Sports

Bobcat Fan Fair to celebrate BG Schools on Saturday

(From BG City Schools) The annual Bobcat Fan Fair will be held Saturday. This is free, family fun event at the High School Athletic Stadium. There will be much to see and to do. Gates open at 4:00pm and the fun builds from there. The High School band will march in at 4:30 accompanied by an antique fire truck carrying the cheerleaders. After the band performs, Board of Education member Ellen Scholl will sing the Star Spangled Banner. Mayor Richard Edwards will be on hand to cut the ribbon dedicating the new stands and Superintendent Francis Scruci will welcome everyone. The Athletic teams will then be introduced by their coaches as they parade onto the field. Fans will then be invited to come on down to the track to meet the coaches and student athletes as well as participate in many games and activities. Students from the elementary schools through middle school can win a free Bobcat Proud T-shirt by visiting each table and completing their “passport.” All students who complete a passport will be entered in a drawing to win a student “all-sport” pass for the entire school year. There will be food! The High School teachers are offering a hot dog meal (hot dog, chips, cookie and drink) for only $3.00, which will benefit their scholarship fund. Drinks and snow cones will also be available for purchase but the ice-cream is FREE! This is not only an excellent opportunity for families to spend some time together, their young…


Local athlete AJ Digby to represent USA on Paralympic track & field team

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News When AJ Digby was born without fibula in both his legs, his parents believed he would never walk. The doctor was reassuring. He’ll be able to climb trees, he said. He’ll be able to play soccer, his mother Robin Digby said. When AJ Digby was 10 months old, both his feet were amputated. Soon he was fitted with his first prosthetics. Now 18, AJ Digby has made the USA Paralympic Track & Field Team. He’s headed to Rio de Janeiro in September to represent the United States in the Paralympics. This weekend the official announcement of the track and field. And though he’s already represented the USA in the World Games, making the Paralympic squad is “the pinnacle … the ultimate” said his father, Gordon Digby. His parents are making their way back from Charlotte, North Carolina, where the trials were held, and where they experienced yet another milestone in their son’s sports career. It was their son’s second try at making the team. He participated in the trials in 2012. He ran in the 100, 200 and 400 meter races, though it’s uncertain which events he’ll run in Brazil. Born into a sports-obsessed family, his participation in sports isn’t surprising. “Our kids didn’t have a chance,” said Gordon, who played football and ran track. “They fell into sports very early.” Robin Digby competed in volleyball. “We’re into all kinds of sports,” Gordon Digby said. Despite using prosthetics, AJ Digby competed against able bodied…


BGSU lacrosse honored at sport’s national home

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Mickey Cochrane, retired Bowling Green State University professor and coach, is a member of four halls of fame. (That’s not including the Baseball Hall of Fame where his namesake the legendary Detroit Tigers catcher is enshrined.) The 86-year-old added another honor when a pillar at the entrance of the headquarters of US Lacrosse was dedicated to the BGSU lacrosse program that he started. He and about 65 players along with families and fans traveled down to Maryland to mark the 50th anniversary of the team’s founding. For once, Cochrane was taken by surprise when the pillar was unveiled. Each of the 20 pillars along the perimeter of the field at the headquarters honors a college program, but BGSU is the first to be formally dedicated. Receiving this Legacy Honor is especially notable, Cochrane said, because BGSU no longer fields a varsity team, the program lasted from 1965-1979, when financial retrenchment forced the shuttering of several programs. Cochrane arrived in BGSU in 1964 from Johns Hopkins where he was recruited to coach both lacrosse and soccer. The soccer stadium now bears his name. At that time, both sports were little known in the Midwest. BGSU president at the time, William Jerome, came from Syracuse, New York, Cochrane said. Upstate New York has been a hot bed of lacrosse since before the arrival of Europeans. Jerome gave Cochrane 10 out-of-state scholarships and sent him east to find players, especially if they could play two sports. Many players,…


BG school district hires new athletic director

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   Jonas Smith served as athletic director for Dayton Public Schools, where he oversaw seven high schools and a $3.6 million renovation of the district’s Welcome Stadium. But something was missing. Smith is hoping to find that missing piece at Bowling Green City School District. “The last several years, I’ve missed being around kids,” Smith said. Tuesday evening, Bowling Green’s board of education hired Smith as the district’s new athletic director. Smith said he was attracted to the “very welcoming” community, the good schools, and the potential to build relationships. Bowling Green Superintendent Francis Scruci said he was attracted to Smith’s 20 years of experience overseeing a large program, his reputation in the state, his winning record at Dayton, and his success securing corporate sponsorships for the renovated stadium. “It’s what he brings to the table,” Scruci said. Smith will receive an annual salary of $90,000. “I’m a firm believer that you get what you pay for,” Scruci said. Smith was accompanied to Tuesday’s school board meeting by his wife, LaDonna, and their two sons, ages 15 and 11. He was also joined by a former school superintendent and mentor, who flew up from South Carolina to be present for his hiring. Smith knows time to prepare for his new job is ticking away, with fall sports starting on Aug. 1. His philosophy for school athletics is “7-12,” he said. The head coaches at the high school level should have a hand in…


