ofﬁcer performed CPR on him early Saturday morning, earning the ofﬁcer a nomination for the Madison Police Department Life Saving Award. According to a police report, around 1 a.m. Saturday morning, a woman called the 911 emergency center after her boyfriend stopped breath-
ing at an apartment on the 1000 block of Emerald Street. The ofﬁcer reported ﬁnding the victim without a pulse and conﬁrmed he was not breathing. The ofﬁcer immediately started chest compressions on the victim. After a minute of CPR, the victim let out a loud gasping sound and began to regain his breath. Madison Fire Department para-
medics arrived to the scene and transported the victim to a local hospital, where he made a full recovery. The victim later told the ofﬁcer who saved his life that he had shot up heroin in the bathroom of his residence before he stopped breathing. The responding ofﬁcer has been nominated by the MPD for the Life Saving Award.
LORENZO ZEMELLA/THE DAILY CARDINAL
Couples dance at an intermediate salsa lesson at the Great Hall in Memorial Union Monday night.
Van Den Kieboom said architects and designers are still working on the design for the main level of the building.
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
brink from page 1 artist, said police pepper-sprayed, assaulted and handcuffed Franklin, who he said had been pleading with ofﬁcers to stop “roughing up” a woman who was being arrested. Newman described the difﬁculty he had with ﬁling a complaint. He ﬁnally went downtown to ﬁle the complaint after getting passed around by phone. “I don’t think the police are taking it seriously,” Newman said. According to 77 Square, an internal investigation, which has been prompted by these complaints, will not begin until all four of the arrested individuals have gone through the court system. “It was a chaotic situation, and [police ofﬁcials] were trying to take a combative person into custody,” MPD Lt. Kristin Roman said in an interview with 77 Square. Police have ofﬁcially reported arresting four people because they refused to leave the club after management had closed. Police declined to comment further until after the four arrested patrons have attended their court hearings.
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Crucial air base leads to deal with the devil TOM HART opinion columnist
eneral David Petraeus traveled to Uzbekistan last week to speak with one of the world’s most ruthless dictators. The popular speculation is that Petraeus, commander of United States forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, made the visit to the capital city of Tashkent as an attempt to court Uzbek President Islam Karimov. The State Department has denied the visit involved negotiations for a transport agreement between the two countries, whose relationship has cooled since the Andijan massacre of 2005. Why would the United States be courting a dictator responsible for the deaths of thousands of his own civilians? Three words: Manas Air Base. Several days after President Obama announced the departure of 17,000 more troops to Afghanistan, the largest supply air base in the region was threatened with the prospect of closure. The Manas Air Base in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan has been one of the most vital lifelines for supplies in Afghanistan. Over 15,000 troops pass through the gates of Manas every month on their way in and out of Afghanistan. The base also serves as an important source of midair refueling aircraft. More than 11,000 individual aircrafts were refueled by Manas tankers in 2008 alone.
Supporting Karimov will only legitimize his reign of terror and lead to countless more civilian deaths.
The United States has been forking over 17 million dollars in rental fees and 150 million in additional aid packages for every year the country has occupied the base. Last week, however, the Kyrgyz parliament passed a measure ordering the United States to vacate the premises or pay hundreds of millions of dollars more. Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev signed the measure into law, giving the United States 180 days to pack up and leave. Bakiyev had promoted the plan vigorously in national newspapers ever since Russia agreed to give over two billion dollars in aid to the impoverished Central Asian country. Although Russia denies any involvement in Kyrgyzstan’s decision to serve the eviction notice, it is wellknown Russia does not feel comfortable with a U.S. air base in the region. Russia-United States controversies aside, it is important that the U.S. maintains their hold in Bishkek for several reasons. The
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supply need is crucial. Trade routes through the Khyber Pass between Pakistan and Afghanistan have come under increased attacks by Taliban insurgents in recent months. If Manas falls through, the U.S. will be forced to reopen negotiations with Uzbekistan, and this is where the problem lies. Uzbekistan possesses extensive rail networks connecting it with Afghanistan. If the United States loses Manas Air Base, it will be forced to use these rail lines instead. The United States originally maintained an air base in southern Uzbekistan until mid 2005. The KarshiKhanabad facility was an important support base for the original invasion in 2001, but Uzbekistan ended their relationship with the US after the Andijan Massacre in 2005.
If Manas falls through, the U.S. will be forced to reopen negotiations with Uzbekistan.
