Summer heat on the horizon
Baseball team starts C-USA play
t h e o f f i c i a l s t u d e n t n e w s pa p e r o f t h e u n i v e r s i t y o f h o u s to n s i n c e 1 9 3 4
THE DAILY COUGAR thedailycougar.com
Issue 122, Volume 76
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April 1, 2011 Read. Recycle. Repeat daily.
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Dangers of driving while texting, talking to be focus of event today Students will have the opportunity of seeing firsthand the real dangers associated with driving while distracted, which includes talking, texting or getting on Facebook while driving a car. The “Talk Text Crash” distracted driving event will take place from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. today in Lynn Eusan Park. A NASCAR simulator will be available for participants to really see what distracted driving can do to themselves and others sharing the road.
Outgoing staff looks back Senators reflect on this year’s accomplishments; student voices opposition David Gonzalez
THE DAILY COUGAR The officers of the Student Government Association’s outgoing administration reflected on its accomplishments during its last official meeting of the semester. All officers were in attendance as
senators and members from the president’s cabinet gave speeches commending the job they had done as a collective group. “In essence, what we have achieved this year is tremendous and it did make a difference for the students we serve — for example especially with events at the Cat’s Back, the Campus Accessibility Tour and Walk in the Dark,” Chief of Staff Jeff Syptak said. “All the work we have achieved could not have been done by one person, but many, so thank you.” The same sentiment was not found
The event is sponsored by UH Department of Public Safety, the Texas Department of Transportation and Nationwide Insurance.
throughout the night. The beginning of the meeting was interrupted by a displeased student upset with the results of the presidential runoff. Incoming President and Vice President Michael Harding and Craig Premjee were convicted of establishing an illegal polling location by a 3-2 vote of the elections commission. Upon appeal, the original punishment of disqualification was reversed by SGA continues on page 3
UH in top quarter of national rankings
Disruptions of service to last through Tuesday Students will be unable to access their myUH accounts from March 31 to April 5. The PeopleSoft system will be offline due to a system upgrade. The upgrade will include “My Academics” and “Planner,” which will allow students a personalized advisement report on what core and in-major classes students need to complete. “Planner” will assist in choosing which future courses to take. These 2 features will only be open to students who are completing their first undergraduate degree. Because the system will be offline, the date to drop classes with a “W” has been extended to April 7.
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86 LO 66
Another pleasant day....
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rom left, English grad students Yunus Sahin and Hidayet Erken, Mustafa Bayraktar, Technology grad student, and Mikail Koc, electrical engineering grad student, dress up in costume for the third annual Turkish Student Festival. | Brianna Leigh Morrison/ The Daily Cougar
The University’s Law Center has moved up four slots to 56th in the national ranking system assembled by the U.S. News & World Report. Health care, intellectual property law and the Law Center’s part-time program ranked in the Top 10 among 190 accredited law schools in the nation. “There are several ranking systems applied to law schools and they mean different things. UH Law does well in all of them,” UH Law Center’s Dean Raymond T. Nimmer said. “The US News ranking system (where we rank 56 out of 200) uses its own methods, which include a heavy reliance on opinion polls of a small number of judges, lawyers and academics,” Nimmer said. “It also includes other variables about bar passage rates (where we do very well), entering class statistics (where we do very well) etc.” RANKINGS continues on page 10
EVENTS AT&T Presenting Free Concert Featuring Sublime With Rome The concert series begins at Discovery Green downtown today at 4 p.m. Sublime with Rome is headlining the event and will be performing at 9 p.m. Envisioning College of Architecture Associate Professor and Architect Robert Griffin will be presenting an exhibition of works from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Joseph Mashburn Architecture Gallery.
FOR MORE EVENTS, CHECK OUT thedailycougar.com/calendar
Students head north to encounter Passion Lauren Mathis
THE DAILY COUGAR UH ranks in the top 10 for students attending the Christian conference known as Passion. The 2011 conference begins today and lasts through Sunday in Fort Worth.
“Passion 2011 is a gathering of tens of thousands of university-aged students from across the US and around the world to celebrate their common faith and purpose,” Hannah Springston, public relations representative for Passion, said. “It’s part of a larger global movement in which students from all backgrounds and parts of the world come together under one
banner,” Springston said. “We are expecting 10,000 students in Fort Worth.” Hotel & Restaurant Management senior Liz Strickland has attended Passion conferences in the past. “Passion is an annual conference that is held by 268 Generation, an organization PASSION continues on page 3
Friday, April 1, 2011
The Daily Cougar
Diversity Institute 2011
Learning from the Past, Uniting our Present, Creating a Better Future Friday, April 1, 2011 M. D. Anderson Library, Elizabeth D. Rockwell Pavilion
9am to 4pm 9:00am 9:30am
Check -in and Breakfast Opening Remarks: Dr. Elwyn Lee, VP for Community Relations and Institutional Access
Learning from the Past Panel Discussion with UH Faculty and Staff
11:00am 12:30pm 1:30pm 2:30pm 3:30pm
Uniting our Present
The best stuff from our website, comments and blogs. See what you’re missing: thedailycougar.com
TOP READS 1. Middle East news isn’t fairly covered 2. Guns on-campus don’t make any sense 3. Boy who stood up for himself not at fault 4. Respect the right to free press, ideas 5. Supreme court pleads not guilty on bias charge
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“This newspaper represents our university and our student body. It’s not just some blog where you can post absolutely anything.”
Keynote Address by Dr. Tyrone Tillery, Professor, UH History Dept. Lunch
Creating a Better Future Panel Discussion with UH Student Leaders Heritage Quilt Activity led by CAPS Pre-Doctoral Psychology Interns Closing Ceremony: Performance by UH Good News Gospel Choir Please join us for the full program or stay for a few events! This event is FREE!!! Food Provided!!! Cougar Cards Available!!!
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— user “Rachel Farhi” Re: Middle East news isn’t fairly covered
“The Government of Palestine declares as part of its charter that they desire and will work toward the complete destruction of Israel. And still Israel refuses to come to the peace table? Go figure.” — user “Samuel Schiller” Re: Middle East news isn’t fairly covered
“It is almost a universally accepted truth that Israeli occupation and Israeli attacks are illegal. Around the world in many countries ranging from England, France, Germany, Turkey to New Zealand attacks are condemned daily.”
