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UO Admin Responds to Ticket Scandal

December 25th, 2010 by Lyzi Diamond

Upon reading my post regarding ticket packages for the 2011 BCS National Championship Game (the Ducks are playing, in case you didn’t know), UO VP for Student Affairs Robin Holmes had this to say:

It is unfortunate that things are being portrayed
this way, but I can totally understand how folks feel. It is not true that
we received the mass amount of tickets that folks think. Because the arena
is so much smaller, we really did only receive a small amount of student
tickets–it was just plain not enough. Compared to the Rose Bowl
distribution (they got 5800) our amount is paltry–but that’s the way it
goes when you have 30,000 less seats in the arena. Also, all of the money
that is loaded onto the tickets less the face value and is going right back
into student activities associated with the Bowl game–none of it will be a
profit to the University–I am happy to provide an accounting that will show
that when we settle up after the event. The travel agency that is handling
everything for us does get a small profit from the sales of the tickets.
Given how much time and effort they have put into this, the profit will not
cover their time and resources. We could not have done it without them. In
terms of the Corvallis game and releasing the tickets too early that was our
mistake. To be honest, we were so excited about finally being able to
release the tickets, we used poor judgment and released them too early.
Every student who contacted us and verified they were at the game and wanted
to buy a ticket were allowed to do so. We are very excited about being able
to put this opportunity together for students. It is our first time doing
this, so we have a lot of learning to do. We are saddened that so many
students were frustrated and hope to do better next time.

How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2010)

December 24th, 2010 by Melissa Haskin

Recently, students at Stanford had a novel idea: they petitioned to be excused from classes during the Orange Bowl. Of course, that went down in flames- glorious flames. Their commendable effort leaves me wondering “why UO hasn’t asked the same?”

The petition, signed by over 1,600 Stanford students did not ask for a shift in the academic calendar, but merely the excusal of those students traveling with the team. The petition argued that Stanford was known as a team that didn’t travel well and students wanted to change their reputation but were worried about missing valuable class time:

Stanford has been ruthlessly defamed across the country as being a school that doesn’t “travel well”, a highly contestable assertion given our presence at last year’s Sun Bowl. We believe that Stanford students should have the chance to attend the Orange Bowl without fearing that a professor will drop them from a course.

Therefore, President Hennessy, we petition you, Provost Etchemendy, and Vice Provost Elam to excuse the absences of those students who will be traveling to Miami, so we may witness a piece of Cardinal history while once and for all putting to rest the notion that Stanford fans do not support their world-class sports teams.

The request was both logical and reasonable, in fact, too reasonable. Why should campus only close for traveling students and students affiliated with the team? All of these students take up a significant portion of the student population, at UO it’s estimated at about 2,000 students (out of the university’s 23,389). With all of these students absent from classes, it would make more sense to shift the academic calendar.Yeah, it would be slightly inconvenient, but less of a mess than the disaster no-show drops are going to cause. In addition, when too many individuals are absent, the whole class suffers as they try to catch up.

Furthermore, traveling students are not the only ones affected by Bowl games. It’s not an excuse, but it’s a fact that for many students, watching their team on TV and getting smashed are simultaneous. Presumably, faculty also partakes in the football watching, though  the after game tradition of celebrating by drinking or drinking ones sorrows away seem to include the whole community. The day after a bowl game is a day needed for necessary recovery. Therefore, when a bowl game conflicts with an academic calendar, it is in the best interest of that school to readjust its schedule. But I digress; students from Stanford were met with a somewhat pointed letter from the Provost (emphasis mine): (more…)

More on Student Tickets

December 20th, 2010 by Lyzi Diamond

Oregon’s Attorney General John Kroger and the DOJ have some more tips and tricks regarding the BCS National Championship Game:

  • Scammers often use the lure of cheaper tickets to take consumer’s money. Be suspicious of any offer that seems too good to be true, because it probably is.
  • Purchase tickets from a reputable ticket distributor. Do not purchase tickets sight unseen unless you are using a reputable ticket distributor.
  • If using Craigslist, meet the seller face-to-face in a public place. Ask questions about the seats and seller. Get reliable contact information from the seller in case the tickets are counterfeit.
  • Confirm that the section, row and seat on your ticket corresponds with a location in the stadium.
  • If possible, use a credit card or account-to-account transfer service such as PayPal. If the tickets you purchased aren’t delivered, not as advertised or counterfeit, you can dispute the charge.
  • Never wire money or give out personal account information to individuals you do not know.
  • Purchase tickets before going to the game. Scammers use color printers to create very real-looking tickets and will try to sell them to desperate fans outside of the stadium for quick cash.
  • If you purchase a travel package, contact the airline and hotel directly to make certain the reservations are legitimate.
  • Verify that any travel agent you are working with to book a travel package is a member of a recognized trade association, such as the American Society of Travel Agents.

