VOLUME 102, ISSUE 87
Defending the First Amendment since 1911
JUNE 12, 2013
VIDEO | UniversityStar.com Summer Fashion: Local retailers give their insight into this summer’s most popular fashion trends.
STUDENT HEALTH CENTER
National law impacts Student Health Center Private insurance to be accepted under Affordable Care Act By Nicole Barrios News Reporter
Austin Humphreys | Photo Editor Danielle Shollar, Texas State alumna, took her daughter Kaylee to therapy sessions several times a week while attending college. Kaylee was diagnosed with polymicrogyria, a developmental disorder, when she was four months old.
Alumna earns degree, cares for daughter with rare disorder
By Caitlin Clark Editor-in-Chief
ock monkeys are tucked all around Danielle Shollar’s apartment. They sit on the kitchen countertops, peek out from piles of toys and line one of the windowsills. One special sock monkey displayed on a table near the apartment’s entryway wears pink plastic glasses made to resemble the pair her daughter Kaylee Rae Shollar wears. Her husband bought a sock monkey for their daughter every day she was in the hospital awaiting a diagnosis that would change the family’s life. The tradition continued once they returned home, and the sock monkey collection has now grown to about 60. Danielle’s 20-month-old daughter has been diagnosed with polymicrogyria. She said her daughter’s brain has too many folds, which has caused severe developmental problems. Kaylee cannot make noises typical of children her age, support herself or crawl. She is also legally blind, has seizures and uses a feeding tube to eat.
“Right now I’m trying to help her realize she has five fingers, not just a hand.” —Danielle Shollar Danielle had to balance the demands of college with caring for her daughter by herself and trying to find more information about the disease,. She graduated from Texas State with an elementary education degree in May and lived by herself with Kaylee in San Marcos. Her husband John Shollar travels
20-month-old Kaylee Rae Shollar recquires a feeding tube to eat. Kaylee is also legally blind and has occasional seizures. for his job and is often out of state. Danielle said his absence has been difficult to handle, but his company’s insurance covers all of their daughter’s medical bills. Danielle said she noticed their daughter was developmentally delayed about four months after she was born. Kaylee was not tracking movement with her eyes and was having up to six episodes per day where she would become stiff and unresponsive. These episodes were later revealed to be seizures. “One day she had a fever, so we took her to a pediatrician who started asking us a lot of questions, and things started to dawn on me,” Danielle said. “Then (the pediatrician) told us that she had polymicrogyria.” Not much is known about polymicrogyria or the long-term implications
of the disease. Danielle said she is unsure if her daughter will ever be able to speak, eat or walk. Danielle said she took her daughter to therapy five days a week while she was enrolled at Texas State. A nurse watched Kaylee while she went to class and did homework at night. She said doing therapy on and off throughout the day is the most important part of caring for her daughter. “Right now I’m trying to help her realize she has five fingers, not just a hand,” Danielle said as she gently stroked each of her daughter’s fingers. “I’m also trying to make sure she knows she has two arms and two legs.” Danielle said most days she lays her daughter down on a blanket on the floor to play.
See KAYLEE, A3
Students who visit the Student Health Center will be impacted by a new set of rules and regulations as part of compliance with the national Affordable Care Act beginning in August. Regulations in the Affordable Care Act, also know as Obamacare, will require insurance companies to provide different levels of healthcare plans for people, said State Rep. Garnet Coleman (D-Houston). Coleman said the ACA will also prohibit insurance companies from refusing policies to those with pre-existing conditions. The health center is expanding its student insurance plan and will begin to accept private health insurance beginning in the fall under the ACA, said Karen Gordon-Sosby, associate director of the Student Health Center. Gordon-Sosby said the student health insurance plan is regulated to include 100 percent coverage for preventative care under the ACA. The new plan will also eliminate many of the exclusions and limitations that were previously included in the student health insurance plan, Gordon-Sosby said. The modified plan has been in the works for two years and will have a higher maximum dollar amount for recipients. “The plan is going to cost a little bit more, but the coverage is going to be significantly better because some of those consumer protections that are in the ACA do apply to college health insurance plans,” Gordon-Sosby said. Gordon-Sosby said the Texas State Health Insurance Plan is offered through the Aetna insurance company. She said all colleges are making similar changes to their health care plans to be in accordance with the ACA. Young adults can remain under their parents’ health insurance policy up to age 26 under the act, which Coleman said is “a really big deal.” “The group that’s most likely to be uninsured are people who have aged out of their parents’ insurance under the previous plans,” Coleman said. The health center is taking steps to accept private health insurance plans since most students will have coverage from their parents under the act, Gordon-Sosby said. She said the health center currently only accepts the Texas State student insurance plan. Students will be able to have a preventative exam without co-pay when private insurance is accepted in the health center, Gordon-Sosby said. Leyla Mayorga, communication disorders junior, said her yearly physical is usually cheaper at her doctor’s office in Austin because they accept her insurance. However, she said it will be more convenient for her to go to the health center once they accept her private insurance. Gordon-Sosby said the health center plans to accept private health insurance by the beginning of the fall semester. The health center will still continue to offer affordable prices for all students, and those without insurance may still use the health center, Gordon-Sosby said.
City manager to resign in September No charges filed in Village on Telluride shooting case San Marcos City Manager Jim Nuse announced June 4 that he will resign from his position at the end of September. According to a city press release, no reason was given as to why he decided to step down from his role as city manager. Nuse became city manager in 2010 after working with the City of Round Rock for more than 27 years. He was Round Rock’s city manager from 2002-2010. “I’ve enjoyed being a member of this great San Marcos team,” Nuse said in the press release. “There is still a lot to do over the next four months, and I look forward to continue addressing significant issues and tasks with the city council and staff.” During his time in San Marcos, Nuse
served on the Hays Caldwell Public Utility Agency and the Greater San Marcos Partnership. Nuse is also known for the introductory song he wrote and sang about his transition to San Marcos called “Rock to the River.” His most recent song, “City Worker” is a tribute to “dedicated city employees,” according to the press release. Nuse earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Wyoming and completed master’s coursework at the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin. —Report compiled by Karen Zamora, news reporter
By Taylor Tompkins News Editor
The San Marcos Police Department is investigating a shooting at The Village on Telluride that left one man in critical condition. An unidentified 29-year-old man was transported to Brackenridge Hospital with multiple gunshot wounds after officers responded to a call from the student housing complex at about 5 a.m. June 4, said city spokeswoman Melissa Millecam.
In an email sent to residents, the apartment management staff said a resident’s gun was fired during an altercation with a guest. Police are in contact with both involved parties, according to the email. No charges have been filed in the case, and police are considering turning it over to the District Attorney’s office for further action, Millecam said. The names of the parties involved cannot be released due to the ongoing investigation, Millecam said. The complex, formerly known as Aspen Heights, is located on 201 Telluride St.
