November 15, 2022

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News: Crime on Campus SEE PAGE 2

Opinion: Thanksgiving Break

Life and Arts: Pokemon

Star Snaps





November 15, 2022



A SECOND CHANCE: Spears' life changed by By David Cuevas Sports Reporter

The opportunity to play Division I collegiate football is not something Texas State redshirt junior safety Tory Spears takes for granted, knowing that it can all be gone in an instant. Spears, a Bobcat since 2020, is a fixture in the Bobcat defense, and while working toward getting his degree in criminal justice and potentially hearing his name called in the upcoming NFL draft, he was excelling by many standards. On July 28, 2022, disaster struck, changing his outlook on life forever. Spears and his girlfriend were driving down I-35 when they encountered major traffic. Sitting in traffic with his hazard lights flashing, an oncoming vehicle collided head-on with the rear of Spears' vehicle, totaling both vehicles. “I’m coming down over a hill and I see the car in front of me put the hazards on,” Spears said. “So, I put mine [hazards] on, but I always keep my head on a swivel I look up and see a red pickup truck just flying.” Spears said his initial instinct immediately following the collision was to make sure his girlfriend was okay. After confirming this, he kicked open the passenger door, allowing them to safely climb out of the car. The driver of the truck, an elderly woman, was also not seriously injured according to Spears. Spears categorized the injuries he sustained in the accident as minor and did not have to miss any time on the field as a result of it, something that to this day remains a mystery to him. “I don’t even really understand it,” Spears said. “I don’t know what a car wreck is supposed to feel like, but I know I’m not supposed to walk out without a scratch on me. I can thank God for that.”

near death experience

Texas State junior safety Tory Spears (12) looks downfield while his teammates regroup for the next play, Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022, at Hancock Whitney Stadium. PHOTO BY VANESSA BUENTELLO



Local nonprofits provide Thanksgiving meals to fight food insecurity Ben Middleton Life and Arts Reporter A pantry full of ingredients and a roster full of volunteers is all Hays County residents need to serve their communities this Thanksgiving. Hays County Food Bank's Turkeys Tackling Hunger and Operation Turkey are ensuring everyone has a meal for the holiday by providing some relief for families facing food insecurity. “Many people, even in September and October, start calling and asking, ‘When can we sign up for this?'” Iris Tate, the community relations coordinator of the Hays County Hays County Food Bank volunteers unload meal kits at Turkeys Tackling Hunger Food Bank, said. “I feel like really just Distribution event, Monday, Nov. 14, 2022, at the Bobcat Stadium parking lot. keeping that tradition going and kind PHOTO BY BEN MIDDLETON of letting our clients have the relief of knowing this is just one less thing that they need to pay for around the turkey pozole,” Tate said. “So, it really holiday season.” gives them the opportunity to explore and create together and sit around a "If [students] know that table.” The planning for Turkeys Tackling their friend or their famHunger began in February. Hays ily could benefit from not County Food Bank works with the having to worry about pay- Central Texas Food Bank to buy all of the ingredients at a discounted price. ing for ingredients, they They have also received $50,000 in can spread the word and donations from local companies to tell their classmates that make the campaign successful. Each Thanksgiving meal costs $30. this is a resource." Hays County Food Bank relies on community fundraising to be able IRIS TATE to afford the 1,500 meals. Tate said Community Relations Coordinator, Hays students can help by donating and County Food Bank getting the word out about Turkeys Tackling Hunger. The Hays County Food Bank’s “If [students] know that their friend 16th annual Turkeys Tackling Hunger or their family could benefit from campaign will provide 1,500 meal kits not having to worry about paying for for this Thanksgiving. The food bank ingredients, they can spread the word knows the importance of cooking and tell their classmates that this is a holiday meals together for some resource,” Tate said. families which is why it provides uncooked ingredients in the meal kits. This way families can spend time in the kitchen with loved ones and cook SEE COMMUNITY their food to their liking. PAGE 6 The kit will include a 14 to 16-pound frozen turkey, shelf-stable goods like pumpkin filling and cranberry sauce and fresh produce including potatoes, carrots and green beans. “While some people make just a classic turkey, other families that have different traditions can make like a INFOGRAPHIC BY MARISA NUNEZ

Local artists Jill and Robert Pankey in their studio in Buda, Texas. PHOTO COURTESY OF ROBERT PANKEY

Local couple celebrates indivduality, creativty in artwork Haley Velasco Assistant Life and Arts Editor Married in 1989, Jill and Robert Pankey they knew that their love for art would open new opportunities that they could endure together. Now, the Pankey's have both of their art displayed in galleries in Sante Fe, New Mexico, Coronado Island, California and Buda and Bernie, Texas, have a published coffee table book and a current art show in Buda. Jill, a Texas State alumna and former senior lecturer in the School of Art and Design, co-owned Aerobics Plus Fitness at Corpus Christi in the late '80s, creating designs for marketing and t-shirts. Robert, who is currently a Texas State kinesiology professor, was a professor of kinesiology at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi at the time. The couple met in a fitness class at Aerobics Plus in which Robert was a guest speaker and the rest was history. "We're not very common when it comes to the art dual couples," Robert said. "There's not a lot of married people that both have interest in art, so it's kind of a limited dichotomy."


