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Next print edition: Jan. 28 • Check wkuherald.com for news over the break

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 3, 2019

WESTERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY

VOLUME 95, ISSUE 14

WKU hosting early rounds of volleyball tournament for 1st time SPORTS • B4

KEILEN FRAZIER • HERALD

The WKU volleyball team reacts after learning it will be hosting the first two rounds of the NCAA tournament during a watch party at Roosters on Dec. 1, 2019.

Experienced staff members exit Finance office BY JACK DOBBS HERALD.NEWS@WKU.EDU With the retirements and departures of several financial staff members this semester, WKU is losing about 80 total years of experience. One soon-to-be retiree is Paula Jarboe, the current Chief Financial Officer of the WKU Foundation. In the more than two decades she worked at WKU, she witnessed extensive changes to the campus and the university as a whole. “My beginning began when Dr. [Gary] Ransdell began,” Jarboe said. “We went through all of the growth and the change under his leadership, the exciting revitalization of the campus. I can’t imagine the changes that have been made.” Jarboe said when she came to WKU in 1997, the university had an endowment of $19 million. Now, Jarboe said the university’s endowment is more than $150 million. “It’s just been exponential, the energy from students and from alums and from faculty and staff,” Jarboe said. “It’s been amazing to see the growth.” Jarboe’s retirement will take effect

Dec. 31 of this year. Jarboe is not the only member of the WKU staff leaving. Several other staff members in the Office of Strategy, Operation and Finance are retiring or have posted their resignation. Stacy Garrett has also left the Finance office. Tony Glisson, director of human resources at WKU, said Garrett left the university for another position in Bowling Green. Garrett worked in the Finance office for almost 12 years. One member, Brad Wheeler, assistant vice president of business services and real estate, worked with the office for almost 20 years. The reason for his departure, Wheeler said, was because he was offered a “great opportunity” to become a wealth manager at Level Four Wealth Management, an investment advisory firm, in Bowling Green, an opportunity he said that he couldn’t turn down. Even though he is leaving, Wheeler said he enjoyed the people he came to know while working at WKU. “I love the people here at WKU,” Wheeler said. “It’s just a remarkable group of people that work up here that are in the trenches and get it done.”

Wheeler’s resignation took effect on Oct. 31. Wheeler said he is planning on “providing some counsel” for the office as it seeks a replacement for Wheeler. Jim Cummings, WKU’s chief financial officer, is retiring. Cummings took the position of CFO in 2005. Cummings considers lowering the interest WKU pays for outstanding bonds to be his greatest accomplishment, he said. Between 2011 and 2016, advance refundings were completed on six series of outstanding bonds, he said. “Those actions generated total debt service savings of $10.8 million over the remaining terms of the refunded bonds,” Cummings said in an email. “I’m very proud of the opportunities that provided to reallocate those annual debt service savings to other priorities.” Earlier this year, the Kentucky General Assembly passed House Bill 1, a controversial piece of legislation which impacts the pensions of state employees. Cummings said this bill allows WKU to evaluate its participation in the Kentucky Employees Retirement System. “While we have already begun that review process, it will continue to occur over the next several months, and I

won’t be able to participate in some of the more important decisions that must be made,” Cummings said. “However, I am confident that our administration will evaluate the options and will make decisions that are in the best interest of our employees and our institution.” Cummings said he feels WKU is facing its financial challenges the best it can, with new administrative leadership alongside a new budget model. “I truly am pleased with the current focus on ‘right sizing’ the institution and improving our financial and operational performance,” Cummings said. “I am very excited about what I believe the future holds for WKU.” Cummings is pleased with the journey he had at WKU, he said. He considers WKU’s faculty and staff to be the university’s greatest asset. “I’ve worked with some of the most wonderful colleagues at WKU, and I’ve made so many lifelong friends here,” Cummings said. “I’m really grateful for all the opportunities I’ve had at WKU.”

Reporter Jack Dobbs can be reached at jack.dobbs469@topper.wku.edu. Follow him on Twitter at @jackrdobbs.

3rd racial slur incident prompts Greek life review BY LAUREL DEPPEN HERALD.NEWS@WKU.EDU

A video which included members of WKU’s chapter of Alpha Tau Omega using a racial slur surfaced last week. The members were singing along to the lyrics of Sheck Wes’ “Mo Bamba,” which contains a racial slur, without

omitting it, according to a news release from the fraternity’s national chapter. “The decision by some members of the Zeta Omega chapter to sing along with a Sheck Wes song (Mo Bamba) that included racially specific lyrics was an extremely poor choice,” the statement read. The national fraternity is working with WKU’s chapter “to help the chap-

ter reflect on why singing along with the song would be offensive to others,” according to the statement. The statement also noted the men involved “meant no disrespect and are sincerely sorry.” Brian Kehne, the president of WKU’s ATO chapter and the Herald’s incoming advertising manager, said his

chapter would not comment beyond the national organization’s statement. WKU’s Interfraternity Council released a statement on Nov. 26 saying it did not support this behavior and that the incident didn’t reflect Greek life on campus.

SEE ATO • PAGE A2


A2 NEWS ATO

CONTINUED FROM FRONT The video is the third to surface this semester which includes members of Greek organizations singing along to lyrics containing a racial slur. The first two were recorded in August, featuring members of Alpha Xi Delta and Chi Omega. Each instance was handled by the university similarly, leaving disciplinary responsibility to the national organizations. The administration handled the AXiD and Chi O incidents the way it did because the sororities’ actions were “ill advised” but not malicious, Director of Media Relations Bob Skipper told the Herald in an Oct. 24 meeting. Skipper said the administration saw a difference between singing the word in a song as opposed to yelling the slur at someone directly. The university’s decision was met with criticism by two members of the Student Government Association, who organized a protest to demand AXiD’s removal from campus and later authored a resolution which sought punishment against AXiD’s WKU chapter. The resolution was vetoed by SGA’s executive board. Brian Kuster, WKU’s vice president for enrollment and student experi-

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 3, 2019 WESTERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY ence, became aware of the ATO video and released a statement about it and the previous incidents. “The use of a racial slur—regardless of the context—goes against the principles of the institution reflected in the WKU Creed,” Kuster wrote. “The WKU Creed conveys to the WKU community that they have a personal and shared responsibility to seek inclusion by respecting the rights of all persons and to celebrate and embrace diversity. The actions of these groups do not accurately represent what we aspire to be as a university.” Kuster said he has asked Dean of Students Lynne Holland to conduct a review of Greek organizations to ensure its members “understand the importance of inclusion at WKU and how their behaviors affect others and the perception of our entire university.” “It is evident some in our Greek system do not understand that their actions can reflect negatively on the entire institution,” Kuster wrote. The process will include Greek and non-Greek students, faculty, staff and alumni, Kuster said. “I want our students that are harmed by the actions of a few to know that WKU is a community that is dedicated to creating an environment that is conducive to their learning and personal development and that they are respected, valued and appreciated,” Kuster said.

REED MATTISON • HERALD

The Alpha Tau Omega house fraternity house on Center Street.

Similarly, the IFC said in its statement that it would implement an education program into its meetings, chapter meetings and during its New Member Leadership Symposium program. “We will do everything in our power to ensure members of the Greek Community are made aware of the harmful

impact that using this racial slur can cause,” the statement read.

Print Managing Editor Laurel Deppen can be reached at laurel.deppen774@ topper.wku.edu. Follow her on Twitter @laurel_deppen.

Students study the forgotten history under their feet BY ABBEY NUTTER HERALD.NEWS@WKU.EDU

Fifty-two years after the Jonesville residents — a Bowling Green African-American community — relocated, students in John Conley’s English 100 classes have dug deep into WKU’s forgotten history, which, according to Conley, was assigned within the context of a national conversation about the longstanding injuries that have been done to black people in the U.S. and in the context of a growing national conversation about reparations. “We’re working on a unit in which the students are encouraged to learn a little bit about the history of Jonesville and to kind of sit with that knowledge and to try to notice, then think about, then write about the history right under our feet on Western’s campus, how that impacts the way we understand ourselves as members of this university community,” Conley said. If a student passed by the marker that stands just past Nick Denes Field on the outskirts of WKU’s campus, they could read that a community called Jonesville was bordered by Dogwood Drive, Russellville Road and the railroad tracks. From 1881 to 1967, Jonesville was a neighborhood with a predominantly black population. At its height, 400500 people called Jonesville home and around 70 homes were peppered within it. A church stood as the center of the community — a church where Maxine Ray remembers attending Valentine’s Day parties and listening to ghost stories in a neighborhood many at WKU don’t know anything about. Ray is one of the few people left who remember growing up in Jonesville. She was born there, along with her grandmother and mother. She played softball in vacant lots and borrowed books from the small library at the church. And when asked what Jonesville looked like to her growing up, Ray gave a wistful smile and a single word: “Home.” Home was a small community where everybody knew everybody. Home was where her parents provided everything they needed and where Ray

KEILEN FRAZIER • HERALD

The Jonesville marker located on the Avenue of Champions near Nick Denes Field.

didn’t know that her mother worked until junior high because her she was always there when Ray came home from school. “I can’t remember growing up and seeing someone in our community that was hungry, because we all shared, we all knew each other,” Ray said. “Everybody had a garden, so nobody was ever hungry.” When Ray was 18, she married young and moved out of Jonesville. Her parents and grandparents still lived in the community, and the university had been trying to buy the properties that made up Jonesville since the 50s. “They fought it and fought for a long time, as best as they knew how during that time,” Ray said. “It was 1954, ‘55, ‘56 – Martin Luther King had just started his non-violent movement – and I don’t think our parents realized that they could have gone out of state and gotten an attorney to help fight it.”

