Feb 272005
Authors: Amanda Havekost

More records were broken this weekend and few students or faculty were in attendance when the CSU track and field teams brought their "A" game to the indoor track and field Mountain West Conference Championships at the Air Force Academy.

A lack of awareness and support from faculty and students hasn't halted the Rams' momentum this season. The teams both came in second this weekend, and placed first in every team meet this season.

Head coach Del Hessel said the nature of track and field in the nation has little hype.

"First off, track and field athletes are very self-motivated and are doing it for themselves and the team," Hessel said. "They realize thousands of people aren't going to attend like football games."

Nationally ranked thrower Loree Smith said she is surprised that more students aren't aware of the world-class athletes that contribute to the track teams' success.

"It makes you feel like a second-class athlete," Smith said.

Smith said if football players were ranked second in the nation like some members of the track team, everyone would know about it.

"We work hard in the weight room," Smith said. "I'm stronger than some of the football players … and prettier."

Smith said the lack of attention is unfortunate, but it hasn't stopped the teams from dominating.

Ben Lorenzen, the CSU athletic marketing and promotions coordinator, said every single varsity sport is important, but a lack of revenue causes limitations.

"Typically, our advertising dollars are used for football, volleyball and men's and women's basketball," Lorenzen said. "We don't really do much for track in terms of advertising."

The only specific promotion used by Lorenzen's department to educate the public is used in the fall.

"We do run track championships, which are promoted on highlight films on the billboard at Hughes Stadium during football games," Lorenzen said.

When asked what efforts were made to publicize track and field events, Lorenzen said his department helps internally distribute information through press releases, e-letters and Web site updates from the sports information department.

Smith said a lot of these updates are outdated, inaccurate or old.

"On the Web site and press releases, (csurams.com) some of the player profiles are from last year and aren't right," Smith said.

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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