VOLUME 103, ISSUE 21
OCTOBER 9, 2013
Defending the First Amendment since 1911
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OPINIONS | Page 3
Cyber Security: The annual Cyber Security Awareness Day is a conference that teaches students and faculty how to safely and responsibly use computers.
The Main Point: The decision by city councilmembers to cancel the construction of a roundabout at Hunter Road and San Antonio Street was a good choice.
Former Congressman delivers speech on drug abuse, mental illness By James Carneiro News Reporter
Madelynne Scales | Staff Photographer Joycelyn Myles, elementary education freshman, studies Oct. 8 at Alkek Library. Myles is currently taking 16 credit hours this semester, which is becoming more common amongst other freshman this year.
PACE Center pushing freshmen, transfers to timely graduation By Autumn Bernhard News Reporter
reshmen are enrolling in more hours of classes each week on average than last semester, which some officials attribute to increased efforts from the Personalized Academic and Career Exploration Center. Members of the President’s Cabinet recently discussed how the average number of semester credit hours taken by freshmen has risen 4.9 percent since the previous year, according to Robert Gratz, special assistant to the university president. While the typical semester course load for freshmen is 12 to 16 hours, Dan Brown, dean of the University College and director of the PACE Center, said the center is pushing a “15-4-1 plan.” The plan encourages freshmen to take 15 hours every semester for four years with the main goal of graduating. “Our priority dream is to help students attain an education in what they want to do,” Brown said. “We are here to help students navigate their path and get there the quickest way possible.” Brown said the price of attending Texas State rises about 20 percent past the fourth year of enrollment due to tuition and textbook costs. He said this is part of the reason
the center is pushing for students to complete their degrees on time. At freshman orientation, Brown gave a presentation that depicted the extra costs of staying more than four years in hopes of increasing the financial literacy of students and their parents. “I feel the increase (in average semester hours) could be accounted for (by) the PACE Center doing a better job in helping freshmen register for their classes and making them aware of what they need to take to get what they need done quicker,” Brown said. “Also, we have individual advising in the registration room to keep students on track.” According to Michael Nava, assistant dean and director of PACE mentoring, in the past two years the center has made critical changes that have contributed to the increase of freshmen enrolling in more credit hours. “Our peer mentoring has grown this year,” Nava said. “Eighty-eight percent of University Seminar classes have a peer mentor in them or students can request a mentor individually. The mentors are mainly juniors and seniors who give guidance in registering for classes and show the benefits of taking more hours.” Additionally, academic advising at the center has become more personal, Nava said. During orienta-
tion, each freshman was required to meet with an academic coach who provided a mock schedule showing ways to enroll in 15 hours of credit during their first semester. Joycelyn Myles, education freshman, is taking 16 hours of classes and feels she misses out on being able to join organizations because of the time she has to spend studying. Myles said she studies three to five hours per weekday and five hours a day on the weekends “I originally did not want to take that many hours, but at NSO (New Student Orientation) my dad heard the PACE Center was pushing for 15 hours and said I was at least doing 15,” Myles said. “In the beginning, I hated having so many hours because I had no time to do fun things, but now I am learning to balance my time.” Nava said PACE is not intending to tie students to a career but wants to help give them adequate information so they do not have to change majors their junior or senior years. “We wish to get freshmen to take the right courses for their first year, so they do not feel like it was a wasted year,” Nava said. “We want students to make connections in their future career, so they do not have to change their mind later in their college experience when it becomes a change by default rather than desire.”
Study to examine reclaimed water usage By James Carneiro
Assistant News Editor
Officials will conduct a Water Reuse Feasibility Study in the coming years to determine if portions of the city’s drinking water can be substituted with a reclaimed version to lower costs and help create a “drought-proof” resource. The $22.1 million study will be performed within the next two years in conjunction with Texas State and the Texas Water Development Board, according to Steven Jenkins, a representative from RPS Group, a municipal consultant agency. The purpose of the study is to extend reclaimed water service to the Texas State chill plants. The plants supply the steam, chilled water and electricity to the university. The study will identify other potential users of the service and project supply and demand for recycled water. According to an Oct. 1 city council presentation, the primary uses of replaceable water are in park and athletic field irrigation, manufacturing and cooling towers.