Re: Future of UH: public or private
“There’s no way UH could turn its back on students and become as inclusive as Rice, because UH would sink like a stone.UH needs to realize now. Student tuition is keeping it afloat. Students are your bread and butter.” — user “Rude” Re: Future of UH: public or private
“Sure with research comes prestige and respectability (and more money) but it comes at the expense of quality in the undergraduate programs. UH has made it clear that Bauer is supposed to be their shining example while other colleges and her undergrads are left in the dust.” — user “Kyle Davis” Re: Future of UH: public or private
“UH must first get rid of inefficient staff and faculty, focus on the millions of dollars available in research from government, public and private entities while attracting quality faculty and students. this is the right time to clean house. UH cannot sustain status quo and reductions in budget.”
— user “Aydin”
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UH MINI WORLD CUP
Student groups collaborate to produce second annual tourney Jesus Acevedo
THE DAILY COUGAR For those who can’t wait 3 years to get their next world cup fix, you may not have to look further than UH in April. Three organizations, the Latin American Student Association, the Brazilian Portuguese Association and the Armenian Student Association, have joined forces to put together the UH Mini World Cup, which will take place April 16-17. The tournament was put together in large part to celebrate the vast diversity at UH. “It’s a two-day tournament,” Jose Pablo Ramirez, president of LASA said. “Basically we’re trying to put together 16 different teams representing different nations and basically provide a place to celebrate the diversity in UH.” LASA formed this year due to the success of last year’s UH Mini World Cup, which was put together by persons who are now members of LASA. Ramirez said they started the organization to keep putting
on events like the UH Mini World Cup. “Soccer is the one thing that brings everyone in the world together,” Ramirez said. “It sounds cheesy, but it’s very true. It’s the one thing that everyone here on this campus, no matter where you come from, has in common.” In one year the event has made significant progress, and this will mark the second year the UH Mini World Cup will be held. Last year’s event was a one-day, 8-team tournament. This year, organizers decided to double it. “This year we decided to bring in more sponsors, have more diverse food and just the fact that we are doubling the tournament in size is a big step,” Ramirez said. Some of the sponsors for the event include the Houston Dynamo and Coca-Cola Co. “The idea of having sponsors for this tournament was to make it more attractive, not only to the people that are going to be playing, but also for the people that will come and watch the games,” Miguel Sada, vice president of LASA said.
“With the help of sponsors we are able to provide better prizes to the winning teams, which was one of our main goals for this tournament,” he said. Ramirez said organizers of the event want to make the UH Mini World Cup an annual tradition. The tournament kicks off with group stage play at noon on April 16, and is followed by the knockout stage of the tournament April 17. Registration is $60 for teams that have UH students filling up two-thirds or more of their roster. Other teams must pay a fee of $80, and must include at least one player from UH. All payments must be received by Tuesday. Ramirez said interested persons who may not have a team could still submit their information and the organizers will pair them up with teams who may be in need of players. Anyone interested in registering a team can email their team information to UHworldcup@gmail.com.
Friday, April 1, 2011
SGA continued from page 1
SGA’s Judicial Branch, which felt that, although the violations were of the highest degree, the 24-hour campaign suspension handed down during the appeal was time served. The student who interrupted, later identified as Brendan Laws by classmates in the audience, expressed his feelings that the punishment was not severe enough, and that he would like to see Harding and Premjee step down. Laws also stated that he was disappointed with the power of SGA as an engine on campus. After making the comments
Laws walked out, leaving many of the senators upset over the comments. Some addressed the comments in their speeches. “Due process was given and due process was followed,” outgoing President Prince Wilson said to the SGA Senate and audience in the gallery. “We followed the rules set by the bylaws during this past election.” Wilson also stated that a copy of the entire report by the Judicial Branch would be available later this week. The inauguration for Harding and Premjee will take place Friday at 6:30 p.m. in the University Center’s Houston Room. The ceremony is by invitation only. email@example.com
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The Passion conference takes its name from the Bible verse Isaiah 26:8, which is displayed above. | Courtesy of Liz Strickland
PASSION continued from page 1
that bases itself off the verse Isaiah 26:8,” Strickland said. “It has lots of Christian pastors, speakers and worship leaders all in one place for a crazy three-day conference that changes lives.” Though 268 Generation is a national organization, Strickland said, Passion is a more state-centered conference. “From what I’ve heard, (Passion organizers) typically just have one conference, but having one in Fort Worth cuts down on travel expenses for some — especially those from the west coast — and allows for more people to participate.” Passion 2010, which took place in Atlanta, sold out. Strickland’s first time to go to Passion was last year. She caravanned with a group of students to Atlanta.
“I loved it,” she said. UH’s Baptist Student Ministries has been instrumental in getting UH students to Passion, as well as getting UH representation into the top 10 of attendees, which numbered between 30 to 40 UH students. “(BSM) teamed up with some local churches and formed one big group so we could get good group rates, and I believe they did the same thing this year,” she said. BSM Director B.J. Ramon organized the trip last year, Strickland said, “and the rest is history.” “I had heard a lot about it and I wanted to learn how to grow as a Christian, I went to the conference (with UH),” she said. “I loved how they were so mission minded, and God-centered.” Besides having Christians come together for praise and worship, Passion’s other purpose is to raise money for charity. “Do Something Now is with the
Passion conference and it is a ton of different charitable organizations,” she said. “They set up booths that help us understand some of the things that are going on in the world. Last year, about 22,000 students raised over a million dollars through contributions to the charity. In fact, Do Something Now has raised over $3.5 million, Springston said. “Do Something Now is helping to end treacheries like sex trafficking, providing clean water and meeting other pressing global needs,” Springston said. Strickland expects the Fort Worth event to be another success. “I think the one in Texas will be slightly smaller than the Georgia conference, but I think it will still change the hearts and lives of many students who go,” Strickland said. “I highly suggest it to all students.” firstname.lastname@example.org
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Friday, April 1, 2011
The Daily Cougar
opinion THE DAILY COUGAR
EDITOR Andrew Taylor E-MAIL email@example.com ONLINE www.thedailycougar.com/opinion
BUDGET CUTS OR SALARY CUTS? by Brandon Alexander
EDITORIAL BOARD EDITOR IN CHIEF MANAGING EDITORS NEWS EDITORS SPORTS EDITORS LIFE
& ARTS EDITOR
Jack Wehman Newton Liu, Christopher Losee Jose Aguilar, Cristi Guerra John Brannen, Joshua Siegel Mary Baak Andrew Taylor
Label could provide extra firepower in cartel battle
rug cartels may find themselves in even more trouble than normal if new legislation in Congress passes.
Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Austin, introduced a bill Wednesday that, if passed, will designate six top Mexican cartels as “foreign terrorist organizations.” If the cartels are indeed labeled terrorist organizations, the US State Department would be able to charge drug and gun traffickers with supporting terrorism. According to McCaul spokesman Mike Rosen, this is the first time any member of Congress has tried to designate what the cartels are doing as acts of terrorism. The legislation is targeting the Arellano Feliz, Beltran Leyva, La Familia Michoacana, Los Zetas and Sinaloa and Gulf cartels — the most violent and successful cartels in Mexico. The war on drugs has already claimed nearly 35,000 lives since 2006. The proposal is more than just a new title — the distinction would allow prosecutors to tack on 15 years to any conviction of providing aid or supplies to cartels. It would also level a federal death sentence against any cartel action that results in death. McCaul recognizes that cartel actions are not religiously motivated, but said in the Chronicle that the organizations are routinely found “using similar tactics to gain political and economic influence,” as well as utilizing “kidnappings, political assassinations, attacks on civilian and military targets, taking over cities and even putting up checkpoints in order to control territory and institutions.” Frankly, any label that can be used to stop the cartel’s criminal operations is fine. Label them terrorists, mafiosos, drug traffickers — the end result is the same. To put the cartel’s 35,000 death count into perspective, that’s more than 7 times the casualties the US has sustained in the Iraq war — and the cartels have racked it up in half the amount of time America has spent overseas. McCaul seems to have the right idea. If a label is what’s needed to crack down on the violence south of the border, then a label is what Congress should provide.
E D I TO R I A L P O L I C I E S STAFF EDITORIAL The Staff Editorial reflects the opinions of The Daily Cougar Editorial Board (the members of which are listed above the editorial). All other opinions, commentaries and cartoons reflect only the opinion of the author. Opinions expressed in The Daily Cougar do not necessarily reflect those of the University of Houston or the students as a whole. LETTERS TO THE EDITOR The Daily Cougar welcomes letters to the editor from any member of the UH community. Letters should be no more than 250 words and signed, including the author’s full name, phone number or e-mail address and affiliation with the University, including classification and major. Anonymous letters will not be published. Deliver letters to Room 7, University Center Satellite; e-mail them to firstname.lastname@example.org; send them via campus mail to STP 4015; or fax them to (713) 743-5384. Letters are subject to editing. ADVERTISEMENTS Advertisements published in The Daily Cougar do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the University or the students as a whole. GUEST COMMENTARY Submissions are accepted from any member of the UH community and must be signed with the author’s name, phone number or e-mail address and affiliation with the University, including classification and major. Commentary should be kept to less than 500 words. Guest commentaries should not be written as replies to material already printed in the Cougar, but rather should present independent points of view. Rebuttals should be sent as letters. Deliver submissions to Room 7, University Center Satellite; e-mail them to email@example.com; or fax them to (713) 743-5384. All submissions are subject to editing.
Abortion barriers must be erased
n South Dakota and other state legislatures, bills are being passed which would require women seeking an abortion to get a consultation at a center and sign a statement saying they have waited 72 hours before getting the procedure. There is only one abortion clinic in Sioux Falls, S.D., and in addition to the 3-day wait it would take those Marcus who live in rural areas Smith hundreds of miles to reach the clinic. South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard said in a written statement “I think everyone agrees with the goal of reducing abortion by encouraging consideration of other alternatives. I hope that women who are considering an abortion will use this three-day period to make good choices.” Abortion rights groups sued
immediately, and Douggard plans to defend the law in the state court — which will cost an estimated $1.7 to $4.5 million. This is unjustified frivolous spending on laws that have no place being enforced by any government, especially with budget concerns toted as something of supreme importance. Whatever good intentions Douggard claims, this is no more than an another ill attempt to once again apply red tape, guilt attacks and other illogical barriers to the abortion process, and it is beginning to blur the lines of how far states can and are willing to go to effectively destroy abortion practices. His very language implies that in the state of South Dakota, the only good choice is the pro-life choice. The idea of consultation or the requirement of an ultrasound is unnecessary, expensive and overall insulting. Women are fit to make their own decisions.
On the issue of abortion, it’s difficult to imagine someone who hasn’t thought it over extensively before making the decision, and women a significant distance away do not always have the liberty to take off work or have the money to make the long trek to one clinic. Those who were in favor of the law have begun sending donations for the law’s legal defense and call this a victory for protecting unborn children. All this talk of protecting the unborn continues to be nonsense — as it always has been. Instead of espousing individual liberties and then hypocritically proceeding to try and infringe upon them in arguably the most personal matter possible, why don’t lawmakers focus on the children that are already born first? They’re willing to, with their moral SMITH continues on page 5
Budget cuts should affect UH equally
udget cuts loom over UH for the next year and the foreseeable future, so the UH community must do what it can to prevent it from happening. The average UH graduate leaves with $22,000 Brendan in debt, which is above Laws the state average, and with tuition predicted to rise dramatically, this figure is likely to go up. Many UH employees are feeling the pressure too, with low pay, furloughs and a lack of job security. These potential cuts will be tough on UH, but, if indeed they come, we need to make sure that the sacrifices made at our University are smart and equitable. That means that students and lowerpaid workers shouldn’t shoulder the burden alone; those most compensated by UH should make sacrifices too. What defines a high-wage employee?
