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This and That

I want you to know I haven't forgotten about you, Eye on The U crew. As I've told you before, they got me doing a lot of different things over at One Herald Plaza lately, from the AVP Tour to golf to the men's Final Four to covering high schools again this week for our departed prep writer who is off to Tampa for a special writing seminar. That being said I just wanted to make this blog more of collection of topics.

I'll start with The U. First off, I'm hoping to have some info relating to center Anthony King and his eligibility real soon. As soon as I know, you will.

I know most of you guys are football die-hards, but there are other sports going on at Miami and while I won't bore you with too much of it, I want to make sure to show Katiemeierthem some love every once and awhile and fill you in on what's happening. On the women's basketball front, the team recently picked up three more signees -- Vitalija Vasciunaite, Latoya Drake and Diane Barnes. The Hurricanes were short several players on its roster this past season and signed six in all in its Class of 2007. Vasciunaite, a 5-8 shooting guard, played on the Lithuanian National Under 18-team and is a prolific scorer. Drake, a 6-2 forward/center, is a JUCO All-American honorable mention from Florida Community College in Jacksonville. Barnes, a 6-2 sophomore forward, is a transfer from Trinity Valley Community College in Texas. She played at Lakeland Kathleen High. Those three join Orlando Boone 5-10 guard Briyana Blair, Damisha Moore, and 5-8 point guard Epiphany Woodson. Not sure how good any of them really are, but just having bodies to choose from is a victory for Katie Meier whose team suffered a tough, tough season and will now return without ACC-leading scorer Renee Taylor.

AudracohenOnto another team at UM that doesn't get enough pub. The women's tennis team is set to take off for the ACC championships this week. You know, the national runner-up from a year ago! The Lady Canes have the No. 1 player in the country in Audra Cohen and are ranked 10th in the country nationally and just got their second-best player back from injury in freshman Laura Vallverdu (ranked 14th nationally). For all the credit Cane coaches get for recruiting, hats off to women's coach Paige Yaroshuk-Tews for having the top-ranked women's player on her team the past two seasons (Meagan Bradley was the other) and taking the Canes tennis program to great heights. Another player in need of a shout out: No. 3 player Audrey Banada, a former standout at North Miami Beach High, who recently passed Ronnie Reis for the most career victories on the tennis court at The U.

OK, now to the topic on everyone's mind. I know this isn't a sports-related issue, but it is a college issue and I've got to imagine all of you have some thoughts on what happened over at Virginia Tech yesterday. Obviously, it's a tremendous tragedy, but the first thing that came to my mind was how in Virginiatechthe world this guy was able to pull off a shooting on two different places on opposite ends of campus. Its one thing to walk-in and kill somebody in their dorm, it is another to cross campus and kill 30 more people. Didn't somebody see him carrying weapons through the campus? I can't understand how students weren't notified -- through email no less -- until two hours after the first shooting there was a killer on the loose. After seeing what happened at Columbine 8 years ago, I figured somethings would have changed. Ss_070417_vtech_mwtease_vsmallBut school campuses continue to be protected by lackluster security. I covered high schools for five years in Miami-Dade. Not once was I stopped by a security guard in my middle of the day visits to campuses to speak with teachers,  administrators or athletes. And when I was stopped, I simply told them I was with The Herald and was let past easily. Most of the time, security guards were rarely found and when they were, they were sitting on carts, relaxing and dozing off. I'm just of the opinion schools need to be held more accountable when providing security for their employees and students.

Lastly, I want to send a shout out to our News Department and Debbie Cenziper for garnering the 19th Pulitzer Prize in our paper's history yesterday. Her House of Lies series on on widespread problems in Miami-Dade County's public housing agency was spectacular and achieved what we all got in this business for -- to help people and make change. Cenziper led a team that wrote more than 30 stories and revealed how local developers took millions of dollars in taxpayer money to build affordable housing for the poor and failed to deliver, leaving thousands without their promised homes. The series led to massive changes in the county housing agency and the arrest of three developers. It was definitely cool to be in the office Monday to see her win the award in person.

Anyway, I'm out. When I get the chance to zero-in and focus on the football team again I'll post my thoughts on the position battles, etc. But for now, you're going to get what I'm covering, writing and thinking about. Feel free to chime in on what's up at The U and the tragedy at Virginia Tech.

Comments

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I dont think it's too hard to shoot 2 people in a dorm room, walk across campus with guns in a book bag and lock up a classroom then kill everyone in there.

What I wonder is how after he shot the first couple of people in a public area, the other 30 or so around didn't bum rush the dude and kick his butt. Is everone so preoccupied in protecting themselves that no one rushed him and as a group defended themselves?

how can 1 guy with 2 guns not get rushed by over 50 people.

Did you just write whatever thoughts popped into your mind on this article? Please find a subject and write about it not just the trailers for a bunch of articles. Last I checked VT is not the U and I believe the national news has already got that subject pretty much covered. Please tell me something about MIAMI like what is going on with our quarterbacks.

Manny,

I like the good amount of audio interviews you guys have.

You should make them available in MP3 format so that people could download and listen to them as a "podcast".