BG Curling Club proud of teams at national championships

Submitted by BG Curling Club On May 10-15, Ice Line Arena in West Chester, Pennsylvania, hosted the United States Curling Association’s Arena National Curling Championships, which included both a men’s and a women’s team from the Bowling Green Curling Club, located in northwest Ohio. The men’s team finished 2-2, in a three-way tie for ninth place among a field of 20 teams from across the U.S., while the women’s team finished 2-4, in tenth place among 18 teams, after a tie-breaker. Both teams just missed advancing to the quarter-final rounds. “The Bowling Green Curling Club is very proud of both our teams and how they performed at Arena Nationals,” said Shannon Orr, club president. “As we move forward with our new dedicated curling facility, which will be opening this fall, we look forward to sending even more local curlers to regional, national, and international competitions. We hope more folks will come to the new club and try one of our learn-to- curls.” The move to a dedicated ice facility will mean, however, that the club will be unable to participate in this event again, which is reserved for curlers from arena-based clubs that share ice with skaters and hockey. The women’s team, consisting of Elizabeth Spencer of Toledo, Angie Jones of Sylvania, Beth Landers of Bowling Green, and Jen Henkel of Perrysburg, lost to San Francisco Bay III (11-2), lost to Lansing (8-1), lost to Palmetto-South Carolina (7-6), won against Dakota-Minnesota, (6-2, with alternate Jennifer Williams of Norwalk), and won…


OPINION: Stay true to Muhammad Ali’s radicalism

By DALTON ANTHONY JONES On this day in history. There is so much chatter going on around the passing of this monumental icon of black liberation, anti-imperialism, spiritual freedom and resistance to state violence that I find myself playing spectator to the outpouring of collective grief. I am always curious about, and to be quite honest deeply suspicious of, mass expressions of praise and sympathy for radical figures who, if they were fighting for the principles we claim to honor in them today, would be banished and ridiculed by civil society. MLK, Malcolm, Arthur Ashe, the Panthers, Muhammad Ali….one is left with the impression that they would be welcomed with open arms and flowers if they were to return to us. Has our society really become that more progressive? Has a critique of U.S. intervention abroad really become the emotional norm? Have black people really developed a more radical critique about their position vis-a-vis, the American war machine, the American police state, the American system of finance capitalism and the exploitation of our communities? Please don’t get me wrong, we still have our warriors of social justice, people who are devoting themselves to preserving and furthering the legacy of those who fought to expose the hypocrisies of nationalism and make this world a more safe and just place to be. But taken as a whole, I see more faux sentimentalism than genuine identification in these mourning rituals, these pageants of lamentation and nostalgia. I have a narrative of identification with…


Moosbrugger comes home to roost as new Falcon athletic director

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Bob Moosbrugger knew what he wanted in a career when he was a student at Bowling Green State University. He wanted to be an athletic director. He wanted it so much that after two years playing baseball, and winning the award as the top freshman, he decided he needed to concentrate on his studies. He left the team. On Tuesday, Moosbrugger became an athletic director, and he was returning to the Falcon roost to realize that goal. BGSU President Mary Ellen Mazey introduced the 1994 graduate as the university’s new athletic director. He’ll start on July 18. The announcement comes just five weeks after Chris Kingston announced he was leaving to go into the private sector. “It was quick. It was fast,” Moosbrugger said. “It’s been a whirlwind tour.” Mazey said that the search was conducted by Turnkey Search. She said she learned that when an athletic director position opens up, a lot of people are interested. That one of those was a BGSU graduate was a plus. “It’s always great to bring a Falcon home and into the Falcon family.” Mazey noted as a former athlete, Moosbrugger “knows that role of student athlete and how important that is to this university. … I was impressed by his passion for his alma mater.” She said at previous institutions, she has worked with athletic directors who were graduates of those schools and found them to be effective at working with the entire university community from…


BGSU taps alum Moosbrugger as AD

Bowling Green State University will hire Bob Moosbrugger, a 1994 BGSU graduate, as its new athletic director. The university will hold a news conference today (May 17) to make the formal announcement. Moosbrugger is deputy director of athletics and chief operating officer at San Diego State University where he’s been since 2000. He played baseball at BGSU. He is a graduate of Celina High School. Moosbrugger takes over for Chris Kingston who left the position in April.