There are different definitions and justifications for pay disparities, but for the context of this article, let’s find our definitions from the ratio of pay in our country. In 2009, only 5.5 percent of the United States’ working population earned at least $100,000 per year. Since the economic recession has driven up unemployment and underemployment, these people may represent an even smaller percentage of population this year. This portion of society is, by definition, more comfortable than the other 94.5 percent of wage earners, so we’ll call them comfortable for being in the elite eighteenth of the richest country in the world. At our university, 521 employees make $100,000 or more annually, and therefore are in this category. So, how much of the University’s
budget is spent making these comfortable employees excessively comfortable? If these 521 people’s salaries are pooled, and $100,000 is taken out of that pool and given to each of them to maintain comfortable employment, just over $21,000,000 per year is left (without taking away any benefits). Budget cuts for UH are estimated to be $27-33 million per year, so this figure of more-than-comfortable pay amounts from 65 to 77 percent of the total estimated cuts. The University of Texas Tech is cutting some high-paid positions to compensate for its budget cuts. Without advocating for anyone to lose their job, doesn’t it seem like a good chunk, if not the majority, of the budget cuts can be absorbed through cutting the pay of the most comfortable UH employees? LAWS continues on page 5
The Daily Cougar
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confidence, champion the rights of the unborn, but have nothing to do with the child afterwards. Forget paying taxes to educate the child, and ignore providing food and adequate healthcare. It’s not the quality of life for the living that seems to matter, but the hypothetical right to life obviously inspired by religious overtones that have no place in political discourse outside the dictations of our constitution. If the goal is to present options to women in this situation, why cut funding for Planned Parenthood centers that give easier access to sex education, contraception and therefore discourage or limit effective programs in the process? Why so few centers? And why the obvious lack of enthusiasm for the centers in government? Adoption is becoming increasingly less of an option with the overcrowding in foster homes, and those seeking the best place for a child may not find it. Pro-choice does not always mean pro-abortion. Having an abortion is a choice, and one that should be made without illogical barriers or coercion. Whether you agree with abortion or not isn’t the issue; what’s important is that above all, these difficult choices remain able to be freely chosen.
However, at the beginning of this school year, UH President Renu Khator, the highest-paid University employee, was awarded a $75,000 raise, which seems like a step in the opposite direction. This was during the first round of budget cuts, so staff positions were eliminated — some UH workers faced pay cuts in the form of furloughs (forced time off ), and tuition went up as well. Those 521 people may not be able to make all of the sacrifices needed to survive the cuts, but they can certainly do more than they have so far. Students who seek social justice have to make sure that those who can afford to take pay cuts share the burden, so that the most vulnerable at UH don’t have to take all of it.
Marcus Smith is an English freshman and may be reached at opinion@ thedailycougar.com.
Brendan Laws is a sociology junior and may be reached at opinion@ thedailycougar.com.
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Friday, April 1, 2011
COMMENTS AND LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: To the editor: The article written by Dana El Kurd published on March 29, 2011 contains false facts and is slander towards a country that is defending its citizens and its legal right to existence. No nation would stand by idly as its country is being attacked by missiles. Hamas has launched over 60 unprovoked rockets into northern Israel in the beginning of March alone. Israel’s defense forces are the only ones who actively announce that they are going to retaliate, as opposed to any other government. Israel is known to send flyers and pamphlets letting the areas know that they will soon be targeted in response to the attacks from Hamas. Hamas then strategically places women and children in these spots to make Israel seem unjust in the public eye. Furthermore, the media does not mention the brutality committed towards the Israelis. The death of the five Fogel family members who were brutally murdered while they slept was barely mentioned by any news sources. When the Fogel’s were finally mentioned they were not publicly acknowledged. The news stated that the Palestinians that killed this family that night were “intruders” and failed to acknowledge the severity of the massacre, such the infant's throat being slashed, and the four-yearold being stabbed through the heart. These were not intruders; they were Hamas terrorists from Palestine.
Israel is a legitimate country with legal rights. It is terrorized by heartless terrorists as well as by the misinformed public. Stop the anti-Israel bullying. Signed, Daniella Singer Undergraduate, English an enrolled student COMMENTS FROM THE WEBSITE:
From: Respect the right to free press, ideas Isn’t the entire point to be professional about it? This newspaper represents our university and our student body. It’s not just some blog where you can post absolutely anything. Keep it classy and take the rest to MySpace. On newspaper websites (The Economist for example), comments must follow certain guidelines by law: http:// www.economist.com/legal/ terms-of-use#userc... (it’s under “User Created Content: You are Responsible for any Content you Post”). I think this accurately represents what we should strive for. Freedom of speech is awesome, but blatant abuse can have legal consequences... Thanks Andrew. You’re right, if people feel passionately they should put in the work by submitting pieces with research and substance. Also I see nothing racist or “stuck up” in this post, it actually sounds quite encouraging. —Rachel Farhi
From: Think twice before texting behind the wheel Thank you SO MUCH for editorializing on this important story. Driving has become so easy, and distractions so plentiful, that it’s not difficult to forget a simple error or oversight on our part could cause tragic results in just SECONDS. —Jennifer From: Laws on what to wear are out of style Absolutely ridiculous, France. What if a country tried to ban people wearing crosses/stars of David as jewelry around their necks or WWJD bracelets? —Anon The ironic thing about the whole “covering your head with a veil” is that its not even mentioned in the Holy Qu’ran. The idea that women (and only women as some would say) need to cover their heads is based on a mistranslation of a verse and nothing more. —Kris Grant I don’t mind covering your head but covering your face is just ridiculous. I understand that is the culture of some, and I am not trying to offend anyone, I just feel that way. —Mark Leave your comment, give a news tip or send a letter to the editor at www. thedailycougar.com.
