Rams get commitment from Longmont tackle

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Jun 292010
Authors: Matt L. Stephens

The CSU offensive line got a boost Friday morning when it received a verbal commitment from Longmont High School offensive tackle Justin Hansen.
Hansen, with a 6-foot-4, 287-pound body frame, had held the Rams as his No. 1 choice for most of the summer, but wanted to attend camps at CU-Boulder, Wyoming, Kansas State, Utah and Washington before he made his final decision.

Ranked by Rivals.com and the No. 11 player in the state of Colorado from the class of 2011, Hansen is a 3-star prospect. He also held an offer from San Diego State and had greyshirt opportunities from CU and Washington.

In the end, Hansen still favored the Rams.

“I really liked their football program, especially the coaches,” he said. “They understand my needs as a player and what I need to work on. They’re really willing to help me. Plus, what they offer athletes for academics with tutoring and help for the classroom. I really liked that.”
According to Hansen, his best attribute as an offensive lineman is his versatility. A strong pass blocker, he said he’s also good at pulling around the end to block for his running backs.

Though currently listed as a tackle for the Longmont Trojans, Hansen will likely play guard at CSU in the fall of 2011.

Hansen becomes the second known commitment of the Rams’ 2011 recruiting class with Bryan Bosworth, a defensive tackle from Cape Coral, Fla.

Sports Editor Matt L. Stephens is a Senior Recruiting Analyst at GoldandGreenNews.com. He can be reached at sports@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 4:47 pm

Rubber duckies take over the Poudre

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Jun 292010
Authors: Kirsten Silveira

The first rubber ducky to cross the flagged finish line Saturday morning sported a yellow ascot.

Close behind were more than 50 rubber duckies, all competing for the top 10 spots in CSU’s Environmental Learning Center’s Annual Rubber Ducky River Rapid Race on the Poudre River in east Fort Collins. Jill Motley, whose duck wore the same beaded necklace as she did, came in second pace winning a gift card to Downtown Fort Collins.

Her winnings, Motley said, will be used for a night out on the town for her 16th wedding anniversary celebration since she and her husband were unable to find a babysitter Friday night.

The Loveland couple brought along their two children Halle, 6, and Jordan, 8, as well as two of their friends as part of Poudre Valley Health System’s Fit Families on the Move program and were the only participants on the banks of the Cache La Poudre this year.

“My mom rocks because she was in 2nd place,” Halle said, adding that her favorite ducks were the beaded one and the hula dancer one.

The event was originally slated for June 19, but high and rapid river flow made it too dangerous for the kids, families and rubber duckies. The race, which normally attracts many families, started as a fundraiser for the Learning Center, with each duck being $5, said Program Director Nicole Stafford.

“Now that we’re steady on our feet again it’s just a fun thing for our members,” said Stafford, who received both her undergraduate and master’s degrees at CSU.

Before taking the short hike to the finish line, everyone chose a rubber ducky and doused him or herself with bug spray. The ELC team, comprised of CSU students and two paid professionals, split up and sent one group with the rubber ducky stakeholders and one to follow their race ducks down the river.

On the walk, Jordan led the pack across a wooden bridge and through the tall grassland –– meeting a Gopher Snake, which Stafford said is a non-poisonous breed that mimics Rattle Snakes –– and tons of mosquitoes on the way.

“The mosquitoes are so bad all you can do is laugh,” Neil Motley said, adding that he’s sure he’ll get the worse bites out of everyone.

Once the group hit the end of the race path, the Motley crew kicked off their shoes and hopped in the shin-deep river to wait for the rubber ducky pack. After 10 minutes of skipping rocks and learning about the Poudre’s many creatures, Jordan yelled, “Here they come,” and with that the duck racers formed a blockade.

After the top 10 ducks had been wrangled and thrown to shore, ELC Director Brett Bruyere said it was the highest he’s seen the Poudre in at least eight years and told the group to prepare for “the critical mass of average floaters.”

“(My favorite part) was catching them and then throwing them so they could go farther down the river,” Jordan said. But the ELC team was sure to catch all floaters so they wouldn’t harm the ecosystem.

“Last year the river was so strong one of our staff members fell over and lost all the ducks she had caught,” Bruyer said.

ELC owns more than 212 acres in east Fort Collins, Stafford said, and holds five week-long summer day camps for kids ages 7 to 14 years old. In addition to their own programs, the ELC brings in outside groups like Cub Scouts for fun and educational events, she said.