The University Star

2 | Tuesday, November 15, 2022 Nichaela Shaheen News Editor


Trinity Building 203 Pleasant St. San Marcos, TX 78666 (512) 245 - 3487

Editorial Staff Editor-in-Chief: Arthur Fairchild Managing Editor: Sarah Hernandez Design Editor: Kadence Cobb News Editor: Nichaela Shaheen Life & Arts Editor: Marisa Nuñez Opinions Editor: Dillon Strine Sports Editor: Carson Weaver Multimedia Editor: Vanessa Buentello Engagement Editor: Meadow Chase Digital Products Developer: Monica Vargas Creative Service Director: Michele Dupont

Public & Internal Relations PIR Director Elle Gangi

Full-Time Staff Director: Laura Krantz Student Publications Coordinator: Caitlin Mitchell

About Us History: The University Star is the student newspaper of Texas State University and is published every Tuesday of the spring and fall and once a month in the summer semesters. It is distributed on campus and throughout San Marcos at 8 a.m. on publication days with a distribution of 3,000. Printing and distribution is by the New Braunfels HeraldZeitung. Copyright: Copyright Tuesday, November 15, 2022. 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. Deadlines: Letters to the Editor or any contributed articles are due on Monday the week prior to publication. Corrections: Any errors that are in the pages of The University Star and brought to our attention will be corrected as soon as possible. Visit The Star at

Bird flu and inflation causing turkey shortage, holiday frenzy By Ireland Sargent News Contributor This year's Thanksgiving dinner may look slightly different for turkey lovers as farmers have had to contend with weather, inflation and outbreaks of bird flu. Businesses are enduring the effects as prices continue to rise and shortages are a continuous issue. Bird flu, or avian influenza, has eliminated more than five million turkeys nationwide, averaging about 3% of the nation's total turkey production, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The rapid loss of turkeys has caused farmers to be short of their usual stock, forcing consumers to pay more per pound as inflation persists. Pratheesh Omana Sudhakaran, assistant professor in agricultural business and economics, shared the impact of inflation and its effects on consumers and farmers. "Due to the general growth of the economy, farmers are paying a higher price for feed which is the main cost for turkey and agriculture production," Sudhakaran said. "This causes an increase in production cost which then yields an overall increase in the price of turkey. As of now, there has been a 28% increase which stems from different factors working together to cause a multiplier effect." A general shortage in turkey meat has played a significant role for businesses that rely heavily on turkey. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states bird flu plays an insignificant health threat to humans. There has been one recorded case of the virus affecting an individual who happened to work closely with the infected birds at the time of contraction. Bird flu is carried by the wild bird population and spread after a bird is infected by the virus. The CDC reported that infected birds can shed the virus in their saliva, nasal secretions, feces and surfaces that have been in contact with the contaminated bird. The virus is easily spread and can wipe out an entire poultry population if a farm becomes infected, playing a role in overall poultry shortages. Sudhakaran said that shortages of larger turkeys and specific parts of the bird will occur. He does not think the shortages will be troublesome for consumers, however. "You do not have to worry about Thanksgiving and your ability to get a turkey this year," Sudhakaran said. "If you're looking for a 20-pound turkey, you might run into some trouble finding that large of a bird, but there is no reason to worry." Weather also plays an important role in the production of corn and turkey feed, which impacts the size of the bird as well as their behavior. Eryn Pierdolla, an animal science lecturer, said the importance of biosecurity is to protect the birds from extreme weather and highly contagious viruses. Most turkeys are grown in environmentally regulated houses to eliminate any negative weather issues that may hinder the growth, development and health of the birds. There are set standards farmers are required to follow to ensure safety for the poultry, people and the environment, according to the One Health Certified turkey standards.


Combating inflation can be challenging for an economy, Sudhakaran expressed that bird flu is not the sole cause of the challenges many are enduring. Once the outbreak subsides, consumers still must deal with inflation and its effects. Inflation has been a consistent issue for Aaron Hernandez, pitmaster and coowner at Hays County Barbeque. The

It's heartbreaking to see the customer's reaction and the disappointment roll off of their faces. We continue to lose a great amount of sales..." AARON HERNANDEZ, Pitmaster and co-owner of Hays County Barbeque

business is currently running on a limited supply and is unable to receive the meat they are supposed to. "Up until the last three weeks we haven't been able to get turkey breast anymore so we are just doing whole turkeys for now and sticking to using the breasts," Hernandez said. "We started with 130 turkeys and we are quickly working through our supply, especially as Thanksgiving nears and we offer specials." Hays County Barbeque receives its shipments from Cisco and Ben E. Keith with two shipments per week. Hernandez said that the need for two distributors is to ensure that if one supplier does not have his goods in stock, he could turn to the other. Hernandez said that the loss in sales and the disappointment from customers have been the most difficult parts of the issue. "It's heartbreaking to see the customer's reaction and the disappointment roll off of their faces," Hernandez said. "We continue to lose a great amount in sales