Considered the worst civilian massacre since the Tiananmen Square incident in 1989, official reports have estimated that as many as 750 Uzbek civilians were mowed down by police forces while protesting the arrest of 23 businessmen in the northern city of Andijan. The protesters had broken the defendants out of jail the night before and occupied the city’s main government building, demanding that Karimov explain their arrest, widely believed to be a result of their opposition to Karimov’s government. Rapid response forces were quickly assembled and snipers, automatic rifles and armored vehicles mowed down the crowd after numbers surpassed 10,000 in the square. International human rights groups have continually criticized Karimov for his suppression of journalists, Muslims and opposition members. The British ambassador to Uzbekistan, Craig Murray, was recently relieved of his post when he spoke out against the slaying of two opposition members who were arrested and boiled to death. Boilings have become commonplace in the former Soviet Republic, where over 10,000 political prisoners are held in Soviet-era gulags. Some Karimov supporters argue that his deposition would lead Uzbekistan down the path to social turmoil, but his harsh tactics are unacceptable. If the United States truly wants to build a new image as a leader in global human rights, it should find another means of supply or just plain pay Kyrgyzstan what it wants. Supporting Karimov will only legitimize his reign of terror and lead to countless more civilian deaths. Tom Hart is a senior majoring in history. Please send responses to firstname.lastname@example.org
Doyle’s tax plan steers away more state revenue By Mike Clutterbuck THE DAILY CARDINAL
Recently, Gov. Jim Doyle made his plans public to help the ailing Wisconsin economy. His policies include raising the capital gains tax, a tax on Internet purchases (E-cards, greetings, digital downloads, etc.) and getting rid of film tax credits, among many others. More importantly, the budget proposals are just another example of the incredibly backward thinking exhibited by our government. First, with all the complaints about piracy among the government as well as organizations like the RIAA (music industry) and the MPAA (movie industry), the absolute last thing that would help ﬁx piracy is increasing the price of online goods. Piracy is a form of market correction and shows dissatisfaction toward the prices of music, movies, games, etc. People are already unwilling to shop in stores because of higher prices and have moved to places like iTunes. What is to be expected once they are dissatisﬁed with prices in that world? An increase in prices of these online goods will encourage more people to pirate, driving revenue out of both online stores and brick and mortar establishments. The governor’s plan is even more backward when one considers the proposed raise in capital gains tax.
These actions/proposals represent backward thinking on the part of the state government.
The basic premise behind raising the capital gains tax is that a raise will lead to more tax revenue. However, Gov. Doyle seems to not have done his research and forgotten that history has repeat-
edly shown that lowering the capital gains tax increases tax revenue. Now include the increased tax on online purchases as well as the inevitable, but slightly marginal, increase in piracy, and that’s less tax revenue from companies, virtual or not.
The nation cannot afford the government to enact polices that create disincentives to start a business.
It would also be prudent to keep in mind that a higher capital gains tax just is a disincentive to invest and start a business, the opposite of what this country needs. We need more businesses created and more jobs given out, not less. The nation cannot afford the government to enact polices that create disincentives to start a business. The Federal Reserve Board, the face of the American economy, lowered interest rates for the very purpose of spurring investment and jumpstarting loans. This proposed Wisconsin budget plan is a complete contradiction of federal policy. As for the aforementioned online tax, it will add a whopping $11 million over two years to government revenue. That’s $11 million out of a $5 billion deficit. To put things into perspective, that is less than 1 percent of our deficit. However, it would be wrong to ignore the fact that money is money and every little bit helps, hence the argument for the very small online tax. An estimated 65,000 state workers are going to lose their jobs this year, according to an internal memo; we need to cut back somewhere. Yet, 132 state legislators voted themselves a 5.3 percent salary
increase in January. Is this really the right time for that? Let’s take a look at the film tax credit, a plan initially established to jumpstart a lagging film industry in Wisconsin. According to the MPAA, $7.4 million was injected into Wisconsin via the production of the upcoming Johnny Depp movie, “Public Enemies.” It does not require a great deal of mathematical skill to deduce that $7.4 million is more than the $5 million that an online tax would create in one year. With the potential loss of this investment, the state could lose a significant amount of money if directors are unwilling to shoot in Wisconsin. This would most likely kill off the fledgling Wisconsin film industry and cause the state to lose revenue in the process.
An increase in the price of online goods will encourage more people to pirate, driving revenue out of stores.
These actions/proposals represent backward thinking on the part of the state government, as well as a complete misunderstanding of the problems inactivity in the ailing economy will cause. Loans are not being taken out because they are tougher to get and jobs are being lost. What better way to help our own state economy than forcing out business, driving out potential employment and unintentionally influencing people to start considering illegal practices in obtaining digital goods? But I suppose this is the nature of government, right? Mike Clutterbuck is a sophomore majoring in economics. We welcome your feedback. Please send responses to email@example.com.