Friday, April 1, 2011
The Daily Cougar
EDITORS John Brannen, Joshua Siegel E-MAIL firstname.lastname@example.org ONLINE www.thedailycougar.com/sports
Cougars set to start C-USA play UH looking to bounce back after what coach calls uncharacteristic play Gilbert Requena
THE DAILY COUGAR
AARON CISNEROS/THE DAILY COUGAR
Rims rattle at Slam Dunk, 3-Point Championships Contestants in the State Farm College Slam Dunk and 3-Point Championships brought fans to their feet at Hofheinz Pavilion yesterday. The men’s portion of the three-point competition led off the evening. Andrew Goudelock of the College of Charleston easily advanced to the finals with 23 second-round points and scored just enough in the finals, 16, to be crowned champion of the field of eight. On the women’s side, the competition was a bit tighter. Cougar Brittney Scott advanced to the second round, but could not earn a spot in the finals. Cerie Mosgrove would take the women’s title. Mosgrove and Goudelock would then meet to decide the ultimate champion. Mosgrove would win with 17. Mosgrove had a chance to tie on the last rack, but fell short. The dunk contest capped off the evening. Jacob Tucker of Illinois College was voted in by the fans and did not disappoint. Tucker won the contest easily, earning perfect scores on two of his three dunks. — Cougar Sports Services
The Cougars will open conference play this weekend as they travel east on Interstate-10 to New Orleans to take on the Tulane Green Wave for a three-game set. UH, coming off its third consecutive loss, will look to turn around the losing streak and start the conference portion of the season on a winning note. “You want to get off to a great start in conference,” head coach Todd Whitting said. Instead of dwelling on the past, Whitting wants his team to catch a case of temporary amnesia. “I told the team that what’s happened to this point is over with. We’re 0-0. It’s a new season. “The last few games do not define our BASEBALL continues on page 7
GAMETIME UH at TTulane l When: 6:30 p.m. Today Where: Turchin Stadium, New Orleans On the air: N/A Live coverage: uhcougars.com
The Cougars will look to end their road woes in New Orleans this weekend for their first series of Conference USA play against Tulane. UH has lost three of its last five games. Their last victory was a series-opening win against TCU on March 25. | Courtesy of Nathan Pardee/The Daily Skiff
Talking smack and sports
With Houston hosting the Final Four, who will leave town as national champions? Keith Cordero Jr.: Huskies or bust
Christopher Losee: Have a toast for the little guy
Joshua Siegel: A case of the Kentucky blues
Judge Brannen: The Avatar wins again
My bracket is busted, but the field for the Final Four in Houston is all set. With no No.1 and No. 2 seeds headed to Reliant Stadium, the Final Four is wide open, but my favorite to win is head coach Jim Calhoun’s No. 3 seed Connecticut. UConn has the best player in all of college basketball in Kemba Walker (sorry Jimmer Fredette fans). They also have the most proven coach in Jim Calhoun, who has led a Huskies team to a National Championship in 1999 and 2004, along with four total Final Fours. With all due respect to the Kentucky Wildcats and the Cinderella duo of Virginia Commonwealth and Butler, the Huskies have won nine games in a row after a horrible finish in the Big East regular season. I predict UConn will get past Kentucky and beat the winner of VCU and Butler. Five wins in five nights in the Big East Tournament and four NCAA Tournament wins led by Walker and freshman Jeremy Lamb have UConn two wins away from a third title since 1999. I love the story of the VCU Rams and Butler Bulldogs, but it’s crunch time and UConn has a closer in Walker; his ability to make shots gives the Huskies the best chance to win it all.
It’s a toss-up for sure Keith, but picking Connecticut is a poor choice. I would think that you would have more to argue than Kemba Walker’s athletic ability; not pointing out anything new there. Anyways, Butler and VCU have shocked the nation upsetting some of the best programs on several occassions, but the rising star among the group is Virginia Commonwealth. Even though VCU posted a sub-par regular season, it has dominated teams in its last five tournament games, winning by 12 points or more in three of those wins. VCU does not rely on the abilities of one player; it relies on four of them. Yes, VCU is at a great disadvantage playing returning Final Four team Butler, but the Cinderella story will have a happily-everafter conclusion. After the Huskies’ Tournament run comes to an end, the stage will be set with VCU in the final facing off against the Kentucky Wildcats. With every bracket busted, it would be an exciting change of pace to have an underdog team such as the Rams win it all. It’s already a miracle that the team has made it this far, so start believing in miracles — because VCU is going to find out that the slipper fits.
Chris, that’s really cute. I’m glad you’re sticking up for the little guy. Really, it’s touching. But the Rams season will turn into a pumpkin at some point. Their offense relies too heavily on 3-point shots. You need to have a backup plan. What’s VCU’s plan B? Also, teams usually don’t win it all on their first try, they usually have to wait their turn. Keith, I love Kemba to death, he’s a great human and ball player. I like the Huskies, but I like the Wildcats just a little bit more. Unlike last year when Kentucky’s lack of a perimeter game was their undoing, this Kentucky team has a multi-faceted offense. Right now they’re clicking. The scoring trio of Terrence Jones, Brandon Knight and DeAndre Liggins will be a lot to handle for the Huskies — and whoever Kentucky faces after that. The emergence of post player Josh Harrellson has added a new dimension to Kentucky’s offense. They have the most talent of all of the teams, and as long as head coach John Calipari can keep their heads straight, they are the team to beat. They have so many weapons and they also play defense. The players have bought into Calipari’s belief that the team is bigger than the player, and they are peaking at the right time.
Looking at the last four teams remaining, it is easy to say that the winner of the UConn and Kentucky game will easily crush the winner of Butler and VCU and leave the Bayou City as national champions.
TALK BACKWhat do you think? Post comments at thedailycougar.com/sports
It’s surprising that no matter what the Bulldogs and Rams do, they manage to attract a steady stream of doubters. This is not like college football where teams from a big-time BCS conference are the only ones capable of becoming national champions. The Horizon League and Colonial Athletic Association can just as easily produce a champion as the Big East or SEC. Butler coach Brad Stevens and VCU coach Shaka Smart have both taken different paths than Jim Calhoun and John Calipari, and could spark a new generation in college basketball. Verdict While I don’t envision VCU pulling off the unthinkable, I do think Butler can with its experience from last season. Chris gets the win for thinking somewhat similarly. Facetime The name’s Smart — Shaka Smart.
