As a university and a greater Fort Collins community, CSU athletes â€“â€“ and all athletes collegiate, high school or professional â€“â€“ are figures we can rally behind, cheer for with a single voice and look up to.
Thatâ€™s hard to do when these hometown heroes get arrested at booze-fueled pool parties, mere hours after a closed football practice. Our student-athletes need to be aware that their actions on and off the field will have far bigger consequences than most regular students.
All students, whether they are an athlete, a member of student government, poetry majors, engineering majors or members of student media, represent our university at all times. And when one of us gets into legal trouble at a party, we as a whole look like fools.
But when itâ€™s an athlete who has the time, money and pride of our school and our community riding on his or her shoulders, the shame is even deeper.
Itâ€™s hard to admit, but there is a natural double standard between regular students and athletes. And our athletes must know this when they enter a collegiate sport. They must know they are expected to study, to practice, to compete, to have fun (to a certain degree) and to represent their team, their school and their community.
When our student-athletes walk on the field to represent Ram pride, they must also be prepared to walk off that field and give the same dedication to their daily lives.