BGSU Student Recreation Center recognized as outstanding by national association

By BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS When the Student Recreation Center reopened on Aug. 14, 2014, after a year of renovations, students were delighted with the fresh new spaces, sunny lobby, new equipment and additional facilities. Now the building has been recognized with the National Intramural Recreational Sports Association (NIRSA) Outstanding Sports Facilities Award. The award was presented jointly to BGSU Recreation and Wellness and Toledo architects The Collaborative Inc. at the NIRSA Annual Conference and Recreational Sports Expo in Kissimmee, Fla., earlier this month. The NIRSA Outstanding Sports Facilities Awards recognize the innovative designs of new, renovated or expanded collegiate recreational facilities of NIRSA member institutions. Increasingly, research is linking robust recreational programs, facilities and services with student success and satisfaction in higher education. State-of-the art facilities have demonstrated their capacity to greatly enhance the overall student experience, thereby boosting recruitment and improving retention. The annual awards honor facilities that demonstrate excellence in a number of critical areas, including architectural design, functionality and how well the facility meets its intended purpose. Winning facilities exemplify the institution’s commitment to providing the higher education experience desired and valued by students and are considered a standard by which other collegiate recreational facilities should be measured, and from which others can benefit. BGSU’s Recreation Center is featured on the NIRSA website. Students and community members alike are benefiting as a result of the $14.8 million renovation, which was guided in part by their input. In addition to the facility award, BGSU took…


BGSU athletic director Kingston takes private sector job

By BG INDEPENDENT NEWS Bowling Green State University’s athletic director Christopher Kingston is leaving to take a job in the private sector. The university announced this morning that Kingston will leave May 10 to take a job with Learfield Sports, a firm that works with top college sports programs on marketing and multimedia rights. In a letter to the BGSU community, Kingston said he would be a vice president at the company which he has “admired from afar during my professional, collegiate career.” In her letter to faculty and staff, BGSU President Mary Ellen Mazey said: “I greatly appreciate the energy and enthusiasm Chris brought to BGSU athletics. Under his guidance, our student athletes found great success in the classroom and on our fields and courts.” Kingston was named athletic director in 2013. He came here from North Carolina State University. In his letter, Kingston writes: “This career change is an opportunity for me to continue serving in the collegiate space and positively impact the resources and opportunities for Student-Athletes, nation-wide. During my time serving as your director of athletics, we have experienced record-setting revenue growth across new and existing mediums, competed at the highest levels and won championships, and most importantly, graduated young men and women at rates that far exceed the national average.” Mazey indicated that plans for filling the post are being finalized. Below is Kingston’s letter to the BGSU community: Dear Falcons: Honor the Past, Create the Future, Make History Now! Those words serve as the…


Scholar puts feminist spin on issues of sports & fitness

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Scholar Pirkko Markula’s talk Monday at Bowling Green State University on “Women’s Empowerment Through Sport and Exercise: Rhetoric or Reality?” revolved around pole dancing, or pole fitness, as it has come to be called. The exercise, popularized in strip clubs, has become a popular form of fitness training for women. Markula opened her talk with positive comments about the activity by one of her students and testimonials from those who participate in pole workouts. The student reported that it helped build her self-confidence as someone who had “overwhelming dissatisfaction with my own body.” This led Markula, who is a professor at the University of Alberta, to wonder: “Pole fitness may be an avenue by which women can develop and maintain positive body image as a result of an environment that emphasizes body acceptance and the body’s abilities.” Still the exercise, with its emphasis on shaping the woman’s body in a stereotypical form that appeals to men, is problematic. At the conclusion of the lecture, Leda Hayes, a graduate student in American Culture Studies, asked the speaker if the popularity of pole fitness could lessen the stigma on those working in the sex industry. Markula said she, contrary to what some believe, considers the sex industry harmful to women, and she wondered why women would choose the particular form of exercise to do. There are other forms of pole exercise, including one practiced in China, that are not sexualized and provide the same benefits. Pole…


Tackling Injustice: Sports as an Arena of Social Change will be focus of Women’s History month on campus

This year, Bowling Green State University will celebrate Women’s History Month with the theme “Tackling Injustice: Sports as an Arena of Social Change.” The Women’s Center and the Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Program, along with a number of campus departments and organizations, have created a slate of programming that explores the role of athletics — and athletes — in positive social change. Numerous special events throughout the month of March are designed to inspire audiences to recognize and celebrate women who have challenged injustice both on and off “the field.” All events are free and open to the public. The first of the two keynote events is “The Toledo Troopers: An Evening with the Winningest Team in Pro-Football History,” featuring the remarkably diverse team of northwest Ohio women who overcame sexism and skepticism to accumulate the best win-loss record in professional football history, in a time before Title IX. Moderated by Tamara Jarrett, executive director of the Women’s Football Foundation, an all-star panel of Toledo Troopers — Linda Jefferson, Verna Henderson, Olivia Flores, Gloria Jimenez, Terry May, Eunice White and Mitchi Collette — escorted by current BGSU Falcon football players, will share their stories and memories. The event begins at 7 p.m. March 23 in 202B Bowen-Thompson Student Union. The second keynote presentation, on March 28, will explore “Women’s Empowerment Through Sport and Exercise: Rhetoric or Reality?” Dr. Pirkko Markula, a physical education and recreation faculty member at the University of Alberta (Canada) and a scholar specializing in socio-cultural…