BUSINESSMAN ASKS SENATE TO RECONSIDER

by Ryan Carssow

Daily Cougar Staff

A recent request for the UH Faculty Senate's support of and participation in the UH Athletic Department's stay-in-school program fell on deaf ears.

Bob Berry, a Houston real estate broker and one of the program's coordinators, sent a letter to the 52 members of the Senate asking them to help, and to keep the Aathletic Ddepartment's charitable efforts in mind when calling for its termination.

Faculty Senate President, George Reiter said he was unaware of the program or the letter, which was sent Sept. 13.

"I have about 30 letters. I haven't had time to read it," he said.

Reiter said if he had read the letter his response would have been, "I've got other things to do. I don't need him to tell me where my moral obligations are."

The Faculty Senate called for the abolishment of university-funded intercollegiate athletics on Sept. 10.

The Athletic Department program is a cooperative effort with the Houston Independent School District. It gives HISD schools free tickets to selected UH sporting events and offers tours of the campus for elementary and middle school students and faculty. It was launched with the Houston-Cincinnati football game, when 10,000 free tickets were distributed to HISD.

Berry said the goal of the program is to educate children on the importance of staying in school now, so they can attend college in the future.

"The only way that is made possible is through that athletic department over there," he said.

Reiter said, "I think that's a great idea but we don't need him to suggest it to us. If you want to bring children on campus it doesn't have to be through the athletic department."

Berry has received little response to his letter.

"The only one who responded, basically told me to go to hell," he said.

Mathematics professor Giles Auchmuty wrote Berry a two-page letter that stated Berry "misunderstood the issues" surrounding the UH budget situation and the need to disband athletics.

In his letter, Auchmuty wrote that "emotional reveries about underprivileged children are totally beside the point."

Auchmuty said, "my impression (of Berry's letter) was that he was saying we have to keep the athletic program because it is a good example for kids. That the way out of the ghetto is through athletics."

Reiter said he agrees with his fellow senator.

"It is beside the point in that it is not the point," he said.

In his response letter, Auchmuty asked Berry to suggest a better alternative for UH to solve its budget problems than abolishing athletics. Berry wrote a second letter in response to Auchmuty's question.

Berry recommended that the Faculty Senate address the Texas legislature and inquire about the reason UH does not benefit from the Permanent University Fund. The University of Texas and Texas A&M are the only schools that benefit from the fund.

"Such great schools as the University of Houston, Texas Tech and Texas Southern should be allowed to participate in this financial windfall.

"Although I realize the Legislature is comprised of a considerable number of University of Texas and Texas A&M alumni, I believe it is a fight worth pursuing," he wrote.

Berry has received no response from Auchmuty.

Reiter said the Texas and Texas A&M alumnae in the Legislature make it unlikely that UH will receive benefits from the fund.

"Another suggestion is for a progressive income tax. Let's see how he, being a business man, likes that. The wealthy are drastically under-taxed," he said.

 

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FORENSIC TEAM WINS NATIONAL COMPETITION

by Matthew Waterwall

News Reporter

After regrouping only three months ago, the UH Forensics Team's is commanding the respect of many top-ranked teams.

The team took first place in a field of more than 60 teams during a three-day weekend competition at the U.S. Air Force Academy National Invitational Tournament in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Until recently, the UH team existed only as a debate team. Without the benefit of an impromptu speech group, the team struggled throughout competitions generally won by teams that can position members in both categories of the competition – individual and team.

Individual events include impromptu speaking, persuasive speaking and various forms of oral interpretation including dramatic interpretation and poetry inter-pretation. Because of the high cost involved, the only event team members did not compete in was extemporaneous speaking.

Forensics Team captain Mike Fain said, "I can't tell you just what a tremendous accomplish-ment it was to win first place overall in a national competition. Three months ago this team did not exist in its current form."

The team, under the tutelage of Dr. Martha Haun, director of UH Forensics, is working hard to regain the prestige it once held on at the national level.

"There was a period during the late sixties to early eighties when UH had one of the most powerful debate teams in the nation," said Fain.

But that edge waned "when the bottom fell out in the mid-eighties. The organization lost a lot of sponsors," Fain said.

This lack of funding resulted in a structural change from a faculty-sponsored team to a student-sponsored organization.

Within a few years of the funding cutbacks, the team went from a consistent top-20 ranking to slipping below the top-100 mark two years ago.

Ron Raxton, the assistant team captain, said, "What is really remarkable about the team’s recent success is that we are winning these competitions with a budget a lot smaller than other schools."

