Apr 302002

Well folks, it’s the last column of the year, the last chance to have my two cents published for all to read.

There are so many things to write about and not enough space, as always. Of course I’d love to discuss the Avalanche’s Game 7 victory over the Los Angeles Kings Monday night. And you know I’d love to write a little about my Boston Celtics, who are going to win the series against the Philadelphia 76’ers tonight. However, let’s stay away from the pro sports for now.

Instead, I think I’m going to stay close to home in this column. For the last eight months I have been the club sports reporter at the Collegian. In fulfilling the responsibilities of this job, I saw many a CSU sporting event in the last two semesters. From rugby, to lacrosse, to cycling, I covered the vast world of sports that are not varsity programs on this campus. I’d like to share with you a few of the things I saw.

First of all, I saw some great games. Whether it was the CSU hockey team’s upset of Utah State last semester or the lacrosse team’s Hughes Stadium debut, one thing all the games had in common was that they were almost always competitive. The CSU club sports programs are first-rate, and many are some of the best teams in the country.

Another constant at the club sporting events was a man. Not just any man. This guy was at almost every contest I attended, but he wasn’t there simply to cheer on the teams. The man I’m talking about is named Bill Hill, the club sports director for CSU. His support and organization of the club sports program were unbelievable and a big part of its success. He was also helpful to me in getting contact information and made my job a lot easier.

Oh, and another thing I saw, well, in this case something I didn’t see, was any fans at the events. Case in point, at last weekend’s baseball doubleheader between CSU and Fort Lewis College on campus, I quickly noticed that there were more Fort Lewis fans than CSU supporters. Parents and students from Fort Lewis had made the long journey from southern Colorado while CSU students, whose dorms are within sight of the baseball field, were nowhere to be seen. I know this argument has been made before, especially when some varsity sports struggle to bring out fans, but really folks, this is pathetic.

Some of the clubs at CSU are nationally recognized and respected programs that seem to have more popularity in other states than they do here. Many of the teams are at “virtual varsity” status, meaning that they do all the same things varsity programs do (travel, compete against other universities, buy new equipment) without the funding that varsity teams receive. This means that many of the students and their families incur the costs of keeping the team going or the team must engage in rigorous fundraising activities.

So next time your on your way home, to the gym, out for the night, or whatever, I implore you to stop and take a look at the CSU athletic fields.

There you will find the club sports of CSU, as always, overlooked and underrated.

Jason is a junior journalism major.

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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