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
From douche-core to popera, when do the sub-genres end? DALE MUNDT croco-dale rock
PHOTO COURTESY VICE RECORDS
Black Lips bring a psych-punk mix to their newest album, 200 Million Thousand. Their unique genrebending style is eerily reminiscent to the psychedelic tunes performed at Woodstock 30 years ago.
Black Lips back on top By Kyle Sparks THE DAILY CARDINAL
Nobody embraces entropy like Black Lips. Atlanta’s most notorious rag-tag group of psych-punk rockers rifle through venues (and, more recently, countries) with rabid exuberance and an utter lack of regard for their own wellbeing, leaving an indelible mark on anyone fortunate enough to be on the receiving end of their physical tirades. Their 2007 opus and first studio LP released on Vice, Good Bad Not Evil, provided a more polished depiction of their signature hooks, each too voracious to approach three minutes. But on 200 Million Thousand, Black Lips sound more comfortable with themselves, allowing cohesiveness to displace their trust in tempo, and embellishing hooks beyond what an earlier Black Lips record might have permitted. The album’s first single, “Starting Over,” is the best gateway to the Lips’ new sound. Production-wise, it’s a reversion to their earlier dirtier, lo-fi quality, but at a more tepid pace. The guitar introduces itself in a manner not unfamiliar to fans; Where on Good Bad Not Evil’s “Lean” the rest of the band rushed into a flurry of drums and throaty yelps,
“Starting Over” is content in its own relaxed groove. Relaxation is also key to “Let It Gow.” The apex of Black Lips’ psychedelic influence, it would have fit in well 30 years ago on stage at Woodstock.
200 Million Thousand Black Lips “Drugs” is the clear standout track. The twangy guitars and incessant hook form a wrecking ball reminiscent of a surfing Exploding Hearts as much as a younger Black Lips. Fittingly, then, “Drugs” induces the most excitement and optimism about the future. Their entire tenure as underground rock’s darlings has revolved around their inhuman ability to exist within chaos, but “Drugs” shows a new ability to envelop, and possibly even control it. Although “Drugs” is the centerpiece of a new approach to bedlam, “Take My Heart” and
“Short Fuse” are the offshoots that give the album most of its depth. If anything, they’re where Black Lips’ out-of-control nature meets more intricate musical talent, to great effect. However, at times 200 Million Thousand is a little too spacey. The latter half of the record drags on with redundant chord progressions, but its bookends, “Again & Again” and “Elijah,” manage to keep the record afloat. The stagnant air in the songs shows the growing pains of a band once focused on only speed and disorder refining its sound to highlight talent instead of personas. Black Lips might never record another Good Bad Not Evil, but their back catalog proves they don’t need to. Good Bad Not Evil could have been the introduction the mass of followers needed to appreciate what the Lips had been doing for the seven years prior under the veil of obscurity. But 200 Million Thousand isn’t a bridge back to their past. Instead, their instrumentation is tighter and their songs are more developed, paving the way for a more refined musical chaos. Like most things Black Lips tend to be, 200 Million Thousand is not void of missteps or imperfections, but it is a lot of fun.
New Albums of the Week
David Reed, in a February 11 review of Trouble Andrew’s selftitled debut album, tags the album with the genre label “douche-core.” This may be the greatest genre delineation I have ever read. The problem with genres is that few artists, albums or songs actually ﬁt perfectly in any genre. More often, music, especially great music, exists in the spaces between the conventional genre boundaries. The lines between the conventional genres have blurred to the point that often, the question isn’t “What genre is it?” but rather “Can you really place this in a genre?” The response has normally been to simply add descriptors. Some of these descriptors are bland and relatively meaningless, like “hardcore” or “alternative.” I’m sure there was a time when the word “alternative” meant something in music, but when Billboard’s “Alternative” Chart includes everything from Katy Perry to Metallica, I would question its signiﬁcance. But other times, a genre name is quite speciﬁc and limited, like “Celtic punk” or “folktronica.” On the other hand, it is impossible to deny the similarities and relationships between music of the same broader style. Despite the fact that Fugazi’s 13 Songs and Rancid’s And Out Came The Wolves sound very different at ﬁrst listen, there can be no doubt these albums are both great representations of “punk.” So, what really is the purpose of genre labels? Why do bands proudly display their “Electronica / Folk / Hip-Hop” genre label on their MySpace? Why is everyone that hypes a CD looking for a way to include the sufﬁx “-core” onto whatever genre they claim? Why the hell would you describe yourself with some ridiculous phrase like “hipster-core funk”? And how did we get to this point? Genres and styles are a way to set expectations prior to actually experiencing the work of art. When you hear “avant-garde” or “impressionistic” as a descriptor for an art show,
you automatically are given a set of expectations about the art. Genres are shorthand explanations of the artistic style. When you hear “gangsta rap” or “nu metal,” you instantly expect certain things. “Gangsta rap” leads you to expect swearing, racial slurs, misogyny, drug references and violent imagery, but in a good way. “Nu metal” instantly leads you to cover your ears, change the station, or try to destroy the source of the contamination. If you are a fan of “metal,” you instantly expect not to enjoy an “easy listening” or “popera” song. Likewise, even if you don’t know what “mathmetal” is exactly, if you know you don’t like “metal,” you have a pretty decent guess about what you would think of “mathmetal.”