A2 | The University Star | Wednesday June 12, 2013
Planning and Zoning Commission blocks Sessom Creek development By James Carneiro News Reporter
Members of the San Marcos Planning and Zoning Commission unanimously rejected the rezoning of land near Sessom Creek for the development of a high rise during their May 28 meeting. The vote came after multiple attempts to develop the unused land behind Sessom Drive. The attempts were met with opposition from some San Marcos residents who lived in older, single-family neighborhoods near the project. The project, proposed by developer Darren Casey, consisted of an 800-bedroom, 9.5 acre mixed-use complex. In order for the project to be built, more than nine acres of land needed to be rezoned from single-family residential to vertical mixed-use, said John Foreman, city planning manager. According to Casey’s plans, the proposed five-story property would have housed 380 apartment units and 16,000 square feet of retail space. More than four acres of parkland next to
the proposed site of development would be dedicated to the city under Casey’s plan. Foreman said the planning staff determined Casey’s project was located in an ecologically sensitive area. He said the staff found the project did not meet the Land Development Code criteria for “superior development” and therefore recommended the commissioners deny the construction request, Foreman said. Steve Drenner, a lawyer representing Casey Development, Ltd., said the company would go to great lengths to comply with the zoning code. Drenner said the planning staff’s environmental impact report was incorrect because of the “tunnel-vision view” of each element that goes toward environmental sensitivity. Drenner said the impact depends upon water-quality treatment around the site, regardless of what is built there. “There would be no negative impact on neighbors,” Drenner said. “There would be no visual burden on people living in the area.” Drenner said the proposed development
project would bring the city an estimated $1.35 million in total tax revenue during the first year and about $6.76 million in the first five years. Drenner said this amount of money would mean an “economic boom” for San Marcos because the development was a “first-rate” project. Austin attorney Renee Hicks represented those who were opposed to the development, including the Sessom Creek Neighborhood Association. “This is a developer’s request for special treatment,” Hicks said. “(Casey is saying) give us special treatment, ignore your staff, ignore your current comprehensive zoning map, ignore what your Parklands Commission has done and let us perch about 800 people in a multi-story development above long-established neighborhoods.” During the public hearing last month, 24 citizens spoke against the project and eight spoke in support of it. Francis Brian, San Marcos resident, said the over-construction of student housing complexes had transformed a “once peace-
ful town” into a “noisy, traffic nightmare” with “alcohol-drenched, unpleasant neighborhoods.” Commissioner Travis Kelsey said Casey’s development was “fabulous” and he’d support it if it were being built somewhere else like Thorpe Lane. Kelsey said there were obvious environmental issues with building the project behind Sessom Drive, and it would threaten single-family homes around the development. Planning and Zoning Chair Bill Taylor said he knew the city master plans, which are designed to guide growth in San Marcos, would probably not allow the project to be constructed behind Sessom Drive. Project Engineer Richard Reynosa said it would be difficult to mitigate the damages to the river that would occur with the development. Reynosa also said it would be “difficult to assess” whether an 800-bedroom apartment would cause more environmental damage than 50 single-family homes.
San Marcos enters agreement with San Antonio water system By Minerva Hernandez-Garcia News Reporter
The City of San Marcos will soon be able to save money on a variety of services as a result of entering into a water supply agreement with a San Antonio company last month. Members of the San Marcos City Council approved two water resolutions during their May 7 meeting. The first resolution allows the city’s participation in a cooperative purchasing arrangement with the San Antonio Water System. The second resolution awarded a contract to Wachs Water Services for the purchase of a water valve assessment, improvement and asset information program for the Water/Wastewater Utility, which will cost $123,517.50. Tom Taggart, executive director of Public Services, said interlocal agreements and resolutions are common for governmental entities. The agreements allow governments to purchase through each other’s water systems, saving the city money.
“If one entity has a contract with a given vendor, these local agreements allow for other governmental entities to use those contracts for needed goods or services,” Taggart said. Taggart said because the San Antonio Water System has a larger water system and is on a “bigger scale” than San Marcos, they are able to get pricing that is more favorable than what San Marcos would be able to get on its own. “Entering an interlocal agreement with the San Antonio Water System will allow us to utilize their contracts and purchasing mechanisms that they competitively get,” Taggart said. Taggart said although this will save San Marcos money on a variety of services, the main purpose of entering the agreement was to obtain a contract with Wachs Water Services for a “valve, service and operation program.” Wachs Water Services will operate and maintain the valves, which control the flow and availability of water, in the San Marcos water system, Taggart said. If the valves are
By Randi Berkovsky Trends Reporter
Pelon Fantastico Local non-traditional chef Non-traditional chef Pelon Fantastico plans to introduce San Marcos to a different kind of organic food—insects. Dishes featuring grasshoppers, mealworms, scorpions and spiders will soon be coming to the Farmer’s Market on The Square, potentially ushering in a new wave of eating options. The University Star spoke with Fantastico about this unique idea, the dishes he hopes to cook up and his plans for the future. RB: How did you come up with the idea to cook edible insect dishes? PF: I’ve done many different things as a chef, but this is new and it needs to be done. It is done everywhere else but the United States. It was brought to my attention a few years ago, and I got fixated on it. It should be difficult but interesting. RB: Why would people want to eat insects? PF: Insects have protein, nutrients and pretty much everything you need and want in food. They also don’t carry diseases like meat and veggies can. I want to promote insects as a good thing because they are. I am also a big fan of fresh and local food. That is what these insects will be. You can tell the difference. RB: Tell me about some of the dishes you plan to make with the insects. PF: Of course, I will be making the dishes with insects incorporated into them. I will be making spreads, pesto and infused oils made out of spiders and scorpions. I am also doing chocolate-covered insects. RB: What exactly is your plan for the future? PF: It is still a work in progress. It has to be completely to my standards and legitimate. I have to get all kinds of permits to be able to do this, and I need to do it correctly. I am shooting for August to be open at the Farmer’s Market. RB: How are you feeling about doing this project? PF: A lot of people don’t understand, but people are interested and excited for me to do this. I want to succeed where I am at. I have worked hard and found ways to do this. It needs to be done.
not functional due to age or mechanical failure, the company will be in charge of repairing or replacing the valves. Taggart said the resolution to enter the interlocal purchasing agreement with the San Antonio Water System is in effect, but Wachs Water Services has not started looking at valves. They must still provide insurance and other information, but once all the paperwork has been submitted the city can proceed with the program. City spokeswoman Melissa Millecam said the agreement is strictly for cooperative purchasing of supplies. The city will not be buying water from the San Antonio Water System, but will instead benefit from lower buying costs of supplies and contracts. “We have our own water system and they have theirs,” Millecam said. “The agreement will give us access to purchase contracts at beneficial costs to the city.” Millecam said this agreement is not unique to the San Marcos water system. Other areas of government participate in cooperate purchasing.
“The City of San Marcos runs a water system, an electric utility system and a broad range of government services,” Millecam said. “In this case it’ll help us do some cooperative purchasing on the water side.” Millecam said the interlocal purchasing agreement will allow San Marcos to purchase contracts and supplies at lower costs. Councilman Shane Scott, Place 6, said on top of saving money, the interlocal purchasing agreement and the contract with Wachs Water Services is for maintenance. Wachs Water Services will make sure all valves and the water system are current and operational. If they are not, Scott said a break in the water line would shut off a larger area of people for a longer period of time. “If we stay on top of this and maintain the valves, then you don’t have to worry about such a large area of people being affected,” Scott said. Scott compared the interlocal purchasing agreement to buying in bulk and said the agreement boils down to “cost savings.”
The University Star | News | Wednesday June 12, 2013 | A3
Austin Humphreys | Photo Editor Kaylee’s parents began collecting sock monkeys when she was awaiting a diagnosis in the hospital.
KAYLEE, continued from front “When she wants to play I’ll get her bells and she thinks it’s so fun,” Danielle said as she placed bells in Kaylee’s hands and shook them back and forth. Since Kaylee cannot sit up or support herself, she laid on her back while her mother placed toys in her hands. Danielle said toys like bells, which make noise, are helpful because Kaylee has cortical vision impairment. Her eyes are normal structurally, but the part of her brain that interprets vision is not working properly, she said. Danielle smiled as her daughter shook with silent laughter at her “peek-a-boo sock monkey,” which covers and removes its hands from its eyes. Kaylee’s fingers, which she balls into tiny fists when they are not in hand splints, are stained with purple paint from earlier in the day. One of Kaylee’s favorite activities to do is finger painting because it requires minimal assistance from her mother. “Kaylee painted that picture all by herself,” Danielle said proudly, pointing to a canvas covered in smears of purple, blue and green paint. Lauren Kattchee, Danielle’s cousin, said she is proud of how the young couple has handled raising a child with a rare disease. Kattchee said her cousin has been “really strong through everything.” Danielle’s mother-in-law echoed the same sentiment. “It makes me want to cry just talking about it. It’s just hard for them every day, and I don’t think anyone realizes what they go through,” Stephanie Shollar said.
