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Archive for Wednesday, July 4, 2001

Making friends

July 4, 2001

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To the editor:

I was encouraged by the June 30 Saturday Column, "Efficient search leads to hiring of promising athletics director.".= The article suggested that Allen Bohl would "score points with many alumni and friends" if he were to take the initiative to reinstate men's swimming and diving and tennis as sports at the University of Kansas. The article recommended the type of leadership decision that many of us have been waiting for, and that has been lacking recently at KU.

Since March, many articles and editorials have been written about KU's decision to drop men's sports. I have only read one article that said that decision was a good idea. That article was an editorial in the university's student newspaper by a naive student who wrote that football and basketball were the only sports that mattered anyway. No other views have expressed supporting the elimination of athletic-educational opportunities.

I admit that I am biased in supporting the reinstatement of men's swimming and diving and tennis. I believe that these character-building educational and recreational opportunities should be offered to future generations. These programs are no different than other extracurricular activities offered on a university campus - they add to the academic learning process. The programs also help to attract new students interested in participating in those extracurricular activities to the university.

Bob Frederick has said that more could have been done in the way of fund raising to support these athletic-educational programs. So, let's do it. Allen Bohl has said he believes he can fill Memorial Stadium for football games, to help support the athletic department's mission of supporting athletic-educational opportunities. So, let's help him do it.

It is going to take "many alumni and friends" to fill Memorial Stadium, but there is no reason it can't be done. Allen Bohl should do the right thing and make friends by reinstating men's swimming and diving and tennis. Then, he should ask those friends to help support KU and help him fill Memorial Stadium. For our future generations, we should do it.

Ron Neugent,

Wichita

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