Dr. Martha Haun said with 50 percent of the funding provided by student service fees and the rest by fund-raising efforts by the team members, "a good portion of the program is made possible by donations and volunteering through the Communication Department.

"Because of the shortage of funds, the team members are required to wear many different hats. Just one week before winning the Colorado tournament, we hosted our own invitational to help raise funds for future competitions. The members had to cover all aspects of hosting the event while at the same time competing," said Fain.

John Dies, UH Forensics Team member, said, "The whole experience of competing is demanding, but we all work hard and receive great direction."

 

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UH AHEAD OF PACK WITH CYBER GRE

by M. McBride

Daily Cougar Staff

The creators of much-feared exams such as the Graduate Requirement Exam, the SAT and PSAT announced Monday that in two years students will view those tests in an entirely new way.

Except, that is, at UH.

The Education Testing Service promises to have nationwide computerized testing on-line by 1995, which means the traditional and preferred pencil and paper exam will be put in the circular file forever. But UH's Counseling and Testing Center isn't waiting for the 1996 deadline. It has had computerized GREs available for three years.

"We collaborated three years ago with ETS on the initial research to determine if (computerized testing) was equitable for all candidates," said Gerald Osborne, assistant vice president for Counseling and Testing.

With Osborne as an advisor to ETS, UH was one of four universities nationwide that participated in the research. The center was the first in the nation to offer the computerized version of the GRE in 1990.

By 1996, 400,000 students nationwide will be required to take the computerized version. Until then, however, students, will have a choice between the paper and computerized tests.

Osborne said UH students prefer pencil and paper to the computerized version. Last year, 2,000 students filled in the dots while only half that amount opted for the computerized version.

Despite the obvious paper preference, Osborne believes the computerized version is more beneficial to the student.

"One of the things students really appreciate is that all they have to do is hit a key when they're finished and there is their score," said Osborne, who has taken the test himself and prefers the computer version, despite being an "old fogie."

While Osborne said computer-naive students have not been shown to be at a disadvantage, critics of computerized testing contend the tests are biased against minorities and females. The director of the National Center for Fair and Open Testing in Cambridge, Mass., said automating a bad test doesn't solve the problems, adding that paper and pencil tests provide an equal playing field for people from all backgrounds.

Yet, Osborne said the extensive research done before ETS decided to computerize the exams proves no one group of people is at an advantage. "We had hundreds of UH students do both the paper and computer tests," said Osborne, "and when we looked at all the data, there was no difference in performance."

 

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JOHN F. KENNEDY A LINGERING LEGACY TO YOUNG, OLD

by Thomas Hewett

Daily Cougar Staff

When looking at the expressions of people walking around Dallas' Dealey Plaza, one wouldn't suspect a U.S. president was shot and murdered there thirty years ago today.

A woman and a young boy, smiling, stood on a street corner waving at somebody they apparently knew. A few feet away, three men were talking among themselves.

Any tour of the site of Kennedy's assassination resolves into a singular experience. No, eerie would be the proper word to describe the surrealism of the scene.

After walking around for a while, one could easily begin to wonder if another armed lunatic was lurking in the comforting shadow of a nearby window somewhere above.

At the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial in Washington, D.C., saddened millions visit the wall every year, mourning the men and women who died in the conflict.

Contrast this with Dealey Plaza, where one of this nation's most popular president's life was tragically shortened. There is no easily detectable sense of anguish among the masses.

Yet, according to a 1985 Gallup poll, the American public considered JFK the greatest president in history.

Thirty years later, Americans continue to question whether his death resulted from a conspiracy.

Many people, including former Dallas Times Herald copy editor William E. Sloan, initially believed the Warren Commission's report, which declared that Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone.

At a college journalism convention two years ago in Arlington, Sloan said he "didn't know anybody in the Dallas media (then) who believed that there was a conspiracy" at the time of Kennedy's death.

"People were more susceptible to believing authorities," said Sloan, who is also co-author of the book, <I>JFK: The Last Dissenting Witness<P>. "We were completely naive about the situation.

"I think the public needs to remain interested in finding out the truth," Sloan said.

As a result of numerous theories and from the examination of thousands of previously unreleased government documents concerning the assassination, it has been difficult for Americans to determine what is true.

More theories about JFK's murder will continue to surface, as surely as Dealey Plaza will be haunted by disquieting memories.

 

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RAIDERS SLAM COUGARS

Cougar Sports Service

SAN ANTONIO – Houston quarterback Jimmy Klingler hadn't taken a snap in three weeks.

And after Saturday night's 58-7 whipping at the hands of the Texas Tech Red Raiders in the newly christened San Antonio Alamodome, it showed.

Houston's record falls to 1-8-1, including 1-4-1 in the Southwest Conference. Tech's record improves to 6-5, including 5-2 in the SWC.

The Red Raiders have unofficially wrapped up an invitation to return to San Antonio for the inaugural Alamo Bowl in late December.

The Cougars' signal-caller was only able to complete 10-of-25 passes for 79 yards and four interceptions before being pulled in the fourth quarter in favor of redshirt freshman Chuck Clements.

"The bottom line is that I made some bad throws," Klingler said. "(Tech) put pressure on the quarterback without the blitz, and we couldn't execute on offense."

Klingler's four interceptions led to 28 unanswered Red Raiders' points.

"The ball should have never been thrown on any of (those plays)," Klingler said.

The first turnover came at 12:28 of the first quarter on the Houston 24-yard line. The Raiders took advantage six plays later as Tech quarterback Robert Hall scored on a one-yard option sweep to the right on fourth-and-goal.

"Jimmy threw some balls under pressure that he shouldn't have," said head coach Kim Helton.

The Tech defense deserved the credit for pressuring the quarterback and driving back the Cougars' offensive line. The pressure forced Klingler into making some risky and off-balanced throws.

"Protection was a problem," Helton said. "We had a couple of linemen out and the quarterback got hit early."

The Cougars committed seven turnovers, including six interceptions.

"We started out with a lot of negative turnovers," Helton said. "We didn't catch the ball; we didn't throw the ball; we didn't protect the quarterback; and their defense was better than I expected."

Nevertheless, Tech stole the show as running back Byron "Bam" Morris ran for 223 yards and broke the SWC regular-season rushing record of 1,744 yards.

Morris' 1,752-yard season total passed former Texas Longhorn and Houston Oiler great Earl Campbell, who set the record during the 1978 season.

"It's a great honor to break Earl's record," Morris said. "I'm grateful to the coaches for giving me the chance to break it."

Houston's lone touchdown came in the fourth quarter on a TiAndre Sanders one-yard plunge to climax a 16-play, 97-yard drive led by Clements.

Clements, however, was intercepted twice, including one in the fourth quarter that was returned 46 yards for a touchdown.

The Cougars will attempt to defend the Bayou Bucket Saturday at 10 a.m., as they take on the Rice Owls at Rice Stadium for the last game of the season.

 

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PRIMUS SHAKES DOWN THE CROWD

by Shannon Bishop

Contributing Writer

Primus' music is a thrill.

It is a strange and beautiful phenomenon when one can find happiness and well-being in songs about cats fucking, drunk driving and whacking off. How do they do it?

No matter how Rockefeller's West determines capacity crowds, last Tuesday night there were about 400 more people than the space could hold. Despite the unpleasant crowding, the Primus show was refreshing.

Before Primus hit the stage, the crowd was bursting at the seams, moshing to the cartoon movie being projected behind the stage. Then it happened.

Primus exploded in a bass-driven frenzy. The crowd below was a swarming, undulating, thousand-headed monster as far as the eye could see.

Band leader Les Claypool can slap his bass better than anyone out there. Claypool's bass virtuosity was, as usual, showcased on electric, six-string fretless bass. Songs like "Jerry Was a Race Car Driver" get better every time.

The other band members held their own through family favorites such as "The Old Diamond Back Sturgeon," "Those Damned Blue Collar Tweekers," "Fish On" and "Pork God."

Larry LaLoude was perfectly charming. He played those really complex melodies and accompaniments, all the time demurely hanging out at stage left, Bobbing up and down, he was barely noticeable except for his awesome sound.

Tim Alexander beat out bowel-rocking rhythms while practically hidden behind his massive drum set. The drums kit isn't big, there's just a lot of drums there.

In this age of excess, bands like Primus can still shake down a crowd with a mere three instruments.

Opening act the Melvins was underwhelming.

No one paid much attention to the band's pseudo-political, angst-ridden, adolescent ramblings. The lead singer screamed, but didn't sound like he meant it.

The Melvins sound relied heavily upon a tonal bass and drum line. The few guitar solos thrown in were reminiscent of a band some kids formed in ninth grade. Listening to the guitarist's solos was sort of like watching someone who doesn't know how masturbate.

Everyone was glad when the Melvins was spent.

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