Author: Hannah WoolumsBy Hannah Woolums
The game of Rugby can be intimidating and intense but to some it provides them with an adrenaline rush and allows them to partake in a school sanctioned sport. For junior Chris Hooyman, a double major in English and Psychology, his five years of playing Rugby has given him something new to experience with his friends, and that is different from anything else he has done.
â€œI started playing my junior year of high school because I rode the bench too much in basketball, so after that season ended I joined the rugby team as soon as possible. I went to UNLV my freshman year (of college) where there wasn’t a team but transferred back here and since all my roommates were my high school teammates it was only natural for me to come back and start playing againâ€ Hooyman said.
Chris has been on a member of the CSU Menâ€™s Rugby team for 2 years now and he will always cherish the friends that he had connected with and will keep the perseverance and strength that he has acquired and apply it to other aspects of his life.
â€œThe friendships I’ve made over the years are a real treasure to me. There’s a certain kind of bond we all share from playing on the field together which makes me love every minute of it. Also, I feel that I’ll walk away from rugby knowing (or at least thinking I know) what it takes to be on the top of the mountain and Iâ€™ll try to apply that to other aspects of my life, which has been very beneficialâ€ Hooyman said.
Through Chrisâ€™ adventures on the team many things have affected him, but one in particular has followed him all the way from high school into his third year of college; his nickname Type 1.
â€œI got the nickname on my first day of practice since there were two Chris’ on the team and because I have Type 1 Diabetes, and it’s stuck with me ever sinceâ€ Hooyman said. â€œPlaying with diabetes can sometimes be a hassle because I play my best when my blood sugar’s normal but obviously that’s hard to do since we’re running around so much and I don’t have much time to tinker with it but a lot of the time I feel pretty normal, I do always keep a Gatorade on me though just in case.â€
Hooyman participates in a full contact sport but when the game of Rugby is compared to the CSU Womenâ€™s team, there is not a huge difference in what the players endure. The two teams support each other by watching the others practices.
â€œI don’t think there are any real difference between men’s and women’s rugby besides who’s on the field, which makes it great because everyone gets to play on a level playing field.â€ Hooyman said. â€œOccasionally, some of our players hang out and watch their game and vice versa but as far as I know there’s no organized support for one another.â€
As far as the sport of Rugby goes Hooyman has continued to excel during his five years of playing, but that is not the only aspect of CSU that Chris has given effort to. His studies are an important part of his life and he continues to try new things even in his education, and is a pleasure to have in the classroom. Lauren Gullion, his E 210 Beginning Creative Writing teacher has been impressed by his writing and his participation in the progressing semester.
â€œChris is wonderfully humble yet consistently high-achieving in his work. He never takes himself too seriously and is always a good sport, even when he gets volunteered by others to share his work out loud. One-on-one, Chris is eager to learn. He takes criticism with grace and humor, all the while remaining confident in what it is he set out to do. He’s just one of those students that make you smileâ€ Gullion said.