Dru

hey Scott,
this is a blog, not an article.
if you do not know what a blog is here is a definition:
"an online diary"
source: dictionary.com

so Manny can write whatever the hell he wants to right on HIS blog.

as a former grad, its people like Scott that embarrass me and the U. Show some compassion, and stop being a classless clown. This is why the national media think so negatively of Us. I remember when there was that bonfire tragedy at Texas A&M, the University of Texas was given great praise by A&M for their help and compassion.

people like you make me wish i didnt go to the U sometimes. . .

Wow, women's hoops signed SIX? Coach Meier seems to know what she's doing, so hopefully some of these girls are pretty good. Charmaine Clark really stepped her game up at the end of last year, and with Maurita Reid returning and now a bunch of bodies, we should be at least decent... I hope.

We heard that AK is on the right track in getting the redshirt and returning, though of course it's all dependent upon the NCAA Board vote next week on the rule change they passed yesterday relating to medical redshirts.

And yeah, security in high school is horrible, and frankly, it isn't much better on a college campus, though it's a LOT harder to effectively patrol a university campus without turning it into a police state. Still, it's disturbing to think that anyone just walk into a classroom building and open fire, and there's really nothing anyone can do about it. The fact that this kid went and mailed a package to NBC News in between the different killings just adds to the horror of this tragedy... that was a truly disturbed human being.

First of all, Scott, you are moron...ok now, i agree that schools need to adapt to todays world in respect to security...however the reality is that nothing is perfect, and crimes are unfortunately going to happen, but beefing up security too much at colleges and high schools might be like having to deal w/ TSA agents 24 hours a day..i dont know if more security is needed, but definitely better security is needed...ok now back to Scott...ill give you the latest scoop on the QB's...they finished out their spring at the spring game a few weeks ago....so now they are just probably going to class, screwing hot UM chicks, working out, and enjoying college...and as for Marve the recruit he's probably banging any girl he wants in his school, i think its also about time for senior prom, and he's probably also getting ready for graduation...if you need any more info like RS has said over and over, wait till the end of fall practice.....whhoooooooooo.....C......A.....N.....E......S.........CANES!!!!!

OK, what's going on with the baseball team? I never seen a hurricane team make so many errors. Going to the ACC has been nothing, but nightmares. I hope our luck changes in the near future. Scott, is there anything between your ears? Think before you writte dude, and represent the U with class.

First of all I am a 2005 grad from Miami, although it did take me 5 years to graduate. But I chalk that up to a little to much partying. 2nd of all I do have compasion for VT and their families, but this is a sports blog. This is my escape from the reality of the world where shootings and other unthinkable acts happen. Thus I do not want to hear about them here. 3rd of all who really feels a whole lot better now that they know what the tennis team is doing. I was just saying lets talk on the teams or team that actually makes our school money. Maybe a little something on if the Canes will be playing in the OB in 2009 would be good to hear.

And whoever it was that said I embarase you to be a Cane. Then get the F@#$ out because this is what a Cane for life looks and talks like.

-Scott- Hurricane since 1982.

Scott, maybe you just stop writing b/c you easily could have fooled me into thinking that you dont even have your GED much less college diploma....now if you want to go read about sports that make money you can read plenty of that with pro sports....as for the U who care about what teams are making the money....all that matters are wins and losses....congrats to all our teams that are doing well....and better luck to the teams that arent....PS: its one thing to not want to hear about national news on this blog....im with you on that one....but its completely different when you act like a total fuckin punk bitch b/c you see three lines written about a national tragedy that just occurred....again Scott, you are a moron...got anymore QB questions?

Obviously you missed the sports that make money coment. I was talking about sports that make the University of Miami money and one of them is not Tennis. My point was that his post "This and That" was point less. Now his last post "Shannon Speaks" was an intriguing and fun read. I also believe a whole lot of people that are now jumping my case, were agreeing with my every word on the "Vanilla Spring" post.

what happened at VTech, is completely outrageous and terrible, and I sympathize with the faculty and students that must be going through a lot right now. They deserve our support in what must be an extremely difficult time, but I can't help but wonder if we would be getting that same support if this had happened at UM.

When Bryan Pata was murdered off-campus while trying to walk away from an aggressor, the media brought back every "Thug U" story and recalled the incident that had happened at the FIU game as if they were related. As if it were our fault that one of our own was taken from us. I can't help but imagine the reaction from the national media if we were actually in someway responsible for something like that. OK, maybe it would have been difficult to spot a guy who could be concealing the weapons in a bag but VTech should have at least informed the student body that a crime had been committed and the killer had not been caught. VTech failed its student body but yet we hear hardly anything about that. I can't help but feel that if this would have happened at UM, the school would've been blasted for its shortcomings. Instead of sympathy we would have heard about how dangerous it is to live in Miami and what a crime-riddled place our school is.

This past season, schools all over the ACC used the Bryan Pata tragedy against us in recruiting. I heard on numerous occasions of schools implying to a prospect's parents that going to the U would expose their son so a fate similar to Pata. Using a tragedy as ammunition is disgusting and shameful. I can only wonder what those same schools would have done if it would have happened here.

I realize this has less to do specifically with VTech than with the huge disparity in the national media's coverage of our school in respect to others. Don't get me wrong, VTech definitely deserves the sympathy it is getting, it just makes me sad to question whether we would be treated the same.

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