As part of Fit Families on the Move, Neil, Jill and the kids go on hikes, walks, bike rides and to swimming pools. The Rubber Ducky River Rapid Race, however, will likely be the highlight of the kids’ participation, he said.

“I think for them this is the one they’ll remember. They’ve gone swimming before, but they’ve never done a duck race,” Neil said.

At the end of the dirt road the Motley crew piled into their minivan and headed off to their next summer adventure.

Assistant News Editor Kirsten Silveira can be reached at news@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 4:41 pm

Computer, projector, keys stolen from Clark

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Jun 292010
Authors: Madeline Novey

A computer, projector and two master keys to the Clark Building were reported stolen from a room in the Psychology Department Friday morning, according to a report from the CSU Police Department.

The burglar is thought to have entered through a garden-level window after removing the screen.

After the incident, a building proctor for Clark sent an e-mail to employees, who work in any of the building’s three wings, about the burglary.

CSU Officer Christopher Robertson said in the report that as of Saturday he had received no reports of further missing items or burglary crimes in Clark.

There are no known suspects or leads in the case at this time.

In a separate incident in March, CSUPD arrested a man in connection to 20 on-campus burglaries. In response to the break-ins, CSUPD Chief Wendy Rich-Goldschmidt reminded the campus community to be certain to lock the doors and windows of offices and laboratories.

“It is also important to lock academic buildings after they are closed –– even if you are working late –– and to keep your personal information and valuable items in a secure place at all times,” Rich-Goldschmidt said in a press release.

Editor-in-chief Madeline Novey can be reached at news@collegian.com

 Posted by at 4:39 pm

Pine beetle infestation decimating Colo. forests

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Jun 292010
Authors: Rachel Childs

A leisurely nature walk can yield a big disappointment for tree lovers this summer. Lodgepole and ponderosa pines are going red and withering away as a result of a raging mountain pine beetle infestation.

Drought and a good supply of pine have allowed the native pests to bore holes into the pine and lay their eggs in the trees for the last 13 years, according to the Colorado State Forest Service.

“Essentially a dominant percentage of Colorado’s lodgepole pine forests became the most susceptible to mountain pine beetle in terms of size and age at the same time. With other stressors on the forest like drought, it set the stage for mountain pine beetle to be very successful,” said CSFS Etymologist Sky Stephens in an e-mail.

The pine beetle has affected almost 3 million acres of Colorado land. The dead wood can pose a threat to forests and areas inhabited by people.
“The vast number of dead trees produced by the current mountain pine beetle infestation has created hazardous conditions. The dead trees pose a risk to people and threaten important infrastructure such as roads, power lines, communication equipment and water supplies,” said CSFS spokesman Ryan Lockwood in an e-mail.

Recommended methods for prevention include sprays, soil treatments and organic products.

One organic method, created by Berthoud-based company AgriHouse, Inc. and called Organic Disease Control, boosts the immunity in the pine to repel beetles trying to burrow through their bark.

In 1994, Jim Linden, CSU professor emeritus of the Chemical and Biological Engineering and Microbiology, Immunology and Pathology Departments, helped create ODC in his lab.

The U.S. Forest Service tested it in 2008 on southern pine in Louisiana, showing it to be safe on trees and other plants.

“In that study it showed that there was 40 percent more resin flow on trees in the forest to which the ODC had been applied,” Linden said.

The study’s purpose was to investigate disease control, that’s where it got its name.

“Chitosan is an organic material from the exoskeleton of crabs and shrimp, and we were investigating it as an anti-fungal agent on potatoes initially,” Linden said.

ODC is currently being tested on ponderosa pine but has not been clinically tested on lodgepole pine. Gardening stores currently sell ODC for personal use.
“A lot of people are interested in trying it because it’s inexpensive and because they want to save the trees,” Linden said.

Another way to curb infestation is through mitigation, according to Stephens.

“One key way to prevent large landscape scale outbreaks of forest pests like the mountain pine beetle is through promoting healthy forests through active forest management that promotes species and age class diversity in Colorado’s forests,” Stephens said.

Crime Beat Reporter Rachel Childs can be reached at news@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 4:02 pm

‘Knight and Day’ no hero for summer actions films

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Jun 292010
Authors: Jason Berlinberg

Just as “Toy Story 3” had me convinced that more good movies were sure to come out this summer, my optimism has been destroyed by last week’s release, “Knight and Day.”

