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september 4, 2009

● Serving

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● first paper free – additional copies $1 ● © 2009 Student Media


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Classes will be held Monday

Where on campus?

Despite the erroneous 2009 TAMU Academic Schedule printed in the Student Discount Handbook, a free coupon book, classes will be on Labor Day. “Even though Labor Day is a national holiday, it’s a regular class day at Texas A&M,” said Interim Provost and Executive Vice President for Academics Karan Watson. “I want to remind students to be sure and attend class and ‘work’ hard as we begin the second week of classes.”

Jeremy Northum — THE BATTALION

Think you know every nook and cranny of Texas A&M? Test your campus know-how by e-mailing The Battalion and telling us where you think this photo was taken. The first people to get the answers correct will have their names published in The Battalion. Send your response with your name, class and major to

Meagan O’Toole-Pitts, city editor


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Labor Day closings College Station The City of College Station municipal offices will be closed on Monday and will resume normal business hours on Tuesday.

A&M wins online fan war At 6:39 p.m. Thursday, the Texas A&M facebook page hit 100,006 fans, winning the “100,000 Fans-100,000 Pennies Race” against Louisiana State University. “In less than 48 hours we gained 17,000 fans on our page,” said Associate Director of Marketing and Communications Diane C. McDonald. “Two days ago LSU mysteriously added 15,000 fans overnight and we became the underdog — everyone expected the Aggies to give up, but Aggies never give up.” LSU lost the race with 999, 951 fans. “It was a close race; it was down to the wire, and it took every aggie,” McDonald said. “We had the Corps of Cadets, our keepers of the spirit, involved; we had professors announcing the race in their classes; we had international students involved, Greek life, fish camp — the students really rallied.” BlueFuego, sponsor of the competition, will award Texas A&M 100,000 pennies, or $1,000, which will go to fund scholarships for students. “This is a win for everyone at Texas A&M,” McDonald said. Meagan O’Toole-Pitts, city editor

Trash pick-up/recycle center Recycling collection (TCW): will be closed Monday.


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Amanda Casanova, Editor in Chief THE BATTALION (ISSN #1055-4726) is published daily, Monday through Friday during the fall and spring semesters and Monday through Thursday during the summer session (except University holidays and exam periods) at Texas A&M University. Periodicals Postage Paid at College Station, TX 77840. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to The Battalion, Texas A&M University, 1111 TAMU, College Station, TX 77843-1111. News: The Battalion news department is managed by students at Texas A&M University in Student Media, a unit of the Division of Student Affairs. News offices are in The Grove, Bldg. 8901. Newsroom phone: 979-845-3313; Fax: 979-845-2647; E-mail:; website: Advertising: Publication of advertising does not imply sponsorship or endorsement by The Battalion. For campus, local, and national display advertising, call 979-845-2696. For classified advertising, call 979-845-0569. Advertising offices are in The Grove, Bldg. 8901, and office hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Fax: 979-845-2678. Subscriptions: A part of the Student Services Fee entitles each Texas A&M student to pick up a single copy of The Battalion. First copy free, additional copies $1. Mail subscriptions are $125 per school year. To charge by Visa, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express, call 979-845-2613.

The City of Bryan municipal offices will be closed on Monday and will resume normal business hours on Tuesday. Municipal court will be closed Monday. Transactions due Monday will only be accepted on Tuesday.

Bryan Texas Utilities BTU will be closed Monday. Normal business hours will resume Tuesday.

Trash pick-up/recycle center Recycling center: Closed Monday

Open House showcases groups Rebekah Skelton The Battalion With more than 800 organizations to choose from, Texas A&M University has something for everyone, and hundreds of these groups will be represented at the Memorial Student Center Open House Sunday at the Student Recreation Center to give students the opportunity to find their perfect match. “The MSC Open house is the largest showcase of student organizations at Texas A&M, with one event happening in the fall and one in the spring,” said MSC Vice President of Marketing and senior communication major Sarah Barnes. “The fall is the larger of the two. Last year, we had over 420 organizations participate. It is the greatest opportunity for students to find their fit and become involved on campus.” The event, organized by MSC marketing, is traditionally

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in the MSC and Rudder complex, but due to the MSC renovation, Open House will be in the Recreation Center. Barnes said the only difference the change in location brought is that MSC committees had to pay a registration fee this year because of the relocation cost. Anyone can attend the event, and marketing committee members said they encourage all students to come by from 1 to 5 p.m. “It’s important for students to get the opportunity to get a sense of the different types of student organizations that are at Open House,” said MSC Communications Coordinator Eric Blodgett. “Speaking as an adviser, there are a lot of groups you can get involved with and learn about that you wouldn’t necessarily get to in the classroom.” There is no admission fee for those who attend. Open House is a great way


10:30 am am, sanctuary Central Baptist Church

for organizations to advertise to students what their mission is and what kind of work they are involved in, said Erin Havener, PB&J project director and junior international studies major. “I feel like [Open House] gives students the opportunity to see what we’re about,” Havener said. “A lot of students don’t know what kind of organization they’re looking for, so it’s easy for students to walk up and see what we’re about and what we’re doing.” Organizations that have completed registration will be posted on the event’s participating organization’s page at www.mscopenhouse.tamu. edu, so that students can preview the list before they go. “Just come in with an open mind, ask questions and talk to the student representatives running the tables to learn more,” Barnes said.


