May 092010
 
Authors: Matt L. Stephens

My favorite thing about writing “The Weekly Blitz” is that I get to shake things up, make people a little uncomfortable or even, sometimes, angry.

It’s crazy how many people come up to me on a Monday and tell me in person that they enjoyed my column, but if someone disagrees … well, then I’m just stupid.

I can’t count how many e-mails I’ve received over the past two semesters from students, parents, professors and other school employees who were upset about what I had to say on a certain topic, always going straight to the point that my opinion is wrong (never the facts, always the opinion).

These humor me.

So, for my farewell until fall (or summer, depending on what I decide), I’m going to list and respond to some of my favorite e-mails and comments on Collegian.com over the past year, mailbag style. Many are too long to run the entire comment, so I’ll summarize.

From “CSU homecoming is just another fall weekend,” Jan gets upset because I am spoiling homecoming for everyone, saying that it’s no big deal in Fort Collins.

I hate to be a party pooper, but it’s true. I used to go to school at the University of Arkansas, both my parents graduated from Oklahoma State and I’ve witnessed Oxford, Miss. in the middle of homecoming weekend for Ole Miss – they’re epic. Why? Because they’re all fueled by fraternities and sororities. It’s one giant, “H-Core” (that’s a new yuppie word I used last week that I think means “hardcore”) party. Despite how completely ridiculous I think the Greek system is, without a good one, your school’s homecoming will be average at best – that’s why it’s no big deal here.

It’s not about school size – Arkansas is significantly smaller than CSU – it’s about a strong Greek life.

From “Dear pro athletes, we don’t really hate you,” Jake L. told me that I was stupid and should stop writing because I said “don’t be irrational” and mentioned I was a Christian in the same column.

Jake, I completely agree with you that religion is irrational, doesn’t matter what your faith is. To believe that a superior being is out there watching everything we do like Big Brother isn’t rational at all. However, to expect everything one does in life to be rational is just plain stupid. Maybe it’s my red neck, red state, Oklahoma blood that allows me to believe in “fairy tales,” as you call it, but to each their own.

From “CSU recruiting offensive weapons,” Zach rips into me because I am apparently illiterate and should be able to break down every single offensive player CSU signed in its 2010 class in under 800 words. Also, I should be ashamed of saying “this guy” in a written document.

Well Zach, columns are very different than standard news writing. I write as if I were speaking. For instance, right now think of me using a somewhat sarcastic and elitist tone when you read this. If what I wrote was a complete summary from the Rams’ signing day press conference, there’s not a chance I’d say “this guy” without quoting someone. I admit it wasn’t my best column, but you work with what you got (forgive me, what you “have”).

And for being illiterate, you mention my work needing to be on par with a fifth grade reading level. I haven’t found the mistakes you’re talking about, so I can only assume fifth grade is the reading level you are at, and for that, I apologize.

From “College football officiating has gone French,” Tyler writes, “Matt, you obviously have no idea what it’s like to play football. These men have to be protected at all costs. You couldn’t be more wrong.”

I’m all for safety, and while my organized tackle football experience does not extend past middle school, I’m smart enough to understand that sometimes when two helmets collide, it’s not always on purpose. If a receiver gets his lights knocked out by a safety while coming across the middle, just because it looks like it hurt doesn’t mean it’s an illegal hit. Football is a physical game. Yes, some hits are malicious and need to be penalized, but just because someone gets a boo-boo doesn’t mean it’s wrong.

Before I sign off for the semester, I want to thank Adam Bohlmeyer and Stephen Meyers, my two graduating staff members, for all of their hard work they put in this past year that made my life a lot easier.

Also, I want to encourage everyone to check out Hoodratpalooza on Friday. It might sound like a crazy party, but it’s first and foremost a benefit to raise money for the Northern Colorado AIDS Project. Finish the year off by supporting a good cause and listening to local music.

No, this isn’t my fundraiser, just something I am in full support of. If you have questions, shoot me an e-mail.

God bless.

Sports Editor Matt L. Stephens can be reached at sports@collegian.com.

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