This film looks pretty darn good on paper. It has a good cast, an accomplished director and some exciting action sequences as evidenced by the trailer –– made all the more better with Muse blaring in the background.

You would think with that formula that the final result would be something along the lines of “Mission Impossible” or even “Mr. and Mrs. Smith.” It turns out that “Knight and Day” is unlike both of those films, and, frankly, it has trouble deciding what type of movie it wants to be.

Tom Cruise plays agent Roy Miller, who works for the CIA but supposedly has gone rogue. He’s at the airport when he bumps into (literally) June Havens, played by Cameron Diaz. The two end up on the same flight, for better or for worse.

On the airplane, June returns from powdering her nose to find that every passenger on the flight has been killed, except for Roy.

After mulling over, at length, whatever possibly could’ve occurred, June realizes that the man she bumped into in the airport is not just another guy. Much like the audience, she’s stuck along for the ride to figure out what Roy’s mission is.

So many good talents are wasted on this film. The script gives the actors absolutely nothing to work with, causing many scenes to become predictable and uninteresting.

While Cruise keeps things entertaining as the star of the show, Paul Dano is criminally underutilized and isn’t able to display any of the talent he showed off in “There Will Be Blood.” As for Diaz … honestly, she just becomes grating after a while.

“Knight and Day” is supposed to be a full-out action movie, but it’s not. At times it feels like a parody of action films. Neither the action nor the comedy work the way they should, resulting in a confusing jumble of ineffective scenes.

Overall, the movie’s inconsistencies make for an uneven final product that leaves a lot to be desired.

Movie reviewer Jason Berlinberg can be reached at entertainment@collegian.com.

Coming next week
“The Last Airbender”

With this live action version of the popular animated series, Director M. Night Shyamalan hopes to revitalize his flat-lining career. Will this be the film that does it for him? I sure hope so.

 Posted by at 3:59 pm

Summer enrollment up 4.4 percent from 2009

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Jun 292010
Authors: Alexandra Sieh

In the face of job scarcity and rising tuition rates, students appear to be turning to summer courses, studying their way through those warmer months and bringing CSU to a 4.4 percent increase in their Summer Session enrollment from 2009.

Up to a total of 6,116 students –– 259 more than last year’s 5,857 students –– are registered for courses this summer, according to Randy Larkins, the assistant director of CSU’s Summer Session.

Of these students, 5,234 are undergraduates and 882 are graduate students, with veterinary medicine students left out of that total.

Even the number of credit hours has increased this year, moving from 30,481 hours to 32,419 hours, a 6.4 percent increase from 2009.

An “unexpected but welcome rise in enrollment,” Larkins said he suspects this increase may be a result of this year’s continued slum in employment and economic stability.

If these conditions continue, he said in an e-mail interview, “students may instead choose to finish their education at a faster rate,” taking classes in time that would have been spent at a part time job.

To better understand these trends in summer enrollment, CSU’s Summer Session conducted a non-random survey of 1,158 students over the last three summers that asked students why they had chosen those sessions.

Nearly 30 percent of students said the courses would help them to graduate earlier or on time, and about that same percentage of students preferred the length of the course ­–– most summer courses are four weeks long –– because it was a more condensed syllabus.

Summer courses have their benefits, among them being smaller, more concentrated classes and improved teacher-student interaction, Larkins said.
Other land grant universities are also seeing the same enrollment trends, with the University of Wyoming in Laramie reporting an almost 6 percent increase in their on-campus summer enrollment.

At this point in the summer, there are about 3,100 students enrolled, with an additional 2,300 students taking courses through their outreach program (which include online courses).
For their students, the reasons seem to be the same as for CSU, said Noah Buckley, the director of admissions for Wyoming.

“Some are not necessarily able to get jobs while others are anxious to get done as soon as they can,” he said. For freshmen, he said, there are additional advantages, with some able to take courses over the summer before their fall semester to get a head start on prerequisites.

For CSU, Larkins said he doesn’t expect a drop in summer enrollment any time soon, even with higher education funding in the balance.

And with such high enrollment numbers, students are seeing more courses offered, the newest including courses in geology, experimental theater, women’s studies and international tourism, Larkins said.

Design Editor and Copy Chief Alexandra Sieh can be reached at design@collegian.com.

