Nov 042003
 
Authors: Justin Goldman

It is hard to describe my overall reaction to Athletic Director

Mark Driscoll’s announcement that women’s water polo had been named

CSU’s 16th varsity sport. As a club sports reporter I feel my voice

deserves some merit, even though I am fairly quiet and

un-disturbing down in the newsroom.

Sara Colorosa, one of the hard-working club sports coordinators,

summed it up nicely when we discussed the school’s decision over

the phone.

“I would have to say I am ultimately shocked and flabbergasted,”

she said.

I was still puzzled. Questions arose exponentially until my

brain hurt. While I spent time talking with co-workers, it was

difficult to understand the athletic department’s final decision.

So many other popular sports were passed up as if they did not even

exist.

I understand Title IX and everything it stands for, and I could

not be more in favor. I have been following hockey for a decade and

one of the greatest facets of the game has been the growing number

of women hockey players and leagues and their influence on the

world of professional and collegiate sports.

For example: female hockey goalie Manon Rheaume. I remember

seeing her in that Minnesota-Duluth college jersey as she made a

huge impact on women’s college sports. Then she put on a black

Tampa Bay Lightning jersey in 1992, becoming the first female to

play in the National Hockey League. She then led the Canadian

Olympic team to a silver medal in 1998, becoming a hero in North

America.

She annoyed and upset men everywhere while showing the entire

world that a woman could be in the NHL and stop male players from

scoring. She was a goaltending phenom and one of the first to break

the sex barrier in professional sports. Now we watch the WNBA and a

female golfer play on the PGA tour.

“It’s never been easy,” Rheaume said in a press release during

her stint with the Lightning. “But I’ve always wanted to play

hockey. I love hockey. If you have that kind of desire, I think you

can achieve whatever you want to achieve.”

While I have never seen a women’s water polo match, rest assured

I understand the amount of talent and strength our women’s team

must have to not only tread water for long periods of time but also

play the game as well. I would sink to the bottom of the pool in

five minutes.

Every sport requires athletes and every athlete needs strength

and talent, no matter what game is played. It seems, however, that

people were expecting a totally different decision.

“I’ve never watched women’s polo, and I’m probably not alone

there,” said Tony Kieffer, the vice president of the Snowriders

club. “I would’ve liked to see a sport that could bring more funds

to CSU being chosen.”

Others agree.

“I think that a school like CSU should opt for the big four

sports before looking at an obscure one that not many people will

follow,” said junior Preston Cagle. “Men’s baseball or women’s

soccer would draw more people and be more fun to watch.”

So while it comforts me that there are others out there baffled

like myself, it does not outweigh knowing that there could have

been a bright, new soccer arena for our women’s soccer teams, a

solid, spray-painted field for our women lacrosse players, or even

a nice, new hockey rink for our men’s ice hockey team.

 

 

 

 

 

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