CSU researchers: Experts think in slow motion

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Feb 282010
Authors: David Martinez

While performing at their peak, Olympic athletes experience the world around them in slow motion, an experience that two CSU researchers now say all people share.

Assistant psychology professors Matthew Rhodes and David McCabe recently published research suggesting time slows not only for top-level athletes, but also for students performing relatively menial tasks.

“We know that time seems to slow down from athlete anecdotes,” Rhodes said in a press release. “But we believe this is the first study that actually addresses individual differences in time perception as a function of expertise.”

In the experiment, Rhodes and McCabe tested the reactions of psychology students to 80 words that flashed randomly across a computer screen. Of the 80 words, 20 related directly to football (pigskin, touchdown), 20 indirectly related (huddle, interception) and 40 had no relation to the sport.

Students saw the words appear on the screen and were asked to judge the length of time the words appear. Researchers then measured how much information the students knew about football by issuing them a questionnaire.

The study found that students with the most knowledge of football said the football words stayed on the screen longer than the students who knew less about football.

“Based on what we knew from the literature … we thought this was the pattern we were gonna get,” Rhodes said.

Rhodes compared the experience to learning to drive. When people first learn how to drive, he said, they panic because the cars and people around them seem to move so quickly.

As people gain more time and practice, driving becomes less of a hectic experience, as their brains learn how to quickly process information and distinguish necessary details from unnecessary ones.

Rhodes and McCabe used eight undergraduate research assistants, and they tested 144 psychology students in the spring of 2008.

“It was fairly cheap because we used undergraduate students as subjects and research assistants and equipment we already had,” McCabe said.

In the future, Rhodes hopes to study how professional athletes perceive time during game play.

Staff Writer David Martinez can be reached at news@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 1:42 pm

CSU swimming and diving finishes sixth in MWC Championships

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Feb 282010
Authors: David de Besche

The CSU swimming and diving team’s season came to an end Saturday evening when the Mountain West Conference Championships concluded in Oklahoma City.

After four days of intense swimming, the Ram’s ended the Championships with a total of 366 team points, earning them sixth place overall.
The BYU Cougars took first with 704 points, defending its championship from last year, while rival Wyoming took home second place honors with 674 points.

Though CSU had a goal of a top-three finish, the Rams’ are pleased with their effort and results in Oklahoma City.

“We’re disappointed, but we left everything in the pool, and we walked away from this with a good feeling,” said sophomore Breann Fuller on the end results for the Rams.

All week the Rams were in the middle of the pack, topping the rankings at the end of Friday sitting in the fifth spot. But they would slip to sixth, where they would finish, on Saturday.

Five seemed to be the number for CSU relays, with fifth place finishes in the 200 Medley Relay, 200 Freestyle Relay and the 400 Medley Relay. These relays helped the Rams stand their ground in the rankings, with strong efforts from veterans.

Freshman Arianne Lujan, who was competing in her first conference championships, helped lead the Rams to a fifth place finish in a veteran-stacked 400 Medley Relay, including teammates Fuller, Nicole Lynch, and Jennifer Muniz, all of whom have competed at these MWC Championships before.

Although a freshman, Lujan, who also contributed with a seventh place finish in the 200 Individual Medley, came into the championships with high expectations.

“Coming in I wanted to do well. I had a lot of pressure and had high expectations for myself,” Lujan said. “I was very excited.”

Though the Rams were hoping for a better overall team finish, the swimmers broke personal records in Oklahoma City. Lynch topped her best time in the 200 IM, while in their last collegiate meet, seniors Mari Anna Loftness and Kathleen McCleary broke personal bests in the 200 IM and 500 Freestyle, respectively.

Fuller was the star for CSU, who after the four days of swimming, is bringing two individual MWC championships back to Fort Collins. Fuller took first in the 100 Backstroke, edging Leona Jennings of San Diego State by 43-tenths of a second, and also broke a CSU record set by herself when she took home her second gold in the 200 Backstroke.

“Breann was a champion tonight. She swam really well,” said CSU coach John Mattos Saturday.

Fuller and the Rams had a solid season, finishing third in the dual meet standings and a sixth place finish in the Championships. CSU will be losing nine seniors from this team, and though the team is happy with this year, they are excited for next season already.

“It is bittersweet losing the seniors. We are glad we did so well this year,” Fuller said. “We really left everything we had in the pool, but we definitely have fuel for next year.”

Swimming and Diving Beat Reporter David de Besche can be reached at sports@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 1:40 pm


 Uncategorized  Comments Off on Scubbles
Feb 282010
Authors: Derrick Burton
 Posted by at 1:39 pm

The PROfessor

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Feb 282010
Authors: Anon Y. Mous
 Posted by at 1:39 pm

LIfe on the Edge

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Feb 282010
Authors: Dave Anderson
 Posted by at 1:38 pm

Horned Frogs hop over CSU women, 73-61

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Feb 282010
Authors: Kyle Grabowski

CSU women’s basketball dropped under .500 for the first time this season following a 61-73 loss to TCU on Saturday.