“They’ve handled this so well. Being so young they’ve done better than most parents my age would.” Danielle said she and her husband want to have more children and are having genetic tests done to determine the likelihood of another child being born with polymicrogyria. “So far the genetic tests haven’t found anything,” she said. “If it’s genetic there will be a 25 percent chance that every child we have could have (the disease). We love Kaylee, but I don’t know if we could do all of this with two kids because it’s a lot of work.” Danielle recently moved out of her apartment to return home to her family in Houston where she will complete the student teaching portion of her education degree, which she was not able to complete in San Marcos in addition to caring for Kaylee. Her family will help care for Kaylee while she completes her student teaching. Kaylee’s seizures have been reduced from about six to one episode per day, and she recently started a new diet that will hopefully yield some more improvements, Danielle said. Danielle is not sure how her daughter’s disease will affect her family in the future, but for now she remains hopeful. “I don’t know if she’ll be able to talk one day, but I just hope she gets to the point where she’ll be able to communicate,” Danielle said. “Right now I’m glad she can definitely tell you that she’s happy.”
A4 | The University Star | Wednesday June 12, 2013
Emmanuel Ramirez | Star Illustrator
Students should be watchful, ready to call UPD
exas State students spend their days juggling academics, jobs, internships and social lives. Between cramming for exams and planning trips to The Square, forgetting to factor safety into the equation is fairly easy. Within the past few weeks a Porsche was driven into the San Marcos River, a handgun was drawn during an argument at Sewell Park and a shooting occurred at The Village on Telluride, among other incidents. A university can sometimes feel like an idyllic place where nothing bad can happen, but these events should remind students to make staying safe both on and off campus more of a priority. Both the University Police Department and San Marcos Police Department do a good job of keeping the Texas State community protected and secure, but
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students also need to be responsible for their own safety. The easiest way for students to stay safe is to be aware of their surroundings at all times. It may seem obvious, but students often become overconfident in what could potentially be dangerous situations. Students should always be on guard, and if something does not look or feel safe, the place or situation should be avoided and reported to UPD immediately. Calling 911 should be always be top priority. When dialing 911 from a cell phone, the caller is connected to SMPD. They will transfer the caller to UPD if assistance is needed on campus. If the situation is not urgent UPD also has a non-emergency line. Students should keep any numbers related to UPD saved to their phones so police can quickly be contacted if need be. For example, UPD was dispatched to the intersection of Sessom Drive and
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Comanche Street June 4 when a student waiting at a bus stop reported three males in a vehicle at a nearby stoplight had begun to yell at her. She also saw the front passenger of the vehicle brandish what appeared to be a four-inch knife. The student paid attention to her surroundings and called UPD when she felt threatened. This student exhibited the kind of safety awareness that all Bobcats should practice. UPD also offers Bobcat Bobbies, a safety escort service for students walking on campus at night. Bobcat Bobbies are in operation from 6:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. Students should always avoid walking alone on campus at night, no matter how short a distance they may be going. Though taking a short walk from an allnighter in the library back to a dorm may not seem very risky, it only takes a splitsecond for something bad to happen. If walking at night cannot be avoided, either call a Bobcat Bobbie or try to use
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the buddy system. The editorial board encourages everyone, from incoming freshmen to seniors who know Texas State and San Marcos like the back of their hands, to make an effort to practice preventative safety measures this summer and during the upcoming school year. College is filled with lots of opportunities for having fun and new experiences, but sometimes situations that are dangerous do arise, and students need to be equipped to handle them. It may sound clichéd, but it is always better to be safe than sorry.
The Main Point is the opinion of the newspaper’s editorial board. Columns are the opinions of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the full staff, Texas State University Student Media, the School of Journalism and Mass Communication or Texas State University.
The University Star is the student newspaper of Texas State University and is published every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday of the spring and fall and every other Wednesday in the summer semesters. It is distributed on campus and throughout San Marcos at 8 a.m. on publication days with a distribution of 6,000. Printing and distribution is by the New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung. Copyright Wednesday, June 12, 2013. All copy, photographs and graphics appearing in The University Star are the exclusive property of The University Star and may not be reproduced without the expressed written consent of the editor in chief. The first five issues of each edition of the paper are free. Additional copies of the paper can be purchased at 50¢ per copy. Contact The University Star office at (512) 245-3487 to purchase additional copies.
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The University Star | Opinions | Wednesday June 12, 2013 | A5
Alternative options for tenure track necessary for university U
Alex Pernice Opinions Columnist Mass commmunication junior
niversities must consider an alternative to tenure because the current system can unfairly reward undeserving professors, as well as lock educators with outdated knowledge into positions they may not be qualified for in the
future. Academic tenure is a topic that has been the subject of heated debate for a long time. For some, tenure is seen as a way to honor those who have been high-achieving throughout their careers. However, if undeserving professors are awarded tenure, it can prove detrimental to universities. The process of tenure and promotion review at Texas State is similar to that at
other universities. Faculty members are reviewed each semester through course and department evaluations. According to the Texas State website, faculty members are only considered for tenure and promotion because of “clearly documented evidence of high quality teaching, sustained peerreviewed scholarly and creative activity and service.” This sounds good on paper, but the effectiveness of tenure in promoting quality teaching is questionable. Many have wondered whether the process of evaluation currently in place may make it possible for educators of less-than-tenure caliber to slip through the cracks. Furthermore, many professors may become lazy after receiving tenure, causing the quality of their classes to sharply decline. According to a May 28 University News Service release, Texas State administrators recently approved promotions for 54 faculty members and granted tenure to 33 professors. If tenure is meant to be reserved as an
honor for exceptional professors, perhaps the university should be less liberal in its awarding. Tenure should be reserved for professors who excel within their fields as well as inspire students to succeed. While there are many tenured professors who deserve the honors they have received, those who do not live up to their reputation are counterproductive to student learning, the university’s budget and overall quality. There would be fewer complaints among students if they could be more involved in the selection of professors who receive tenure. Students are already somewhat involved in the process by completing course and department evaluations each semester, but many do not take the surveys seriously because they do not feel they can make a difference. Perhaps administrators could add an optional comment area on evaluation forms, giving students further opportunity to discuss what the professor did effectively and ineffectively. This would likely provide more accurate feedback than sliding scales
LETTER TO THE EDITOR
Former ASG president’s P&Z comments misrepresent student body From Benjamin Hutchins Ph.D. Candidate
On March 14, the San Marcos Planning and Zoning Commission held its regular meeting. On the agenda were a series of requests by ETR Development Consulting LLC, on behalf of Darren Casey Interests and others for a rezoning of properties near the junction of Sessom Drive and Loquat Street. The rezoning would allow construction of a mixed-use, multifamily residence— essentially a five-story student housing project with business space on the first floor. As evidenced by the “Save Sessom Creek” yard signs, the “Invest in San Marcos, Support Rezoning” T-shirts and record attendance by citizens at this and the previous public meeting, this proposal is a hot-button issue for the City of San Marcos. Accordingly, community members are given the opportunity to publicly comment in support or opposition to proposals. At the beginning of the public comment section, the commission chair requests that speakers give their name, address and importantly, any organization that the speaker is affiliated with that has an interest in the proposal. My understanding is that the intent of this statement is to make it known to the commission that a speaker is speaking on behalf of that organization and that the speaker’s opinion represent those of his or her affiliation. Nathan McDaniel, student body president of Texas State University at the time of the March 14 P&Z meeting, made a comment during this