The problem with genres is that few artists, albums or songs actually ﬁt perfectly in any genre.
The problem occurs when the expectations are wrong. If you listened to the Beatles’ last album, “Let It Be” and expected to hear the same music as “Please Please Me,” their ﬁrst studio album, you would be severely disappointed. But if the entire music culture lumped those two radically different albums into the same genre, the problem grows. This leads to splitting the main genre into smaller genres. Eventually, the smaller genres contain music that is too divergent to be painted with the same brush, and the smaller genre splits into smaller, more speciﬁc genres. The cycle continues, until eventually, the idea of the genre has been made ridiculous and entirely unhelpful. That brings us back to “douchecore.” In this genre characterization, David has found a way to provide a set of clear expectations for the listener, despite the mediocre “hybridization of punk rock, electronic, and hip-hop.” Plus, he uses the sufﬁx “-core,” and this is always appropriate. Send Dale your band’s new folkternative/adult contempermetal album at firstname.lastname@example.org
Even though The Daily Cardinal reviews tons of albums each week, there are still many new releases which slip through the cracks. Here are some of the best new albums coming out this week, including our editor’s pick of the week. New Releases Lamb of God - Wrath Black Lips - 200 Million Thousand Gentleman Reg - Jet Black JJ Cale - Roll On K’Naan - Troubador Editor’s Pick: Tom Rush - What I know Tom Rush has been releasing studio albums for 47 years, and only recently has he been able to consider himself an overnight success. For a folk musician who had mainstream connections in the ’60s with the likes of Joni Mitchell, James Taylor and Bob Dylan, it is ironic that this only came after a YouTube video of “The Remember Song.” Now he is releasing his 22nd album on the wave of millions of viral video watchers finally hearing his name, and we will get to see the father of the “singer/ songwriter” tag comment on a society that has come full circle. If the title of the album, What I Know, is any indication, he is set to use his instrument to convey his experiences and opinions to a new generation looking to change the world for the better, a similar situation to when he was performing in his prime.
PHOTO COURTESY VIRGIN RECORDS
Although subdivisions of genres are becoming excessive, Trouble Andrew deﬁnitely personiﬁes the small sub-genre “douche-core.”
How many unicorns have you seen? A group of unicorns is called a “blessing.” dailycardinal.com/comics
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Rocks for Jocks
By Eric Wigdahl email@example.com
© Puzzles by Pappocom
Angel Hair Pasta
By Todd Stevens firstname.lastname@example.org
Sid and Phil
By Alex Lewein email@example.com
Solution, tips and computer program available at www.sudoku.com.
Fill in the grid so that every row, every column and every 3x3 box contains the digits 1 through 9.
Today’s Crossword Puzzle
The Graph Giraffe
By Yosef Lerner firstname.lastname@example.org
By Caitlin Kirihara email@example.com
Answer key available at www.dailycardinal.com CAN DO
ACROSS 1 Decorative pottery 6 Fido’s peer 10 Does something 14 Willow variety 15 Take a bride 16 Lee of baking fame 17 Abode of a Muppet 19 Impediment 20 Grafton of mystery 21 Overcharge 22 Produce hippie attire 24 Attempt 25 Pastor’s home 26 Kindergarten supplies 29 Nonverbal congratulations 32 Easily understandable 33 Beer-drinker’s middle name? 34 Stunned disbelief 35 Jewish calendar month 36 Baby Jane portrayer 37 Alpine elevator 38 Seminary subject 39 Light wood 40 Chunnel vision? 41 In a contemporary way 43 Dress down 44 How great minds think 45 Swimmer’s
assignment 46 With less tread 48 Transfusion liquids 49 Words on many park signs 52 Hautboy 53 Weirdest 56 What drunks do 57 Tree in a Christmas carol 58 Producer Ponti 59 Dame on the piano 60 Bald eagle’s cousin 61 Provide ﬁnancial backing DOWN 1 Some boxers 2 Womb-mate of Jacob 3 Bygone coins 4 Leap day’s mo. 5 Vandalized 6 Verb for Richard Simmons 7 Forty-niner’s tool 8 Anatomical eggs 9 Arm of the sea? 10 Put a value on 11 Liberace trademark 12 Something to carry a round 13 Stufﬁng herb 18 Baby talk words 23 Pac-Man ghost 24 Tend to a wok 25 Valletta is its capital
