No More Booze at Hughes

 Uncategorized
Sep 162004
 
Authors: Erin Tracy

Beer sales at Hughes Stadium will be temporarily suspended until

Feb. 1, President Larry Penley said Thursday, prompting frustration

from some students.

The decision to ban beer inside of Hughes came just a few days

after it was announced that 5 percent alcohol by volume would

replace the 3.2 percent alcohol by volume beer previously sold at

football games.

Penley appointed a university alcohol task force to “look into

binge drinking, underage drinking, fraternity and sorority systems

and the overall culture of the institution as it relates to alcohol

and substance abuse issues,” according to a university press

release.

The suspension will be in effect for Saturday’s football game

against Minnesota and will continue until the alcohol task force

releases its findings report on Feb. 1.

Athletic Director, Mark Driscoll, said the action was needed in

order to let the task force investigate alcohol use without the

distraction of alcohol at football games.

Gary Ozzello, director of media relations, said the decision to

suspend beer sales was not because of the riots or Samantha Spady’s

death, but the distraction beer has had at football games.

“We didn’t want to impede on (the task force’s) progress by

having this as a distraction,” Ozzello said.

Tom Milligan, university spokesman, said the beer sales were

causing problems in the community.

“The issue of the strength of beer at the stadium was becoming a

major distraction,” Milligan said. “It was causing some people in

the community to question our commitment to the task force.”

Milligan said a total prohibition will only be in effect inside

the football stadium, but will not affect tailgating.

The news of beer suspension at Hughes made several students

upset, but they said the decision won’t hinder their drinking

habits.

Kevin Chroust, a senior English major, said the beer suspension

would not cause any change in his football-drinking schedule.

“It really doesn’t affect me, because I have never really drank

beer at the games,” Chroust said. “I might bring in a little more

liquor; I bring in a flask to every game.”

Lance Moorman, a freshman business major, said it does not

affect him because of his age, but he understands the feelings of

people it does apply to.

“If they stop selling beer, it’s going to make people bootleg it

in,” Moorman said.

Still, Bobi Stallbaumer, a junior landscape and design major,

said she is more concerned about the university’s loss of money

from not selling beer.

“I understand why they are cracking down on alcohol, but they

are losing money,” Stallbaumer said. “I just think they will lose

money.”

Driscoll said the revenue made from beer sales was a secondary

concern to the importance of the task force.

“It’s a factor, but not a big enough factor,” Driscoll said.

Although he could not say how much money would be lost due to

the suspension, Driscoll said the beer sales were “way less than

six figures.”

Driscoll said the decision is up to the task force if beer will

be sold at Hughes again and it is “speculative” whether the beer

will be 5 percent or 3.2 percent, if beer is allowed back inside

the stadium.

“We’re not saying that beer sales at the stadium were the

problem,” Milligan said. “We need to create an environment where

the task force can succeed.”

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