Ray remembered the next sequence of events clearly: the state condemned everybody’s property, then Urban Renewal came in and bought all the property and then sold it to the university. Everyone in the community owned their property and had what Ray called “clear deeds.” “That was really hard,” Ray said. “Remember, it’s segregation — you can’t walk into a bank and get money for your property.” Ray said most families that lived in Jonesville found new property. She recalled her mother talking about going to the bank to get enough money for their house and her grandmother’s house. “We never move as a neighborhood together, it was spread out around the city,” Ray said. “It wasn’t too far spread out, there were only around four sections, four parts of town that blacks could live in, so we never were togeth-

er again as a community.” Conley, like many others, came to WKU with no knowledge that Jonesville had existed. He saw a number of signature meeting places for the WKU community like Diddle Arena and Houchens-Smith Stadium and had no idea that half a century ago, there stood a thriving neighborhood. “Personally, I love teaching at WKU,” Conley said. “I love my students and I love our mission to provide a high quality, accessible education to the students of south-central Kentucky and our service area. But I think that if Western as an institution is unwilling to account for how it got to where it is today, I think it risks to lose a lot in the long run.”

News reporter Abbey Nutter can be reached at abbigail.nutter168@topper. wku.edu. Follow her on Twitter at @ abbeynutter.

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NEWS A3

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 3, 2019 WESTERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY

THC vapes continue to pose a danger to public health BY MICHAEL J COLLINS HERALD.NEWS@WKU.EDU The Warren County Drug Task Force estimated that of all marijuana-related charges in the past year, over 2000 such cases involved confiscation of THC vapes. Todd Young, deputy director of the Warren County Drug Task Force, said THC vapes have surged in popularity since the legalization of marijuana in several states. Young said THC vapes are especially popular among teenagers and young adults. “I would say cases tend to involve the high school to the college-age crowd,” Young said. “Most THC vapes are trafficked through the mail from places where they’re legal, like California and Colorado, to Warren County.” Law enforcement has struggled to identify THC vapes as a result of their discrete nature and lack of the smell associated with marijuana. “Once vapes are out of their package, they’re easy to hide and can be disguised as other things, so officers have to know what to look for to catch them,” Young said. Last week, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention continued to urge the public to avoid e-cigarette and vape products as the number of vape-related lung injuries reached 2,290 cases spanning 49 states — the majority being linked to THC vapes. The surge of illnesses was first announced in a Sept. 6 telebriefing by Dana Meaney Delman, incident manager of the CDC’s response to the outbreak. “Most importantly, while this investigation is ongoing, people should consider not using e-cigarette products,” Delman said. “People who do use e-cigarette products should monitor themselves for symptoms (e.g., cough, shortness of breath, chest pain, nausea, vomiting, or others) and promptly seek medical attention for any health concerns.” The CDC analyzed 29 patients who had been admitted to hospitals for e-cigarette and vaping associated lung injuries (EVALI) and found that all were linked to Vitamin E acetate, an additive used to thicken THC vaping products. As of Nov. 20, the CDC has reported 47 deaths nationwide linked to THC vapes since the start of the investigation. Freshman Webb Bates said students

REED MATTISON • HERALD

A student walks through Centennial Mall exhaling smoke from a non-THC vape pen on Monday, Sept. 23, 2019. Seven people in six states have died recently due to e-cigarette related pulmonary illnesses.

generally continue to use THC vapes as many are unaware of the risk of ill-

discreet, and it’s a USB world,” said Bates. “Several of my friends have

WEBB BATES

Freshman

Several of my friends have gone the extra mile to buy from organic and safer sources.

ness. Other students aware of the outbreak have switched to other forms of marijuana. “[THC vapes] are convenient and

gone the extra mile to buy from organic and safer sources.” Bates said students should spread awareness of the dangers associated

with THC vapes to avoid future illnesses. According to an annual study conducted by the University of Michigan, the number of college students vaping marijuana increased from 5.2% in 2017 to 10.9% in 2018. This marks the most rapid increase of any substance tracked in the 40-year history of the study. Alongside Vitamin E acetate, THC vapes contain hash oil that can reach THC concentrations upwards of 80%. According to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, this degree of potency “increases the risk of an unpredictable high and negative physical and emotional reactions.” The CDC will continue to track injuries and deaths related to vaping and release its next update on Dec. 5.

News reporter Michael J. Collins can be reached at michael.collins527@topper.wku.edu.

WKU middle of the road in student loan default rate BY MATTHEW WILLIAMS HERALD.NEWS@WKU.EDU WKU’s student loan default rate was listed at an average of 9.2%, according to a new annual report released by LendedU, a marketplace of financial products. The student loan default rate is the percentage of borrowers who go past 270 days without making a payment on their federal student loans. When a student enters default, their wages could be garnished or they could lose access to federal aid until they are in good standing on their loans. Out of nearly 4,500 colleges across the nation, WKU ranked 2,305 in the report. Andrew Head, director of the WKU Center for Financial Success, said he thinks it’s necessary to consider all factors that contribute to a school’s loan default rate.

“WKU used to have a little bit more liberal admissions policy, so there were students that just were not academically prepared to come here,” Head said. In the long run, colleges that enroll students through lax admission policies could be causing future problems for students who are accepted but lack the skills to handle higher level courses. According to a PEW research report, first-generation college students and students of color are more susceptible to default on their student loans than their peers. For students who are more inclined to drop out, they will have a hard time finding jobs that pay as much as those for people with a degree. “So they’ve got that payment without the additional pay that would come with having a better job as a result of graduating,” Head said. “They’re still in that pre-college-grad stage job that

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ANDREW HEAD

director of the WKU Center for Financial Success

WKU used to have a little bit more liberal admissions policy, so there were students that just were not academically prepared to come.

doesn’t pay a lot.” A major part of the problem comes from pressure put on high school graduates to attend college when sometimes a post-secondary education isn’t necessary, Head said. If a student isn’t in ideal circumstances to pay back their loans, there are options to make it easier. Such options are loan forgiveness, forbearance and deferments, which can be used to relieve the payment load. “Loan forgiveness is if you work in a government setting for a certain amount of years, the government will forgive a certain amount of your student loan debt,” Head said. “Typically after 10 years of payment.” Teachers, doctors, nurses and lawyers can take advantage of state-sponsored repayment assistance programs to receive help with repaying debt. As a benefit of employment, some companies will pay for their employees to go to college or help pay off their loans after working for a certain amount of years. Deferment and forbearance are other paths students can take to temporarily pause having to make payments or lessen the monthly payment amount for a requested period. More specifically, forbearance applies to students who aren’t able to find gainful employment by the time they need to start paying back loans. Many times the program makes new payment plans for students based on their income. In these income-based repayment plans, they don’t want the payments to be more than a certain percentage. Until a student reaches a certain threshold of incoming money,

their due payments can be paused or reduced to a manageable amount. While in deferment, subsidized federal loans, otherwise known as Perkins loans, don’t accrue interest. These options are not automatically applied, so students have to submit a request to their loan servicer and provide them with documentation showing they meet the requirements to receive forbearance or deferment. Tate Keeling, a freshman from Louisville, has already been dealing with stress related to student debt and the confusion brought about by the various applications. “We didn’t do the FAFSA on time and right now no one is taking the certain things you have for the FAFSA,” Keeling said. “Now, I can’t even apply for loans.” If the average student default rate is 30% or higher for three consecutive years at a college, the schools can lose eligibility for Pell Grants and federal student loans. Loan eligibility can also be lost if the rate is 40% or higher in one year. However, most colleges never reach those high magnitudes except for a small number of schools that fail the annual test.