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The Material The Material, a finalist on MTV2’s “Dew Circuit Breakout,” will perform at 9 p.m. Sunday at the Stafford in Bryan. Admission is $5 for 21 and up and $7 for minors at the door.

thebattalion 9.4.2009 page3

Sparks fly Megan Ryan

in Reed Arena

The Battalion Since 1998, Texas A&M University has held First Yell as a way to kick off the fall semester and football season. The yell leaders do their best to hire comedians that will best appeal to former and current students. This year, because of a Facebook group petition and his growing popularity, comedic ventriloquist Jeff Dunham was chosen. “We picked him [Dunham] because he’s one of the hottest comedian acts in the country right now. He appeals to a lot of ages,” said Rusty Thompson, associate director of student activities and adviser to the yell leaders. Thompson said tickets sold out faster for “Spark of Insanity” than for any other First Yell. “That just goes to show the appeal that he has with all his fans right now. All of his puppets… people laugh at them because you can see people you know in those characters, and that’s what makes them funny,” he said. “Who knows what too expect with Jeff Dunham. There’s going to be new content, and nd it’s going to be a lot of fun.” Comedy Central will begin air-In October, Come television show starring Dunham.. ing a new televisio “For him, him this show [First Yell] is helping him kick off his TV show,” Thompson sa said. yell leader and senior management Head yel ement major Casey Schaefer said a lot of work ork goes into prepar preparing the show, but becausee of Dunham’s popu popularity, selling tickets was not as hard as in the past. one “It’s funny because not everyone knew the name Jeff Dunham at a first but everyone knew w ‘the funny guy with thee puppet,’” Schaefer said. id. “Dunham is so popular lar

that we didn’t have to do as much as last year.” Behind the scenes, though, a lot of effort has been put forth to make sure everything goes smoothly tonight. “We had to work really hard with Jeff Dunham’s publicists and make him agree to the show, but we finally got a good contract,” Schaefer said. “After we got the contract done, we’ve been ordering t-shirts and selling those. We do a lot of work with radio stations and local TV stations trying to get the word out. We put fliers everywhere around campus and town and made a lot of stuff on Facebook. We’ve also been working with the other acts to try to t make it fun.” First Yell will also feature student acts act by a variety of Aggie groups. “We “ market the tickets hard to forme and current students,” Thompson former “W like to have the current students said. “We perfor first so that former students can see to perform what’s new.” Pe Performers include Fade to Black, Aggie W Wranglers, Singing Cadets and Percussion Studio. “We’ve got some of the top studentt es acts on campus,” Schaefer said. “Aggies performing are always great.” tuSchaefer said the combination of stum’s dent acts with an act like Jeff Dunham’s will make an incredible show. “It’s going to be a great First Yell and we’re really excited,” he said. “We’re ready to get a good start to the year and take the victory at K Kyle Field the next day.”

Graphics by Osa Okundaye— THE BATTALION

In 1924, students at Notre Dame made history by defeating the KKK. In 2008, one university made history by punishing a student for reading about it. When a college student was found guilty of racial harassment simply for reading a book, he called on FIRE to help clear his name. Join the thousands of students in FIRE’s Campus Freedom Network who are defending their rights on campus. Don’t wait until it’s too late. Learn about TAMU’s stance on student rights: Because your liberty is a precious thing.

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Electric guitarist and vocalist Bonesaw performs on stage with the band Full Service. Full Service will play at 10 p.m. Saturday at Zapato’s on Northgate.

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Rock and nachos Band Full Service to perform Saturday Clay Harley The Battalion This Saturday, the members of the Austin-based rock band Full Service will return to College Station to perform at Zapatos Cantina from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. The band played on campus at Texas A&M last school year during the LunchBox concerts put on by the Memorial Student Center Town Hall. Formed in 2004, Full Service’s music certainly falls into the broad genre of rock, as far as instrumentation and general style, but drummer and lead vocalist Hoag was able to give a more detailed description. “Basically we just try to get a lot of different textures and sounds and degrees of softness and heaviness,� he said. “Lyrically I often write how different people see the world. It’s rarely autobiographical ... It’s searching for different lenses through which people see the world. The form that comes out musically doesn’t really matter.� Hoag writes the lyrics and vocal melodies, while electric guitarist and vocalist Bonesaw writes the guitar music. Songs sometimes come from the whole group – “jamming something and then honing those jams,� Hoag said. “We write a ton of [stuff] just because we live together, and it’s always kind of fresh.� Each member of Full Service goes by a nickname – and not just on the stage, all the time. When asked for each member’s real name, they chose not to divulge that information. The band consists of Bonesaw, Hoag, bassist Twink and Smell, percussionist