as customers come in for turkey breasts and we are unable to provide for them. Catering’s reached out to us asking for turkey this Thanksgiving and we are unfortunately unable to meet those requests at this time." Customers notably go to Hays County Barbeque for the turkey. Hernandez said the restaurant has been cooking more beef, pork and chicken to offset the lack of other poultry items. Similar to Hays County Barbeque, Ike's Love and Sandwiches has experienced effects from inflation and avian influenza as the business is struggling to receive shipments from Cisco, their only distributor. Robert Lopez, a shift lead for the store, expressed his concerns for the business as the turkey they are receiving does not meet the standards Ike's is used to. "The last shipment we got was in no way good the meat was yellow and had grey spots all over it," Lopez said. "I guess this is a nationwide issue that Cisco is sending out bad turkeys due to the current issue with the bird flu but we aren't using any of that meat." Lopez shared how the business is using the turkey supply that they stocked when their shipments were adequate. When the supply runs slim, however, Ike's will be without turkey for the time being. "Until we run out of our good turkey we will be turkey-less and we just rely on our supplier to find quality meat," Lopez said. "It really is nearing the end." Listeria is a hardy germ found in deli meats and cheeses located mainly on deli countertops, deli slicers, surfaces and hands, and can be deadly if the virus is contracted, according to the CDC. Lopez recognizes bird flu is a more recent concern for businesses that rely on turkey, but believes this issue will not persist for much longer. "I have been in the food industry for many years now and issues like this tend to sort themselves out," Lopez said. "As a sandwich place we will truly be in trouble if we run out completely and I'm not sure what we will do."

The University Star

4 | Tuesday, November 15, 2022 Dillon Strine Opinions Editor


Opinions in The University Star are not necessarily those of our entire publication, Texas State University’s administration, Board of Regents, School of Journalism and Mass Communication or Student Publications Board.


Thanksgiving break is too short By Rhian Davis

Opinions Contributor Starting on Nov. 23, Texas State students will have a five-day break for the Thanksgiving holiday. The vacation begins on Wednesday and runs through Sunday. Texas State does not offer a break between the three-day Labor Day weekend and Thanksgiving. Giving students 10 straight weeks of classes and having courses on the Monday and Tuesday before Thanksgiving break is unnecessary. Students are already mentally checked out due to the idea of having time away from school. Having the entire week off for Thanksgiving would prove beneficial. This break is one of the few opportunities for students to spend time with family. In addition, having a more extended break gives out-of-state students more time to travel, allowing everyone on campus to take a breather before finals. Over 38,000 students are currently enrolled at Texas State, and it is clear that not everyone will have the opportunity to see family often. Maintaining relationships with family while in college is one of the most important things for students and faculty, but it can be difficult when they're hundreds of miles away, which isn't just valid for out-of-state students since Texas is the second largest by land mass. Having a familial support system is essential. According to a study from the National Library of Medicine, support from one's family can be crucial in maintaining good health, which is why being away from them for long periods

can be detrimental to mental and physical health. Texas State can feel small after spending consecutive weeks in it, which is why it can be essential to prioritize time away. Though students will have the opportunity to see family over winter break, Thanksgiving provides additional time with loved ones. According to College Factual, 1.77% of Texas State students are from out-of-state. While this may not seem significant, these students should still have a say when discussing the short break. In-state students can travel out of state as well. Traveling is an incredibly demanding process. Travel anxiety includes the stress of planning. Since Thanksgiving break is so short, it can be challenging for students to plan flights or other modes of transportation. Students may decide to skip the process altogether and miss spending the holiday with family. Extending Thanksgiving break would alleviate copious amounts of anxiety for out-of-state students, allowing them more time to travel home and get back to school on time. Students are starting to prepare for final exams. As previously mentioned, Texas State only offers a few breaks throughout the first semester, which can lead to burnout. College burnout is extreme fatigue and a decline in academic performance due to prolonged levels of unnecessary stress. It can often take time to determine whether or not one is experiencing burnout. Still, some symptoms may include losing interest in social activities, becoming increasingly irritable and


having trouble meeting deadlines. In April 2021, a study showed that 71% of college students faced symptoms of burnout. During finals season, burnout makes it hard to find the motivation to study or adequately prepare for exams. Devin Dorado, an English junior, has dealt with burnout throughout college. Because of this, he often finds it burdensome to complete work. "When it comes to burnout, you literally have this feeling that you don't want to do anything," Dorado said. "You know for a fact that you need to do it but you don't have the energy, motivation or drive to do it because everything is so overwhelming." Finals begin on Dec. 2, just one short week after Thanksgiving break. While the holiday is nice, students deserve more. Unfortunately, the classes

on Monday and Tuesday don't allow for this. Instead, they pile on top of their worries. Though Thanksgiving break is shorter than some would like, there are only two weeks between it and winter break. After finals, students will have five weeks to reset before the spring semester begins. Despite this, an extended Thanksgiving break would benefit students and faculty. - Rhian Davis is a journalism freshman The University Star welcomes Letters to the Editor from its readers. All submissions are reviewed and considered by the Editor-in-Chief and Opinions Editor for publication. Not all letters are guaranteed for publication.