The Rams trailed by as many as 24 in the second half, but managed to claw within 12 with under a minute remaining. CSU outscored the Horned Frogs 35-27 in the second half, but had dug too deep of a hole to climb out of.

“In the second half we played more as one team,” sophomore forward Chatilla van Grinsven said.

Van Grinsven led the team with 17 points, 15 of which came during the second half, to go along with six rebounds and four blocks, one shy of her career-high.

Meghan Heimstra bounced back from a 10 turnover debacle at New Mexico to score 14 points and grab nine rebounds, but fouled out with two minutes remaining.

The Rams’ leading scorer, Kim Mestdagh, only put up nine points, well below her season average of 16.8 per game. Foul trouble sidelined her for most of the first half.

“If Kim doesn’t score, we don’t win too many games,” head coach Kristen Holt said.

TCU entered halftime up by 20 and dominated most of the first half. They opened the game with a 12-2 run and never had their advantage fall under double digits after 14:08 remaining in the first half.

The Frogs shot 44.8 percent for the game, including 42.1 percent from beyond the three-point line.

“They shoot the ball very well and got a lot of open looks,” Mestdagh said.

TCU outscored the Rams 24 to 18 in the paint, 12 to four in the first half.

“They’re a very efficient team offensively,” Holt said. “They picked us apart.”

Four of TCU’s starters put up double figure point totals, with freshman Starr Crawford leading the way with 15.

Junior guard Zoi Simmons only played one minute after suffering a knee injury Wednesday at New Mexico.

“She could’ve played more, that was a decision by me,” Holt said. “We wanted her to feel confident on that knee.”

Simmons ranks first on the team in free throw percentage and assists per game.

The loss drops the Rams to eighth in the conference standings with the regular season winding down. CSU has two games remaining this season before the MWC Championships, at home against San Diego State on Wednesday and at Utah on Saturday. The Rams have lost to both the Utes and Aztecs in their earlier match ups this year.

“It’s kinda fun to play against those good teams,” Heimstra said. “It wouldn’t be any fun if all we did was play teams we could beat up on all the time.”

Women’s Basketball Beat Reporter Kyle Grabowski can be reached at sports@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 1:36 pm

The Weekly Blitz – For the love of the country

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Feb 282010
Authors: Matt L. Stephens

I don’t really like hockey.

Living in Colorado for three years now, I realize how blasphemous that sounds. But it is the truth.

It’s not that I don’t “get” it or think it’s a dumb sport. I’m just not a fan. The same thing goes for rugby, track and field and NASCAR.

I see the appeal, I understand why folks are drawn to it, but it’s just not my cup of tea. If that’s all there is to watch on TV during a Saturday afternoon, I’ll just get out and hit the fishing hole.

And my lack of love for this game on ice can’t be attributed to the fact I’m an Oklahoman. Growing up, I went to Tulsa Oilers games along with the city of Tulsa’s four-team high school league, but whenever I went to a hockey game, it was mainly to see the gloves drop.

Heck, the majority of my knowledge about the sport comes from playing “Wayne Gretzky’s 3D Hockey” and “NHL Breakaway ‘98” on the Nintendo 64 – neither of which are true almanac’s on Canada’s pastime.

Still, despite not being a fan of hockey, I wouldn’t trade this past week of watching USA in the Olympics with my roommates for anything.

You can pick your poison on whether that’s attributed to sappy feeling-sharing time with friends or, the way I see it, rooting for my country. Correction: our country.

I think former Collegian Sports Editor and columnist Sean Star said it best on his Facebook status Wednesday that read, “I don’t usually watch hockey, but when I do, I prefer Team USA.”

Star is right. When watching sports of which you’re not a big fan, it helps when it’s international play. You root for country.

It reminds me of sophomore year, my first at CSU, living in Corbett Hall. The FIFA Women’s World Cup was being played in China, and despite staying up most nights until 2 a.m. annoying the heck out of my poor roommate while socializing, I went to bed early on those international game days so I could wake up at four in the morning and watch the USA play live. Good times.

It’s all about a sense of patriotism. Seeing the red, white and blue fall behind by two goals against Canada on Sunday was not something that sat well with me. But when Ryan Kesler (whether he actually scored it or not) was credited with cutting the lead in half in the second period, I got a little excited.

I don’t really know hockey, but I know sports. I know momentum. I know how the snowball effect works. I started to think, “OK, no problem. We’re right back in this.”

Then 26 more minutes went by and the US could not score, could not even setup a good shot. Ryan Miller is pulled and the Canucks even cleared the puck towards that empty net. But it was still a time game.