Hat tip to the Willamette Week. Check out their post for some sweet Ducks photos.

“We just want a ticket to the game.”

December 19th, 2010 by Lyzi Diamond

UO students are upset with the way the University of Oregon (Athletic Department?) has handled student tickets for the BCS National Championship Game in Glendale, AZ on January 10th. From the R-G:

Of the 17,000 tickets allotted to the university, 1,000 are set aside for students. But the UO isn’t selling any of those as individual tickets for the face value cost of $200.

Instead, all 1,000 are being offered through a local travel agency as part of packages that include extras ranging from post-game parties to airfare and hotels. The minimum price for the most pared-down package is $450, and that’s sold out. So is the next cheapest, at $1,135.

According to UO professional baller (dean of students) Paul Shang, the decision was made in order to avoid the complications individual tickets created at last year’s Rose Bowl, where students with tickets were unable to find places to stay and had to deal with counterfeit tickets. (Editorial: I’m unsure how selling travel packages helps with the latter concern. Indeed, wouldn’t more people be inclined to find face-value tickets instead of paying for a travel package? But I digress.) Additionally, the travel packages have flights back on January 11th to make sure students can get to class on the 12th.

Students are also frustrated with how face value tickets were distributed. An email went out to students with ticket information immediately following the Civil War game on December 4th at OSU’s Reser Stadium in Corvallis. If students had attended the game, as die-hard football fans are wont to do, they did not reach a computer in time to gain access to the ticket-only packages.

Shang acknowledged that a portion of the package price goes to cover the university’s cost for providing transportation around Phoenix, pep rallies and an after-game party. He said he didn’t know how much it will cost to provide those services or what the per-ticket mark-up is.

The least expensive package, which is sold out, is the $450 game-day-only package. That’s $250 above the ticket cost, and covers a ticket lanyard, transportation from the hotel where tickets are picked up to the stadium, and a pre-game party.

But even that is more than what some students want.

I am unsure of the real goal of this new system. What is the UO hoping to gain out of this? Additional money for the university and providing these services, obviously, but why distribute tickets directly after the game, knowing full well that many football fans would be in Corvallis? What are its intentions? What is it planning?

US Senate Beer Pong Tournament: Second and Third Rounds

December 13th, 2010 by Rockne Andrew Roll

Second and Third Round highlights from the Ted Kennedy Memorial United States Senate Beer Pong Tournament. For First Round Action, see below. For full Tournament rules, bracket, and results, see “The Holiday Issue” of the Oregon Commentator, available online to your right. (more…)

US Senate Beer Pong Tournament: First Round

December 13th, 2010 by Rockne Andrew Roll

Editor’s note: For those of you who haven’t perused the Holiday Issue yet, you should do so now. The link is to your right. It includes a bracket and predicted results from The Ted Kennedy Memorial United States Senate Beer Pong Tournament. Some better explanation of those predicted results might be helpful so here it is, in the form of ESPN style recaps. Actual results were based on the perceived badass levels of the senators and their states.   Where it says “coin flip,” the winner was literally decided by the toss of a dime. Today includes results from the first round, second and third rounds will be later today, with the championship rounds either late today or early tomorrow. (more…)

Sunday Best: An emotional day.

December 5th, 2010 by Lyzi Diamond

Jerry Allen calls the last minute of yesterday’s Civil War that will send the Ducks to the BCS National Championship Game. Jerry Allen is the same man who called “The Pick” back in 1994. Try not to cry when you watch this clip.

When our football team does well, it serves as a form of micronationalism, unifying us as a school and a team and a community. In these moments — despite all the fucked up dealings involving the UO administration, the ASUO and everything else — I am proud to be a Duck.

See you in Glendale, kids.

Dr. Huff and Mr. Tuinei

December 1st, 2010 by Alex Tomchak Scott

I felt like devoting a post to this week’s Jackson Long interview. I don’t know who Long is, even though I’ve met most people who have written for campus publications in the last two years. I can only assume, though, that he has some sort of solid-gold connection/compromising photo of a receivers coach/Jedi mind trick that allows him to commune with Oregon Football players, then put their thoughts in the Emerald every week.

This week, he’s got both of the team’s slot receivers, multi-use bulls-eye Lavasier Tuinei and Swiss Army legs Josh Huff talking to him. These interviews are not quite as entertaining as Cliff Harris’ was a couple of weeks ago, and Long needs some new questions, but there are some gems, starting with this dazzling ruby from Huff:

Before I leave here, this is my plan: I don’t want to be known as the football player who played for the Ducks, I want to be that nice guy everyone knows that helps you with your homework.

(I corrected a seeming typo and punctuation error for clarity) I don’t know whether that epitomizes a dry sense of humor or a sincere civic conscience, but I’m charmed one way or the other; aren’t you? If I was writing a thesis about The Illiad or cramming for an organic chemistry final, you know I’d have Huff on the line.