Safety awareness makes walking less deadly signs can benefit tremendously from more advanced LED signs. These signs produce even stronger light and less energy, saving energy costs significantly. In addition, the LED signs are more visible at nighttime and in dim weather conditions such as fog and rain. Replacing the standard stop signs with flashing signs would help protect pedestrians walking on campus. The LED stop sign captures the driver's attention through additional visual input. It has prevented right-turn crashes by alerting of roadway changes and preventing the driver from running the stop sign. With the busy roads near campus, adding LED signs would help drivers navigate roadways. Drivers have to pay extra close attention due to the current traffic signs in place, an issue that LED signs could improve. While it is unrealistic to expect these methods will prevent any motor vehicle-pedestrian accidents from occurring, students must be aware of what to do in case an incident does occur. Texas State can use its platform to educate students on what action to take if an accident occurs on campus, including who to call, what information to gather and what additional steps to take. Educating students about public safety laws such as the 51% modified comparative fault rule is critical. The rule ensures that an injured party is not recompensated for possible injuries if they are responsible for 51% or more fault for the accident. The university needs to bring students awareness of their rights as a pedestrian. Driving on campus has its complications of managing a busy roadway. It can be easy to become distracted by groups of students walking across intersections while trying to pay attention to surrounding cars. In addition, driving on campus can become overwhelming for those navigating the road. Regardless, educating students about the importance of pedestrian safety is vital.

By Kadence Cobb

Opinions Contributor The chaotic lanes and busy intersections along North Comanche Street make walking to class like an intense game of Frogger. If Texas State implemented pedestrian safety education into its social media and improved its traffic signs, students would be more aware of pedestrian safety. Texas State could upload infographics on Instagram to help students understand their rights as a pedestrian and better understand road rules. Texas Transportation Code Section 552.003 states, "When traffic signal is not in place, vehicles must yield to pedestrian in crosswalk on vehicle's half of road or close to it." This law gives pedestrians the right of way, but the crowding of a car-heavy campus makes it extremely difficult to navigate. In addition, the university sold over 19,000 parking permits this year, significantly more than in 2021. Texas is one of the five states accounting for 43% of pedestrian deaths. Highlighting tips from safety organizations can help expose students to beneficial information. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration contains tips for pedestrians, including recommending individuals walk facing traffic if a sidewalk is not present. The Centers for Disease Contro and Prevention (CDC) advises pedestrians to wear reflective clothing at night or carry flashlights to become more visible to passing vehicles. On social media, Texas State could demonstrate these tips on TikTok or Instagram reels and stories. Knowing helpful walking tips could help decrease the 150,000 pedestrians injured annually in motor vehicle-pedestrian crashes. Texas State could have taken advantage of October's National Pedestrian Safety Month to educate students and address their plans to promote the safety of their residents. The university needs to improve its current traffic


signs to increase drivers' awareness of pedestrians. A traffic sign's general purpose is to guide drivers, regulate traffic and promote safety among those on the road. Drivers who have trouble noticing standard traffic

- Kadence Cobb is a journalism sophomore


San Marcos public transportation fails reliability test By Dalton Powell Opinions Contributor

The current public transportation system in San Marcos leaves students and residents stranded or entirely cardependent at night and on weekends. Students can rely on the Bobcat Shuttles to travel to campus from home, but this only applies at specific times. In the evenings and throughout the weekends, residents find themselves without an accessible and reliable means of transportation. As the city continues to grow at a rapid pace, San Marcos and Texas State should look to expand its infrastructure

to include dependable public transportation. Throughout the day, thousands of students living off-campus will step onto the buses provided by the university. According to transportation services, over 27,000 rides per day are provided. In terms of providing students access to and from campus during weekdays, Bobcat Shuttles are an excellent means of transportation. Not only are the shuttles reliable in their travel times and overall efficiency, but students riding the bus in the mornings and afternoons can take time to catch up on readings or homework. But the reliability of the Bobcat

Shuttle system ends as the day begins. From the morning until the early afternoon, wait times are short and average 15 minutes. Later, routes become more prolonged and wait times double. By 10:30 p.m., the last buses make their final rounds. Wait times during the night average 50 minutes. Saturdays have only two available routes with wait times of over an hour. On Sundays, there are no shuttles. - Dalton Powell administration senior




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The University Star

Tuesday, November 15, 2022 | 5 Marisa Nuñez Life & Arts Editor


Alkek Library's Long Night Against Procrastination facilitates student success By Carlene Ottah Life and Arts Contributor Coffee, doughnuts and lo-fi music await students in Alkek Library as library staff prepare to host the 12th semiannual Long Night Against Procrastination on Wednesday, Nov. 16. At the event, students can take advantage of student resources and speak to library staff about procrastination and prepare for finals with the University Writing Center from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. in study rooms 441 and 442. Donna Dean, Instruction and Outreach Specialist, who coordinates instruction and events at Alkek, has helped run the event for six years. Dean sees the fall Long Night Against Procrastination as a way to motivate students to work on their final projects before Thanksgiving break and finals. "There's always staff attending to assist students and guide them if they want help, and then we're also there to give you space and freedom if you want to do more independent study in the space that we're in," Dean said. The Alkek staff came up with Long Night Against Procrastination in 2014 when they read about an event that went by the same name in Germany. Inspired by the event's success, the Alkek version would break down the barrier between students and library staff. They also wanted to dedicate a night to accommodate people who visited the library at nighttime. "We noticed that right near the end of the semester, students need a lot more support because all of the sudden papers are due, finals are coming up and people need research help and they need study buddies even," Tricia Boucher, open pedagogy and STEM librarian said. "[Long Night Against Procrastination] is set up in such a way that people kind of set a goal for the evening. They work towards that goal, and we're all kind of there to help each other work towards those goals." Boucher was the user experience and psychology subject librarian in 2014 and is one of the only members of the inaugural