26 The liquid part of blood 27 Half of a TV transmission 28 Like Watergate 29 ___ Wetsy (old doll) 30 Look forward to 31 In and of itself 33 She has a ball? 36 Broke 37 Weight of an empty moving van 39 White-crusted cheese 40 Act of contrition 42 Tribal spokesmen 43 Amish community project 45 Beneﬁt from a teacher 46 Hogwash 47 Having the know-how 48 Disﬁgure 49 Steve Urkel, for one 50 Norge capital 51 Put safely away 54 Wedding announcement word 55 Writer Fleming
By Lindsey Heinz and Emily Villwock firstname.lastname@example.org
UW picks up three more wins By Joe Skurzewski THE DAILY CARDINAL
The Wisconsin softball team (58-0) won three of ﬁve games in the New Mexico Invitational tournament in Albuquerque this weekend. In an exciting tournament, the Badgers recorded three straight victories bookended by losses—with all ﬁve games decided by one run. Wisconsin carried a two-game winning streak into Albuquerque after winning their last two games of the Bama Bash tournament in Tuscaloosa, Ala. The winning streak ended when the Badgers lost the ﬁrst game of the New Mexico Invitational to Texas Tech. But Big Red rebounded, reeling off three straight wins before losing the ﬁnal game of the tournament to Drake. The threegame winning streak was the ﬁrst of its kind for the Badgers since Feb. 1617, 2008, when Wisconsin strung together three wins in a tournament in Las Vegas. The Badgers began tournament play Friday against the Red Raiders of Texas Tech (3-10-0). After ﬁve innings of play, Texas Tech led 3-1. The Badgers’ offense came up big in the sixth inning, plating three runs and taking the lead 4-3. But Tech managed to tie the game in the seventh inning, and then won the game in extra innings by capitalizing off a tie-breaker rule, which automatically puts a runner at second base to start off the inning.
Tech scored the run easily, and Wisconsin could not respond in the bottom half of the inning. The Red Raiders prevailed, 5-4. With another game later that afternoon, Wisconsin could not fret over the one-run loss. The Badgers looked to rebound against the New Mexico Lobos (5-7-0). The Badgers exploded offensively against the Lobos’ pitchers, scoring four runs off of 14 hits. Sophomores Livi Abney and Jennifer Krueger led the charge, producing three hits apiece. Despite a late rally by New Mexico, Wisconsin held on to win, 4-3. Wisconsin’s Saturday schedule included a game against the Drake Bulldogs (7-3-0) and a rematch with Texas Tech. Drake entered the game on a three-game winning streak, including victories against the Red Raiders and Lobos. The Badgers and Bulldogs engaged in a thrilling game in which Drake led until the ﬁnal play of the game. Going into the bottom of the seventh inning, the Bulldogs led 3-1. But one by one, the Badgers broke down Drake’s pitching and manufactured three runs, with senior Nichole Whaley getting the game-winning hit. Wisconsin won, 4-3. Wisconsin looked to carry its offensive momentum into its night game with the Red Raiders. However, the contest became a pitching duel of sorts, with junior Letty Olivarez giv-
ing an excellent performance both at the plate and in the circle. Olivarez homered in the third inning to drive in Wisconsin’s only run, and then went to work pitching, allowing only four Red Raider hits. Big Red won a nail-biter, 2-1. The Badgers looked to continue their streak Sunday as they closed out tournament play in a rematch with Drake. Despite a solo home run by senior Alexis Garcia, the Badgers could not hold off the Bulldogs, and Drake prevailed, 2-1. Wisconsin’s pitching staff produced solid performances during the New Mexico Invitational, but the real storyline of the tournament for the Badgers was the emergence of their offense. Seniors Raphael Valyncia and Theresa Boruta—along with Abney, Garcia, Whaley and Krueger—provided clutch hits during the tournament, allowing Olivarez and senior Leah Vanevenhoven to focus on pitching. The Badgers look to bring a more all-around attack into their next tournament in California. Wisconsin will now prepare for the Mayfair Tournament in Long Beach, Calif., next weekend, Feb. 27 to March 1. Wisconsin will once again face a slate of universities from the West Coast, including rematches with Long Beach State and Fresno State. —uwbadgers.com contributed to this report.