That’s in stark contrast to Tuinei, who mostly seems to be snapping at Long, and uses really weird jargon, at least to someone who doesn’t really care about football like me: “JuCo”? “‘Ship”? OK, Lavasier. But even he can muster a winning tribute to a teammate:

He will put you first before he puts himself first. I talked to him today, he sent me a text message. It was something like: “I played (against Arizona) like I had a burden on my shoulder because I was playing that game for you. I knew I had to win these last games so you (Lavasier) could be back to play in the future.” That touches me. I feel like he is one of my best friends.

And here’s another thing:

What we do is what we love to do —­ play football. What happens on campus has nothing to do with us. I’m not saying it is fair or not fair that we get the Jaqua or new clothes, we just happen to have more support than other people. We do bring in the money and it is helpful to have things like that. Man, you should just take that up with Phil Knight, you ask Phil Knight that tough question. People need to know we work hard for theses things, we bust ourselves for that stuff.

Lariviere tells us what the UO sees in its relationship with Phil Knight

November 23rd, 2010 by Alex Tomchak Scott

The University is building a new expansion to the Len Casanova Athletic Center, to great controversy because the process involved will be the same as that used for the John E. Jaqua Academic Center for Student Athletes. UO Matters posted a couple of days ago a long mp3 of a meeting at which President Richard Lariviere outlines his rationale for accepting the donation from Phil Knight/Phil Knight’s various organizations.

This is the important part, I think. The mediated form hinders the ability of those being mediated to make a considered, rational argument, so I’ll just block-quote the thing in its entirety. Emphasis mine.

It really doesn’t have much to do with the central mission of the University of Oregon. The mission of the University of Oregon is education and research.

We live in a very odd society in that every society feels passionately about sports of one sort or another. You know this from your travels internationally. Soccer in most of the rest of the world. People spend billions of dollars on that entertainment. The odd thing in this country is that some significant portion of that entertainment world is associated with higher education.

There’s in my view an unconscionable tolerance for confusion around this. All of us who know better need to be educating the public that athletics is entertainment and education and research is why the University exists.

Now, do I wish that there was as much passion and willingness to part with treasure that focused on the humanities and the social sciences and the natural sciences as there is around football? You bet I do. That’s not the world we live in.

And should we be puzzled that a family that have made billions of dollars in the sports industry and love the University of Oregon are interested in giving money to this entertainment enterprise? It’s not much of a mystery for me and I don’t think it probably is for anyone.

If we don’t accept this gift, is it likely that the donors will get out of bed tomorrow and think, “Oh, what were we thinking? We should have been giving it to promote Sanskrit at the University of Oregon”? I don’t think so.

If we don’t accept this gift, what will be the negative consequences for the University’s education and research mission? Probably not much — in the short term. But they could be really, really profound over the long term. Really profound. This is an important gift for our future. So that’s all I have to say on that.

Once, Matt Petryni, an ex-Emerald columnist with whom I used to work there, told me that if the UO would just come out and say this, he’d understand the flirtation with sportswear corporations. And we’re talking about a guy who organized a march on Johnson Hall in an effort to end the UO’s relationship with one.

There are questions raised, though, such as what kind of “really, really profound” “negative consequences”? I guess I’ll ask Lariviere next time I see him. On the other hand, nobody in a position of power has ever been this forthright about the UO’s relationship with Knight on the record, at least that I can remember.

Media digests: They’ll return once all the content for the magazine gets copy-edited.

Word of the Day

November 12th, 2010 by Lyzi Diamond

Today, Merriam-Webster’s word of the day is:

golden parachute (n.): a generous severance agreement for a corporate executive in the event of a sudden dismissal (as because of a merger)

Think the dictionary folks are trying to remind us of something?

Holistic pictures, manipulative presidents, woeful .036. Ol’ Dirty Digest; Oct. 11, 2010

October 11th, 2010 by Alex Tomchak Scott

The News (must have been a slow day):

  • Ben Eckstein is the new ASUO chief of staff. I’m sure Lyzi will have things to say once production is complete on the magazine about this. Such as how, you know, ASUO President Amelie Rousseau — to be generous about it — appears to have blithely flaunted circumvented* ASUO rules for hiring people. My favorite thing about this article is the following, wonderfully opaque Rousseau quote: “It wasn’t necessarily choosing between (Eckstein and Hulen),” she said. “It was looking at the holistic picture.”
  • Serious note: I know the outgoing Conrad Hulen from my time reporting on the ASUO and it’s depressing to learn he’s had a family tragedy so serious he can’t come back to school.
  • There is also another ASUO story about an ASUO committee appointing people to officer positions. If I were a tree felled to have this news printed on paper made of me, I would be upset, despite the fact that, as a tree, I would have no emotions. That is to say, it stands out for its irrelevance.
  • A guy rode a bike. A long way. For charity. Evidently Tijuana is not so bike-friendly, the rest of Baja California is a bit bland, and there’s not really much else to say about the rest of the Pacific coast of North America.


  • The Emerald’s editorial board with a typically bland election-season argument: You should, you know, vote, even if politicians make your skin crawl. Boring. Much more interesting is the UO College Democrats president calling the president’s 2008 campaign “manipulative.” Many people are terrified to criticize the political party to which they profess allegiance, even if it’s true, so I laud her for doing so.
  • Thomas Kyle-Milward opines that the UO has rescheduled graduation to Mondays to make more money and make things easier on faculty and staff, but at the expense of students.
  • Slow news day supplemented by weird news column. The rubber-encased semen of Commonwealth Games athletes is a threat to India’s plumbing! Woman puts glue in eye by mistake, then visits hospital! Cocaine found in butt! Couple buys skeleton! Man doesn’t die in non-explosion!


  • Band of whom some have heard plants advertorial in Emerald! Other band throws party! Restaurant old and quirky!


  • In my opinion, this clip contains all the information you need to know about sports.
  • Oregon Football won a gristly, ugly game.
  • Two volleyball teams from Arizona played Oregon Volleyball this weekend, an exercise apparently geared to producing  unintelligible numbers, such as “hitting a woeful .036” (blood alcohol content?) and “19 kills” (rap sheet?) and lending support to the notion that nobody cares enough about volleyball to explain what the fuck they’re talking about.
  • Oregon Softball played Portland State in a match that evidently unfolded in banal succession of quotes and evaluations, followed by a dizzying and somewhat inscrutable series of declarative sentences in large paragraphs. Sunflower seeds were missed by all.

* I want to emphasize that this is not a barb. It is a correction. Thank you to Andrew for providing the relevant rule, which I seemingly couldn’t be bothered to seek. I acknowledge my mistake.

Return of the Quack

October 1st, 2010 by Lyzi Diamond

Supwitchugirl is back, with slightly higher production value and (hopefully) slightly less legal trouble. I wonder if that’s going to affect the popularity of their new song / video, “I Love My Ducks (Return Of The Quack).” [Featuring Joey Harrington!]

Brooks wins most improved

April 22nd, 2010 by Drew Cattermole

Former University of Oregon basketball standout Aaron Brooks has won the NBA’s most improved player award. For those who do not remember Brooks at Mac Court he was the greatest player I have seen in my four years here at the UO. With outstanding speed and  leadership  Brooks lead the Ducks a championship in the Pac-10 tournament and brought the Ducks to the Elite Eight during the NCAA tournament during the 2006-2007 season.

So now the question is, is Aaron Brooks the best NBA player that the Ducks have produced?

Below is a video of Brooks dominating UCLA, who was #1 in the nation before they came to Mac Court.

M-a-s-o-l-i, Like The Football Player

March 16th, 2010 by Drew Cattermole

Police have released the 911 call from Max Wolfard of SAE. My favorite part is the girl in the background when she finds out the laptop was stolen by Masoli.  Below is the video from Downtown Eugene News.

Masoli and Embry plead guilty

March 12th, 2010 by D

Embry and Masoli/KVAL

“So when my little brother comes to visit in April, does this mean I can take him to the Eugene prison to get his football signed?”

That was what my friend’s Facebook status read today. That particular person is from the state of New York, only further proving that the rest of the country thinks our football team is a bunch of losers.

Jeremiah Masoli plead guilty today, as I am sure you are all aware of. What does this mean now, as far as our football team goes? To be honest, I don’t particularly care (blasphemy!) What I am worried about, however, is the strain this puts on our school and our surrounding community. The comparisons have been ample, so I won’t go into depth here, but I assume the coming wave of displeasure will feel much like it did around the summer of 2003.

Is it too cliche to wonder about the sense of “entitlement” our athletes have, what with the lavish surroundings Uncle Phil surrounds them with?  Masoli ran into legal trouble in high school, and the fact that he was willing to again commit a crime–this time with so much more to lose as an adult and as the face of a team that is sponsored by the world’s largest shoe company–is absolutely inexplicable.

There are so many consequences to Masoli’s actions, much farther reaching than I’m sure he’s imagined up until now. The state of Oregon, Eugene, even Phil Knight’s contributions to the University could be affected Masoli’s lust for musical instrumentation.

I’m also curious about how the rest of the student-athletes feel, especially from the football team. I highly doubt any of them would talk (for “brotherhood” or from simply being muzzled by the AD) but I’m sure that many of them, upstanding individuals, feel like they are now unfairly painted with the same colors as Masoli, James, Beard and Embry.

Good thing Spring Break is coming up. We all need some rest from this insanity.