I think that's why I really care for it. A lot of academic spaces can feel somewhat intimidating, but this one didn't feel like that. It's almost like it's a fun night event that you're doing with several other college students while you're working on your homework." AMAYA LEWIS Writing Consultant, University Writing Center

Long Night Against Procrastination left. Despite this, the event continues at Alkek because it has seen positive reception from student surveys and staff feedback. The event has seen 300 to 400 students turn out in previous years. Long Night Against Procrastination has evolved since 2014. The event used to be more activity-based with specific times for stretching and breathing exercises, games hosted by organizations and discussions about procrastination. The staff saw big turnouts for those events but realized a greater purpose could be fulfilled by directly helping students with

their studies. "It was really about helping students where they were at, so wherever you're at in your process, we're basically sitting here waiting for you to ask for help," Boucher said. The activities are still options at Long Night Against Procrastination, but now students can choose between engaging in them or working on their assignments. Room 441 will offer group study, refreshments and consultations with the Writing Center. Room 442 will be quieter and the lights will be dimmed for students engaging in independent

studying. Library staff will walk around both sections attending to students. The Writing Center, which assists students with things like resumes and research papers, also offers its services at Long Night Against Procrastination. Amaya Lewis, a theater performance and production senior, works as a writing consultant and is one of a few consultants who represent the Writing Center at Long Night Against Procrastination. She previously volunteered at Long Night Against Procrastination as a consultant in the spring of 2021, holding 15-minute sessions for students instead of the 25 or 50-minute ones usually offered at the Writing Center. The idea of consulting with more people in less time initially drew her in, but she grew to appreciate Long Night Against Procrastination's relaxed atmosphere and how it allowed her to help people while also being able to do her own studying. "I think that's why I really care for it," Lewis said. "A lot of academic spaces can feel somewhat intimidating but this one didn't feel like that. It's almost like it's a fun night event that you're doing with several other college students while you're working on your homework." For eight years, Long Night Against Procrastination has had the purpose of motivating students and staff to interact and help each other. It has brought people together who are experiencing similar feelings of finals approaching the end of the semester while also informing library guests on the resources and services offered at Alkek and Texas State. "We all procrastinate, we all kind of handle it in different ways and handle stress in different ways, but in the end, we can relate just through the experience of being stressed out and having to finish those assignments," Dean said. For more information about events happening at Alkek Library, visit its Twitter @alkeklibrary.


New club Pokemon TXST brings back nostalgia Zachary Scott Life and Arts Contributor What started out as a few students gathering to play Pokemon Go together on campus has evolved into a club for students to discuss, debate, socialize and bond over trading cards, video games and all things Pokemon. Zack Estrada, a computer science freshman, was introduced to the Pokemon world at a young age by his older brother through the trading card game. His love grew as generations of Pokemon were released, and he continues to add to his collection of trading cards. Estrada said that he has watched the franchise evolve from a simple card game into the worldwide phenomenon that it is today. “I joined because it's a great opportunity to meet other people who play and love the game," Estrada said. "It offers wonderful interactions with others and plenty of chances to increase your knowledge as well." While some members of Pokemon TXST are relatively new to the franchise, most players discovered the world of Pokemon at a young age. As the childhood game of many born in the late '90s and early 2000s, Pokemon has built an empire off of its nostalgic characters and evergrowing universe. One of the more interesting perks of a large Pokemon community at the university is the ability to discuss and competitively train Pokemon to battle, a childhood dream come true for many lifelong Pokemon fans. Pokemon, short for the original Japanese title Pocket Monsters, began in 1996 and made its television debut a year later. Its sudden boost in popularity overseas in Japan evolved the company into a mixed media franchise boasting the third-best video game series of all time, an anime television series with over 1,000 episodes and the highest-selling trading card game of all time. Pokemon Go made its debut in 2016 as the first mobile Pokemon game, and it is still popular today. Players can participate in a three-hour long event called Community Day, a random monthly worldwide recurring event dedicated to celebrating players in the Pokemon Go community. Community Day players have only one goal in mind: catch ‘em all and win gym battles. Players are encouraged to go out and hunt for certain rare Pokemon, items and gameplay necessities that appear at a higher rate. Urban areas often offer better gameplay than rural areas due to more points of interest such as statues, parks, art and memorials as well as consistent player traffic. "Pokestops" located near buildings like the LBJ Student Center or in areas like Sewell Park offer users an opportunity to collect gameplay necessities and battle. This makes Texas State an ideal location to play Pokemon Go and interact with fans alike. Alan Martinez, a chemistry senior, recently started playing Pokemon Go in July. Although he is new to the Pokemon universe, he said playing Pokemon Legends: Arceus quickly turned his curiosity into a passion. He first discovered Pokemon TXST on Nov. 5 during one of the Community Days. “I just randomly bumped into Quinn Ruschhaupt as I was playing, and she told me about the club,” Martinez said. “This is just a great way to meet new people, and to also spend time outside.” Other club events and meetings feature trading card game days, movie nights, discussions and presentations about upcoming Community Day events. The organization is open to any student who is interested in Pokemon. Joshua Hatley, a geography and environmental studies sophomore said that his love for Pokemon started when he would trade cards with friends in elementary school. As a member of Pokemon TXST, Hartley seeks to share his passion as an enthusiast with other Pokemon lovers. “To see more people getting into the thing that I held so dearly [growing up] is amazing," Hatley said. "Years later I’m still playing Pokemon Go and I find myself making friends and memories all the time, especially during big events like new updates and community days." The club plans to gather even more participants through upcoming events such as the highly anticipated Community Day event next month. December’s Community Day event has not yet been announced. Pokemon TXST meetings are held every Thursday. New members are encouraged to drop by to meet, challenge and engage with other Poké Fans. For more information on Pokemon TXST and its meetings, visit its Twitter @PokemonTXST.