Reporter Matthew Williams can be reached at matthew.williams904@topper.wku.edu.


OPINION

A4

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 3, 2019 WESTERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY

THE GIVING SPIRIT The Herald gives back to its favorite people

BY HERALD EDITORIAL BOARD HERALD.OPINION@WKU.EDU

As is tradition, the College Heights Herald editorial board gives out Christmas gifts to those most important in our lives, regardless of whether they’ve been naughty or nice. Enjoy your gifts, and the last issue of the semester. Thanks for all the great content — we mean it. Disclaimer: These gifts are given in jest, but all good jokes contain true things. To Alpha Xi Delta, Chi Omega and Alpha Tau Omega, we give you a joint Netflix subscription so all of your members can watch “Dear White People.” Some of the lessons in the show may come in handy later on, whether you’re being recorded or not. To President Timothy Caboni, we give you a Chinese finger trap. It can serve as a not-so-subtle reminder of the situation WKU has gotten itself in with China, and in both this case and your gift, we all know you could get out of it if you really wanted to. To the members of the College Heights Herald, we give ourselves a breathalyzer. Next time you decide to walk home after a night out, use it and see if you’d rather call an Uber instead. It’s best for all of us if we stop showing up in our own crime reports. To Deb Wilkins, we give you please stop suing the College Heights Herald. To Officer Tim Gray, we give you a cheat day for your diet. Everyone knows how hard you work both in the gym and on the job, so take a day off and help us feel better about ourselves, too. To our former editor-in-chief, Andrew Henderson, we give you a muzzle. You haven’t quit talking since any of us have met you, whether with President Timothy Caboni about campus issues during semi-formal events

or on Twitter about your cat. Everyone else would like their turn to speak. To the College Heights Herald Facebook commenters, we give you a hobby — any hobby. Surely some of you can find something better to do than writing harsh comments with a higher word count than the article you hate — which you also didn’t read. To the WKU football team, we give you an apology for our columns written about you earlier this year. While losing to an FCS school is egregious, you have proved it is at least redeemable. To WKU quarterback Ty Storey, we give you a homecoming king crown for your performance in your home state during WKU’s win against Arkansas. Leading your school to a 45-19 blowout win and having nearly double the passing yards as Arkansas did total yards after the first half is a performance worthy of a throne. To WKU point guard Kenny Cooper, we give you an eligibility waiver. We’re all anxiously waiting for you to suit up as a Hilltopper after these long seven months since you transferred, so we decided to take matters into our own hands. To Gov. Matt Bevin, we give you a U-Haul truck and a real estate agent. With these gifts you can pack your belongings, sell your house and leave Kentucky. To anyone who wants it, we give you the building formerly housing the Confucius Institute. Somebody on this campus can find a way for it to actually benefit WKU this time, right? To Bob Skipper, WKU’s director of media relations, we give you some peace and quiet. Take it easy, and rest assured you won’t be hearing from us as much for the next month and a half. We imagine you’ve been wanting this all semester. Happy holidays, everyone.

ILLUSTRATIONS BY MADALYN STACK • HERALD

Smoke-free campus policy unpopular among students BY EMILY DAVIS HERALD.OPINION@WKU.EDU

WKU recently rolled out a new policy to make campus smoke -and tobacco-free, but a number of students feel the new smoke-free campus policy, which goes into effect Jan. 1, 2020, can’t or won’t be enforced properly, which will lead to no change. McKenzie Blair, a graphic design major from Rineyville, said, “I think it’s a decent idea with very good intentions, however, I don’t know if it will have much of an impact. “Students who smoke will continue to smoke,” Blair said. “They’ll just find a different place to do it off campus or hidden somewhere on campus.” The lack of confidence in the policy’s effectiveness was reinforced by several more student’s opinions. “I don’t think that this policy will be effective because of the amount of students on campus compared to the amount of people who can enforce it,” Kylie Kidd, a nursing major from La Vergne, Tennessee, said. She later provided a bleak outlook on the new policy and its potential enforcement. “I think forcing people to quit smok-

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ing/vaping on campus is very unrealistic,” Kidd said in an email. “There are thousands of people on this campus, and many of them smoke/vape. So to try to take that away from them and enforce it seems impossible.” In solidarity with student’s lack of faith in the policy and the potential enforcement of it, several students expressed their lack of confidence. “There is no way to stop them,” Catalina Rose, a geology major from Louisville, said. “I think a lot of people are going to be absolutely pissed.” “WKU wants this policy to be enforced from a positive, compassionate approach,” Susan Pennington from the Health Education and Promotion Department said. “If students see someone using tobacco products, they should “kindly approach them and ask them if they [are] aware of the tobacco policy and ask them to please comply.” Pennington also compared this policy to the seatbelt law, which is self-enforced, implying that this is how the policy will be handled. The university’s tobacco-free website provides a brief explanation of how WKU will enforce the policy, describing that the policy’s success will “require positive, compassionate reinforcement. With the passage of time, a tobacco-free campus will become the

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norm.” It also states that faculty, staff and students “all share responsibility for supporting and communicating expectations for policy compliance.” The website explains that students cannot use tobacco or related products on any part of the WKU campus or property including the parking garages or in personal vehicles. “We hope that friendly reminders will be enough in most cases for people to cease, but there is the option for enforcing as a policy violation,” Bob Skipper, director of media relations, said. It also seems unlikely that students will be given any kind of smoking areas to either alleviate the newness of the policy or to keep that portion of the student population from being completely unsatisfied. The website explains that “designated smoking areas are not consistent with the purpose of this policy,” and doing so would put limitations on creating a healthy environment. “Creating smoking areas sends a message that tobacco use is acceptable,” the website states. Some students were also concerned about the addiction aspect of trying to enforce a policy that bans very addictive products. “Addiction is tricky, and just banning it won’t take care of that problem

right away,” Blair said. In response to questions regarding the addiction aspect of this new initiative, Skipper said, “with the proper motivation and assistance, addiction can be overcome.” Skipper also said that WKU will “point smokers to the resources available to help them overcome their smoking/vaping addiction.” Skipper and Pennington both included the university’s website in their very similar, seemingly rehearsed responses. The WKU website states, “WKU has resources in place for those of the campus community who want to stop using tobacco and related products and will continue to expand cessation programs.” It also provides a link to the university’s tobacco-free website. On this website, the resources available to students include online resource and app links, such as Freedom from Smoking Online Program, Kill the Can, Tobacco Free, QuitGuide and quitSTART. It is still unclear how WKU is actually planning to enforce this new policy.

Opinion columnist Emily Davis can be reached at emily.davis261@topper. wku.edu.

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A5 OPINION

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 3, 2019 WESTERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY

A senior sign-off: Thanks for reading this semester’s news

BY JEREMY CHISENHALL HERALD.OPINION@WKU.EDU

In case you didn’t know, today’s edition of the Herald is the last one before our eternally-long winter break begins. So get to reading! If you’ve been reading all semester, I sincerely thank you for picking up the Herald and staying up to date on the most important news on the Hill week in and week out. My last semester at the Herald has no doubt been an eventful one —

although I’m not sure it quite lives up to some of my past experiences in my seven semesters here. From the commitment departure return departure of five-star basketball phenom Mitchell Robinson, to the university deciding to sue its own student newspaper, to the university looking to balance a budget $40 million in the red, there’s certainly been no shortage of chaos in my time here. Although, this year’s gubernatorial election provided even more great content for our reporters, as Attorney General Andy Beshear managed to unseat Matt Bevin, despite Bevin’s

initial refusal to concede and an insistence that there are major flaws in Kentucky’s election system. Thankfully, this semester has at least seen a great bounceback from the football team — which is going bowling this year! I hope all of our readers have a great winter break and a happy holiday season. I hope you’ll continue to read the Herald when print publication resumes at the start of the spring semester — our returning staff members will be sure to keep you in the loop on all the news you need to know involving WKU.

In the meantime, be sure to keep up with the Herald online for content throughout the break: - Website: wkuherald.com - Twitter and Instagram: @wkuherald - Facebook: facebook.com/wkuherald Best of luck on your finals, and to all the Hilltoppers like me who are graduating this month, congratulations!

Editor-In-Chief Jeremy Chisenhall can be reached at 270-745-5044 and jeremy.chisenhall921@topper.wku. edu. Follow him on Twitter @JSChisenhall.

Letter from the (former) editor: Dear Herald, thank you

BY EVAN HEICHELBECH HERALD.OPINION@WKU.EDU

When I arrived on WKU’s campus as a freshman in fall of 2015, it took me less than a week to find my way to the Student Publications office to ask if I could write for the College Heights Herald. I walked in, sat down with the sports editor at the time and a few minutes into our conversation I was offered the women’s basketball beat. Coming into college I didn’t know a lot of people in Bowling Green, but I knew one thing for certain: I was going to work at the Herald. Truth be told, WKU was not my number one choice for college. I had my heart set on going to Indiana University in Bloomington. When I finally came to grips with the fact that it simply made more sense financially for me to come to WKU, I started thinking about what opportunities I could take advantage of on the Hill. Join a fraternity? Maybe. Make new friends? Hopefully. Find a girlfriend? Alright, don’t get too crazy Evan. Work at the nationally recognized and highly decorated student newspaper on campus? Absolutely. Four and a half years later, I’m extremely proud to say I’ve accomplished all of those things, and I wouldn’t change a single thing. It’s long been a dream of mine to work in journalism. I grew up telling my parents that I was going to be an author when I got older. Writing has always been one of my passions, right behind sports. As an

only child, I often had to find ways to entertain myself, and most of the time that meant watching the same episodes of SportsCenter on a loop each day or spending time outside of my English class writing in my school journal at home. By the time I was a sophomore in high school, it dawned on me: I could get paid to watch sports and write about them. Why wouldn’t I want to do that? A few years later when I got to Bowling Green, I found myself asking the same question: I could get paid to go to WKU’s football and basketball games, write about them and have my stories published in one of the most respected college newspapers in the country. Why wouldn’t I want to do that? Before I could blink, I was in Boca Raton, Florida, covering a bowl game that capped off WKU’s most successful FBS football season in school history. Two weeks later, I was named the sports editor at the Herald as a sophomore, and if it were up to me, that’s likely where I would’ve stayed until I graduated. Luckily, the Herald has two of the best advisers any student journalist could ask for, and they saw potential in me as a journalist outside of sports that I never considered. I was quickly shoved out of my comfort zone and found myself in a managing editor’s role as a junior before eventually being named the editor-in-chief for the 2018-2019 school year. My experiences in those leadership roles were some of the most valuable and rewarding times of my college career. I truly believe that you learn more about yourself through learning about other people. One way of doing that is by telling stories that matter. Some are more

significant than others, but sometimes the most bizarre stories are the ones that capture more people’s attention. I spent the tail end of my summer in 2017 scrambling to get the information needed to be the first to break the story of Mitchell Robinson leaving WKU unexpectedly in the middle of the night. And then he came back. And then he left again. None of that reporting would have been possible without the College Heights Herald. Without that experience, I’m not sure if I would have been able to lead our team of reporters in chasing a similarly crazy story earlier this year when the longtime dean of Potter College was asked to resign out of nowhere. Trying to keep up with the whirlwind of events over those two weeks were some of the most exciting and stressful days of my time as editor-in-chief. None of that coverage would have been possible without the College Heights Herald. Perhaps an even more wild time to be a journalist at WKU was when the university announced it would be closing one of its freshman dorms because of a mold outbreak just weeks before the end of the fall 2018 semester. We spent the entire following weekend poring over more than 2,700 available web pages of maintenance requests to produce an investigation revealing that there were more than 500 reports of mold in the last year. Leading that project would not have been possible without the College Heights Herald. But above every other story I’ve written or edited during my time at the Herald, none of them mean more to me than Roger Osborne’s, the lifelong fan of the Hilltoppers who was given just a few

weeks to live during WKU’s run in the NIT in the spring of 2018. I watched what would be Roger’s final WKU basketball game with him and was blessed with the chance to tell his story. He died eight days later, and I’ll never forget the evening we spent together. It wouldn’t have been possible without the College Heights Herald. As my time at the Herald and WKU draws to a close, I could not be more grateful for every opportunity I’ve had on this campus and in this city. I came in with a goal and I’m leaving with the same goal, except I’m much more well-rounded and better equipped to achieve it as I enter the job market. It would be wrong of me to spend all of my final words at the Herald talking about myself, so I want to give thanks to a few people in particular. To Herald advisers Chuck Clark and Carrie Pratt, thank you so much for everything you’ve done to help me grow through giving me your advice, talking me through difficult situations and helping me land two excellent internships. To all of those who worked alongside me at the Herald, thank you for making my job(s) here so much more enjoyable and easier. To all of the coaches and players I’ve covered and interviewed over the years, thank you sincerely for your time. And to all of the readers of the Herald, thank you. I don’t even want to imagine how it all would have turned out if I didn’t end up on the Hill. ‘Til next time, WKU.

Evan Heichelbech can be reached at evan.heichelbech059@topper.wku.edu. Follow him on Twitter @evanheich.

CONGRATULATIONS to our graduating seniors... EVAN HEICHELBECH

College Heights Herald - 9 semesters Editor-in-chief: Fall 2018, Spring 2019

JEREMY CHISENHALL

College Heights Herald - 7 semesters Editor-in-chief: Fall 2019

GRIFFIN FLETCHER

College Heights Herald - 5 semesters Talisman - 3 semesters

SAVON HAYDEN

College Heights Herald - 1 semester

NOT PICTURED ALEC JESSIE

College Heights Herald - 5 semesters

AUGUST GRAVATTE Talisman - 4 semesters

AVARI STAMPS

Student Publications Advertising - 2 semesters Advertising manager, Fall 2019

ROSE HARRIS

College Heights Herald - 1 semester

ALEX ORTIZ

Student Publications Advertising - 1 semester

You’ve come a long way!


PHOTO

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TUESDAY, DECEMBER 3, 2019 WESTERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY

HO HO HO!

Behind the scenes of santa at Flea Land

Kendall Allenspach, 5, sits in Santa’s lap and excitedly shouts, “I want a castle!” at Flea Land market on Sunday, Dec. 1, 2019. Allenspach was Santa’s first guest of the day at the Flea Land market.

BY BRENNA PEPKE HERALD.PHOTO@WKU.EDU

Each Sunday in December, Bobby Hite, 63, arrives at the Bowling Green

Flea Land market dressed in a fuzzy red coat and pants with a large brown belt to tie the suit together. From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Hite happily awaits young patrons of the flea market to tell him their Christmas wish lists. Hite is part of Flea Land’s hosting of Santa on

Sundays for the entire month of December. The meet and greets offer free photos and encourage voluntary donations toward the Bowling Green Humane Society and St. Vincent DePaul.

Bobby Hite, 63, arrives early Sunday morning to the Flea Land cafeteria and waits for shoppers to stop by and say hello to Santa Claus on Dec. 1, 2019. Each Sunday in December, Flea Land will host free photos with Santa with voluntary donations to the Humane Society and St. Vincent DePaul.

Leon Macisaac, 6, explains to Santa that he was not sure if he had been good this year but still “wants a D.S.” while his mother takes photos in the Flea Land cafeteria on Dec. 1, 2019.

Bobby Hite puts on his coat as he gets ready for visitors at the Flea Land market on Sunday, Dec. 1, 2019. Hite has become Santa every holiday season for the past 15 years. Each Sunday during December this year he has dedicated four hours of his time at the Flea Land cafeteria offering free photos with Santa. “I didn’t mean to look this way,” Hite said. “ I just turned out looking like Santa Claus.”

Bobby Hite places the finishing touches on his Santa Claus costume before another group of children arrive for photos at the Flea Land market on Sunday, Dec. 1, 2019. After a group of young girls happily tell Santa their Christmas lists, Hite said, “All year I’m a nobody, by this time of year I’m a rockstar.”


LIFE

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TUESDAY, DECEMBER 3, 2019 WESTERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY

FIGHT FOR CHANGE Student-led movement addresses climate issues and inequality BY JULIE SISLER HERALD.FEATURES@WKU.EDU

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alancing classes, jobs, homework and a social life can be difficult enough for students. Add in a mission to spark change which could save the world, and you get the daily agenda for members of Sunrise Movement Bowling Green. “The Sunrise Movement is a nationwide, youth-led movement to get the Green New Deal enacted as policy and support and canvass for politicians that support the deal,” Sunrise Movement Bowling Green project manager Jessica Williams, a Florence junior, said. Williams described the Green New Deal as a set of guidelines which seeks to combat both global climate change and socioeconomic inequality by creating jobs in the green energy sector and addressing social justice issues. The Sunrise Movement has hubs all over the country, using a grassroots approach to educate and empower. Williams said Sunrise Movement Bowling Green seeks to make its mission a community affair, appealing to more than just WKU students. This, Williams said, is because the issues at hand impact more than just students. “Everyone’s realizing how big of an issue this is,” Williams said. “It’s not just people that study science. Climate change is going to affect everyone, not just the people that study the sciences.” Williams said she sees strength in including community members because it capitalizes on one of the core meanings of the movement. “It’s not just an environmental movement,” Williams said. “It’s a people’s movement. What we’re doing is for all of humanity.” Even with members of the community, a local grassroots campaign is a

EMMA STEELE • HERALD

Jessica Williams, a junior from Florence, has started a sunshine movement on campus. “We hope to educate and mobilize students to be a part of the change, to vote and to be prepared when the crisis hits home,” Williams said. She co-organized a climate strike in Centennial Mall on Sept. 26.

huge undertaking. A core team of seven people and a larger team of almost 40 help organize events, create signs and posters, canvass and strategize new ways to get the word out. The group organized a climate strike in Centennial Mall earlier this semester on Sept. 26. It is currently in the process of planning two different events for WKU students and Bowling Green community members. This Friday, Dec. 6, the group will host a climate strike beginning at noon in front of Cherry Hall. Together, the group will march to the Warren County

events, especially when they’re expecting over 100 attendees, requires time, energy and a lot of logistical planning. The group must plan every aspect of the event. “We’re just a handful of students trying to plan an event that could have over 200 people there,” Lamb said. “We’re learning to look at every possible detail.” Planning is also underway for the group’s Earth Day climate strike, which will take place on April 22. With so much work to be done, movement members find themselves taking on the equivalent of a part-time job.

RYAN ST. CLAIR

Sunrise Movement Bowling Green member

When the opportunity to try to build a movement for change came, I had to act and make it a priority. Because the only other option was to give up.

Justice Center for a rally. Movement member Ryan Lamb, a graduate student from Mayfield, said the aim of the event is to urge legislators to support the Green New Deal. The movement already has the support of some state legislators, as Rep. Charles Booker will be speaking at the rally in support of the movement and the Green New Deal. Lamb explained planning these

Louisville senior Ryan St. Clair said he spends about 25 hours a week on the movement all while keeping up with classes and a job. He admitted it can be difficult to balance it all, but he remains determined to make it work. “When the opportunity to try to build a movement for change came, I had to act and make it a priority,” St. Clair said. “Because the only other option was to give up.”

St. Clair explained although there is already much damage that has been done, which is evident in the species which have already gone extinct and the people who have died because of climate change’s wide-reaching effects, there is still hope. The people are the hope. “I have to try,” St. Clair said. “And a people’s movement for a livable future that can win political power and transform both our government and culture is our only hope.” Williams voiced a similar sentiment, saying she knew she had to try to do something. “I’ve wanted to do something for a while but never took the leap of faith to try organizing anything,” Williams said. “I’ve always cared deeply about people, but I was so passive in my actions.” Williams said seeing other activism around the world inspired her to become more active herself. For her and the other members of the movement, any potential change presents an important question. “If it’s not me, then who?” Williams said. “If not now, then when?” For more information about Sunrise Movement Bowling Green, the upcoming climate strikes or how you can get involved, follow @sunrisemvmtbgky on Instagram or email sunrisemvmtbgky@gmail.com.

Features reporter Julie Sisler can be reached at julie.sisler389@topper. wku.edu. Follow Julie on social media at @julie_sisler.

Hemp dispensary helps customers ‘try something new’ BY ELEANOR TOLBERT HERALD.FEATURES@WKU.EDU

Steel drum rhythms reminiscent of Bob Marley fill the colorful shop, tapestries of elephants and Hindu deities line its bright blue walls. On counters left and right, books about marijuana invite curious glances, provoking quite a contrast between that which lies open on a table nearby: a Bible. Daniel Johnson, the owner of Green Love Hemp Dispensary and Wellness Center, opened the alternative medicine shop on Magnolia Avenue in April 2019. However, the store originally opened in December 1999 in the building on College Street now occupied by Hilligans sports bar. It was closed in the spring of 2001 due to personal issues Johnson faced around that time such as his mother’s death. “I had to shut down that store 20 years ago because of times, trials and tribulations,” Johnson said. “It is in a much better location now.” Green Love sells a variety of different products. Johnson said it offers cannabidiol, popularly known as CBD, oils, edibles, mints and vapes. Vintage gift shop objects, tapestries, glass smoking devices and religious items are also sold at the shop. “We sell Buddhist, Hindu and Chris-

tian items, because we are all one with wellness,” Johnson said. He said he finds hemp and CBD to be beneficial because they allow a person’s system to better “communicate.” He said hemp contains Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, which are good for the body’s longevity. CBD oil is similar to flax seed oil in that it is thought to reduce the chance of certain diseases like cancer or heart disease but works better, Johnson said. So what is the difference between CBD, hemp and marijuana? According to Medical News Today, hemp and marijuana are two types of cannabis plant. Hemp has less than 0.3% of tetrahydrocannabinol, commonly known as THC, which is the compound in cannabis that makes a person high. Therefore, it is legal. Marijuana has a higher THC content, making it illegal. CBD is another compound within cannabis which relaxes the body and can ease inflammation. CBD and hemp are currently legal under the 2018 Farm Bill as long as their THC content remains lower than 0.3%. Before the Farm Bill, all Johnson sold was gift shop items like tapestries, pipes and other merchandise. Now, he can sell CBD and hemp. Johnson said he sees a variety of different customers in his shop. Sometimes, people 65 years and older come SEE HEMP • PAGE B2

The Difference Between Hemp and Marijuana Johnson said he finds hemp and CBD to be beneficial because they allow a person’s system to better “communicate.” He said hemp contains Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, which are good for the body’s longevity. CBD oil is similar to flax seed oil in that it is thought to reduce the chance of certain diseases like cancer or heart disease but works better, Johnson said. So what is the difference between CBD, hemp and marijuana? According to Medical News Today, hemp and marijuana are two types of cannabis plant. Hemp has less than 0.3% of tetrahydrocannabinol, commonly known as THC, which is the compound in cannabis that makes a person high. Therefore, it is legal. Marijuana has high THC content, making it illegal. CBD is another compound within cannabis that relaxes the body and can ease inflammation. CBD and hemp are currently legal under the 2018 Farm Bill as long as their THC content remains lower than 0.3%. Marijuana cultivation, possession and trafficking are listed as misdemeanors or felonies in Kentucky. However, some counties, including Jefferson County, will no longer prosecute for possession of a small amount of marijuana when it is the only charge. GRAPHIC BY ALEX COX


B2 LIFE HEMP

CONTINUED FROM PAGE B1 in to find something for chronic pain. Other times, it’s registered nurses and doctors who want to know more about the substances. Many times, though, it is people who have health issues and have already gone the traditional route, Johnson said. “Many people get tired of treating the symptoms and not the sources,” Johnson said. “They come in here to try something new.” CBD and hemp can also help anxiety, depression and pain, Johnson said. For people who cannot function on mood stabilizers or antidepressants, this gives them an alternative. Johnson said these are the types of benefits that keep bringing people back. “The stuff sells itself,” Johnson said.

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 3, 2019 WESTERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY “I don’t advertise, and people almost always come back.” Johnson ran for the Kentucky House of Representatives in 2018 because he felt the current administration did not represent him and others involved in the hemp industry. He is now running again in 2020. One of his platforms is to spread awareness about the benefits of cannabis and medical marijuana. Green Love Hemp Dispensary is located on 1131 Magnolia Ave. and can be followed on Facebook and Instagram @greenlovehemp. Hours are Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Features reporter Eleanor Tolbert can be reached at eleanor.tolbert618@ topper.wku.edu. Follow her on Twitter at @ellietolbert.

SAVON HAYDEN • HERALD

Daniel Johnson, owner of the Bowling Green alternative medicine shop Green Love Hemp Dispensary and Wellness Center, shows a customer a bottle of CBD gummies.

CRAZY CREDITS

Class utilizes outdoors, teaches all things insects BY GABBY BUNTON HERALD.FEATURES@WKU.EDU

Many classes at WKU are outside of the norm and capture the interest of those curious enough to give them a chance. One class studies some of the most feared and notorious creatures on earth: insects. BIOL 325, or Insect Biodiversity, is a course taught by Keith Phillips which examines the ins and outs of bugs and their habits. “In the class, we try to cover everything about insects,” Philips said. “We talk about insect morphology, diversity, evolution, physiology, behavior, defenses, lifestyles and pretty mucheverything that insects do. I make sure I cover all the cool stuff — all the whacked-out things you would never think about that insects do.” Philips has been capturing and studying bugs since he was 7-years-old. He said his passion for insects has only grown as he’s gotten older, which is expressed to all students who take the class. Class sizes are small and open only to biology majors, offering 14-16 slots, due to the extensive research and various activities students partake in, including labs, field trips and making a personal bug collection. This semester,

the class took trips to Shanty Hollow Lake and a biological preserve located in Hart County called the WKU Green River Preserve. Field trips involved trap setting, black lighting and simply observing insects in their natural habitats. Senior Jacob Carroll said looking for insects at the preserve helped him understand their behaviors better than ever before. “That was a really cool experience,” Carroll said. “I’ve learned that there is a lot more than I thought there was when it comes to insects.” Class labs are dedicated to observing different aspects of insects. Labs include everything from arthropod diversity to insect taxonomy and analysis of internal and external features of insects. Philips said students tend to like the labs due to their hands-on nature, as many involve him bringing in piles of live insects which vary each year. Philips expressed the importance of the bug collection and how they’re captured. “We capture them, but we also try to watch them and see how they live,” Philips said. “The insect collection is something many people enjoy and also something that they can learn from with biodiversity.” Senior Emily Anderson said though some might view a bug collection as unappealing, it’s a necessary part of the course. “That sounds very off-putting, be-

ILLUSTRATION BY MADALYN STACK

cause you have to keep jars of bugs in your freezer,” Anderson said. “The teacher is really nice and wants you to learn, so just have fun with it.” Despite the class’ unusual subject matter and exciting features, it’s still a 300-level course, which comes with challenges and hard work. Senior Kaitlyn Menser said the class is rewarding so long as students pay it the time and effort it requires. “I’ve learned so much about many processes and made many new friendships in class, as well,” Mesner said. “Do take time to study, however. The

knowledge will not come without effort from your end. Coming to class, taking notes and going on sampling trips [are] the main three keys to succeeding.” This class employs a special approach to teach special material, providing an opportunity to learn about an easy-to-overlook part of our connected ecosystem.

Features reporter Gabby Bunton can be reached at gabrielle.bunton605@ topper.wku.edu.


SPORTS B3

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 3, 2019 WESTERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY

Hilltoppers encouraged by most November wins since 2006-07 season BY ELLIOTT WELLS HERALD.SPORTS@WKU.EDU The WKU men’s basketball team has played roughly one-fourth of its 2019-20 regular season schedule, and the Hilltoppers are off to a 6-2 start for the second time under the guidance of head coach Rick Stansbury. WKU’s previous 6-2 opening came during the 2017-18 campaign, ending in a trip to the National Invitation Tournament semifinals. So far this season, the Hilltoppers have played in Diddle Arena three times, played four neutral-site games and a true road contest at Eastern Kentucky (3-5). WKU has fared well in its games played in the state of Kentucky — going 4-0 in such matchups — but the Hilltoppers are an even 2-2 in games played in impartial venues. The Hilltoppers participated in the U.S. Virgin Islands Paradise Jam from Nov. 22-25, posting a 2-1 record and finishing fourth in the early season tournament field. WKU fell to Bowling Green (6-2) early on but later picked up wins over Illinois State (3-4) and Fordham (4-3). After closing out the tournament with back-to-back wins, WKU traveled to Bridgestone Arena in Nashville to square off with then-No. 2 Louisville (7-0) on Black Friday. The Cardinals — now ranked No. 1 in the country — dominated WKU from the opening whistle, as Louisville started with a lethal 9-0 run on its way to a convincing 71-54 victory. Louisville carried a 14-point lead into halftime, and Stansbury said he believes WKU’s early drought was one of several reasons why the Hilltoppers came up short. “If we were playing a different caliber team, maybe you can dig a hole and come back,” Stansbury said. “But you can’t dig yourself a hole to get down 14 points early against Louisville.” In both of WKU’s losses this season, the Hilltoppers have trailed by double-digits in the first half. The Hilltoppers were able to dig themselves out of a hole after trailing by 14 points against BGSU on Nov. 22, but the Falcons handed WKU its first

loss of the season, 77-75. Coming into Friday’s in-state rivalry game, the Hilltoppers were shooting 52.8% from the floor and 41.1% from deep, which ranked fifth and 16th in the nation, respectively. But the Cardinal defense held the Hilltoppers to only 37% shooting from the field and allowed WKU to convert 1-of-17 shot attempts from behind the arc. “I thought our defense was much better than it’s been,” Louisville head coach Chris Mack said postgame. “Of course, it needed to be against Western.” Junior guard Taveion Hollingsworth thought WKU struggled to get the ball to the rim against Louisville. “It was really their half-court defense,” Hollingsworth said. “You know, based off our team, we want to run the ball and we weren’t getting them to miss any shots. They came out hot, and we couldn’t get them to miss any shots, so we had to play through half court, and we kind of struggled through that a little bit.” Louisville’s half-court defense not only caused WKU to shoot its lowest percentage from the floor this season, but the Cardinals also forced 10 turnovers in the first half. Prior to WKU’s matchup with Louisville, Stansbury challenged his team to limit the self-inflicted turnovers he thought were hurting the Hilltopper offense. “If there’s one area, one offensive stat, that we have to get better at, it’s those self-inflicted turnovers,” Stansbury said. “Not the ones other teams cause, but the ones we cause by being too quick, too much in a hurry, walk, charge or forcing a turnover because of us. Teams are going to cause turnovers as is. We’ve got to limit some of those self-inflicted ones.” Despite WKU struggling against the Cardinals for most of the game, Stansbury said he was pleased with his team’s effort to not fold when Louisville jumped out to a lead. “Again, we’re disappointed in the loss,” Stansbury said. “But I’m proud of the way our guys battled back. You could have very easily laid down after the first 12 minutes of that game, being down 14 and get beat 40. They’ve beat some people by 40, but we did,

MATT GADD • HERALD

WKU forward Carson Williams (22) drives in guarded by Louisville forward Dwayne Sutton (24). The Cardinals defeated the Hilltoppers 71-54 in Bridgestone Arena on Sunday, Nov. 17, 2019, in Nashville.

we fought back.” After posting a stellar freshman campaign, sophomore center Charles Bassey has played even better throughout his first eight games of the 2019-20 season. The NBA Draft prospect averages 15.5 points, 9.6 rebounds and 1.5 blocks per game, and Bassey has also recorded four double-doubles in just eight tries this season. The Lagos, Nigeria, native went toe-to-toe with both Jordan Nwora and Steven Enoch, showing the NBA scouts in attendance that his skillset is ready for the next level by scoring 14 points and collecting nine rebounds in 36 minutes of action. “Coming into the game I know our team had great respect for WKU,” Mack said. “They have a very talented team, and when Bassey gets going they’re really tough to stop. He likes to go to that left shoulder, but because you know what he likes to do doesn’t mean you can stop it all the time.” Stansbury said Bassey and his teammates will only get better from facing one of the best teams in the country. “Well, there’s no question that you benefit from this game,” Stansbury said. “You don’t ever like getting an L while you’re doing it, but I think from a standpoint of preparation for these guys, the multiple ways that

they’re able to attack you with size and strength, we’re not going to see a lot of that. Not many teams are going to see that.” Following a neutral-site loss over the weekend, the Hilltoppers now have four non-conference games and one exhibition remaining before Conference USA play begins in January. WKU will first meet Wright State (62) in Dayton, Ohio, on Tuesday night before returning home to host SEC opponent Arkansas (7-0) in Diddle Arena on Saturday night. After a home exhibition against Kentucky Wesleyan on Dec. 17 — a tuneup that won’t count toward the official overall record of either participating team — the Hilltoppers will travel to Kingston, Rhode Island, to meet Rhode Island (5-2) on Dec. 21 before concluding non-conference action against Belmont (5-3) in Diddle Arena on Dec. 28. Tipoff between WKU and Wright State is scheduled for 6 p.m. in the Nutter Center. The game will be streamed live for ESPN+ subscribers.

Reporter Elliott Wells can be reached at douglas.wells357@topper. wku.edu. Follow Elliott on Twitter at @ ewells5.

Lady Toppers to face 5-game road trip after matchup with Oklahoma

KEILEN FRAZIER • HERALD

WKU foward Dee Givens (4) use the screen from Fatou Pouye (12) to dribble toward the top of the key. The Lady Hilltoppers defeated Little Rock 77-58 on Nov. 24, 2019 in Diddle Arena.

BY JESSE SPENCER HERALD.SPORTS@WKU.EDU The WKU women’s basketball team (5-2) travelled to McKeon Pavilion in Moraga, California, to participate in the Saint Mary’s Thanksgiving Classic last weekend, boasting a four-game winning streak that saw the Lady Toppers dominate NCAA Tournament-caliber teams. WKU was slated to take on two opponents the Lady Toppers had never played in the program’s storied history — Tulsa (3-4) and host team Saint Mary’s (3-4). Head coach Greg Collins spoke highly of both programs and believed they would provide a solid measurement of how good his team truly was. “We’re excited about playing Tulsa and Saint Mary’s,” Collins said. “It’s another new type of test, one that we’re looking forward to, and we’ll find out what we got to do to keep getting better so when we come back we can fill this arena up for Oklahoma.” The Lady Toppers handled the Golden Hurricane on Black Friday thanks to 18 points and 10 boards from junior forward Raneem Elgedawy and a stellar all-around performance by senior guard Whitney Creech, who tallied 15 points, five rebounds and five steals. The following afternoon, the Lady Toppers experienced defeat for the first time in almost four weeks, as the Gaels used the 3-point shot early and often to build a large lead. Collins said heading into the contest that defeating Saint Mary’s wouldn’t be easy. “They were a team that was like a 40

RPI team last year,” Collins said. “They took Gonzaga to the wire in their conference championship game, so they were within an eyelash of getting to the NCAA Tournament. They are returning their top four scorers. And getting to play a team like that on their home floor, that’s what we’re looking forward to.” Elgedawy willed WKU to a 16-point second-half comeback by controlling the paint with 27 points and 13 rebounds, but Saint Mary’s guard Sam Simons scored 25 points on eight 3-pointers and knocked down shots when the Gaels needed them most on Saturday. The crushing 80-73 overtime defeat sustained by the Lady Toppers showcased a WKU squad that shot the ball poorly all night and struggled to guard the three-point line. While the loss was a step in the wrong direction for the Lady Toppers, WKU has many upcoming opportunities to get back onto the hardwood against some tough competition. WKU is set to take on Oklahoma (4-3) in its next contest, as the Lady Toppers will host the Sooners on Wednesday evening in Diddle Arena. The Sooners knocked off the Lady Toppers 90-83 in Norman, Oklahoma, early last season before finishing with an 8-22 overall record. Oklahoma went 2-1 in the Preseason WNIT Tournament, losing to Missouri State in the semifinals. The Sooners have gone 2-2 since the event, including 0-2 on the road. Over the first seven games, sophomore guard Taylor Robertson has averaged 19.7 points per game and shot 53% from behind the arc for the Sooners.

The other scoring threat for Oklahoma is junior guard Ana Llanusa, who is scoring 19.1 points and grabbing five rebounds per contest. Both girls have scored 30 points this season — Robertson did it in her last outing against Wichita State on Saturday, and Llanusa did it against Missouri State on Nov. 14. Following a home tilt at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, the Lady Toppers will then go on the road for their next five games to wrap up both non-conference play and the 2019 calendar year. WKU will first travel to Muncie, Indiana, to take on Ball State (4-3) for the seventh consecutive year on Saturday. Ball State holds the overall lead in the all-time series, 5-3. Last season, the Cardinals came into Diddle Arena and stole an 86-83 victory from the Lady Toppers before going on to an 8-23 campaign. WKU has dropped two straight to Ball State and will look to grab its first win since 2016 against the Cardinals. The Lady Toppers are set to play at Samford (2-6) on Dec. 15 for the schools’ first-ever matchup in program history. Samford has struggled this year against a very tough schedule that included games against Florida, Florida State, Alabama-Birmingham and Kentucky. WKU will take on a dominant Purdue

(6-0) team on Dec. 18, meeting a Boilermaker squad that looks poised to have a big 2019-20 season. The Lady Toppers hold a 2-0 lead in the all-time series, but the teams have not faced off since the 1977 campaign. The Lady Toppers will round out their away games with a short trip to Texas for their first two C-USA games of the season against North Texas (3-4) and Rice (4-3) on Jan. 2 and 4. North Texas held tough last season, splitting both games with WKU, but the Lady Toppers hold the all-time series lead with a 20-7 mark. The Mean Green finished eleventh in the C-USA standings last season and were predicted to finish seventh this season by league coaches. Rice defeated WKU twice last season, knocking the Lady Toppers out of the C-USA Tournament in March. The Owls went on to claim their first C-USA Tournament championship, and Rice was projected to win the conference once again in the preseason poll. The Lady Toppers will have their work cut out for them during a daunting five-game road stretch, and their results may indicate how the rest of the season will play out for WKU.

Reporter Jesse Spencer can be reached at jesse.spencer782@topper. wku.edu. Follow Jesse on Twitter at @ jesse_spencer_5.


FUN A5

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 02 , 2019 WESTERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY

FUN PAGE Across

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To solve the Sudoku puzzle, each row, column and box must contain the numbers 1 to 9.

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To solve the Sudoku puzzle, each row, column and box must contain the numbers 1 to 9.

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CLASSIFIEDS

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SPORTS B5

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 3, 2019 WESTERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY

VOLLEYBALL

CONTINUED FROM PAGE B6 I think it really is just topping off our season. We’re so excited to play in front of everyone again, and it’s just remarkable.” Roughly 15 minutes after the broadcast started, raucous cheering that would eventually explode twofold emanated from a table filled with members of the WKU volleyball team. The Lady Toppers first rose to their feet with jubilation when it was revealed that WKU will face Kennesaw State (22-8) in Diddle Arena on Thursday at 7 p.m. But the girls literally jumped for joy when they learned Samford (24-5) and Louisville (19-9) will join them on the Hill for another First Round matchup set for Thursday at 5 p.m. The winners of the two First Round matchups will face off at 7 p.m. on Friday for a spot in the Sweet 16, meaning a potential rematch with instate rival Louisville — the only team able to blemish an otherwise perfect

FOOTBALL

CONTINUED FROM PAGE B6

“It carries the momentum for us,” Helton said. “You feel good going into the bowl. It makes practice a lot better. You hate having a couple weeks of practicing coming off a loss. You just have that sour taste in your mouth. It just continues the good vibes. Now you gain confidence more and more, and we’ll see where the bowl picture goes and what our matchup is, but whoever we play will be a quality opponent.” The Hilltoppers will know their bowl destination by the time conference championship games are finished on Saturday, but WKU’s game could also leak earlier in the week. Latest bowl projections for WKU ESPN: Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl vs. Air Force in Fort Worth, Texas, OR SERVPRO First Responder Bowl in Dallas vs. SMU 247Sports: Music City Bowl vs. North Carolina in Nashville Sporting News: New Mexico Bowl vs. Utah State in Albuquerque, New Mexico CollegeFootballNews.com: WalkOn’s Independence Bowl vs. Florida State in Shreveport, Louisiana

season for WKU — is looming large if the chips fall just right. “Well, by process of elimination I started understanding that it was possible after the Kentucky regional went by and the Purdue regional went by and Louisville hadn’t been up there yet,” Hudson said. “I knew that it very much looked like they would be sending ‘em our way.” Although WKU has advanced to the NCAA Tournament in eight of the past 10 seasons, the Lady Toppers have posted a 3-11 all-time mark and have never reached the Sweet 16. Defeating Kennesaw State, the owner of the Atlantic Sun Conference’s automatic bid, isn’t a given for the Lady Toppers. The Cardinals did receive an at-large bid, but knocking off the Southern Conference Tournament champion in Samford won’t be a cakewalk either. Still, the chatter that filled the air after the 64-team tournament field was announced focused on what if — what if the Lady Toppers get a chance to avenge a loss to the Cardinals on

Sept. 6? Better yet, what if WKU can make its first-ever Sweet 16 appearance by defeating Louisville? A shot at redemption isn’t lost on senior Sophia Cerino, who will be making her third appearance in the NCAA Tournament alongside fellow senior Emma Kowalkowski. “I think the first time that we played Louisville we were a completely different team than what we are now,” Cerino said. “You know, we’re ready for revenge on them if that’s what everything plays out to be. So, I’m just really excited. I think we got a really good draw.” WKU will soon become the sixth C-USA squad to host the NCAA Tournament First and Second Rounds and the first to do so since former member Louisville accomplished the feat in 2001. Rice also earned an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament, making C-USA a multi-bid league for the first time since Rice and former member Tulane both appeared in 2009.

The Lady Toppers enter postseason play on a school-record 27-match winning streak, boasting NCAA-best marks in both team and individual categories, and Hudson now has what might be his best shot yet at taking WKU volleyball to heights it’s never been before as a program. “All year, nothing’s been given to this group — they’ve earned it,” Hudson said. “I think they very much have earned a top-16 seed, and now hopefully we can get people behind us and try to turn this into a special weekend.” Fans can purchase all-session tickets for $12 per ticket at WKUTickets. com. Students will be admitted for free with a valid student ID, according to a tweet posted by @WKUSports.

Sports Editor Drake Kizer can be reached at clinton.kizer287@topper. wku.edu. Follow Drake on Twitter at @drakekizer_.

What they’re saying… Head coach Tyson Helton: “I would love to go to a warm weather bowl. And I would like to play before Christmas. There’s nothing better than that. That’s not up to us though. We’ll be happy wherever we go. Our kids will be really happy to have the opportunity to play one more game one more time.” Redshirt sophomore defensive end Juwuan Jones: “It’s between three. I’ve already thought about this a lot. New Orleans, Tampa or the Bahamas. I’ll be good with any three of those places.” Redshirt junior linebacker Clay Davis: “I would love to go to the Bahamas because I’ve never been to Atlantis before. But just for family members and getting fans, I think the New Orleans or Tampa Bowl could be a pretty good one to go to.” Redshirt senior receiver Lucky Jackson: “Anywhere where the sun is. I’m not really picky. I’m glad we got that extra game. Anywhere where it’s heat, I wouldn’t mind.” Graduate transfer quarterback Ty Storey: “We’re down for wherever honestly.”

Reporter Alec Jessie can be reached at alec.jessie226@topper.wku.edu. Follow Alec on Twitter at @Alec_Jessie.

GABI BROEKEMA • HERALD

WKU redshirt junior running back Gaej Walker (5) celebrates scoring a touchdown against MTSU during the game in Houchens-Smith Stadium on Saturday, Nov. 30, 2019.

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MONDAY, DECEMBER 9th 7:00aM


TUESDAY, DECEMBER 3, 2019 WESTERN KENTUCKY UNIVERSITY

SPORTS

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GABI BROEKEMA • HERALD

WKU junior defensive lineman DeAngelo Malone (10) celebrates making a stop during the game against MTSU in Houchens-Smith Stadium on Saturday, Nov. 30, 2019.

NOVEMBER TO REMEMBER WKU football headed to bowl on 3-game winning streak BY ALEC JESSIE HERALD.SPORTS@WKU.EDU

The WKU football team (8-4, 6-2 C-USA) was teetering on the edge of a disastrous meltdown entering the final month of the 2019 regular season. Following back-to-back losses against Marshall (8-4, 6-2 C-USA) on Oct. 26 and Florida Atlantic (9-3, 7-1 C-USA) on Nov. 2, the Hilltoppers found themselves removed from the Conference USA East Division race with the final stretch of the season on the horizon. The Hilltoppers had been sitting at five wins since Homecoming, and reaching bowl eligibility would get no easier for the squad during its final three games in November. Road games against SEC opponent Arkansas (2-10, 0-8 SEC) and surging Southern Mississippi (7-5, 5-3 C-USA) awaited along with the annual 100 Miles of Hate rivalry game against Middle Tennessee State (4-8, 3-5 C-USA) on WKU’s Senior Day. Adversity mounted against WKU, but the Hilltoppers’ response allowed for a November that first-year head coach Tyson Helton will always be remembered for.

Helton knew the final three games of the regular season would be crucial, especially after dropping two games in a row. He said his message to the team wouldn’t change, but he uttered a mantra prior to the Arkansas game that’s stuck with him ever since. “I do tell our football team that you’re evaluated by your full body of work,” Helton said on Nov. 4. “There’s a statement, ‘What you do in November, they remember.’ You know, September’s come and gone, October’s come and gone, and down the stretch is kind of what you’re remembered for. I think everybody will look back on this football season and say this team played really hard and positioned themselves to go win games.” The Hilltoppers did just that. Only one year removed from a 3-9 season in 2018, Helton nearly reversed the record by finishing 2019 on a threegame winning streak. Graduate transfer quarterback Ty Storey led a 45-19 thrashing of his former Arkansas teammates on Nov. 9, the WKU defense stifled Southern Miss in a 28-10 blowout win on Nov. 23, and the Hilltoppers rallied to defeat rival MTSU 31-26 on Saturday. Although the year started off with a loss to Football Championship Subdivision program Central Arkansas,

Helton said it might have been the best thing to happen to his squad. “I felt like it gave us an edge,” Helton said. “Made us not take anything for granted. Made us know we had to play a whole game of four quarters. It taught us to believe in each other and fight and battle for each other. Taught us not to be complacent. It taught us at any given day, it doesn’t matter who you play, you can win or lose. At the end of the day, I look at it as probably, maybe it was a positive. That’s how I would look at it. You have to take advantage of learning lessons. Learn from all your failures.” Storey said he thoroughly enjoyed his lone season on the Hill and loved watching the team grow closer each week. “It’s been one of the more fun years to be a part of,” Storey said. “A lot of it is the guys, the coaching staff, everyone, winning on top of that. It’s a feeling you wish everyone could feel. How close we’ve come together throughout the year. Yeah, we’ve had some ups and downs and everything, but at the end of the day it’s made us all closer and realize that there’s something bigger than just individual people.” Redshirt sophomore defensive end Juwuan Jones credited an attitude

change in 2019 with playing a big part in the turnaround from 2018. “We just have a different mentality,” Jones said. “This year, you can tell on the sideline, we are keeping each other up. We’re motivating the offense while the offense is motivating us, and I think that’s the biggest difference between this year and last year.” Although the goal of winning a C-USA Championship wasn’t attained, Helton said the team “took a big step this year” and gained traction heading into 2020. “I expect to win them all,” Helton said postgame. “I know y’all think that. I really do. Everyone says, ‘Did you expect to be sitting here with eight wins?’ I hope I would. Ball could’ve bounced the other way too and not won several games. That’s all up to the good Lord. My job as a coach and our staff is to try to coach as hard as we can and put kids in positions to make plays … I hoped we would have a good season, but at the end of the day I’ll sleep good because it’s all in God’s hands.” With a bowl game on the horizon, Helton said the momentum of the three-game winning streak will help with confidence and the practices that lead up to the postseason.

SEE FOOTBALL • PAGE B5

No. 15 seed WKU draws Kennesaw State, could meet Louisville again BY DRAKE KIZER HERALD.SPORTS@WKU.EDU

ABIGAIL JAMES • HERALD

Members of the WKU Lady Toppers gets riled up before the WKU vs. UTEP game on Nov. 1, 2019 in Diddle Arena.

After ending the 2019 regular season with a 31-1 overall record, a 14-0 mark in Conference USA play and a No. 19 ranking in the AVCA Division I Coaches Poll, the WKU volleyball team still wasn’t sure of its place in the NCAA Division I Women’s Volleyball Championship bracket. Head coach Travis Hudson guided the Lady Toppers to a C-USA regular season title and secured his program’s fifth automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament since joining C-USA six years ago by defeating No. 21 Rice 3-2 in the finals of the C-USA Tournament on Nov. 24. But 31 other conference champions were also automatic qualifiers, which meant WKU had little security in terms of its bracket seeding and the potential of hosting games in Diddle Arena. The Lady Toppers finally learned their postseason fate while watching the 2019 NCAA Selection Show — which aired live on ESPNU nationally — with an entire restaurant full of red-clad fans, friends and family at Roosters on Three Springs Road on Sunday night. About seven minutes after the Selection Show began, a loud round of

applause erupted when it was revealed that WKU had received the No. 15 seed in the NCAA Tournament. A No. 15 seed meant the selection committee had seeded WKU as one of the top 16 teams on a national basis, but it also meant the Lady Toppers would be hosting the NCAA Tournament First and Second Rounds in Diddle Arena for the first time in program history this week. “We’ve had great crowds in there, but it’s time to fill that building up for volleyball,” Hudson said. “What we’re doing this year, it’s an incredible run that our kids are on. We’ve worked hard to achieve the respect that it takes to be able to host, and now we need Bowling Green and the WKU fanbase to come out and show the NCAA that we belong as a host site and we’re worthy of that in every way, and that includes people in the stands.” After waiting for over a week to find out who and where the Lady Toppers would be playing, the entire room waited with bated breath as exact matchups for the entire 64-team tournament field were revealed incrementally on the TVs mounted across the eatery’s wooden walls. “Oh my gosh, I was so anxious just all day waiting for it,” junior transfer Nadia Dieudonne said. “But you know, SEE VOLLEYBALL • PAGE B5

Profile for College Heights Herald

Dec. 3, 2019  

This publication is brought to you by the College Heights Herald. For more content and coverage of WKU, be sure to visit wkuherald.com.

Dec. 3, 2019  

This publication is brought to you by the College Heights Herald. For more content and coverage of WKU, be sure to visit wkuherald.com.

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