and vocalist. Full Service has six studio albums, one live album and one EP. Their newest album, titled “The Earth Still Wants You,� was released in February 2009. “It’s very high energy but it’s not that kind of, like, spastic energy. That would feel and look very obviously contrived,� Hoag said. “It’s almost like a public display of a private experience ... I think that that’s what people appreciate — that you’re so into it yourselves, and then people feed off of that, as opposed to bands who are clearly just sort of cheerleading the crowd.� In summer 2008, Full Service embarked on what they called a “Takeover Tour.� The band followed musical groups 311 and Snoop Dogg from Boston, Mass., to Austin, Texas, and played free live music in venue parking lots before each show. “We needed a crazy idea,� Hoag said about the tour. However, the tour idea turned out to not be so crazy. The parking lot shows generated interest and eventually got the attention of 311’s managers, and Full Service was invited to open the last three shows. Full Service is touring with Badfish, a Sublime tribute band, until November. The band members are also brainstorming for their next tour. One idea in the works is to bring recycling bins to each venue and have the audience members recycle bottles and cans, and have a green company sponsor the tour. Full Service will debut another unique idea — kazoos — at Zapato’s Saturday.

1. Guster “Come Downstairs and Say Hello�

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page 5 friday 9.4.2009


— I M M E DI AT E F UL L - T IM E O P E N I NG —


Grand jury dismisses Northgate rape case Meagan O’Toole-Pitts The Battalion A criminal case for the alleged rape of a former Blinn student was no-billed by a grand jury Thursday, absolving Tim and Laura Howard. The Battalion does not identify assault victims. “It’s a sad day for rape victims in this county,” said the 24-year-old victim’s lawyer Ty Clevenger. “If these guys were innocent why did they refuse to give a DNA sample? Why did they refuse to give a deposition? Why did they refuse to testify to the grand jury?” In December 2007, according to court documents, the then 22-year-old victim went out with friends to Northgate and was left at Lux Nightclub after who she and her friends believed to be the bar’s owners¬ — married couple Tim and Laura Howard — offered her a ride home. The couple told the victim’s friends they would give the intoxicated woman a ride home but instead drove her to their residence and gave her a pill comparable to Vicadin. She woke up the next morning in the couples’ bed in unfamiliar clothing, ripped underclothing and had vaginal bleeding. DNA retrieved from the rape kit was tested and matched Tim’s court-ordered DNA sample. “The chances of [the DNA] being someone other than Tim Howard is less than one in 20 million,” Clevenger said. “There’s a tape recording where my client called Laura; [My client] recorded the conversation and Laura implicated herself in the sexual assault.” Clevenger said there is not much he and his client can do about the no-bill return, and that it could go back before the grand jury, but it is up to District Attorney Bill Turner.

“That amount of evidence and they weren’t even indicted is just shocking,” he said. “It’s shocking — as much evidence as they had I don’t see how this could happen.” Lux Nightclub, also known as Get Lucky LLC, is owned by Donal Vernon, Laura’s son from a previous marriage. “The bar itself is not in their name but in the name of their son, but they admit they portrayed themselves as the owners of the bar,” Clevenger said. A civil lawsuit was filed against Get Lucky LLC, Vernon, the Howards and the private investigator and former Bryan police Sgt. Donald “Donnie” Mantry for invading the victim’s privacy. In addition to asking a friend of the victim if she was promiscuous or a lesbian, Mantry traveled to the victim’s hometown asking questions about the victim’s sexual history and pressuring acquaintances to give derogatory information about her. “I’ve spoken with some national crime victim experts, and this is the only case we’re aware of that a victim sued the alleged rapist because the alleged rapist hired a private investigator to dig into her personal life,” Clevenger said. The civil lawsuit has not yet gone to trial. Clevenger said he hopes for a 2010 date. Lane Thidodeaux, Tim’s lawyer in the criminal case, declined to comment. “All I will say is I think the no-bill returned by the grand jury speaks for itself,” Thidodeaux said. Kevin Davis, Laura’s lawyer in the criminal case, said he would not comment other than to say he stands by the grand jury’s decision. “They did the right thing,” Davis said. “Because I don’t think it was a criminal offense that was presented to the district

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attorney’s office.” Sexual Assault Resource Center Executive Director Alesha Istvan said she hopes the survivor is able to move on despite the no-bill return from the grand jury. “In this business, we realize sexual assault cases are very difficult to prosecute and that’s just the reality of the line of work,” Istvan said. “Going through these court cases I’m sure added to the difficulty … and we hope she is able to heal.” The College Station and Bryan Police Departments do not have a standard rape victim policy, and that is why rape cases are “falling through the cracks,” Clevenger said. “The standard, recommended policy for any police department is to assign each victim a victim advocate … That person makes sure the victim — and the case — do not get lost in the system,” he said. “I’m a former cop myself (and still a reserve), and the local police departments are not following recommended procedures for dealing with rape victims.” The College Station and Bryan police departments told The Battalion Thursday that they do not assign rape victim advocates to rape victims. “Both Bryan PD and CSPD detective divisions are seriously understaffed, and that’s a big part of the problem, but it’s all the more reason why the PDs need to be working with victim advocates to make sure the cases don’t slip through the cracks,” Clevenger said. “That’s a big part of why it’s taken so long. It’s been nearly two years since this rape happened and it’s just now [got] to the grand jury.” Brazos County has a rape crisis center, but not enough is being done to help rape victims, Clevenger said. “Brazos County is looking pretty rape friendly these days.”