(Left to right) Members of Pokemon TXST Zack Estrada, Quinn Ruschhaupt, William Howard, Alan Martinez, Daniel Ibarra, and Kaysen Barker hunt for Pokémon during Community Day, Saturday, Nov. 5, 2022, at Sewell Park. PHOTO BY ZACHARY SCOTT

(Left to right) Members of Pokemon TXST Zack Estrada, Kaysen Barker and Daniel Ibarra hunt for Pokémon during Community Day, Saturday, Nov. 5, 2022, at Sewell Park. PHOTO BY ZACHARY SCOTT

The University Star

6 | Tuesday, November 15, 2022 Marisa Nuñez Life & Arts Editor

FROM FRONT COMMUNITY “After the food bank buys the ingredients they are stored at the title sponsor, Night Hawk Frozen Foods’, warehouse in Buda, Texas, where the they are packaged and then transported to distribution centers by Little Guy Movers. “There are families in need in Hays County, which is where our business is, that won't have a Thanksgiving without these meals,” Leanne Logan, owner of Night Hawk Frozen Foods said. “So, it's a total partnership between Night Hawk Frozen Foods and the Hays County Food Bank. They get all the ingredients and we put them together because that's what we do.” Logan and her husband got involved with the food bank by helping pack the meals for the Turkeys Tackling Hunger in 2014. After the event they realized they had the resources to be able to pack the meals at their plant and established the partnership they have today. Night Hawk Frozen Food employees are paid off the clock to come in to pack the 1,500 meals on Nov. 12. “We have decided a long time ago that we wanted to give back to the community,” Logan said. ”This is something that we can do and we hope to continue to do it with Hays County Food Bank for a long time. It's fun. Our employees love it. It's just a fun day for everyone.” Operation Turkey is a non-profit volunteer organization that started in Austin in 2000. Jesse Ruiz, a Texas State exercise and sports science alumnus, founded Operation Turkey San Marcos in 2011 to give warm meals to those in need. He got involved with Operation Turkey in Austin in 2010 and expanded it to San Marcos. This year Ruiz's goal is to serve 1,500 warm meals. The turkeys will be smoked the day before Thanksgiving,

and the side dishes will be heated up on Thanksgiving morning. Volunteers then package and deliver the meals to the houses of those who signed up to receive one. Ruiz sees Operation Turkey as a way to give back to San Marcos. “This is a service that I get to provide to a city that allowed me the opportunity to receive an education,” Ruiz said. “I just imagined that some of the people that we serve are probably families like mine when I was growing up.” This year, Operation Turkey's meal distribution will take place at Texas Roadhouse, where volunteers will prepare, package and deliver food from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Thanksgiving. For Operation Turkey to be successful a lot of volunteers are needed. Ruiz hopes for 125 volunteers. He can make it work with 50 to 75 but the low numbers cause a lot of strain on the volunteers. There is a volunteer orientation for Operation Turkey from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Zoom, on Nov. 20, and the signup links can be found on Operation Turkeys' website or Facebook page. Ruiz’s long-term goal for Operation Turkey is to turn it into a long-term fixture in the community. He wants to build connections with student organizations to have Operation Turkey as a yearly service project to increase the longevity of the event. “I want to leave my imprint in the San Marcos community, but I need help to do that for the long term,” Ruiz said. “For now. It's fine the way it is. But in order for it to be a fixture, I need to be able to hand it off to a group.”


Hays County Food Bank volunteers unload meal kits at a Turkeys Tackling Hunger Hays County Food Bank volunteers load a meal kit into a recipients car during a TurDistribution event, Monday, Nov. 14, 2022, at Bobcat Stadium. keys Tackling Hunger distribution event, Monday, Nov. 14, 2022, at Bobcat Stadium. PHOTO BY BEN MIDDLETON PHOTO BY BEN MIDDLETON