session, and I feel that this was an inappropriate misrepresentation of the student body. In his introduction, Mr. McDaniel stated his position as student body president but never stated that he was not speaking on behalf of the student body. To my knowledge, there have been no student polls or on-campus discussions related to this development project, nor any student body consent to allow Mr. McDaniel to publicly represent us, the student body, on this subject. Later in his comment, he reiterated his elected position and discussed relevant issues that the student body was facing. Given the intent of the chair’s statement at the beginning of the public forum and Mr. McDaniel’s repeated mention of his role as student body president without any acknowledgment that he was not speaking on our behalf, it seemed apparent that Mr. McDaniel was purposefully, albeit implicitly, misleading the commission to interpret his statements as being made on behalf of the student body. In my opinion, this misrepresentation is unacceptable. I believe that public opinion, especially when verbalized at these public hearings, affects decisions made by the P & Z committee at least for some of the commission members. This is especially true on this polarizing issue about which many community members are very passionate. Otherwise, this proposal would not have continued to languish without resolution for over 18 months. Furthermore, I believe that student opinions on this issue are especially important to the com-
mission because it profoundly and most significantly affects us— where we live and where we drive. Consequently, it is critical that student opinion is accurately represented. So, how can student opinion by better represented in the San Marcos community? First, under no circumstances should representatives of the student body make comments that could be interpreted as representing the student body without prior student body discussion, either as a poll or public discussion. Second, students should be present at public meetings. This will lead to first person representation and accountability from our representatives. I suspect that Mr. McDaniel might have altered his wording if a large contingent of students were there watching. As a side note, there were a few students present that spoke both for and against the proposal. In addition to a calendar and agendas for future meetings, past commission meetings, including the most recent, can be viewed in their six-hour entirety with public comments at the City of San Marcos’ website http://sanmarcostx.gov/index.aspx?page=864. If, like me, you feel that this this is an important issue, I encourage you to attend future commission meetings on the subject. You may be surprised and concerned to find yourself, unknowingly and without consent, being represented or misrepresented. —Benjamin Hutchins is a Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of Biology
TALK IT OUT STRAHAN COLISEUM EXPANSION
of vaguely worded qualities could ever glean. It may be that tenure is no longer the right way to go about rewarding educators for their service. It would seem appropriate that the university grow with the times and find new ways to compensate educators without compromising the quality of education, because students today are so significantly different from those of yesteryear. Additionally, because technology is constantly changing, the tenure system could be a considerable detriment to future students by securing professors specialized in outdated technologies in their positions. Texas State can secure the satisfaction of students and provide the best learning environment possible by finding a new way to applaud outstanding work among faculty members. Finding alternatives to tenure as an incentive is important. Without change, future students may find they are learning from educators who have given up, are teaching an outdated curriculum or who are simply not up to par.
Texas State needs to bring back safe-ride program soon I
n light of recent drunk drivingrelated accidents in San Marcos, Texas State officials should make the decision to bring back the Students With Alternative Transportation program. The university decided to cancel the S.W.A.T. program in 2009, according to an April 15 University Star article. Before the program was Molly Block dropped, S.W.A.T. provided a safe Opinions Columnist ride home for Texas State students Mass commmunication senior too intoxicated to drive at the end of the night. A combination of a lack of volunteers and the reallocation of funds eventually caused the program to fail. Now, however, it seems that the program may be reinstated to serve Bobcats once again. Drunk driving has become a serious problem at colleges nationwide. According to a study published in April 2012 by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, about 80 percent of college students drink alcohol. Almost half of that number reported binge drinking in the two weeks prior to being surveyed. A large percentage of college students drink alcohol regularly, but many do not realize the consequences their drinking could result in. An estimated 3,360,000 students between the ages of 18 and 24 have driven under the influence of alcohol, according to the same study. Car accidents and DUIs are only two of the consequences students risk when they drive drunk. Students who choose to drive while intoxicated can face additional disciplinary action from the university, especially if they are underage or on campus. Many students do not realize they could be putting their professional and academic futures in jeopardy by choosing to drive drunk. San Marcos officials could see a dramatic decrease in drunk driving-related incidents among students by bringing back an improved S.W.A.T program at Texas State. The S.W.A.T. program struggled to receive adequate funding in the past. However, there are several ways students and Texas State administrators could work together to support a safe-ride program financially. The Texas A&M program CARPOOL is a safe ride program that, unlike S.W.A.T., has seen huge success, according to the same University Star article. The program was created in 1999 and remains an integral part of campus safety to this day, according to the Texas A&M website. Fundraisers, alumni dollars and corporate sponsorship bring in most of the program’s $100,000 annual budget, of which A&M only provides $6,000. If S.W.A.T. is brought back to the Texas State, organizers should strive to model the revamped program after CARPOOL. Hosting fundraisers during the upcoming semester would be an excellent way for organizers to collect funds and raise awareness for the new S.W.A.T. program. Once educated, many will be inclined to help the program knowing it could potentially save student lives. Service organizations and clubs at Texas State could make adjustments to contribute to the S.W.A.T. program. Student service organizations could help supply the program with the staff it needs to function by requiring a certain amount of S.W.A.T. volunteer hours from their members. The S.W.A.T. program had issues in the past, but Texas State officials should make the decision to bring the program back to the university. Drunk driving will likely continue to be a problem among college populations long into the future, and by bringing S.W.A.T. back, many student lives could potentially be saved.
EXPAND IT By Alex Pernice Opinions Columnist Mass commmunication junior
Texas State students must support the potential expansion of Strahan Coliseum. The expansion would benefit Texas State on multiple levels and provide sufficient seating for commencement ceremonies
now and in the future. It is the university’s responsibility to expand Strahan for future sporting events as Texas State climbs the collegiate ladder of athletics. Expansion would help match the quality of the university’s venues to its teams and provide a confidence boost to Texas State athletes. The transition of Texas State to bigger, better conferences should be followed by the construction of
a higher caliber arena. One of the biggest benefits of expansion is the additional space that would be available for commencement ceremonies. Texas State saw its largest commencement ceremony this May, and with enrollment on the rise future ceremonies will likely only get bigger. Without expansion, Strahan may not be able to accommodate future commence-
ment ceremonies. It is essential that Texas State grows with its student community, and that means consistently making moves to properly fit the entire Bobcat family. Students must support the expansion of Strahan as the next step in improving the athletic image of Texas State and as a solution to increasingly larger commencement ceremonies.
two of the six graduation ceremonies were projected to exceed the Coliseum’s maximum capacity this past semester. A more reasonable solution to the seating problem would be to create additional ceremonies organized either alphabetically or by major. With more ceremonies, the friends and family of graduates could easily fit within Strahan without its maximum capacity being exceeded. Another factor to consider is the financial toll the expansion would take on
students. The money needed to expand Strahan would be better used on projects that more urgently affect students. The lack of seating at commencement ceremonies seems trivial compared to issues such as the campus counseling center not being able to accommodate students and vital bus services facing cuts. It does not make sense to spend valuable time, money and manpower expanding Strahan Coliseum while more pressing issues sit on the back burner. Furthermore,
the commencement seating issue can easily be solved without expanding the Coliseum. Strahan Coliseum should not be expanded even though there has been a significant growth in commencement ceremony attendance. Instead, Texas State officials should find a cost-effective way to split graduation ceremonies while focusing resources on more urgent issues.