Finally, with my heart pumping, the entire living room no longer on the couches but rather two feet away from the TV screen, with less than a minute to go, offensive face off for the US, something happened.

All is quiet …


Our house erupted while the Canada Hockey Place fell silent.

It was a good feeling. There was a sense of joy and camaraderie for about 20 minutes of real time until Sidney Crosby had to ruin it all.

Canada deserves credit. They played harder and won that game fair and square, but it’s rough to get silver while your ginger cousin from up North wears gold.

And being a die-hard Kansas Jayhawks fan as well as CSU student, this was just another loss to cap off a bad weekend in personal sports fanhood. But this loss was actually bittersweet.

It capped off a fun two weeks of cheering for the United States, a time of brotherhood across the country.
I’m no hockey fan, but I’m a fan of our country. And while I still feel like the Winter Olympics are primarily a two-week episode of MTV’s “Jackass,” there are still the high points.

Uniting a country is definitely one of those.

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

 Posted by at 1:33 pm


 Uncategorized  Comments Off on RamTalk
Feb 282010
Authors: Compiled by Heidi Reitmeier
  • Did anybody else notice that CSU has a parking lot named “Lot 420”?
  • Does anyone else feel like they’re playing Frogger when Greenpeace is in the plaza?
  • Is anyone else wierded out when you make eye contact with someone through the little crack in the bathroom stall door?
  • To the woman in the bathroom stall next to mine, in LSC: No, it is not okay to mutter creepily to yourself while going to the bathroom. It’s really, really, not okay.
  • Free massage chair, relaxing music, pretty girls and condoms at the Relaxation Zone. What more could a guy ask for?
 Posted by at 1:01 pm
Feb 252010

Something sad happened today! Just now, in fact. So, I know the blog has been filled with Yellowstoney stuff lately but I have one more for you. Today at the store I picked up this month’s Backpacker and found a short article in it about the possibility of webcams all over the backcountry in Yellowstone…ewwww! Didn’t I just finish saying how the backcountry of this awesome park was wild, untouched and you couldn’t be bothered? I thought so…but I guess I was just plain wrong! If webcams in the backcountry happen, there will truly be no escape anymore. Sure, they say, you shouldn’t care if you’re not breaking the rules or being unsafe, but that’s a lie! I still care that eyes are watching me when I don’t want them to be. And that I can’t ever be trusted.  And, oh yeah, that BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING ME! I don’t think it’s about rules. And I don’t think it’s about safety. It’s about a lack of trust and a sad lack of respect that people have for nature.

I say: Please leave me alone in the backcountry big brother! What do you guys think?

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Rams host cream of Mountain West’s crop

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Feb 252010
Authors: Kyle Grabowski

The conference-leading TCU women’s basketball team will pay a visit to Moby Arena Saturday for a showdown with the Rams. Earlier this year the Horned Frogs downed CSU 78-51, which started a four-game losing streak.

This season, TCU is the only team in the conference with 20 wins and currently leads second place BYU by a half game. The Horned Frogs stand above all other conference teams in terms of scoring offense, rebounds per game and turnover margin.

“It’s going to be a challenge,” head coach Kristen Holt said. “TCU is at the top of our conference for a reason.”

Junior guards Emily Carter and Helena Sverrisdottir both average more than 14 points per game for the Horned Frogs, a formidable scoring duo. They torched the Rams for a combined 32 points when the teams met in January.

Since the Horned Frogs joined the MWC, they are 9-0 against CSU. Despite that, however, the Rams are confident in their chances to win.

“As long as we limit our turnovers, I feel we have potential to win this TCU game,” freshman Chantel Kennedy said.

While most coaches would shy away from such confidence, fearing cockiness, Holt embraces it to a degree.

“With this group confidence isn’t a bad thing,” she said. “I hope we have some confidence because I think if they play hard and give a lot of effort we certainly stand a chance, especially at home, but it’s not going to be easy.”

CSU has posted a 9-3 record at Moby this season, but on the other side of the coin, TCU has won half of their road games, which is one of the better marks in the conference.

The Rams, however, remain undaunted by the fact of having the No. 1 team in the conference in their building.

“It’s exciting,” freshman Meixandra Porter said. “I think if we go in there and play together, play aggressive and limit our turnovers, we’ll be fine.”

The Rams focused on turnovers during the latter half of this week after committing 25 in a loss at New Mexico on Wednesday.

“If we cut down our turnovers by half during our last game, we would’ve stood a much better chance of winning that game,” Holt said. “That’s not something that you can just flip a switch and fix.”

Tip off Saturday is scheduled for 2 p.m.

Women’s Basketball Beat Reporter Kyle Grabowski can be reached at sports@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 5:58 pm