Reasons to take summer courses
To graduate early/on time
Fulfill prerequisite courses
Prepare for a new program, major or graduate school
Take courses only offered during the summer
Repeat/Delete courses for better grades
Scheduling conflicts
To lighten fall and spring course loads

 Posted by at 3:54 pm

Yays and Nays

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Jun 292010
Authors: Collegian Editorial Board

Yay | to England’s poor showing at this year’s World Cup. It must be pretty humiliating for the Brits to exit the worldwide tournament in worse fashion than the U.S.

Nay | to the U.S. soccer team losing in its first elimination game of the World Cup. The Yanks put up a good effort but lost to Ghana, a country about the size of Wyoming. Ouch.

Yay | to university sanctioned holidays. See, for us summer schoolers, the Fourth of July isn’t just another day of relaxing vacation, it’s a break from the hell of two-hour-long classes.

Nay | to mosquito bites. Not only do they leave itchy, annoying bumps but also they give people West Nile. Seriously, what good use does the world have for mosquitoes?

Yay | to things that go boom in the sky, specifically fireworks. But we do not condone the use of firecrackers, bottle rockets, Roman candles, air bombs, repeaters, artillery shells, smoke bombs or anything else fun. Snakes suck.

Nay | to wild fires. Fires are not cool, especially when they start in an ex-boyfriend or ex-girlfriend’s house. Psycho.

 Posted by at 3:26 pm

‘Twilight’ series sets up girls for failure in their relationships

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Jun 292010
Authors: Robyn Scherer

Today, the third installment of the Twilight movie series, “Eclipse,” was released. Around the United States, millions of fans, mostly female, will flock to the theaters and declare their allegiance to Team Edward or Team Jacob and glue their faces to the big screens.

This obsession with Twilight, and the characters in the books, has affected many girls of all ages, but it especially seems to grab the younger teenage girls.
After keeping myself out of the Twilight “loop,” my sister finally convinced me to read the books. Once I started, I was amazed at how fast I was engrossed in the series.

I remember when I went to see the second film, “New Moon,” on opening night. I was awestruck. Not because of the movie, but because of the number of young girls in attendance.

I’m not talking 15 or 16 year olds. I’m talking 10 or 12.

Girls this young aren’t supposed to date. They aren’t supposed to look at boys without shirts and drool over grown men. However, that is exactly what these young girls were doing.

They feel they can relate to main character Bella, the clumsy, awkward girl who never really fits in. Now, they are looking for their own Edward, not necessarily a real vampire, but in terms of how he acts.

This is where the fairy tale ends.

Twilight appeals to girls of that age because at that age they have no other worries than to fantasize –– no, dream –– about the man who will sweep them off their feet, their knights in shining armor.

This dream relates directly to Twilight, in which Edward is the knight. He is the one to fulfill these girls’ dreams, thus setting them up for failure in the real world.

Edward’s character represents what every female dreams about: someone who treats her like a princess all the time. Someone who listens, is engrossed in learning about her and who “would die without her in it (his life).”

Edward tells Bella, “You are my life,” and that is why Edward is such a dangerous character, outside of the book.

This relationship model sets girls up for failure later in life. They see what seems to be a “perfect” relationship, but the reality is that kind of relationship will not last.

With so many families split up today, many young children do not see a functioning relationship at home. They turn to movies and books, in which the relationships are normally hardly realistic. They believe true love should be like that.

However, once this generation of girls reaches high school and starts to date, it will quickly find out no guys like Edward exist. They will have to learn that a relationship has give and take.

That people need space and need to have a life “together,” not just a life about one person where the other follows along.

It would be nice to have some series out there that shows this, but we all know that rarely makes blockbusters.

I hope that young girls and their parents can see that however intriguing his series is, it does not showcase what real life is like. It is okay to enjoy a good story and to dream as long as one realizes it’s not always a reality.

Robyn Scherer is a graduate student pursuing a Master’s degree in integrated resource management. Her column will appear periodically throughout the summer. Letters and feedback can be sent to letters@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 3:25 pm

Future BOG should learn from concealed carry debate, 09-10

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Jun 292010

Editor’s note: Seth Stern was a plaintiff in the lawsuit against the CSU System’s ban on concealed weapons on campus. That lawsuit has been dismissed.

While most of western civilization celebrated Cinco de Mayo by consuming vast amounts of alcohol, the CSU Board of Governors voted unanimously to overturn its prior, incomprehensible decision to ban concealed carrying of firearms on campus after the Colorado Court of Appeals struck down a similar ban in place at CU-Boulder.