LEAVE IT ALONE By Molly Block Opinions Columnist Mass commmunication senior
Instead of expanding Strahan Coliseum to fit more people, Texas State administrators should find other ways to accommodate the growing commencement ceremony turnout. Spending millions of dollars to expand Strahan is not the answer, even though
A6 | The University Star | News | Wednesday June 12, 2013
ROOM TO GROW
30 Pre-leased Rooms
30 Available Rooms
Multi-family housing complexes target student population
Hillside Ranch Phase 1 Expansion
88 Units, 104 Bedrooms 75% Pre-leased
The Village on Telluride 172 Units, 508 Bedrooms 66% Pre-leased
Copper Beech 416 Units, 1238 Bedrooms 86% Pre-leased
Vistas Apartments 257 Units, 532 Bedrooms 90% Pre-leased
Comprehensive Master Plan includes new multi-family housing projects By Minerva Hernandez-Garcia News Reporter
New apartment complexes are constantly being built around San Marcos, and Texas State’s growth and demand for student housing are able to fill hundreds of additional bedrooms each year. There are currently eight multi-family housing projects under construction and 13 under consideration for future development, according to a May status report released by the city. The projects include expansions to existing apartments and the construction of new housing complexes. Most apartments in San Marcos that opened last fall or will open this fall have pre-leased more than half of their units, according to their leasing representatives. Matthew Lewis, director of planning and development services, said the occupancy rate of existing apartments in San Marcos is high. Vickie Pustka, leasing manager for Copper
Beech, a townhome community on Mill Street, said the complex has pre-leased 87.85 percent of its units or about 1,088 of 1,238 bedrooms for the upcoming semester. The Vistas Apartments, a new student apartment complex located on North Fredericksburg St. slated to open fall 2013, has pre-leased about 479 of 532 bedrooms, 90 percent of its units for the fall, according to leasing manager Amanda Kamenoff. The Village on Telluride currently has a 66 percent of its units filled, or 335 of 508 of the new bedrooms built in the last phase of expansion, said leasing manager Melissa Konstancer. Lewis said there is a need to create a diversity of housing complexes for the community that are “long-term, good investments” because of the university’s trends in growth and plans for expansion. Lewis said the city had to play catch-up instead of being ahead of the curve in terms of housing because of the outdated city Comprehensive Master Plan. “Rather than being reactive to the growth
as we have been, we are trying to plan for the growth appropriately,” Lewis said. Lewis said the newly completed Comprehensive Master Plan will give San Marcos a clear direction in how growth should occur in the city. Lewis said the main reason the multi-family market is coming to San Marcos is to largely fill Texas State’s student housing needs. John Foreman, planning manager for the City of San Marcos, said multi-family projects aimed at students are typically on similar construction time schedules to be completed for the fall semester each year. “We had that last year with The Retreat and the last phase of Aspen Heights (now Village on Telluride),” Foreman said. “This year it will happen with The Avenue Apartments, Vistas Apartments and several others.” Foreman said the number of multi-family projects in San Marcos is higher than that of other cities of the same size, but the number is comparable to other towns with universities. Foreman said since the majority of San
Marcos developments in the last few years have been multi-family housing, this leads to a culture of people who are renting and not owning homes. Foreman said this has resulted in San Marcos’ “fairly low” home ownership rate of 25 percent. Lewis said a recent community survey showed some San Marcos residents believe multi-family developments are “happening too fast” and want the city to address the issue. However, Foreman said there is a definite growth in the populations of average collegeage and nontraditional students, but there are also more families moving into the city as well. He said this creates a need for more apartments that will only be met by making more housing available. “Typically, when you see growth in multifamily development it is in response to some kind of a demand,” Foreman said. “Obviously, there is a demand for new residential dwellings.”
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Saved by the Alumnus rescues dog, opens ‘Sinners and Saints’ pub By Randi Berkovsky Trends Reporter
Austin Humphreys | Photo Editor Philip Nadeau, Sinners and Saints Bistro and Pub owner and Texas State alumnus, takes a bite out of his signature “Dirty Dog.” Sinners and Saints offers beverages and a line of specialty hot dogs just off The Square.
While pet sitting a black labrador named Bella, Philip Nadeau, Sinners and Saints Bistro and Pub owner and Texas State alumnus, encountered a problem. After biting a UPS man, Bella was placed in canine incarceration. Nadeau needed a way to raise enough money to free Bella. Thus, the Dirty Dog dish at his restaurant was born. The hot dog, a beer-boiled sausage topped with slow-cooked pulled pork, house-made green chili macaroni and cheese and Dirty Dog sauce was made and sold to help raise money to free Bella. After three weeks, all of the money needed to free the dog had been earned. The demand for the hot dogs spurred Nadeau into continuing the food’s sale, as well as creating and introducing new dishes for the residents of San Marcos. Sinners and Saints operates as a bistro by day and a pub with snacks at night. Nadeau’s sister owned The Coffee Pot, which was popular among students before it closed. The restaurant plans to recreate many of The Coffee Pot’s signature drinks for students to continue to enjoy. “A lot of people think that we just started up a hot dog business,” Nadeau said. “But I’ve been in the restaurant business for 10 years. We just wanted something fast, productive and different.” Sinners and Saints is serving up other classic dishes made-in house, such as a shrimp cocktail. They offer a London Platter, consisting of fish and chips along with three large shrimp. Nadeau said they want to make as many in-house dishes as
possible. Along with the food, there is a full service bar with daily happy hours and signature Sinners and Saints drinks. The bistro and pub’s location near The Square makes it a popular late-night destination for students. Sinners and Saints offers free Wi-Fi and outlets around the entire building for laptops. Patrons can enjoy a variety of activities such as trivia nights on Sunday. One of the most popular events at the bistro and pub is Mustache Monday, where those who have mustaches get half-priced drinks and appetizers. Pink and black faux-mustaches are passed out at the door so everyone can enjoy the special. “It is the chill laid-back atmosphere that makes the restaurant perfect for anyone,” said Felisha Bull, public relations senior and Sinners and Saints’ public relations intern. Bull said the restauarant is looking to introduce new events for the upcoming football season. “A true pub is about community,” Nadeau said. “It is for people to come during the day. We want people to study and hang out here.”