JENNY PEEK/CARDINAL FILE PHOTO
Wisconsin senior outﬁelder Raphael Valyncia earned three hits and scored one run over the weekend for the Badgers as they picked up wins in three of their ﬁve games in the New Mexico Invitational.
tennis from page 8 feated. Although Baumann struggled to take control of the ﬁrst set against Steve Forman before the tiebreak, he came back in the second to win it straight out 7-6(4), 7-5. “[Forman] has a really big serve and a really big forehand so you don’t get a lot of opportunities to get on that guy and to beat him,” Baumann said. “The opportunities you have, you really have to take them.” Conversely, Badgers junior Michael Muskievicz and junior Michael Dierberger fell in straight sets to their Wake Forest opponents, as did No. 60 Michalicka at the No. 1 position who nearly faced match point in the second
set but forced a decisive third. After dropping his second set 16, it was Marrack who nudged the Badgers to the win, picking up two telling breaks in the third set. With this weekend’s win, the No. 43 Badger men improve to a record of 7-2 for the season as they approach Big Ten play. “I told the guys it’s going to be a year like that, and I think we’re far from peaking where our level is at right now,” Van Emburgh said. “This is a team effort, this is a great win by these guys. That’s a great team, that’s a top50 team all day long.” UW will host No. 34 North Carolina State (6-5) Feb. 28 once again at Nielsen Tennis Stadium.
mascots from page 8 I cannot figure out why the Musketeers choose to have this guy roaming around their sports arenas as opposed to a swashbuckling swordsman. He looks like an oversized Cookie Monster who got a bucket of hydrochloric acid dumped on his head. What it is and what relevance it has to Musketeers or the greater Cincinnati community, I would sure love to know. Unfortunately for the folks at UC-Santa Cruz, there is no mistaking what exactly their mascot is: a banana slug. I really want to know what was going through
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
ISABEL ALVAREZ/CARDINAL FILE PHOTO
The Wisconsin men’s wrestling team dropped their last Big Ten dual meet to Ohio State at the UW Field House over the weekend.
Badgers fall short to Buckeyes By Daniel Lyman THE DAILY CARDINAL
This past Sunday, the No. 16 Wisconsin wrestling team competed in their ﬁnal Big Ten dual meet of the season, hosting Ohio State in front of 1,141 fans at the UW Field House. At the end of the day, the Badgers fell short to the sixthranked Buckeyes, 24-18. The ﬁrst match of the afternoon went to the Buckeyes, as Ohio State’s No. 17-ranked Jason Johnstone defeated UW freshman Ben Jordan with a 6-2 decision at 157 pounds. At 165 pounds, another UW freshman, eighth-ranked Andrew Howe, continued his dominance in Big Ten matches as he scored an impressive 3-2 decision over the Buckeye’s Colt Sponseller. The Ohio State sophomore had been ranked No. 2 at 165 pounds. With the victory, Howe improved his record to 22-4 overall and a perfect 8-0 against Big Ten competition. All four of Howe’s losses came against opponents ranked in the top ﬁve. That all changed on Sunday when the freshman scored the most impressive victory of his collegiate career. The Buckeyes regained the momentum in the following two matches. At 174 pounds, Ohio State’s Dave Rella scored a 5-3 decision over UW’s Travis Rutt. At 184 pounds, the Buckeye’s No. 2-ranked Mike Pucilo defeated Wisconsin sophomore Eric Bugenhagen with a 14-4 major decision. Down 10-3 overall, UW senior Dallas Herbst came through for the team at 197 pounds, pinning Ohio State’s Jason Cook in 2:02. The team co-captain scored his 20th win of the the minds of the folks on the athletic board when they made that decision. They seriously could not come up with anything more fierce and intimidating than a slug that hangs out on old fruit? The only picture I could find of this thing was slightly badass. He had his arms folded in a tenpoint stance with his little Shrek ears flopping on the top of his half-baked face. Honorable mentions should go to a couple of big league schools with mascots that look like little league characaturesgone-costume. Stanford is a pretty solid Pac-10 school with some respectable sports programs. But
season against two losses. The senior also ﬁnished the Big Ten season with a perfect 8-0 record. At 285 pounds, Wisconsin’s 18ranked Kyle Massey scored another win for the Badgers, defeating Ohio State’s Corey Morrison with an 81 decision. The win for the senior improved his record to 22-7 overall, 6-2 in Big Ten competition. With the victories for Herbst and Massey, the Badgers took the lead, 12-10. At 125 pounds, OSU’s Nikko Triggas pinned UW’s Drew Hammen, giving the lead back to the Buckeyes. At 133 pounds, Ohio State’s No. 3ranked Reece Humphrey scored a major decision over UW freshman Tom Kelliher, 13-3. The Buckeyes scored their third consecutive win at 141 pounds, as J Jaggers scored a major decision over Wisconsin junior Erik Senescu, 133. The victory for Jaggers put the Buckeyes up 24-12, an insurmountable lead with only one match to go. Wisconsin took the ﬁnal match of the day in the 149 pound weight class, as ﬁfth-ranked Kyle Ruschell pinned OSU’s Owen Schaefer in 4:29. The pin earned the Badgers six points, bringing the ﬁnal tally to 24-18 in favor of the Buckeyes. With the win, the Buckeyes improved to 17-2-0, 7-1-0 in the Big Ten. The Badgers ﬁnished the regular season at 9-8-0, 3-5-0 in the Big Ten. Next up for UW is the Big Ten Championships, March 7 and 8 at University Park, Penn. Its season concludes with the NCAA Championships at St. Louis, from March 19-21. —uwbadgers.com contributed to this report. the Cardinal mascot is anything but pretty, solid or respectable. In fact, it’s a tree. A tree with big, creepy Rupaul lips. Google “Stanford tree.” You’ll see what I mean. And of course, there’s Goldy. Covering a volleyball game in the Minnesota Field House, I could not agree more with the student reporter sitting next to me at the press table who pointed to their mascot and said, “Who’s going to be scared of an oversized rodent with a grin like that?” Good question. Anyone? What’s your favorite college mascot? Let Andy know by e-mailing him at email@example.com.
