Athletes should be more involved on campus

Patrick Loera

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There is a problem in San Jose City College’s Athletic Department.

Aside from the obvious problems, such as not having a permanent athletic director or not getting fans from SJCC to go to games and events, the problem is the athletes’ influence on campus.

Where’s the school involvement from the athletes? It is true that SJCC sports do their part in the community off campus, but when do they do anything on campus with the students and faculty who are supporting them?

The Jaguars football team, which suffered from an abundance of criticism for a poor record last season, winning only one of eight games, seems to be in a restructuring phase and not ready for more public involvement than on the field.

There are a few players that are noticeable and decked-out in Jag apparel that are on campus long enough to make an impact, but not many.

What is to stop them from showing the campus that they are above a poor record, they have sportsmanship and know how to be champions again by becoming leaders on campus that fans should cheer for at games next season?

Then there is the Jaguars softball team, our imperial Lady Jags, who have been the most successful team on campus in the past five years, winning four of five conference championships, and they are recognized as sixth in the nation for highest grade-point average.

Still, the team’s presence on campus is undetectable unless there is a game or a practice in Jaguar Stadium.

Although there are a few shining, all-academic stars on the team, what’s to stop them from tutoring students or volunteering to show incoming students around campus? Can you Lady Jags imagine having more classmates and fans from campus shouting for you at Jaguars Stadium?

On the other hand, one can imagine how a campus connection can be a daunting task for SJCC delicate men’s basketball team when it was suspected of theft at the beginning of last season.

Consequently, the team fell out of sync on the court for a moment, and it bounced back with an eight-game win streak, but not in the community.
Why not prove the critics wrong by becoming more open and involved on campus?

The Jaguars women’s basketball team has also been unnoticeable on campus. It is great that it recently worked with kids to teach them basketball techniques, but what does that do for the students on our campus? Has anybody on campus observed the teams influence on campus since its 1998 state championship?

What about the Jaguars golf team? Are they a myth like big foot with distant sightings and unimaginable stories? Well, we do have a golf team, but nobody would have known it if the Times did not publish their results.

Dear Mr. Roger Maltbie, can you please send the golf team some golf swag to golf in, wear on campus while they talk about golf and sell in the golf section of the book store? FORE! Thank you.

The only teams on campus that have made somewhat of an impact on the campus community is one that is underfunded, the track and field and cross country teams.

They frequently raise funds for equipment and travel by holding community-wide fundraisers where they actually serve pancakes to the attendants of the event.

Fundraising for a good cause notwithstanding, if all the athletes on campus were more involved with the campus, they might see an increase in attendance at their games and events assuming the Associated Student Government’s director of publicity gets its act together and actually starts publicizing some games and events.

Not just that, but if the athletes were more involved with students, the campus community would not be able to accuse them of being selfish, stuck-up, thieves, disruptive and academically favored because of sports. Instead, the campus community would view the SJCC athletes as Jaguars leaders, role models and motivators. Be the change.