B2 | The University Star | Trends | Wednesday June 12, 2013
Austin festival brings together television stars, creators ‘Parenthood,’ ‘Friday Night Lights,’ ‘Boy Meets World’ cast and crew among those in attendance By Jordan Gass-Poore’ Trends Reporter
Fans and industry insiders tuned in June 6-9 for the second season of the ATX Television Festival in Austin. In celebration of the medium, the fourday event looked back at its history, where it is now, and where it is headed through screenings and panels. Executive producer David Hudgins and writer Sarah Watson discussed their involvement with the NBC comedy-drama “Parenthood” during a highly-attended panel in the ballroom of the InterContinental Stephen F. Austin Hotel. Mae Whitman, who plays Amber Holt on the show, Miles Heizer (Drew Holt), Sarah Ramos (Haddie Braverman) and Matt Lauria (Ryan York) spoke at the event as well. InterContinental Whitman said she believes the show has been successful because there are not a lot of television shows where the audience gets to see the characters “grow and change and actually encompass those changes and become different people.” “I think partially, every year just gets better and better because you really do get to know the people that you’re watching, and you’re along with them on all these journeys,” sheWhitman said. “You know where
the changes have taken place in their lives because you’ve been with them through the most intimate moments of their lives.” . Not much was said about the upcoming fifth season of “Parenthood,” but most panelists seemed hopeful that Lauria will return as York, a military veteran diagnosed with posttraumatic stress disorder and Amber Holt’s love interest. Lauria also attended the “Friday Night Lights” press conference to reminisce about his time playing Luke Cafferty on the NBC and DirecTV series that concluded its fifth and final season in 2011. “Friday Night Lights” was primarily filmed in Austin and Pflugerville, Photo courtesy of Jack Plunkett but in a 2007 episode, many of the scenes were filmed around San Cast members from “Boy Meets World” reunite at the ATX Television Festival June 7 in Austin. Marcos and Texas State, which was “Girl Meets World,” which is currently long-lost film background. used as a stand-in for the fictional awaiting a series pickup by the Disney Anson Mount, actor in the AMC westTexas Methodist University. Much like the cast of “Friday Night Channel, centers on Cory, Topanga, their ern series “Hell on Wheels,” has not quite Lights,” stars of the 1990s ABC series teenage daughter Riley, her older brother escaped his early fame from the 2002 “Boy Meets World” reunited in Austin dur- Elliott and best friend Maya. Austin native Britney Spears-fronted “Crossroads.” Mount, who is also an adjunct assistant ing the festival to discuss experiences on Peyton Meyer will play Riley’s potential professor at Columbia University School of set and what to expect from its upcoming love interest Tristan Friar. Savage said it was easy for him and the Arts, said he was approached by one of spin-off “Girl Meets World.” Ben Savage, who played the eponymous Fishel to pick things up where Cory and his students with the idea of parodying his “Boy” Cory Matthews in the coming-of-age Topanga left off in “Boy Meets World” 13 scenes in “Crossroads.” Now that his days gracing the covers comedy, was joined at a press conference years ago. While cancelled-too-soon and cult televi- of teen magazines have come to an end, by Rider Strong (Shawn) and show creator Michael Jacobs. Danielle Fishel (Topanga) sion series were celebrated, some burgeon- Mount, 40, can next be seen in next year’s had a pre-taped Q-and-A that was played ing stars in the medium were reminded of “Non-Stop” and is working on a book about what they may have believed to be their the casting process. for fans at a prior event.
By Jordan Gass-Poore’ Trends Reporter
Alumnus discusses unorthodox poetry style, gives writing advice As the “Voyeuristic Poet,” Branch Isole, born Marc S. Gentile, explores the issues and emotions people may often experience but do not always voice. The Texas State alumnus draws inspiration for his poetry from the choices that are made or are avoided based on these unvoiced experiences. In the 1960s he moved from California to Texas, having never lived in the Lone Star State, to pursue a bachelor’s degree in education at Texas State. Isole said his fellow students’ friendly dispositions were a pleasant and “unusual” surprise. He was born in Osaka, Japan to a military family that traveled extensively throughout his youth. His travels, both physical and spiritual, continued after his college graduation. Isole has lived in Hawaii for more than a decade. It was in Hawaii where he wrote his first poem and legally changed his name. Isole has since written 22 works, from poetic prose to erotica, spirituality and self-help, three of which were released last spring. Jordan Gass-Poore’: What is “voyeuristic poetry”? Branch Isole: The tagline is “looking out, seeing in.” Unlike most poets, my work
isn’t biographical. It’s about people and events that go on in my world then I comment on them. What I’ve found looking out and reflecting is that our behaviors are pretty normal and that people can usually see themselves. We can identify issues and emotions in the world that we can see in ourselves and this helps us grow as a person. JGP: How are the themes of spirituality and sexuality similar or different in your work? BI: Sexuality is a part of us and our human nature. As human animals we have a sexual nature and a spiritual nature. Both sides are heavily emphasized. I focus on the spiritual because I see a need today to reconnect with that part of our character. Even though I write from a Christian perspective, I recognize all religions and individuals’ spiritual relationships with each other or his or her god. I don’t try to push the spiritual thing. I don’t try to convert people. My job as a writer is to make a connection with people’s emotions and to make people think and take off their blinders, to discover the importance of the spirit. JGP: How have your travel experiences influenced your writing, if any? BI: They were opportunities to live in different places and interact with different
people. I had a well-minded upbringing. My travels gave me my keen sense of observation. I’m very in-tune with my surroundings. It helped me hone my sense of observation. JGP: What are most people’s initial reactions to your work and “voyeuristic poetry”? BI: They initially think it has to do with sex. The more they get into it they understand the purpose behind the stories and realize it’s not all about sex. Each of the prose stories deal with everyday emotions. It’s a growth process for me and the readers. JGP: Why did you move to Hawaii? BI: I was making a change in my life. I
decided to go all the way. I had a mid-life epiphany, changed my entire lifestyle. The spiritual walk is the foundation of life. Everything I write is to drive people to a spiritual life (and) plant that seed for their spiritual awakening. JGP: What is your advice to aspiring authors? BI: Don’t be afraid of writer’s block. A lot of people get antsy. Writer’s block can be good. It gives you a chance to step back and mentally expand. Aspiring writers ready to go to the marketplace have to have a website (with) a shopping cart (option), so their fans can buy their work. Aspiring writers don’t have to have big time publishers.
Piano festival, national radio show hosted at Texas State NPR’s ‘From the Top’ broadcasts live from San Marcos By Fiona Riley
Musicians from around the world gathered in San Marcos June 1-9 to both perform and learn about their art as part of the Texas State International Piano Festival. The festival was sponsored by KMFA and TPR, classical radio stations located in Austin and San Antonio respectively,
said Jason Kwak, associate professor in the School of Music. “This is a way to attract really great talent from around the world,” Kwak said. “Recruiting was a part of starting this event, but more than that we wanted something really big and eventful for the culture and community of San Marcos.” National Public Radio broadcasted the program “From the Top” at the Texas State festival. The program features young talent from across the nation, focusing on musicians aged 11-23. “From the Top” has a regular weekly audience of approximately 700,000 listeners, and anticipated the same number for the performance on June 8. “For ‘From the Top,’ it isn’t going to be a normal recital,” Kwak said. “It’s inter-
active. There’s a lot of interviewing, and there’s much more. It’s not just for music lovers, it’s for everybody.” Kwak said he anticipated nearly a full house for the “From the Top” performances. Pieces performed among the “From the Top” recitals included a piano and voice piece composed by a 13-year-old boy, a piano trio of 12 and 13-year-olds and a fivepiano arrangement of “Stars and Stripes Forever.” “We record the show all over the country, sometimes all over the world,” said David Balsom, an NPR producer. “One thing that’s interesting to us about the Texas State International Piano Festival is that we’ve had performers from ‘From the
Top’ who have been participants at the festival, so we knew that the level of musicianship at the festival was quite high.” Balsom said he hopes the “From the Top” broadcast will boost the piano festival’s visibility and number of applicants in upcoming years. One of this year’s applicants and performers, Yu-Ci Liao, is a piano performance graduate student at Texas State and participated in the college division. “Playing piano is the only way to survive,” Liao said. “It always makes me feel better. That’s the reason I keep studying it, and the reason I came to the United States. We cannot live without music.”
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Wittliff to receive new collection Actor, playwright Sam Shepard featured in latest exhibit By Zach Mayer
The Wittliff Collections recently introduced a new exhibit called “The Writer’s Road,” featuring works by Pulitzer Prize-winning actor and playwright Sam Shepard. Best known for his roles in popular movies such as “Black Hawk Down” and “The Notebook,” Shepard’s exhibit is part of the Wittliff’s Southwestern Writers collection. Shepard’s career has spanned over 50 years and yielded accolades including Academy Award, Golden Globe, Tony and Emmy nominations. “For such a well known actor, his private life and his work process is pretty shielded from public view,” said Steve Davis, Southwestern Writers collection curator. The exhibit was prompted by the 2013 release of a book and documentary based on a 50-year correspondence between Shepard and his former father-in-law Johnny Dark, said Chad Hammett, senior lecturer and exhibit co-curator. The collection will feature the duo’s correspondence, as well as other notable works by Shepard, Hammett said. Each part of the exhibit includes a significant work in Shepard’s career from its beginning to the present, including the Pulitzer Prize-winning play “Buried Child.” Exhibit visitors will be able to see rough drafts, notes and final copies of Shepard’s screenplays, fully showing his unique writing process, Hammett said. . “This exhibit shows pretty clearly the great writers are
Star file photo
the ones who fix those drafts that have all of the scratches, red marks, cut outs and arrows,” Hammett said. “It can be kind of inspiring to get to see that even the writers that are considered the most respected in the world still have to revise. Their first draft is nowhere near (what) the final draft is going to be.” The release of the documentary on Shepard corresponded well with the development and opening of the collection, said Michele Miller, Wittliff Collections media rela-
tions and publication specialist. “There are many things coming together right now, and it was perfectly timed for us to open,” Miller said. Hammett said the documentary will screen at the Wittliff Collections on Oct. 10, and the museum will host a celebration of both the exhibit and the book on Nov. 9. He said he hopes Shepard will attend both events. “The Writer’s Road” will be on display through February 2014.
Bobcat authors provide entertaining summer reading options By Brenda Urioste Trends Reporter
While tanning poolside or taking a break during summer jobs, students can keep their minds alert by reading books written by fellow Bobcats and alumni. Texas State is known for its talented professors and diverse alumni, and the creations that spawn from these individuals can make up an eclectic mix of books. From fictional accounts of fraternity life familiar to college students today to a series following a clairvoyant who tries to save a city under attack, everyone can find something to enjoy from this short selection of Bobcat books. “I think it’s important to support fellow Bobcats, and this is one way of doing that,” said Jaelyn Lyles, music perfor-
mance sophomore. For something that requires less time but allows for deeper thinking, one can try “Kiss It Up To God.” The book is a collection of eleven poems written by Nadine Mozon, associate professor in the department of Theatre and Dance. Mozon’s everpresent energy is transferred into words in the book. The selected poems include relatable ideas and can appeal to a wide audience. . Another faculty member from Texas State’s Theatre and Dance program, Eugene Lee, has written many highly acclaimed plays as well as one musical. For those who do not usually read play scripts, starting with one written by a member of the Bobcat family is a great place to begin. If students have some free time and want more of a commitment, they might enjoy alumnus Scott A. Johnson’s “The
Stanley Cooper Chronicles.” The story is centered on Stanley Cooper, who is able to see ghosts after a near-death experience. Now at three books and counting, the most recent addition to the series was entirely funded by fans via Kickstarter. Johnson’s short stories and novels are tales that spark interest amongst sciencefiction fans. From tales of ghosts and ghouls to solving cases of cold blooded murder, alumna Marilyn Rucker’s book “Sax and the Suburb” is a mix of wit and adventure. Rucker’s book was awarded a 2012 B.R.A.G. Medallion as an outstanding self-published novel. Another highly praised book by a Texas State alumnus is Ross Bolen’s “Total Frat Move.” Bolen’s book parallels today’s summer blockbusters as he exploits the wild life of fraternities. Fast-paced and highly
humorous, Bolen’s “Total Frat Move” documents the fictitious but outrageous life of Townes Prescott as he joins a fraternity. “Total Frat Move” caught a lot of attention as it recently hit the New York Times Bestseller List. Lizzie Velasquez has also gained attention with her autobiography “Lizzie Beautiful” in which she shares her inspiring story. She candidly describes living with a rare undiagnosed condition which makes her unable to gain weight. In her other book “Be You, Be Beautiful,” Velasquez shares how she learned to deal with negativity and love herself. “She has an amazing story that I think everyone could benefit from hearing. She’s just really inspirational,” said Baileigh Jones, theatre sophomore.
The University Star | Wednesday June 12, 2013 | B5
Athletes compete in national championship
Lyssy, Titzman represent Bobcats in Oregon series
Texas State Athletic Director By Odus Evbagharu Sports Editor
After speaking to The University Star about Texas State’s one and only year in the Western Athletic Conference, Athletic Director Larry Teis followed up on the discussion of Bobcat athletics heading into the Sun Belt conference. OE: Is Texas State satisfied with its position within the Sun Belt Conference, and is Texas State in a position to make any kind of move further up the conference ladder? LT: We are satisfied with the Sun Belt Conference, and we always want to make ourselves better, so we are attractive to the Sun Belt and the rest of the country. We need to play into the Sun Belt, and our fans need to come to our games. I hear all the time we need to be in this league or that league. We need to support the Bobcats no matter what league we are in. OE: Does it discourage you as an athletic director that the Sun Belt has been picked apart in recent months by Conference USA, as the WAC was picked apart just before you joined the conference? Obviously, the Sun Belt has done its part to add new members, but the reality is that the Sun Belt is subject to more changes in the future if the trend continues. LT: Every league is subject to change. Our goal was to be FBS (Football Bowl Subdivision) football first, and we have done this. Conference realignment is crazy and at times ridiculous. The Sun Belt finished third among the five non-BCS (Bowl Championship Series) conferences last year in football. The WAC was first, MAC (Mid-American Conference) second, Sun Belt third, MWC (Mountain West
By Bert Santibanez Sports Reporter @bertsantibanez
Star File Photo
Conference) fourth and Conference USA fifth. The Sun Belt still has the four bowl teams in the league. People don’t understand how good Sun Belt football is. We played a great home schedule last year and too many people missed great football by staying at home. Get to the games. OE: Would you be opposed to having home football games on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday or any non-traditional night to have the games televised on ESPN or any other sports network? And to your knowledge, do you know if the Sun Belt will be moving forward with a similar setup for exposure purposes? LT: All the five non-BCS conferences have midweek games. If we do, we need our fans to show up. Too many times, you watch those midweek games on television and the stadium is empty. Some of the betterattended midweek games are in the Sun Belt. Fans at some of the Sun Belt schools support their teams really well. We need to do the same. OE: How important is it to establish a new rivalry in the Sun Belt, and how long do you believe it will take to do so? Without UTSA or Sam Houston State, the faces in the Sun Belt aren’t as recognizable to the average fan. Do you believe that will hurt attendance? LT: It only hurts attendance if you are not a football fan. Goes back to what I have said before, other schools support their teams while we look for excuses not to attend.
The Texas State men’s and women’s track team sent three members to participate in last weekend’s NCAA Championship held in Eugene, Oregon. Danessa Lyssy, Texas State senior, competed in the women’s heptathlon in Eugene finishing 22nd out 24 competitors. Lyssy was one of two Bobcats who qualified for nationals, along with senior Kelsey Titzman. Lyssy’s most impressive performance in the heptathlon came during the shot put event, throwing 13.05 meters, .40 meters short of the leader, coming in 4th place. During the javelin throw, Lyssy placed 15th tossing for 36.82 meters. Lyssy failed to place within the top 10 of any event other than shot put during her performance in the heptathlon. Lyssy finished with a total of 5,294 points. . “I knew we had to have a pretty good day in order to move up,” said Coach Keith Herston. Coach “I really thought we could finish in the top 16 for sure, but it just wasn’t our day. In conference, we had a PR (personal record) in the long jump, and I knew we needed that again to have a good day too, so that was the key. Long jump has been one of the
Head Baseball Coach
Head Softball Coach
By Odus Evbagharu
By Samuel Rubbelke
Coach Ty Harrington discussed the team’s past season, the success of former students in Major League Baseball and expectations for the Sun Belt conference.
Coach Ricci Woodard discussed adversity during the past season, her thoughts on the team’s recognition and anticipation for this year’s players.