The University Star

Tuesday, November 15, 2022 | 7 Marisa Nuñez Life & Arts Editor


At the age of five, Jill Pankey grew a passion for art. Being born in the border city of Del Rio, Texas, and always witnessing vibrant colors throughout her hometown inspired her to create vivid works displaying the female form. "Ever since I was a teenager, I've been interested in figures, and I thought I would focus on women because I know my species," Jill said. "There's so many different types of body types, too — endomorph, ectomorph, mesomorph — we're all different types of bodies. I liked the idea now that I'm getting older, I'm not so interested in pretty and perfect; I like real and activity." Robert began creating pen and ink illustrations while he was a graduate student in kinesiology and biomechanics at Texas A&M University in the early '80s. His time spent with wildlife hunting and fishing throughout his lifetime created the direction for his art. "Birds, longhorns, bobcats and other animals are really attractive to me and when I paint it, it doesn't have to be so exact like when you're painting someone's portrait, you have to be really exact, where a bobcat you could have different looks and colors to it," Robert said. Their choice to live in San Marcos sparked from Jill and Robert's love for Texas State. Jill attended Southwest Texas State before transferring to Corpus Christi State University in the late '70s. After receiving her Master of Fine Arts from the University of Texas at San Antonio in 2002, Jill returned to Texas State from 2002 to 2013 to teach basic drawing, figure drawing and painting courses as a senior lecturer in the School of Art and Design. The was the chair for the Department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation, as well as a kinesiology and biomechanics professor in 2000. Although he retired from being the chair in 2016, Robert is still a professor at Texas State, teaching an online class in sports sociology. Jill and Robert extend their love to Texas State by donating their art to fundraisers such as Bobcat Bonanza. Jill's art is displayed on the right side of the Undergraduate Academic Center. "[Texas State] is a part of us now," Jill said. "People are always asking for money and I think we'd rather give through our art than money. We like the idea of giving through art, because the money will be spent and gone, but the art lives on." Although their artwork differs, the Pankeys share a similar theme in using vibrant colors. They take inspiration from Jill's birthplace of Del Rio as well

Jill Pankey works on her art piece"Floral Fandango," Sept. 2022, in Buda, Texas. PHOTO COURTESY OF ROBERT AND JILL PANKEY

as San Marcos. Jill said San Marcos has a colorful atmosphere like Del Rio and that the college student demographic creates a more active city. The Pankey's self-made path influences Wendi Martin, Jill's daughter. After working in the corporate world for a few years, Martin founded Kick Pleat, a boutique in Austin and Houston that features a range of modern styles for women, in 2003. is her last name Martin or Koletar? the Vogue article says Koletar She realized that her corporate jobs lacked individual creativity, redirected herself and found support and inspiration in her parents, who showed her it is okay to take an uncommon approach to a career. "I saw them do their own thing, which wasn't very conventional," Martin said. "I think they helped me with modeling not with words, but by action." Last year, Kick Pleat was listed in "The Best Fashion Boutiques in the Country, According to Vogue Editors" by Vogue. The Pankey family strives to put their best feet forward. As of February of this year, Robert published two books that feature both his and Jill's artwork, "Wildlife Art: by Robert Pankey" and "Patterns: by Jill

Pankey." Jill and Robert currently have an art show titled "Figure, Floral & Fauna." The gallery is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sundays at the Assemblage Gallery in Buda, Texas, until Nov. 30. Other than the art show, Jill plans on remaining consistent throughout the year and keeping up with her love for painting. "I just want to maintain what we're doing," Jill said. "I paint slower than him because my paintings are big, whereas he can whip up a painting in a couple days, but my goal is to just keep painting." To learn more about Jill and Robert Pankey, visit For more information on "Figure, Flora & Fauna," visit events/2022/10/24/figure-floral-fauna/.


Texas State political science senior Angely Hernandez holds up signs in support of Hays County Judge Ruben Becerra during the final voting hours of election day, Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022, outside the Hays County Government Center. PHOTO BY VANESSA BUENTELLO

Texas State chemistry junior Alan Martinez sets his telescope on Jupiter, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2022, at Supple Science. Martinez is an officer in Texas State's Astronomy club. The club meets every other Wednesday to stargaze. Check out for more information. PHOTO BY JEFFREY HALFEN

Texas State psychology freshman Jonathan Sera looks for a pair of pants at a sustainable thrifting event, Thursday Nov. 10, 2022, at the LBJ ballroom. PHOTO BY SARAH MANNING

KZSM Radio Theater performs a live comedy show for the KZSM Fall Fundraiser, Thursday, Nov. 10, 2022, at the Price Center and Garden. PHOTO BY JOHN GOMEZ

8 | Tuesday, November 15, 2022

The University Star

Carson Weaver Sports Editor


PROGRAM Spears said the first thing he did after getting himself and his girlfriend out of his wrecked car was call head coach Jake Spavital and his position coach Clay Jennings, who picked Spears and his girlfriend up from the crash site and took them to the hospital. Jennings, who is in his first season as defensive backs coach for Texas State, said he and Spears have developed a very close relationship over the brief eight-month period that he has been with the team and spoke of an intimate conversation the two of them shared in the aftermath of the wreck. “The one statement that Tory made to me was that, 'you know coach I’ve been blessed with another opportunity, another chance, so I’m going to make the best of it,' and that’s one thing he has done this fall [is] made the best of his opportunities, and that’s an attribute to him,” Jennings said. Spears wholeheartedly believes he was given a second chance in life that day and said the wreck has drastically changed his outlook on life for the better. Spears said the wreck has taught him to focus on and appreciate the little things in life. “It definitely made me a better person," Spears said. "My mindset is different for sure. Tomorrow is not promised." Even

months after the incident, Spears relives the moment inside his head often. Having lost family members to car wrecks that weren't as bad as his, when he closes his eyes to sleep, Spears still sees those images of his wreck. "I still think about it, the fact that it doesn't feel real... When I go to sleep, I close my eyes ... it's just the car wreck," Spears said. "I’m not questioning it because I know that’s all nothing but God, but I can’t explain it." Redshirt junior wide receiver Julian Ortega-Jones said the team learned of the wreck the following day. They were thankful Spears made it out alive and well and was in good spirits after experiencing such a traumatic event. “He was in here playing around, messing around literally the next day, so we were all really thankful he was okay,” Ortega-Jones said. Exactly what transpired that day is something that continues to perplex Spears. "I’ve lost many family members in wrecks, seen wrecks not as bad as mine that people are three times as hurt and I just kick open the passenger door and we get out?" Spears said. Jennings is still unsure how, but extremely grateful that Spears made it out of the accident unscathed. "You never want them to be in harm’s way,” Jennings said. “Seeing the accident, the fact that he’s still with us, that’s a blessing within

itself because neither one of those vehicles had a chance to be mobilized at all."