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Badgers bring down Wake Forest By Emma Condon THE DAILY CARDINAL
The Wisconsin men’s tennis team edged out the No. 21 Wake Forest Demon Deacons for a 4-3 victory in the last minutes of singles play at Sunday afternoon’s meet at Nielsen Tennis Stadium. After suffering a close loss to Louisville two weeks ago, Wisconsin head coach Greg Van Emburgh
could not have asked for a better result or a more dramatic way to earn the win. With the meet leveled at 3-3, sophomore Peter Marrack was the only Badger left on the courts, battling out a decisive third set at the No. 6 singles position. With a break to level at 5-5 and a solid hold to move to 6-5, Marrack forced Wake Forest junior Jason Morgenstern to stay in the match,
as coaches and players assembled around the last court and unsuspecting Badger hero. “I thought we had already lost because they were yelling at those guys up there and I was like ‘Why is everyone so excited?’ And then I was one point away,” Marrack said. “So I didn’t really get nervous until the last point.” But one point was all it took for
PHOTO COURTESY UWBADGERS.COM
Wisconsin sophomore Peter Marrack picked up the deciding point Sunday afternoon after defeating Wake Forest junior Jason Morgenstern in the third set at No. 6 singles.
Marrack to pick up another break, winning the match 6-3, 1-6, 7-5 and the meet 4-3. In doubles play, UW swept the matches to secure the point early on. No. 18 pair junior Moritz Baumann and sophomore Marek Michalicka appeared as a nationally ranked duo for the ﬁrst time this season, upsetting the national No. 1 senior Cory Parr and junior Steve Forman and maintaining their spotless record. After eight steady holds, Baumann and Michalicka converted on a triple break point and a Deacon double fault to move up 5-4 at the No. 1 doubles position. The pair followed with another break and two love holds to take the match 8-4 before the Badgers secured the point with a strong 8-2 victory from sophomore Luke Rassow-Kantor and freshman Patrick Pohlmann. Moving into singles play, the Badgers picked up a straight-set win from Pohlmann at the No. 3 position, who went 7-5 in the ﬁrst before assuming control of the match and closing the match with a 6-1 second set. “I knew that it is up to him if he stays aggressive,” Pohlmann said of Deacon junior Andrew Brasseaux. “I just had to play consistently and his level went down.” At No. 2, Baumann, who moved from No. 117 to No. 36 nationally in last week’s ITA rankings, delivered his ninth win this season to remain undetennis page 7
Track and Field
Wisconsin has strong ﬁnish in Badger Open By James Adams THE DAILY CARDINAL
The coming weeks are pivotal for the Wisconsin men’s track and ﬁeld team. With the Big Ten Indoor Championships and NCAA Indoor Championships on the horizon, UW hosted the Wisconsin Badger Open Saturday afternoon at the Shell. The meet, which featured UW-La Crosse, North Central, Augustana and Beloit, was the Badgers’ ﬁnal chance to compete before heading to the conference championship this coming weekend. Wisconsin junior hurdler Nate Larkin proved to have one of the most impressive performances of the afternoon. Larkin placed first in the 60-meter hurdles with a time of 7.87 seconds, a personal best. Since the Notre Dame Invitational in late January, Larkin has shaved .12 seconds off his time and improved nearly every week. Head coach Ed Nuttycombe has certainly noticed Larkin’s improvement. “Nate’s last four races have been the best of his life. He is hurdling with confidence and he continues to get sharper each week,” he said. Another Wisconsin athlete placing first is an unfamiliar face to the track circuit. Freshman wide receiver Nick Toon traded in his football pads for track spikes Saturday and proved to be a valuable addition to the team. In his first race, Toon placed first in the 60-meter dash with a time of 7.08 seconds. Other ﬁrst place ﬁnishes for
