Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

Misty Eyed Memories from 2003-04

“I always turn to the sports page first. It records people’s accomplishments; the front page, nothing but man’s failure.”

— Former Chief Justice Earl Warren

The greatest thing about sportswriting is that it allows the writer to focus all of his or her energies on telling people about a game. We don’t build bridges, we don’t end wars, and we don’t save lives. But in an age when sports takes on such great influence and notoriety, the sportswriter is capable of entertaining many people. Still, it’s all a game, and with that in mind, I proudly introduce the 2004 edition of the Misty Eyed Memories. Our theme this year is that of the greatest non-athletic sport in the history of time: Bubble hockey. Partly because it’s an easy metaphor set, and partly because you’ve got a hockey addict running the show. You know the players, and you know what they do. Here’s our version. