The most common question I’ve gotten about the newspaper in the past couple weeks is something to the effect of “Why do you guys keep picking on Ron English?”
Here’s the thing – I know nothing about sports.
My only knowledge of football comes from my high school years, when I’d sit with the other gaudily-made up color guards and half-watch the team play while silently praying my fingers didn’t freeze and fall off before I marched the halftime show.
But I do know kindergarten-level math, which means I’m aware that five losses and one win isn’t exactly something to be proud of.
Now I’m not going to write a rant yelling about ways we can improve our team because frankly, I’m about as qualified to do that as I am to perform brain surgery.
I’ve read and heard some pretty nasty comments about The Eastern Echo regarding the editorials on Ron English, accusing us of being too un-spirited.
I will say that we here at the paper are journalists, and our primary goal should be to report the truth, even if it isn’t necessarily pretty. If we wanted to be cheerleaders, we would have tried out for the cheer team. And I’m fairly sure most of us can’t do cartwheels, including me.
But that doesn’t mean we hate our school. In fact, we love our school. We love being Eagles. We know we have a lot to be proud of in our heritage as students at Eastern Michigan University.
Just, at least for the time being, our football team isn’t one of those things.
But did you know that the EMU College of Business has just been named one of the best business schools in the nation? Even more, did you know this is its 10th year on the list?
And don’t even get me started on the education program. According to the department’s page on the EMU website, the College of Education is ranked as “exemplary” by the Michigan Department of Education and is one of the top providers of education personnel in the country.
We’re one of the most LGBT-inclusive schools in the U.S. according to Campus Pride and we have a diverse campus filled with nearly every religion, ethnic background, national origin and viewpoint you could possibly imagine.
I’ve learned so much about so many different kinds of people by spending three years getting to know my classmates. You truly feel like you’re part of something bigger than yourself.
And just because our football team isn’t doing its best doesn’t mean every athletic team is in the dumps.
The swimming, cross-country and soccer teams are kicking a respectable amount of butt, and that’s not even factoring in our intramural and club sports.
As for me, I came here for the music program. My guitar teacher and band director were both EMU students at one point, so I decided to follow in their footsteps. I’m proud to be where they once were, to perform on the same stages they did, to wear the same colors they did.
I feel a great sense of pride attending their alma mater.
I’m an optimist. I think we’ll have a respectable football team again someday, maybe even someday soon.
Until then, there’s no need to yell, “Eastern sucks!” and hide our EMU T-shirts under our University of Michigan hoodie. Look at the things we have to be proud of.
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