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Texas A&M University Honor Council Are you an Aggie with integrity and ethical principles that genuinely cares about upholding the Aggie Honor Code? The Honor Council is looking for new Undergraduate Student members. If you are interested, then the Texas A&M University Honor Council needs you! Pick up your application to be a new Honor Council member at the MSC Open House on September 6, 2009 (1-6 PM). For more information call 458-3378. Pg. 5-09.04.09.indd 1





*************************************************************** Texas A&M Emergency Care Team Reminds you to: * Bring a 1- Liter plastic bottle of water to the game! * Know locations of First Aid stations at Kyle Field!


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Students wait for answers to their financial woes Thursday afternoon at the offices of Student Business Services in the General Services Complex.

New delivery system delays students’ financial aid refunds Vicky Flores The Battalion Many students expecting refunds from financial aid, loans, grants, fellowships or scholarships have found that these refunds have been delayed and not processed when expected. Because of the delays, many students have been forced to take out emergency loans to pay for books and other expenses. Julie Campbell, a graduate plant pathology major, said she had to take out an emergency loan in order to pay for rent and bills. “I am living off of my fellowship and because I have not gotten my refund I am having to put costs onto my credit card that I would not normally have to do,” Campbell said. “This is actually costing me money now, having to pay off interest off credit cards.” Campbell said she was frustrated with the administration for not taking the financial situations more seriously. “I have had to go to many different offices and have been frustrated with the nonchalant attitude administrators seem to take on,” Campbell said. “This is people’s living money; you

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should be able to count on payment being there when they say it’s going to be there.” Campbell said there seems to be no communication between the financial aid and Student Business Services offices. When students have some form of financial aid, it is processed through the financial aid office, then sent to Student Business Services, then sent to Wells Fargo Bank to issue checks for the students. Helen K. Bow, assistant vice president of regional banking communications said Wells Fargo had nothing to do with the delay. “We are delivering refunds on a timely basis once we receive them from the University,” Bow said. Bow informed students that have chosen automatic clearing house, ACH, as the method of delivery that it will take two to three business days to process. However, if you chose a printed check, those will be mailed and should be received within 10 days. The problem with the delays originated in a switch to a new accounting system that had not properly been updated, said

Alex Soto, a graduate land development major. “Last year, I would receive e-mails notifying me of when refunds were being transacted,” Soto said. “The only reason that I knew now about problems was me going and having to investigate for myself.” Soto said that he still couldn’t get a list of individual charges off the Student Business Services Web site and can find the total amount. “Things did not run as smoothly as they did in the past,” Soto said of an e-mail that was sent saying refunds were still being processed. Due to the delays in refunds, the University has set back the date that tuition is officially due from Sept. 1 to the 14. Senior political science major Gina Johnson is waiting for an unsubsidized loan to cover her fees. “I haven’t been able to get my books, and teachers are already saying to read chapters,” Johnson said. “Monday I even had to apply for a short term loan to pay for my rent.” A&M is not covering the origination fees on the emergency loans.

Committee to provide forum for student, faculty input Julie Rambin The Battalion The presidential search committee is holding an open forum today from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. in Rudder Theatre to solicit student and faculty input. “I think we should keep people informed about what’s happening,” said committee member and geography professor Robert Bednarz. “The last time around there was very little information and I think everyone agrees that that was not a good thing.” The names of candidates will

remain anonymous throughout the search process. Final candidates will meet with representative groups, including students and faculty, before the decision is made. “I think many on the committee would like the candidates, when they become final candidates, to go public,” Bednarz said. “If you’re not willing to come out at that point — why not?” An online survey system has been created for students and others to give their opinions and feedback on important criteria for the next president.

Open forum Time: 3:30-5:00 p.m. Place: Rudder Theater To take the survey, visit: http://www. search/index.html

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thebattalion the battalionasks asks What are your thoughts on the 2009 Aggie Football season? See student responses online at the

thebattalion the battalion 9.4.2009 page page7 7

Taking it in stride Tannehill has accepted his role, whatever it may be Michael Sullivan The Battalion


single word can describe sophomore Ryan Tannehill’s three years at Texas A&M thus far: adaptation. From adapting to a college workload, new football personnel and now a new position, he has taken every change as a learning process. “I think being adaptable is a key quality I have,” Tannehill said. “In life things happen and you have to be able to adapt to them and make the