Far be it from me to criticize a decision I agree with, but I have to say the board’s initial decision to pass a policy based on unreasonable fears, talking points and a desire to make CSU more like other universities –– most of which have a similar concealed carry ban –– was appalling.

Following the ruling against CU-Boulder, CSU officials said campus presidents would go back to the drawing board and construct laws that fell in line with state law, according to reporting by the Collegian.

My hope is that the BOG recognizes the outrage and consternation demonstrated by the CSU students as undeniable evidence that we did not come to Fort Collins to be sheep; we came here to be Rams.

Despite the faculty and public safety team –– both of whom recommended banning weapons –– apparently feeling they were making decisions that would be accepted by a student populace that had clearly drifted to the left for the 2008 election, the student body recognized the threat presented by a gun-free zone and made its collective anger known.

What gun control advocates do not seem to comprehend about gun free zones is active shooters simply do not care about the ban on firearms.

As a result, if a licensed concealed permit holder were in a classroom or building attacked by an active shooter, there might be a chance of terminating the incident without even needing to fire a shot.

Professor Richard Eykholt responded to a similar claim made by students during the fall semester: “If you have a classroom situation where somebody starts shooting and other people are shooting back, there is a real opportunity there for more bystanders to be injured,” he said.

Well professor, since we obviously can’t use your superior intellect to help us off Gilligan’s Island, perhaps you can tell me approximately how many students will be injured or killed when an active shooter enters a gun free zone?

My guess – based only on recent American history, facts and logic –– is, a lot.

What the student body really needs to take from this is that the administration, the Board of Governors, the Public Safety Team and the faculty, have zero interest in what the student body has to say about pretty much anything.

They ignored the 21-3 vote by student government’s Senate to uphold the concealed carry policy; they ignored the protests; they ignored the petitions.

When it came down to it, they only cared they were going to lose a very public lawsuit on a completely frivolous policy.

So where do we go from here? Well, sadly, it appears if the law is not entirely clear on a policy proposed by the BOG, as it argued was the case with conflicting state laws in the case of the gun ban. It will move forward on the policy despite the concerns of the students or students’ parents.

This means CSU’s bureaucracy potentially threatens all student freedoms. My fear is the only reconciliation available to students moving forward on any of issue of rights is to immediately seek legal counsel and file a lawsuit.

The student outcry against this policy was overwhelmingly in support of allowing concealed carry on campus. We had the facts, we had the arguments, we had the history and we had the popular support.

Ultimately, the student body should make decisions affecting the student body; not a geographically separated group of adults unconcerned with the desires of the student body.

At the end of this fight, the system worked. We didn’t turn the other cheek and forget this was happening. We galvanized, we played the game and we came out on top.

Enjoy your summer, CSU. When we come back next fall, we will still have some line of defense between all of us and an active shooter. Well played. Today, I’m proud to be a CSU Ram.

Seth Stern is a senior journalism and sociology major. His column will appear periodically throughout the summer. Letters and feedback can be sent to letters@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 3:23 pm

BOG, ban the gun ban

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Jun 292010
Authors: Collegian Editorial Board

Monday marked the beginning of the next saga of the gun rights/ban debate.

In a 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court voted to strike down a Chicago firearm ban, setting the precedent that no matter where someone resides, a citizen has the right to carry guns.

And according to the Associated Press, this landmark decision could likely lead to other city and state gun law challenges because the “justices left a lot of ground for other courts to cover in determining the constitutional limits on gun laws.”

Locally, however, this appeal court decision could set a precedent for the gun ban debate on both the CSU-system and CU-system campuses.

In the recent past both campuses’ governing boards approved concealed weapons bans; CU’s was struck down by the Colorado Supreme Court in April and CSU’s Board of Governors repealed the ban in early May amid a pending lawsuit.

But CU’s Board of Regents recently voted to appeal the court’s decision, and the BOG will await the outcome of the appeal to make a decision whether to enact again the ban.

We would like the BOG, the supposed voice of hard-working, tuition-paying CSU students, to heed the decision of the U.S. Supreme Court. We’d also like them to, again, take an interest in the student voice.

When it comes to make a decision on whether or not to ban concealed weapons, we hope the CSU leadership will vote to not pursue another gun ban that will likely lead to a draw-out legal battle and millions in attorney’s fees.

Protect the student voice.

 Posted by at 3:17 pm