OE: This year you guys finished .500, but finished third in the WAC. How would you describe this year’s season? TH: I would say it was frustrating at times, challenging at times and then optimistic at times also. The challenge was that we had inexperienced players, and the players with experience and some of our best players were injured. There wasn’t much we could do about it. The challenging part was our schedule with it being so difficult and we had to fight through that. We eventually gained some momentum and were able to compete for the WAC regular season title and then the WAC tournament championship. OE: You talked a little bit about having inexperience and key players being hurt, but what players stood out to you this year? TH: Well Kevin Sah really stepped up his game this season. Donnie Hart and Hunter Lemke did really well for us coming out of the bullpen this season. Those guys made huge strides this year, and with Donnie that was evident in that fact that he got drafted this season. OE: Recently you have had players get drafted and make an impact in Major League Baseball, most noticeably Paul Goldschmidt of the Arizona Diamondbacks. What does that say about the Texas State baseball program and the direction it is heading in for years to come? TH: My staff and I really pride ourselves on player development. We know that when we recruit we will not necessarily get the best talent so we put an emphasis on player development. Our guys put in a lot of work to get better every day and it really pays off for a lot of them.
training focuses of the year.” Herston said future recruitment of multi-event athletes to the school is more likely with the amount of national attention Texas State gained from Lyssy’s appearance at the NCAA Championships. , “When anyone does well at any school that’s always a selling point for the school,” Herston said. “Hopefully (future athlete prospects) will take notice and attract some future recruits and do some of the things (Lyssy) did.” Lyssy’s previous successes include placing 5th in the heptathlon at the WAC Indoor Championships in February with a total score with 3,576 points and receiving the gold in the heptathlon at the WAC Outdoor Track and Field Championships. “We never had a heptathlete compete at nationals from Texas State,” Herston said. “(Lyssy) has been so successful for our school. She’s been conference champ now, set the school record three or four different times now. It means a lot for the program here to see (Lyssy) compete on the big stage.” Senior Timothy Young, competed in the 110 meter hurdles, failing to qualify for Saturday’s finals. Young needed to finish within the top 12 to qualify and placed 14th with a time of 13.87 in the event. “After my senior year, I still want to come out and show my support for the team,” Lyssy said. “Tina (Velenzuela) is going to be a senior next year, and I definitely want to see her compete in the multis. To end my senior year here at the nationals is a really big deal and means a lot to me.”
Assistant Sports Editor
Star File Photo
OE: I mentioned Paul Goldschmidt because personally I feel like he is the leading candidate for National League MVP and should be an All-Star with the numbers he is putting up this year. What did you see in him when he was here at Texas State? TH: Preparation and organization. Paul was one of the most organized guys that I have ever coached. A lot of the things you guys see is what he was doing here at Texas State. He wasn’t just organized from Monday through Friday, he was organized and prepared Monday through Sunday. That was something I really liked and admired about Paul and its really paying off for him in the majors right now.
SR: What does it mean to have nine of your former players on the All-Time team with you as well? RW: We can talk about just those nine, but there are a whole lot of other people that contributed to that, between coaches and other players. It’s a great honor. A lot of those players obviously were great pitchers here at Texas State who helped put this program on the map. It’s a nice recognition for Texas State University, for our softball program and what we were able to accomplish in the Southland Conference.
OE: You have four All-WAC performers on your team returning back for next season, do you feel you have a good foundation heading into the Sun Belt conference next year? TH: We’ll see. Some of our guys got drafted so we will see what happens with that. I think it helps that we have experience on our team heading toward next year. We should be fine. Hopefully our schedule is more favorable and we can start off a little bit faster and stronger than how we did this season.
SR: What experience did your team gain when they played and competed well against the National Pro Fastpitch AllStars? RW: That was an awesome experience. Unfortunately for us, it made us believe that the spring was going to be a great spring, but it set up something that was never accomplished. This team wanted to get to a super regional and to play at the College World Series. The reason why we did that was to see where we were at and see potentially a glimpse of what we’ll be doing the spring of 2014. With the adversity we faced, we just weren’t able to put that team on the field.
OE: With your one and only year in the WAC over and done with, what are your expectations for next season heading into a new conference? TH: The Sun Belt is going to be tough, but our expectations are always the same. We expect to come out and compete for a conference championship, so we can play in the NCAA tournament. The Sun Belt will just be a challenge for us. I feel like it is one of the better conferences in the NCAA for baseball. I expect our guys to compete hard next year.
SR: Speaking of adversity, when Anne Marie Taylor went down due to injury, how do you feel your team responded both on and off the field? RW: Unfortunately for us, it took us a good six to eight weeks to figure out what we were going to do. I had some young pitchers that have never pitched before at this level, and they were thrown in the fire, which was tough for them. I think just the mental aspect of the entire team having to adjust (was difficult). It took until mid-season to really start to make that adjustment. SR: The season had its struggles, but Texas State was one game out of the WAC championship game. Talk about this team’s performance and resiliency during that span.
Star File Photo
RW: I couldn’t be more proud of the way they finished. The WAC tournament itself showed that we learned how to deal with adversity itself. We got rained out in day number two, so we were going to have to play three games on the third day. We knew that going into it, and a lot of my teams in the past would have just folded after the first game and said there’s no way we can win all three. This team fought to the very last out of the third ball game, and I could not ask for more than that. SR: Who are you looking at to take an even greater leadership role going on next year? RW: Coralee Ramirez. She’s kind of stepped up with her approach the past couple years for us. She needs to be really hungry going into her senior year. That senior group is going to have to lead the way just because they’ve been playing so much. Jordan Masek and Coralee Ramirez have been on the field a lot for us the past three years. So those are the two that are going to have to lead the way for us. Courtney Harris has played a lot of ball games for us in the infield, and she’s going to have to be the one who is playing with a lot of new people. With the release of Selena Hernandez, we had to take Jordan out of the outfield and put her at shortstop. I think you’ll see a better infield production this year too because she’ll have a year under her belt in the infield. It starts with those kids who have been there and done that for a few years. With the addition of the new kids we have coming in, I think they’re hungry. I think it’s going to make for great team chemistry when things pan out in February. SR: What will you remember most about this year’s team? RW: The adversity. The life lessons that we learned together. Me as a coach and our coaching staff and having to battle through the adversity that we faced over and over again this year. That was some adversity that even I have never faced. I think that was part of it from the way we started to the way we finished. I’m so proud of our team and the way we rebounded and responded.
B6 | The University Star | Advertisement | Wednesday June 12, 2013
The University Star | Sports | Wednesday June 12, 2013 | B7
O L L E H
... s i e m a n my
y s s y L a s s e n a D thlete A d l e i F & Track
Photo courtesy of Texas State Athletics
By Bert Santibanez Sports Reporter @bertsantibanez
The University Star spoke with senior Danessa Lyssy, a multi-event outdoor track and field athlete, about her pastimes and favorite local hotspots. BS: What is your favorite place to eat in San Marcos? DL: The Taproom. I like the mushroom swiss burger from there. BS: What’s your favorite genre of music? DL: Most likely country music. BS: Do you have a favorite Texas country band you enjoy a lot? DL: Stoney LaRue and the Josh Abbott Band. BS: What’s your favorite activity to do during the summer? DL: I like floating the river. BS: Was there ever a class during your academic career that you didn’t expect to like but enjoyed a lot? DL: Probably my interior world design class. I really liked it. We did full floor arrangements in the class. BS: In the Spurs and Heat series, which team do you want to win the finals? DL: The Spurs. Hopefully they can win four straight or maybe five. BS: Do you have a favorite movie? DL: I like Bridesmaids. BS: Favorite TV show? DL: I like to watch Friends, and my favorite character is Joey.
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B8 | The University Star | Advertisement | Wednesday June 12, 2013
Published on Jun 12, 2013