best of all situations. Hopefully I have done that in my football career and will carry that to other areas of my life.” Tannehill was recruited to A&M as a part of the “Fran Era,” which included the recruitment of dual threat quarterbacks. As a two-year starter at Big Spring High School, Tannehill accumulated 2,668 passing yards and 1,439 rushing yards. In both his junior and senior years, he was tabbed with All-District honors and was ranked as the No. 21 dual threat quarterback in the country by Upon his arrival in Aggieland, Tannehill was redshirted during the 2007 season. When Dennis Franchione was replaced by current Head Coach Mike Sher-

man, Tannehill was moved from throwing passes as a quarterback to wide receiver. “Ryan [Tannehill] is a heck of an athlete,” said junior quarterback Jerrod Johnson. “Ryan’s definitely a good football player and he definitely helps his team in a lot of different ways.” Despite having caught three passes for 68 yards during his high school career, Tannehill emerged as A&M’s leading receiver in 2008. Tannehill set A&M records for receptions and receiving yards by a freshman, totaling 55 catches for 844 yards and five touchdowns. For his on-the-field accomplishments, College Sports News named Tannehill See Tannehill on page 8

Time for redemption

Jack of all trades Former defensive end shifts to hybrid position Patrick Hayslip The Battalion


t 6-feet, 3-inches tall and 240 pounds, junior “jack” Von Miller has the look of a safety, but his speed and athletic ability have given him nicknames such as “freak” and “the matrix.” “I just try to go out there and compete, and the name just comes along,” Miller said. “I didn’t ask to be called that. I just try to play and show everybody that I’m here to get it.” Miller’s versatility even con-

fuses the occasional inquirer. “When some people ask me what position I play, they say safety or receiver,” Miller said. “I like to think personally that I’m like a running back but I never got a chance to do all that.” In 2008, Miller played defensive end, recording 44 tackles, but this year he moved to the “jack” position, a roaming player with an option to play as a hybrid defensive end and linebacker. “Von can make his body do so many different things. He’s a unique guy,” said Defensive Coordinator Joe Kines. “We moved Von to the ‘jack’ position during the spring and he’s been in several places on the field and is doing a good job with that.

That position is going to be a big part of our package.” In Miller’s senior year of high school at Desoto, Texas, he was named the District 8-5A defensive most valuable player. He ran track four years of high school and that contributes to his speed on the football field. “My sophomore year going to my junior year of high school I was No. 11 in the state,” said Miller about his track career. “I’m an offensive guy at heart and a track guy at heart.” Many players consider Miller an unspoken leader of the defense. “Everybody knows what is expected of Von,” said sophoSee Miller on page 9

Photos by Jonny J G Green — THE BATTALION ATTA ION

Pg. 7-09.04.09.indd 1

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page 8

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friday 9.4.2009

Tannehill Continued from page 7

an honorable mention Freshman All-American. “I came here to play quarterback and I definitely didn’t think I would be playing any wide receiver in my career here,” Tannehill said. “I had a lot of fun [playing receiver], but I wished we could have won some more games. I had a lot of fun being out on the field.”

Whatever I am called upon, whether that is snaps at receiver or quarterback, then I will do that.”

— Ryan Tannehill sophomore quarterback

While making the adjustment from quarterback to receiver, Tannehill was also faced with handling the change in head coaches. Sherman brought in a new spread offense and a new coaching style, but Tannehill said the adjustment has come easily, in part to being able to trust Sherman. “Sherman came in and led us to trust him right away,” Tannehill said. “There was no down time and he picked up right where he wanted to and has started sending us in the right direction. We all believe in him and everything he can do.” Outside of football, Tannehill is a biology major. In 2008, Tannehill was named to the Academic All-Big 12 Football Team, which honors athletes who have a GPR of 3.2 or higher. When Tannehill completes his time at A&M, he would rather hear his name read by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell than be filling out medical school applications. “Ideally my goal is to play in the NFL, but that doesn’t work out for everyone,” Tannehill said. “If the NFL doesn’t work out, I will always have my degree to fall back on.” When A&M takes the field Saturday against New Mexico, Tannehill will be on the sideline relaying plays to Johnson. Announced to be the back-up quarterback during Monday’s press conference, Tannehill doesn’t expect to see much playing time at wide receiver, but is ready to fulfill the role needed to make the team successful. “Whatever I am called upon, whether that is snaps at receiver or quarterback, then I will do that,” Tannehill said. “It is just whatever I need to do to help the team. Whether Jerrod goes down in the first game or stays healthy all season, that is part of football, and he is our quarterback right now, and I just have to be

STUDIES IN PROGRESS SWIMMER’S EAR/EAR INFECTION STUDY Volunteers ages 12 and older are needed to participate in a 3 week long clinical research study of an investigational ear drop for the treatment of SWIMMERS EAR (external ear infection). Eligible volunteers will receive at no cost: • Study related ear exams by the doctor • Study examinations or placebo (ear drops) • Compensation up to $200 for time and effort For more information please contact:

RED DRY SCALY PATCHES OF SKIN ATOPIC DERMATITIS STUDY (ECZEMA) Volunteers ages 18 - 64 needed to participate up to a 12 week long clinical research study with an investigational topical medication for atopic dermatitis (RED, DRY, SCALY PATCHES OF SKIN). Eligible volunteers will receive at no cost: • Study related medication • Physical Examination • Dermatological Assessments • Compensation up to $675.00 for time and travel For more information please contact:

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Pg. 8-09-04-09.indd 1

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page 9 friday 9.4.2009



When some people ask me what position I play, they say safety or receiver. I like to think personally that I’m like a running back but I never got a chance to do all that.” — Von Miller junior jack

Continued from page 9

more defensive tackle Tony Jerod-Eddie, in an interview with Gabe Bock. “Von knows what’s expected of him and he’s going to play well. Teams are going to adjust to his strengths — his pass-rushing skills, his flexibility and versatility. We just have to follow Von. Von sets the bar high and we just have to finish it.” Jerod-Eddie is also from Desoto, along with sophomore running back Cyrus Gray and sophomore outside linebacker Garrick Williams. Jerod-Eddie has a strong bond with Miller in many ways. “I love it. I wouldn’t trade it for anything,” Jerod-Eddie said. “I just love playing with Von, playing with Cyrus, and playing with Garrick behind us. Von and I were talking about it the other day watching film, seeing three DeSoto guys on the same side of the field. Von and I have that connection because we have been on the same defensive line for five or six years now. We can do certain things and get away with them because we have that feel for each other.” Miller is such a team player

that he even gives advice to the offensive line after practice. “After practice I’ll tell them what they did wrong because if they start blocking me, they are definitely going to block someone else in the Big 12 and the rest of the teams we play,” Miller said. “We are only as strong as our weakest link and I try to have all those guys on the same page and in unison.” As far as Miller’s opinion of his skills, he said he is a defensive end who can pass rush effectively and that was one of the reasons he was recruited by A&M. “I can stand in there with those guys but my strength isn’t really power so I have to have a counter,” Miller said. “They’re big and strong and I’m big and fast so I have to use my speed to get around those guys.” The Aggies’ first game of the season is at home against New Mexico and Miller said he wants to have a much different outcome than 2008’s narrow 28-22 win. “We’re ready as we’ll ever be,” Miller said. “I really want to go out there and get a lot of points on the guys, but beat them first, then get a lot of points on them and show the Twelfth Man that we have a win on the way.”




Two convenient locations to serve you inside : Bryan Branch 725 East Villa Maria (2 miles north of campus)

College Station Branch 1900 Texas Avenue South (2 miles south of campus)




★★★★” Roger Ebert CHICAGO SUN-TIMES



Pg. 9-09.04.09.indd 1



Welcome Back Ags!


page 10 friday 9.4.2009



10% Off

as of Aug. 30

With Faculty, Staff, or Student I.D.

OFFENSE offer expires 9.14.09

Just In Time for

Back to School




8 10


55 Danny Baker 50 Craig Raschke Pugh


76 MICHAEL SHUMARD 71 Brian Thomas


63 KEVIN MATTHEWS 61 Patrick Lewis 67 Joe Villavisencio


70 Matt Allen 65 EVAN EIKE


74 LEE GRIMES 75 Vincent Williams


4 JAMIE MCCOY 15 Kenny Brown


11 7 5 81 25


next to Chili's Restaurant across from A&M Golf Course


TERRENCE MCCOY Uzoma Nwachukwu Howard Morrow Kenric McNeal Ryan Swope




29 Anthony Vela 35 Cole Grayhill


32 Cyrus Gray 20 Bradley Stephens 33 Christine Michael


DEFENSE The key defensively will be how a young linebacker group responds to pressure. The Aggies have four underclassmen listed in the depth chart. In the back, though, Sherman should be pleased to have junior Von Miller, senior Jordan Pugh and sophomore Trent Hunter returning.



The receiver corps added a number of young players in an attempt to bolster the team’s speed. Sherman said he’s been impressed with freshmen Uzoma Nwachukwu, Kenric McNeal and Ryan Swope. Veterans, sophomore Jeff Fuller, junior Terrence McCoy and senior Howard Morrow will return as well.





83 TONY JEROD-EDDIE 96 Michael Ebbitt




18 Kyle Mangan 36 ANTHONY LEWIS


8 GARRICK WILLIAMS 10 Sean Porter 53 Derek Dumas


35 JAMIE MCCOY 11 Kenny Brown


21 Justin McQueen 4 Coryell Judie




25 JORDAN PUGH 27 Chevar Bryson


1 TRENT HUNTER 20 Steven Campbelll

TAILBACK A&M lost a key cog in their offense when Mike Goodson left for the NFL Draft. But not far behind him was sophomore Cyrus Gray with 363 yards and one touchdown. Freshman Christine Michael rushed for 1,414 yards and 25 touchdowns in his senior year of high school, so expect to see fireworks from him also.

Matt Moss Spencer Nealy Cody Williams


QUARTERBACK Both Johnson and Tannehill are quality quarterbacks. Though their styles differ according to sophomore receiver Jeff Fuller, either one is capable of leading the team. With redshirt freshman Tommy Dorman still waiting for a chance, it is a little surprising Tannehill will not see more time at receiver.