Certain thermal and chill plants at Texas State will hold the water tested during the study, Jenkins said. Once the study is completed, the city’s water will be substituted with its reclaimed counterpart in a series of expansion phases. The first phase will take place in 2015, sending reclaimed water to the university’s chill plants, according to the presentation. Phase two will take place in 2017, providing water to city and university parks and Texas State facilities. School, commercial and the San Marcos Gary ball fields will receive reclaimed sources in place of drinking water in 2020. The northern portion of San Marcos will receive the reclaimed water in 2035. A benefit of using reclaimed rather than potable water is affordability, Jenkins said. He said switching to reclaimed water would cost $1,083 for the supply treatment, storage and distribution of one acrefoot of water. The cost is $1,910 for drinking water, so switching would mean an estimated $900 reduction, he said.
Patrick Kennedy had much on his plate as the youngest member of the U.S. Congress at the age of 27. Kennedy juggled his responsibilities as a Rhode Island congressional representative along with his issues with drug abuse, alcoholism and mental illness during his eight terms in office. Kennedy discussed his life and advocacy for ending the stigma surrounding addiction and mental illness at a Common Experience event Tuesday as part of the Distinguished Lecture Series. Kennedy mixed humor with personal facts in his speech detailing his time in Congress from 1995 to 2011 and his ef-
Kennedy said it was “tragic” he was the only sponsor of the bill, which was passed in the House of Representatives in 2008 after being stalled in the Senate, he said. During his time in office, Kennedy said he plowed into a police barricade in D.C. while under the influence of drugs. He was forced to enter rehabilitation and word spread of the incident, he said. People from his district told him to resign, but he decided to stay in Congress, Kennedy said. When he retuned, members of Congress who had never spoken to Kennedy held a private meeting with him, telling him of friends and family members who had also struggled with mental illness and addiction, he said. Kennedy said the incident
Kathryn Parker | Staff Photographer Former U.S. Representative Patrick Kennedy speaks to students Oct. 8 as part of the LBJ Common Experience.
forts to pass a bill addressing mental illnesses like bipolar disorder, which he was diagnosed with. Kennedy said he felt uncertain when he first arrived in Congress. “I didn’t know what I was going to champion at first,” he said.
and support he got from colleagues gave him renewed hope for the bill. He said the bill was finaly passed after it was attached to a larger banking bailout bill. Kennedy said some members of Congress voted against the bill because conservative constituents did not see mental ill-
“(When) I got to put my name on that bill I was so happy.” —Former U.S. Rep. Patrick Kennedy
Chris Motz | Staff Photographer Texas State aims to use reclaimed water in university chill plants for a more cost effective cooling method for campus resources.
Jenkins said the study can receive funding from a variety of sources. The sources include the Clean Water State Revolving Fund, the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and an Edwards Aquifer Authority water conservation grant. The switch to using reclaimed water instead of drinking resources makes sense financially, Jenkins said. “We’re replacing a source we get nothing from,” Jenkins said.
In his speech, Kennedy recalled his problems with drug addiction, which he was seeing a doctor for at the time. None of his fellow representatives were aware of the problem, he said, and was so afraid of them finding out about his addiction that he parked his car three lots away from his doctor’s office in Washington, D.C. Kennedy said he was able to begin coping with his fear surrounding others finding out about his addiction when he became the sponsor of a mental health parity bill. As part of the bill, insurance companies have to treat mental illness and addiction the same as other diseases, he said. “(When) I got to put my name on that bill I was so happy,” Kennedy said.
ness and addiction as a medical problem, but as a moral failure. The reaction from constituents convinced Kennedy to start advocating for those with drug, alcohol and mental illness problems, he said. Kennedy began his advocacy full-time and has continued his efforts since his term in the House of Representatives ended. Kennedy said he brings his message across the country and founded One Mind for Research, a program for people who suffer from brain disorders. He works with The Jed Foundation, which works to keep youth from committing suicide. “If you stick with it and put one foot in front of the other, you’ll find a whole new life,” Kennedy said.
2 | The University Star | Wednesday October 9, 2013
Nepalese student retains culture after moving to Texas
Austin Humphreys | Photo Editor Binita Upadhyaya, exercise and sports science senior, moved to the United States from Nepal at 13 years old.
By Jordan Gass-Poore’ Trends Reporter
Although she has lived in Texas since her teenage years, Binita Upadhyaya, exercise and sports science senior, calls the country of Nepal her home. At 13 years old, Upadhyaya moved to Sugar Land, Texas from Tamghas, Nepal, a sprawling rural town in South Asia surrounded by green hills with a population of
less than 11,000 people. “For me, I never want to forget Nepal,” Upadhyaya said. Upadhyaya remembers living with her family in their three-story house made of bricks and mud. It was a place where memories and traditional Nepalese foods were made, such as dal bhat, a dish with lentils and steamed rice. “Better education, better life” is a mantra that has helped ease Upadhyaya’s transi-
tion to the U.S. Here, she is dependent on other people’s vehicles and the kindness of strangers. “Here, I have to be the one to talk to people,” Upadhyaya said. “I was shy in the beginning to talk to people. What if I made a mistake?” English as a Second Language courses at Kempner High School in Sugar Land helped Upadhyaya overcome her fear of coming across to others as unintelligent or an outsider, she said. “Since you wake up in the morning, you speak English,” Upadhyaya said. Ana Algeria, Upadhyaya’s high school ESL teacher, said it was clear she studied English in Nepal before coming to the U.S. Her challenge was to learn the language academically so that she would be able to make passing grades on the state’s standardized tests. “We really became friends because she has a very strong drive to learn and to gain a level of mastery that I find very attractive,” Algeria said. Algeria said Upadhyaya has been her only student from Nepal. According to the Texas Education Agency, 310,812 students in the state are enrolled in an English as a Second Language class. Upadhyaya said she had lunch with Algeria last semester. Algeria told her, “you have no idea how far you’ve come.” Upadhyaya and her siblings began learning English in kindergarten, but their parents are not fluent
in the language. “Now me and my sister mix Nepali and English,” she said. Traces of Nepal have left their mark on Upadhyaya, like her nose ring. She had her nose pierced at seven years old as a cultural symbol. “Sometimes I’m thankful I’m Nepali because I have another culture,” she said. Attending Texas State was a dream of Upadhyaya’s since she was in high school, Algeria said. Upadhyaya’s parents stressed the importance of an education because they did not receive an adequate one in Nepal, she said. Upadhyaya’s younger sister is attending Texas Tech University. Her older sister is a Houston-based radiologist. Upadhyaya has a passion to help people that has extended to her work in the Texas State Physical Therapy Clinic. Although she no longer works in the clinic, her relationship with former patients remains reciprocal. “I wanted to help other people, make them smile and give them hope,” she said. Upadhyaya said she wants to go back to Nepal to use the skills she learned at Texas State. Later in the future, Upadhyaya is interested in moving back to Sugar Land.
San Marcos, university to host viewing of rare John F. Kennedy photo collection By Ernest Macias Trends Reporter
A rare and unique set of photographs by Jaques Lowe, personal photographer of President John F. Kennedy, are on public display at Texas State and will be featured in a full exhibit next month. A preview of the “Remembering Camelot” collection began Oct. 1 and will be featured through Nov. 9 on the first floor of Alkek Library. The exhibit preview will showcase a limited amount of the collection’s rare photographs. They feature selected shots of former President Lyndon B. Johnson, Texas State alumnus. “The photos that are going to be displayed from Jaques Lowe’s collection were hand selected by Frank Harvey from his time spent with the
photographer,” said Diana Wiley, True Vineyard Ministries executive director. “Jaques Lowe’s negatives of these photos were lost during 9/11 because they were kept (in the destroyed buildings).” Once the preview concludes at Alkek, the collection’s official opening reception will be held Nov. 16 at the San Marcos Conference Center, offering an open bar and hors d’oeuvres. The reception will display the exhibit in its entirety, including a full collection of vintage pictures, Kennedy artifacts and a silent auction of rare objects. The exhibit includes a racing sailboat used by Kennedy during his years at Yale University and the car from his 1961 inaugural parade, a Thunderbird convertible. The event will also feature
keynote speaker Helen Lowman, Peace Corps’ associate director for the Office of Volunteer Recruitment and Selection. Kennedy created the Peace Corps during his presidential term. Event tickets for the Nov. 16 reception and full exhibit tour will cost $250. For those unable to attend the full exhibit and reception, a limited viewing of the collection will be held Nov. 17 in the San Marcos Conference Center. General admission tickets for the event are $25, or $15 with a student ID. “Remembering Camelot” is a fundraiser for True Vineyard Ministries, a San Marcos-based non-profit organization. “This probably is the one and only time he will show these pictures and artifacts,”
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4 | The University Star | Wednesday October 9, 2013
THE MAIN POINT
City councilmembers, residents deserve praise for roundabout cancelation
he decision by city councilmembers to cancel the construction of a roundabout at the intersection of Hunter Road and San Antonio Street was a positive move, and one for which citizen involvement should be praised. According to an Oct. 3 University Star article, city councilmembers previously voted to approve construction on the roundabout, which was expected to be complete by September 2014. After a group of 50 protesters gathered inside the City Hall lobby Oct. 3, councilmembers discussed their options and decided to forgo plans for the construction of the roundabout. The decision to construct a roundabout in town was met with controversy from San Marcos locals. Many felt the intersection would be unsafe, despite contrary claims from Texas Department of Transportation officials. Other points of contention were the presence of several historical trees, which would have to be removed in order for the construction to proceed, the high costs of construction and the potential loss of local business that could occur as a result. Local protesters should be praised for their efforts. San Marcos councilmembers often seem to go ahead with plans that are in direct contradiction of the views of their constituents. Residents deserve recognition for their dedication to show up to the city council meetings and protest what they saw as an unsafe and unnecessary addition to city infrastructure. In the future, residents should not hesitate to protest when local officials approve construction projects or other ordinances that are in opposition to their views. It is distressing how far along plans for the construction of the roundabout came before dissenting residents finally took a
stand. Citizens should make sure their voices are firmly heard when it comes to potentially harmful projects or ordinances. For example, city councilmembers frequently field proposals from construction companies wishing to build apartment complexes in environmentally sensitive areas. Residents who care about the local environment have a duty to protest such proposals and keep city council decisions aligned with citizen interests. Especially when plans have come as far along as the roundabout, it is critical residents band together and make their voices heard before it is too late. On the other hand, city councilmembers deserve recognition for listening to residents and canceling the roundabout even when many members did not agree with protesters. This is how local government should work. The voices of constituents should ultimately be the deciding factor for officials when making decisions that could impact the city’s safety or overall well-being. The decision to cancel roundabout construction and instead build a traditional three-way intersection at Hunter Road and San Antonio Street is the best option for the area. San Marcos residents should take their victory to heart and continue to
Brandon Sams he ignorance and irreverence that T exists within the college community in regards to rape is problematic, and
Lara Shine | Star Illustrator
protest projects they do not agree with, and city officials should continue to take resident opinions into account when making important decisions. 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.
Males should not be expected to give up bus seats
alry or tradition while riding the bus. This idea that because I am a man I should go out of my way to accommodate a female is ridiculous and sexist. It is demeaning to men because it implies James Soto that for some Opinions Columnist reason a man English senior should have to stand while a woman sits. This does not make any sense to me. Some may argue this practice is simple hospitality. I call it a slap in the face of a man’s right to sit down on the bus after a long day without being bothered. When students ride the bus, they are all equals in the same situation. All passengers, regardless of sex, simply want to get from one place to another as quickly as possible. Being born a female should not equal an automatic bus seat,
especially if that woman has a habit of arriving to the tram late. I have a hard time feeling sympathetic for girls who have to stand because they were late when I have been waiting for the bus for 20 minutes. Walking long distances uphill is another shared experience of students. Legs will ache, feet will throb and sweat will drop as students navigate the hilly, temperate Texas State campus. This is just the way it goes. The hills on campus do not play favorites between genders. Men and women alike must climb up hills and walk long distances to get around campus. The idea the same women who traverse these hills are unable to stand up on the bus is ridiculous. Men get just as tired walking around campus. Nobody asks females to give up their seats to exhausted male students. Males should not have to give up their seats either. Seats should be taken on a first come, first serve basis— gender is irrelevant. I do understand the courtesy in giving up a seat to a female from time to time. There is nothing wrong with being generous. However, expecting this generosity to be given all the time is wrong. It is wrong for students to think that men should constantly be holding
open doors and jumping out of their seats for females. This is an unrealistic way to view how males should act around females. It is as unrealistic as a man expecting his girlfriend to cook and clean up after him every day. Men and women have differences when it comes to their bodies, but arms and legs are shared by those lucky enough to have full use of them. Women can open their own doors and stand on their own two feet without the world coming to an end. A bus should be a place of equality. A person may sit one day and stand another—it is not always a pleasant experience, but it is a fair one. Men and women are both capable of standing or sitting, and the idea that one gender should have precedence over the other is a flawed concept and reeks of sexism. The men of Texas State should be able to sit on a bus without fearing pressure to give up their seats. Women likewise should accept they are not special and therefore require no such treatment. It is time to leave ideas of sexist chivalry in the past. Men and women may have their differences, but when it comes to being passengers on the bus, entitlement should be left at the doors.
Blogging worthwhile for students
logging is an easy way for students B to share their college experiences and expand their knowledge of different
cultures, perspectives and points of view. An important function of college is making connections that will be beneficial when joining the working world. A big part of this is being active in Ashley Trumps clubs and orOpinions Columnist ganizations on Journalism senior campus, but the Internet also provides networking opportunities on a world-wide scale. Blogging is a form of social media that is excellent for cultivating connections. Experiences are the true vehicle of knowledge, but one person can only encounter so many of them. Blogs serve to spread the insights of professionals, the intimate encounters of adventurers, the day-to-day occurrences of people practicing different cultures and all the knowledge that comes with these observations. They force readers to experience our
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world through a different lens. College life can sometimes feel like a bubble— study, sleep, party, repeat. Browsing the blogs of those who live a vastly different lifestyle pops this bubble and rains the soapy drops of broad-mindedness into readers’ heads. With the technological tools at our disposal, experience through words and pictures can be conveyed and absorbed practically anywhere. A smart phone is clutched in the hands of nearly every college student. Laptops and computers go hand-in-hand with classwork. All it takes is a click and a few moments of contemplation to travel the world through somebody else’s eyes. This exposure is necessary for students to gather a sense of the world outside of textbooks and courses. It provides a peek at the “real world” outside of college culture and structure. This can ease the anxiety of students who feel they are flying blind as they plunge into adult life. Creating and sharing blogs online teaches certain skill sets that can sharpen students’ abilities before looking for a career. Active blogging provides a creative outlet for those who want to vent. Photography and blogging are intimately connected. Sharing life through pictures allows the reader to form their own interpretations, and is an important
Editor in Chief................................................Caitlin Clark, firstname.lastname@example.org Managing Editor..........................Liza Winkler, email@example.com Letters..................................................................................firstname.lastname@example.org News Editor............................................Taylor Tompkins, email@example.com Trends Editor.............................................Amanda Ross, firstname.lastname@example.org Opinions Editor..................................Savannah Wingo, email@example.com Photo Editor.......................................Austin Humphreys, firstname.lastname@example.org Sports Editor.......................................Odus Evbagharu, email@example.com Copy Desk Chief................................Lesley Warren, firstname.lastname@example.org Video Editor........................................................Alex Peña, email@example.com
Rape culture unacceptable at Texas State
Opinions Columnist Journalism freshman
o male Texas State student should N have to give up his seat to a healthy, able-bodied female student out of chiv-
addition to reading the words of others. Additionally, learning to express oneself through writing is an invaluable craft. It is important as a communicator to take responsibility for expressing thoughts and feelings accurately to a reader who is unable to immediately ask questions to clarify for meaning. The great thing about blogs is they provide a forum for discussion through comments. Coding and design are taught and used in blogging. It takes a lot of behindthe-scenes work to make a website attractive. An enormous amount of interaction and communication happens online these days, and just as people seem to be more receptive to an attractive person, they are apt to pay more attention to a pretty webpage. Blogging gives students the opportunity not only to learn these skills but to use them regularly. Skills learned through blogging do not go to waste and are immediately put to use. If knowledge or experience is offered in a student’s blog, somebody in the world will be interested in reading about it. Online personalities are noticed and appreciated—even if they are just pictures of a cute new adopted kitten. Students should make and maintain a personal blog throughout their college years and beyond.
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students should take steps to educate themselves. Although men are also affected, rape and sexual assault are serious offenses that disproportionately target women. To trivialize these crimes as happenstance is ignorant, insensitive and, frankly, stupid. Hearing boys speak arrogantly about their sexual exploits while belittling rape and sexual assault is more than irritating. Shamefully, some girls partake in this insular view of slut-shaming and victim-blaming— allowing themselves to be further brainwashed by the patriarchal society at large. The rape culture existent on college campuses and in society as a whole is something I refuse to engage in. Nor will I participate in objectifying women as a commodity for heterosexual men to use, abuse and excuse as they wish. Objectification leads to dehumanization, which in turn leads to sexual violence being normalized since women are seen as objects instead of humans deserving of respect. This is rape culture. The students at this campus, specifically the men—oh, excuse me, I meant boys—definitely have some growing up to do. Self-evaluation is key. The golden rule says one should do unto others as they would want done unto themselves. It is called empathy, and students should practice it on a regular basis. Frat bros who regularly objectify women and toe the lines of consent should especially consider the part they play in rape culture. It is a well-known “secret” that fraternity culture seems to contribute greatly to the perpetuation of rape culture. The philanthropy within these organizations is commendable—I am not knocking that. However, the men who are part of these groups often solidify their position and express their masculinity through homophobia and tales of sexual exploits. This kind of environment contributes to the rape culture in more than a few ways. Exaggerated sexual boasting and sexual assaults are commonplace in fraternities are almost required for members who want to feel accepted and rise in the ranks. This mindset is a part of the tired cliché of being a “manly man,” a stereotype that hurts men as well as women and creates an atmosphere where the sexual abuse of women is acceptable. Sexually promiscuous men are positively viewed by our society and are referred to as “studs.” Conversely, sexually promiscuous women are ridiculed as “sluts” or “whores,” perpetuating the idea they deserve to be raped or are “asking for it.” Bad behavior warrants bad results if (and only if) that “bad behavior” is done by women, apparently. Rape culture appears to demonize any expression of female sexuality that is not virginal. I do not want seem like I am just bashing heterosexual males—that is not my point. Men are affected by the rape culture, too. Rape culture is all about gender norms and heteronormativity, with men being seen as active predators and women as submissive prey. These stereotypes hinder men and women from expressing themselves fully. The dehumanization of women in our culture is not specific to women but more so to femininity in general. Men, not wanting to be seen as feminine, use defensive homophobia to humiliate insufficiently masculine men. This often causes male victims of sexual assault and rape to remain in the shadows and seldom report assaults. Students should play a part in the destruction of rape culture instead of its perpetuation. Demonizing women and condoning rape is not something students should participate in. Rape is not a joke. It is not funny and should not be trivialized. Students should take an active role in combating the rape culture present at Texas State and in American society.
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, October 9, 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 Bobcats averaged 27.93 yards per kickoff return on special teams. This places the ball club ninth in the country in that category. The team has two kickoff return touchdowns for the season, making them tied for first in the FBS.
Texas State’s offense is averaging 141 yards per contest through the air, which is the worst in the conference by 90.6 yards.
The Bobcats are giving up a Sun Belt Conference-worst 329 passing yards per game. Texas State ranks last in the FBS in passing yards allowed.
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