The Daily Cougar
BASEBALL continued from page 6
ball club.” The Cougars (12-14) are in the midst of a nine-game road trip, and their energy level is starting to falter. “The fatigue factor of being on the road so much is going to bring you down a little bit,” Whitting said. “We’re in the middle of a ninegame stretch, all on the road and against ranked teams.” In the team’s last three losses, the Cougars have struggled with pitching and hitting. They have allowed 32 runs while scoring 11. “When you don’t get out of the gates with your starting pitching, it kind of puts the whole team in a mental funk,” Whitting said. “Our position players sometimes get a little discouraged, but I told them that sometimes they have to pick up the pitching staff.” Teams performing similarly The Green Wave (18-6, 1-2 C-USA) have had a solid season so
far, but have slumped as of late. They have lost two of their last three games and have dropped out of the top 25 in the USA Today Coaches poll. The Green Wave are led by catcher and Bellaire native Jeremy Schaffer. Schaffer leads Tulane in nine offensive categories including batting average (.409), runs (21), hits (38), doubles (17) and RBIs (18). Last season the Cougars lost their series against Tulane, dropping two out of three, including their last meeting 8-6. The Cougars lead the all-time series against Tulane 28-24. “We have a chance to be right in the thick of things in this conference,” Whitting said. “But we need to get off to a good start.” The series opener is at 6:30 p.m. Friday, 2 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday at Turchin Stadium in New Orleans. The Cougars will return to Texas on Tuesday to face Texas A&M at 6:35 p.m. in College Station. email@example.com
Because Chris can be a woman’s name, too. Though The Daily Cougar strives for accuracy and fairness in its reporting, mistakes happen. Please report any errors you see in the paper to the editorial staff. Corrections will run on Page 2 as needed to amend the record. To report a correction, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call (713) 743-5362.
Friday, April 1, 2011 ■ 7
Friday, April 1, 2011
The Daily Cougar
EDITOR Mary Baak E-MAIL email@example.com ONLINE www.thedailycougar.com/arts
Fraternity festival makes a comeback
THE DAILY COUGAR
McClelland’s ‘Victoria Day’ is a guaranteed hit Melissa McClelland and her husband, Luke Doucet, appeared on “Good Day Houston” in January to promote their CDs and announce their plans to release an album together. The audience received one of two single albums of their choice — I had no idea when I left the studio that McClelland’s album “Victoria Day” would become one of my favorite albums to listen to. But make no mistake; this is definitely a listen-to-it-allthe-way-through CD. Without a bad song in the bunch, this album offers something appealing to every listener and lovers of many different genres. Melissa McClelland’s voice has awesome tone quality and purity. The music itself has somewhat of a rustic feel, and the CD offers feel good, up-beat tunes as well as soulful ballads and abstract love songs. The album was produced by Six Shooter Records, a small Toronto-based production company, and therefore never received a lot of attention from the mainstream American crowd. However, this CD is worth a listen and can be purchased online from the artist’s website www.melissamcclelland.com or downloaded from iTunes. — Ellen Goodacre
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of the year, my study spot is usually a spot on the floor in the closest building to me. I also sometimes find myself eating lunch from vending machines in whatever building I am in so I can further limit my time spend outside. I enter every class in a state of heatinduced malaise, thinking there must not be a God if such weather exists, or that I am possibly already in hell. After I fail to work out any philosophical argument for this, I spend the remainder of whatever class I am in fantasizing about taking naps in meat lockers or getting frostbite. I become a bad student during the warmer months. I have missed class on several occasions because I didn’t want to deal with walking to class in the heat, or having to wait 20 minutes for my car to drop below 80 degrees during my commute. I find the humidity offensive and totally unnecessary. Literally within a minute of walking outside on particularly humid days, I find myself sweating profusely, and I am not someone who generally sweats a lot when I am in other climates. An extra stick of deodorant and a bottle of cologne are a constant companion to the books and notebooks in my backpack during these months. I reapply them throughout the day, worried I will offend people sitting
UH’s Alpha Chapter of Delta Epsilon Psi is hosting its annual Festival of India March 31 through April 3. The event will take place in Houston for the first time since 2008, when it attracted over 4,000 attendees. “FOI is a huge deal to our fraternity,” Alpha Chapter President Mukesh Pillai said. “It is already known as one of the nation’s top 10 South Asian cultural events, which is a huge milestone. We originally threw FOI in 2008 and it was a very big success.” Pillai says the most anticipated event of the weekend will be the talent show that will be held at the Cullen Performance Hall. “The premiere event of the weekend that FOI really prides itself on every year is the talent show,” he said. “We have more than 10 of the best teams from all around the nation ready to put on a great show. The event itself is MC’ed by Dan Nainan and we are bringing Penn Masala, an acapella group from Pennsylvania, to perform 2 lengthy acts in the talent show. The winner of this talent show will be leaving with $4,000.” This year’s FOI is receiving support from some major sponsors such as Network Booking & Talent Agency, Cosmodesigns, Aleberry, IndoRaja, Masala Radio, Gujurati Samaj of Houston, So For Real Marketing, Voice of Asia and Jethva Law Firm. The weekend will also feature a celebration of Holi on Saturday at Lynn Eusan Park on campus, along with a highly competitive basketball tournament — where the winning team will receive a $3,000 cash prize. Finally, the weekend will provide nightlife parties for college students. The official launch party presented by Delta Phi Omega, Kappa Phi Gamma and Delta Epsilon Psi will take place at Evo Lounge with
HUMIDITY continues on page 9
FESTIVAL continues on page 9
Summer is fast approaching, which means it’s almost the time of year that sweating profusely — even when the sun’s not out — becomes a common thing. Be sure to keep deoderant and perfume or cologne handy so as not to offend those around you. | Photos.com
Houston, we have a humidity problem Daniel Renfrow
THE DAILY COUGAR Hot weather has come early this year. I am quickly approaching my seventh year living in Houston, but I still have not managed to acclimate myself to the heat and humidity. There is a long running joke in my family that anywhere you go in the world will have better weather than Houston. My father has been working in Siberia for a couple of years and he still makes this joke, so there must be some truth to it. I can’t imagine how miserable the summer months, really two-thirds of the year, must have been for Houstonians before the invention of air conditioning and bottled water. I picture them stumbling through their days yearning for a glass of tepid water and then a quick death somewhere in the shade. Things really haven’t changed that much. Students must endure long walks between classes on nearly molten cement, not to mention even longer walks to their parked cars. Because of these miserable walks, I find myself limiting my campus mobility during the warmer months of the year. During the winter I aimlessly wander around campus during my free time. I am shifty and can’t study in the same place for too long. I guess I have wanderlust on a small scale. However, during the warmer months
Last chance to see the Mountain in Blaffer Emily Holley
THE DAILY COUGAR The satirical exhibit at UH’s Blaffer Art Gallery museum “First Look: Okay Mountain” shows the audience a creepy — yet at times funny — way to look at cults and communes. The first piece walking into the exhibit is the Trust Staircase. There are 8 steps and each one states another step on how to achieve self-mastery — for example, “forget what you think you know.”