55 99 97 77 19

compiled by Brad Cox

Want to get fit and lose weight? Participants Needed for a Weight Loss Study Researchers in the Exercise & Sport Nutrition Laboratory at Texas A&M University are recruiting 160 women between the ages of 18 and 45 to participate in a weight loss program. Participants will be randomized into one of four intervention groups involving varying exercise and nutrition requirements for six months. Eligible participants will receive $200 for completing the study. For more information call: Exercise & Sport Nutrition Laboratory, Dept. of HLKN Research Park, Building #2, Suite # 2500 979- 458-1743

Pg. 10-09.04.09.indd 1

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page 11


friday, 9.4.2009

Dances with wolves

Aggies need to impress

Football team gets season started at home against New Mexico Brad Cox The Battalion After three weeks of fall practice in the sweltering Brazos Valley heat, sophomore quarterback Ryan Tannehill failed to deliver the knockout punch needed to earn the top billing for Texas A&M’s season opener against New Mexico. Saturday at Kyle Field, junior quarterback and incumbent starter Jerrod Johnson will take snaps against the Lobos after a tough battle with Tannehill during fall camp. Head Coach Mike Sherman told Tannehill before camp began that he would need a knockout punch to take control from the returning starter. “Going into it, as I explained to Ryan, we were going to give him every opportunity to compete, which I think we did, and he competed very favorably,” Sherman said. “We’re very fortunate to have two very good quarterbacks. I have complete confidence in both.” Tannehill threw a single eightyard completion during the 2008 season, spending most of his time lining up at receiver. He led Aggie receivers with 844 yards and pulled down five touchdowns. Because he is the second quarterback on the depth chart, Tannehill will spend less time as a receiver this season, to be ready to replace Johnson if he suffers an injury. At New Mexico in 2008, Johnson replaced an injured Stephen McGee in the first quarter. “I worked hard, and quarterback was where I wanted to be,” Tannehill said. “It’s definitely hard when you work so hard for something and you don’t get what you want. But at the same time, in life, things happen that way, and you just have to be able to accept it and just try to move on and do the best you can every

Staff predictions

T.D. Durham 27-10 A&M David Harris 35-17 A&M Matt Woolbright 38-20 A&M Jason Staggs 21-19 A&M Jill Beathard 42-21 A&M Mattie Williamson 28-14 A&M Kalee Bumguardner 27-17 A&M day.” Johnson, who had 124 yards and three touchdowns against the Lobos in 2008, said he trusted Sherman’s decision. “Ryan is a heck of an athlete,” Johnson said. “It’s just kind of one of those unfortunate situations, that you play the same position. That’s the nature of the beast. Ryan’s definitely a good football player, and he definitely helps his team in a lot of different ways. I would love to see him on the field.” Though the receiving corps will miss Tannehill’s talent, sophomore Jeff Fuller said the team benefits from having two quality quarterbacks. “It is a win-win situation,” Fuller said. “Both are really good players who can really throw the ball.” The difference between the two, Fuller said, is that Johnson likes to throw deep passes while Tannehill can put the ball into tight spaces. With the quarterback competition in the past, Johnson will See New Mexico on page 12

David Harris

After the debacle of 2008, the Aggies need to show some improvement to both themselves and to their fans



Jerrod Johnson, Aggie starting quarterback, leads the team into their season opener at Kyle Field against the Lobos of New Mexico.

New Mexico vs. Texas A&M Kyle Field 6 p.m. No TV A gg Radio Network Aggie

bout this time a year ago, 80,000 maroonclad Aggies left Kyle Field in a state of astonishment. The scoreboard read 18-14. The 10 Arkansas State fans that actually made the trek to College Station looked as if they had just won the lottery. It was supposed to be a fresh start after the fiveyear stink bomb that was laid at the doorstep of Aggie football by coach Dennis Franchione and company. Mike Sherman was coming in with an innovative offense, an experienced quarterback and an NFL pedigree. But 60 game minutes into the era of Sherman, the Texas A&M Aggies had lost a game at Kyle Field to Arkansas State. What followed in the next 11 games has been gnawing at every Aggie football fan throughout the last eight months. It’s fairly safe to say it has been one of the longest off seasons in the history of the program. Hence why the opener against New Mexico on Saturday needs to paint a picture of improvement to the Twelfth Man sitting in Kyle Field. The Lobos waltz in with a new regime at the helm, after the firing of Rocky Long. New Head Coach Mike Locksley, former Illinois offensive coordinator, is part of the uprising of young, confident coaches around the country. He brings with him an offense that turned Juice Williams and Rashard Mendenhall into stars for the Illini. Quarterback Donovan Porterie returns after tearing up his knee and missing all of the 2008 season. Porterie has the type of arm that could cause problems for the young Aggie secondary. And, the Lobos boast two pro prospects on the offensive line in center Eric Cook and tackle Byron Bell who should be able to keep Porterie clean in the pocket. On the defensive side of the ball, New Mexico has a lot of high-energy guys but a lot of mediocre talent. Linebacker Clint McPeek seems to always be around the ball. And an attacking pass rush led by See Impressive on page 12