the Badgers included sophomore Jake Fritz’s shotput throw of 53' 11 1/4" and sophomore Rayme Mackinson’s 24' 3" performance in the long jump. The meet gave Wisconsin the opportunity to allow some of their athletes who are redshirting this season to gain competition experience. Freshman James Groce, competing unattached, placed ﬁrst in the 300 meters with a time of 33.71 seconds, a record time at the Shell. Also competing unattached was freshman Paul Annear, who placed ﬁrst in the high jump after clearing 6'11 3/4". Wisconsin’s decision to redshirt some of their top athletes has drawn criticism this season. The Badgers have won eight straight Big Ten Indoor Championships, but Nuttycombe still feels like his athletes have something to prove. “There is a lot of tradition and pride in the Big Ten Championships and I think they will surprise a lot of teams this year,” he said. Women’s Freshman Jenna Severson’s personal best time of 1:35.50 was good enough for ﬁrst place in the 600 meters Saturday at the Wisconsin Badger Open. Teammate, junior Alex Beecham, placed ﬁrst in the 300 meters with a time of 39.95 seconds. It was her second time winning the event this season. The Badgers received their ﬁnal track event win with sophomore Egle Staisiunaite’s time of 8.71 seconds in the 60-meter hurdles. Sophomore Rebecca Fritz won the weight throw with a mark
of 49 feet, 1 inch, and senior Samantha Dehn won the shot put with a throw of 39' 1/2", rounding out the ﬁrst place ﬁnishes for the Badgers. On Feb. 28 and March 1, the men’s team will travel to University Park, Penn., while the women’s
team will travel to Bloomington, Ind., for the Big Ten Indoor Championships, and on March 13 and 14 both teams will travel to College Station, Texas for the NCAA Indoor Championships. —uwbadgers.com contributed to this report.
Weird mascots embarrassing to schools ANDY VAN SISTINE sistine’s chapel
still cannot help but shake my head every time I watch any game that involves Ohio State and the television camera squares up on the ridiculous head of Brutus the Buckeye. Ohio State, your mascot is a nut. A nut with a body and big ol’ Mickey Mouse gloves on his hands. But to be fair, you could have it a lot worse. As ridiculous as Brutus the Buckeye is, he pales in comparison to some lesserknown mascots in the world of college sports. For instance, St. Louis University’s Billiken. I had no idea what a Billiken was either, so I looked it up on Wikipedia. It said, “The Billiken was a charm doll created by an American art teacher and illustrator, Ms. Florence Pretz of St. Louis Missouri, who is said to have seen the mysterious figure in a dream.” So the mascot in St. Louis is a doll. I looked up a picture of this character, and the only way I could think to describe him was wearyfaced extra-terrestrial. Or maybe a bald elf that just got ﬁnished swimming in the Arctic Ocean. I just don’t feel the intimidation factor. At least you can look up what their mascot is, though. The same cannot be said for George Mason’s Gunston. It’s basically an oversized Seasame Street puppet in a green and gold jersey. Does it say something about a university when they invent a mascot, give it a name and then trail off when someone asks what the hell that thing is? Speaking of meaningless puppets, the Western Kentucky red blob thing still boggles my mind. He is like a short, red version of Grimace, the McDonalds character on Happy Meal boxes. Most people are familiar with this infamous figure in the sporting world. Big Red has starred in a number of SportsCenter commercial spots and a bunch of those Capital One mascot challenge commercials, but few know where he’s from.
[UC-Santa Cruz] seriously could not come up with anything more ﬁerce and intimidating than a slug that hangs out on old fruit?
LORENZO ZEMELLA/CARDINAL FILE PHOTO
Wisconsin junior hurdler Nate Larkin took ﬁrst place in the 60meter hurdles with a personal best 7.87 seconds.
I got a ﬁrsthand lesson two years ago when I covered the WNIT tournament at the Kohl Center, and Western Kentucky paraded onto the basketball court followed by that thing. Then I saw it grab a woman’s scarf and stuff it down it’s mouth-hatch. It did not give the scarf back. Maybe intimidating? If it could talk, I imagine it would sound a lot like Fat Bastard from Austin Powers—“I’m gunna eatcha!” Big Red’s sad blue cousin from Xavier is no better. Affectionately referred to as “The Blue Blob,” mascots page 7