At the top of each step are glowing coals that seem to symbolize a difficult journey. The reward for reaching the top is to fall onto a mattress with a crudely drawn target. Further into the exhibit, another sculpture is a set of bunk beds with neatly folded sheets atop pillows and glowing pictures of relaxing sunsets at the foot of the bed. There are mirrors at the head of the bed, but they are not meant for vanity. Walking around to the back of the beds reveals switches, a clipboard and mirrors of the two-way variety. After taking in the sculptures there is a
three-tiered bleacher set up so that one can view a video that explains how the commune works and should function to new inductees. The film’s narrator is a soft spoken woman dressed in neutral tones. Her voice is meant to be soothing and impersonal. She explains that everything you bring in will be taken away and you will be given everything you need while living there. The feeling of isolation and removing of ones personality appears to be what the MOUNTAIN continues on page 9
The Daily Cougar
HUMIDITY continued from page 8
next to me in class even though they are probably concerned about the same thing. There are times that I wish I had no immune system so I could just walk around campus in a giant air-conditioned plastic bubble during the summer months. Sure, my dating life would take a major hit, but I could sit in my air-conditioned bubble and philosophize about how my situation really wasn’t that bad while watching healthy students trudge to class. It’s only March and it is already quite hot out. I look forward to being made miserable by the heat with the rest of you for the next 8 to 9 months, the length of Houston’s summer. firstname.lastname@example.org
FESTIVAL continued from page 8
veteran disc jockey DJ Indo spinning. Friday night’s party will be held at Club Isis and will feature a special performance from Houston rap legend, Z-Ro. The final party will take place on Saturday night at Stereo Live and will feature another special performance, this time by platinum-selling artist Slim Thug. With such a rich history, this year’s FOI looks to only build on the legacy that events of the past have left. “The event first originated in 1992 under a different name,” Delta Epsilon Psi alumni Ajith Kay said. “What once was known as a local celebration in Houston has grown to an annual statewide event that attracts over 4,000 participants throughout the weekend. Since then, the event has traveled to different cities such as Austin, Dallas and College Station. The event gained monumental traction in 2008 in Houston, as the brothers of Alpha Chapter made history by attracting over 4,500 people throughout the weekend. Since then, the bar was raised to increase that number annually. This year, as it returns, we intend to surpass that number.” email@example.com
Mexico City leaves lasting impression Miguel Cortina
THE DAILY COUGAR The idea of attending a university with over 200,000 enrolled students is nearly unfathomable, but it’s the reality for college students at National Autonomous University of Mexico. It’s the biggest university in Latin America — in fact, it’s so expansive that the part of the city where it’s located is called Ciudad Universitaria — or in English, University City. Once walking through the campus, we not only see the Olympic Stadium used in 1968, but also the works of art by Juan O’Gorman, Diego Rivera and David Alfaro Siqueiros. UNAM is also a public university, but contrary to the United States, students in Mexico’s public universities don’t pay any tuition. However because of that, it is very hard for students to get in. In 2009, it was
ranked in the 100 best universities worldwide. It’s also home of the Pumas, the Mexican soccer team that is in first place this year so far. Not far from UNAM is Xochimilco, a part of the city where all you have to do is get in a trajinera, a sort of gondola, and relax. We went there on a beautiful Friday afternoon where we enjoyed more than 6.5 pounds of carnitas. We bought the carnitas along with tortillas, guacamole, cheese and cactus and took them to the trajinera for the ride. The canals in Xochimilco are very wide. You can find mariachis in their canoes asking other people if they would like to have some music played. We also found vendors, who instead of sitting in the street, sat in their canoes and sold jewelry, textiles and T-shirts. After we finished the ride, some went to buy their last souvenirs from the stands that are at
Houston students had a chance to experience the culture of Mexico City and UNAM for their History 4396 course. | Miguel Cortina/The Daily Cougar the dock’s exit. Because it was our last night, we had to celebrate. We decided to go to Plaza Garibaldi, a medium-size plaza that is surrounded by cantinas and is full of mariachis. We enter to Tenampa, perhaps the most famous cantina in Mexico. It’s here where the Mexican artists went every weekend to have a good time. We stepped out and made a deal with the mariachis for 4 songs. After singing and dancing, we drove
to the Lucha Libre, where the Mexican wrestlers fight. We each got a wrestler’s mask and enjoyed the different kinds of fights. We watched, yelled, clapped and chanted for whoever was winning. After all the fun, we left Mexico City thinking about when we would come back. This megalopolis has trapped our hearts in hopes that one day we’ll return. firstname.lastname@example.org
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continued from page 8
“Okay Mountain” video is trying convey. Satirically speaking, of course. The actors do a good job of playing up the cult appearance. One of my favorite scenes is when the narrator goes over the proper way to wash dishes, the senior buddy looks over at the junior buddy in a slightly disapproving manner for missing a spot on the dish. And then humor shifts for second when there is a brief 1984 BigBrother-is-watching-you moment in the film. The narrator says calmly but firmly, “remember you are being watched,” to make sure that the “buddies” do their work correctly. The exhibit ends Saturday. Do yourself a big favor and check it out. It is one of the most creative and interesting modern art exhibits I have seen in a while.