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Anytime. Anywhere. 9/3/09 11:12 PM


page 12 friday 9.4.2009


Vick to play game three

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NEW YORK — NFL commissioner Roger Goodell says Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick is eligible to play beginning in the third game of the regular season. Goodell met with Vick for 45 minutes Thursday before announcing his decision. Vick, recently signed by the Eagles, played in last week’s exhibition game and was expected to play against the New York Jets on Thursday night. Previously, Goodell said he would consider Vick for full reinstatement by no later than Week 6. Vick was released from federal custody July 20 after serving 18 months of a 23-month sentence for his role in running

a dogfighting ring. “I think he’s making real progress,” Goodell said. “I think he has a better feel for the challenges ahead of him.” first reported the Goodell-Vick meeting. The Eagles told The Associated Press that the commisVick sioner met with Vick at the team hotel near the Newark airport. A three-time Pro Bowl pick during six seasons with the Atlanta Falcons, Vick was a surprise signing by the Eagles on Aug. 13. He received a oneyear deal for $1.6 million.

Vick started practicing with the Eagles on Aug. 15, but did not travel with the team to its second preseason game a week later in Indianapolis because he could not play. He played six snaps in Philadelphia’s home game against Jacksonville last week, lining up at quarterback and receiver. He completed all four of his pass attempts, but the Eagles offense scored just three points in the possessions he played. The Eagles plan to use Vick in their version of the wildcat offense, and coach Andy Reid has stated that Kevin Kolb remains the backup to Donovan McNabb.

New Mexico

After Johnson entered the game against New Mexico in 2008, the Aggies took control and had a 21-7 lead at halftime. But the Lobos rallied to within six points with 34 seconds remaining in the game. New Mexico failed to recover an onside kick and A&M took a knee to end the game with a 24-22 win. “They were a scrappy team, with strong fundamentals, that played hard,” Johnson said about the Lobos. “We are going to have to be ready for a fight on Saturday. It’s going to be important that we respect them.” The biggest thing for Johnson will be to control the pace of the game. Many times during the 2008 season, Sherman said Johnson needed to speed up the game. He said Johnson improved

his pace during spring football and fall camp, but he still had to remind him on occasion. Part of the blame for the past season, Sherman said, belongs on him. The Aggies run a prostyle offense that can be wordy. Since college quarterbacks don’t wear headsets, the long plays can slow the huddle down. Sherman said he shortened some of the terminology and communication with the quarterback during the offseason. “The terminology is more so for everyone else,” Johnson said. “Just so we can run a play faster more so than helping us understand it more. We’re still running the same plays and concepts, we just changed the names of them from an eightword play to a two-word play.”


phenom Christine Michael will be able to run all over a relatively small New Mexico front seven. Unlike last season, Jerrod Johnson should actually be able to sit back in the pocket and make more than one read. Look closely at whether or not Johnson can get on page with three freshmen receivers that will play a big role in the Aggies’ success: Uzoma Nwachuku, Kenric McNeal and Ryan Swope. Defensively, the Aggies must be prepared to stop the run. Locksley’s pedigree suggests that there will be a lot of carries for both running back Tony Glynn and quarterback Donovan Porterie. It will be up to defensive tackles Tony Jerrod-Eddie and Lucas Patterson to stuff the inside and allow the linebackers to roam and make plays. Keep an eye on the newly invented “Jack” position for the Aggies. Von Miller will be lining up as both a defensive end and a linebacker. He will be key to getting pressure on the quarterback from the outside. Ultimately, by about 10 p.m. Saturday, Kyle Field will be empty. Fans will be roaming College Station with smiles on their faces and a bit of hope etched into their minds. And the scoreboard will read Texas A&M 35 and New Mexico 17.

Continued from page 11

have the chance to instill confidence in Sherman’s decision Saturday against the Lobos.

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led by defensive end Jaymar Latchison should keep things interesting in the Aggie backfield. However, Saturday evening’s stories shouldn’t have anything to do with New Mexico. It should be all about Texas A&M. Heck, it needs to be all about A&M. It should be about the obvious improvements that they made in the off-season and a potential resurgence that they could be embarking upon. Plain and simple, Saturday night, Mike Sherman and his Aggies must blow out New Mexico. On the heels of a 4-8 disaster and with the economy in the toilet, season ticket sales are down almost 12 percent. The result should be a less full Kyle Field than most have come to expect. Being picked last in the Big 12 South doesn’t exactly instill confidence in an impatient fan base. Thus, Sherman has to show the faithful in the stands and Aggies everywhere that there is a bandwagon to hop onto. His team needs to show fans that they shouldn’t expect to get blown out every time they pay good money to go see a game. With an improved offensive line, Cyrus Gray and freshman

Associated Press

David Harris is a junior economics major.

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Sep 4th 2009 The Battalion Print  

Sep 4th 2009 The Battalion Print