Spears has made good on what he swore to Jennings, as he is in the midst of a stellar 2022 season. Through nine games, he has registered 50 tackles, half a sack, one forced and recovered fumble and a 94-yard interception return for a touchdown that ultimately sealed Texas State’s biggest victory of the season over Appalachian State. Following the Appalachian State game, Spears was named the Sun Belt Defensive Player of the Week for the first time in his collegiate career due to his phenomenal performance, where he led the Bobcat defense with 12 tackles and had the 94-yard pick-six. When reflecting on what it felt like to go from being in a life-threatening situation to achieving such an impressive accomplishment in the span of three months, Spears thanked God and his teammates. They all played a role in his being named conference defensive player of the week. Without them, he said, it would not have been possible. Jennings shared what he believes Spears, being named the Sun Belt Defensive Player of the Week, says about him as both a football player and a human being. “I think he’s blessed by the man above,” Jennings said. "As a player, he hasn't had a lot of missed tackles or blown assignments. He wants to be a better ballplayer not just for himself but to help his teammates. He's the ultimate teammate." Spears said his biggest takeaway from being in a near-death experience is to go out and treat every day like it's his last because he never knows when it might be. "It just humbled me,” Spears said. “It opened my eyes, I see things differently; that’s all I really think about every day, not just with football, with life

period. Every day is another day to better yourself and do what you got to do because it could all be gone just like that."


Cats' suffer fourth consecutive loss, ineligible for bowl game By Carson Weaver

Sports Editor

After a devastating 31-30 loss to the University of LouisianaMonroe that featured a missed game-winning field goal by kicker Seth Keller last weekend, head coach Jake Spavital knew that the Bobcats needed to win the rest of its schedule for bowl game consideration. Despite the loss, one in which Texas State had a 21-point lead in the first quarter, Spavital had faith in his team for this week’s matchup against South Alabama. “Eventually the ball is going to bounce our way,” Spavital said after Texas State’s 31-30 loss to ULM. The ball, despite Spavital’s hopes, did not bounce the Bobcat’s way. Texas State (3-7, 1-5 Sun Belt Conference) dropped Saturday’s contest 38-21 to South Alabama (8-2, 5-1 Sun Belt Conference), and is now in the midst of a fourgame losing streak. Texas State’s seventh loss of the year makes the team ineligible for its first bowl game in program history. Spavital said before the season that it wasn’t his goal, but his expectation that the Bobcats reach a bowl game this season. After South Alabama, a team the Bobcats beat in four overtimes last season, coasted to its eighth win of the season, Texas State will have to aim its sights toward next year’s bowl game opportunity. “You got to play complementary football and you got to have all three phases of the game playing well together, and we just didn’t do that,” Spavital said. “South Alabama did that a lot better than we did.” South Alabama scored two touchdowns and a field goal in the first half, securing a 17-0 lead

Texas State football head coach Jake Spavital scans his playbook in a game against South Alabama, Saturday , Nov. 12, 2022, at Hancock Whitney Stadium. The Bobcats lost 38-21. PHOTO BY VANESSA BUENTELLO

entering the second half. Texas State had 27 total offensive yards in the first half, with 30 passing yards and -3 rushing yards. The two teams traded touchdowns in the third quarter, with junior quarterback Layne Hatcher throwing his 19th of the year, to make it 24-7. Hatcher finished his night going 24-42 for 143 yards, one touchdown and one interception. Sophomore running back Josh Berry rushed for a five-yard touchdown early in the fourth quarter to make it 24-14. The Jaguars and Bobcats then exchanged touchdowns to make it 31-21. South Alabama sophomore linebacker Ke’Shun Brown returned Hatcher’s ninth interception of the year for a touchdown with less than three minutes on the clock in the fourth quarter to make the score 38-21, effectively killing the hopes of a Bobcat comeback. Berry finished with 87 yards on 15 attempts with one touchdown. His 87 yards rushing were all in the second half and were a career-high. “Nothing really changed in the second half,” Spavital said. “We just

finally got into a rhythm of things, and the rhythm of things was we established the run game a little bit better." The Bobcats, whose defense has shined in moments this season, surrendered 21 points in the second half. South Alabama went a perfect 6-6 on fourth downs, something Spavital chalks down to poor execution. “I thought our execution was poor on offense, with dropped balls and self-inflicted wounds. We kind of worked our way through it,” Spavital said. “The same thing happened on defense.” The Bobcats are now officially winless on the road for the first time since 2019. Texas State will finish off its last two games on the schedule at home. Next, the Bobcats will face Arkansas State at 4 p.m. on Nov. 19 at Bobcat Stadium in San Marcos, Texas.

Texas State junior safety Tory Spears (12) pumps his fist in the air after a play during a game against South Alabama, Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022, at Hancock Whitney Stadium. PHOTO BY VANESSA BUENTELLO