Friday, April 1, 2011
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Friday, April 1, 2011
The Daily Cougar
Testing out the future Dozens of students from greater Houston area high schools attended UHâ€™s Event 2011 on Tuesday, looking to get information on a possible college career here. Students from schools like Debakey, Sharpstown and Klein Collins attended the recruitment event, hosted by the Black Leadership Network, Inc. â€œThe â€˜Event 2011â€™ is a great opportunity to show Houstonâ€™s top performing African-American high school students and their parents everything the University of Houston has to offer,â€? Freshman Admissions Counselor Tiffany Anderson said by email. Student presenters provided historical perspectives of buildings, highlighted the positive aspects of UH and provided advice based on their experiences on campus. â€œUH is a friendly and inviting environment. It was exciting to learn about the campusâ€™ history and traditions because you really canâ€™t build towards the future without embracing the campusâ€™ foundation or past,â€? Koneshia D. Ringer, Klein Collins high school junior, said. â€œOverall I picked up some extremely helpful information,â€? she said. For Event 2011, students were able to travel to campus not only with their school counselors but also with their parents. â€œThe parent and counselor presentation was very informative, with a good discussion of scholarship opportunities and costs of financing an education for the coming year,â€? said Dorothy Ringer Sumner, a parent representative. â€“Tap Nguyen/ The Daily Cougar
RANKINGS continued from page 1
The Law Center is ranked 38th out of 200 by the National Law Journal, a US periodical that reports legal information of national importance to attorneys. â€œThe National Law Journal (where we rank 38 out of 200) focuses on what percent of graduates are employed by major law firms. Another ranking has measured the number of graduates who have become the â€˜best lawyersâ€™ in America, where we finish 42nd,â€?
Nimmer said. Another publication, the National Jurist, ranks law schools in terms of â€˜best valueâ€™ based on a variety of variables, and the Law Center ranked 26th out of 200. The University of Washington and Lee ranked the Law Centerâ€™s Law Journal in the top 3 percent of over 1400 journals in the country. â€œEach group chooses its own measures,â€? Nimmer said. â€œUH Law does well on all of them. We do best on objective measures, such as job placement at graduation, quality of entering class, faculty-student ratio, and the like.â€?
The ranking system does not affect funding changes, however, it does affect the selection process of applicants and faculty members. â€œRankings affect the choices of applicants and of employers. We have been a highly ranked law school for many years and that has helped us attract and retain a strong student body and placement profile,â€? Nimmer said. â€œPotential applicants need to understand that the US News Rank is not the only assessment, nor even the best assessment of a law school.â€? Historically, the Law Center has always been highly ranked, Nimmer
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said. â€œSix years ago, we had fallen to the â€™70s in the US News rank, although we remained high in other rankings,â€? Nimmer said. â€œWe have steadily moved up in the US News rank and the others since then.â€? Associate Dean of the Law Center, Richard Alderman said recent tuition increases have allowed the college to make better accommodations. â€œOur Health Law and Intellectual Property Programs are both ranked in the top 10, and that obviously helps the overall ranking of the school.
â€œRecent tuition increases have allowed us to improve our faculty student ratio and the credentials of our students, both of which also factor into the rankings,â€? Alderman said. â€œWhile making predictions about the US News ranking is like trying to pick the NCAA Final Four, we fully expect that we will continue to move up in the rankings.â€? In 2010, the school ranked 60th overall with specialty programs ranked 4th in health care law, 8th in intellectual property and 10th among part-time schools. firstname.lastname@example.org
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COMICS & MORE
The Daily Cougar
Friday, April 1, 2011
Dim Sum by Ho Yi Lau
ACROSS 1 Bloke 5 Earlier 10 Database command 14 Unusual 15 Valveless horn 16 Toward shelter 17 Nosecone covering 18 Zeno follower 19 Soft metal 20 Downgrade 22 House part 24 Per person 27 Ride the waves 28 Learns (2 wds.) 32 Oktoberfest tune 35 Citrus drink 36 More than willing 38 Hotel staffers 40 Pull dandelions 42 Imported auto 44 Fast pace 45 Consumer advocate Ralph 47 Zealous 49 “Shogun” apparel 50 Old harps 52 Pirate (2 wds.) 54 — — for the money 56 Inversion problem 57 Of vital importance 60 Situate 64 Rock’s Bon 65 Scold 68 Maj. Hoople’s word 69 Statuesque model 70 Moves like lava 71 Step on a ladder 72 — shui 73 Was sincere 74 Letter encl.
The Fishbowl by Thomas Hernandez
sudoku How to play
Each row must contain the numbers 1 to 9; each column must contain the numbers 1 to 9; and each set of 3-by-3 boxes must also contain the numbers 1 to 9.
Previous puzzle solved
DOWN 1 Some PC screens 2 Crop hazard 3 Singer Guthrie 4 Chirped 5 “Nature” channel
6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 21 23 25 26 28 29 30 31 33
Same old grind Inventor Sikorsky Spicy stews Win back Utah feature (2 wds.) Bogus butter Enjoy, as benefits Media mogul Turner Maneuver slowly — scratch Anthracite Even bigger Spotted animal Best possible Emotionally demanding Border state Russian ballet company
34 37 39 41 43 46 48 51 53 55 57 58 59 61 62 63 64 66 67
Sun-dried brick Bumpkins Cook in a wok Stemming Yul’s film realm Casino city Let fall Many a TV show Gawkers Nevada lake Pear or quince Physiologist Pavlov Ms. Minnelli Water, in Baja Tuna holders Perimeter Skippy rival Cave, often Part of i.e.
2010 UNITED FEATURE SYNDICATE INC.
Previous puzzle solved T R A P
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H V A P E AWA N L OC C T U R E H E E D S L I ME T O A S E S F I F R A N R EM A G A ME D I R E C L I N E D A L E X P O S T S F E R A T S HO A C R E MON L A I R U N D
OR R E A L
R O T HO I T E R OWN S N I S I T R C P E T E H E A D A S H I U T T T E E E R D
O K A Y
A L M A
R A P S
H O U R S
I D I O T
P E N N Y
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#HECK OUT 4HE $AILY #OUGAR ON YOUR SMARTPHONE 3NAP THE 12 CODE TO TRY IT OUT
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Friday, April 1, 2011
The Daily Cougar
FOCUS. HUSTLE. HYDRATE. BELIEVE. P O W E R A D E I O N 4 A D V A N C E D E L E C T R O LY T E S Y S T E M C O M P L E T E W I T H 4 E L E C T R O LY T E S L O S T I N S W E A T. ®
ADVANCED ELECTROLYTE SYSTEM
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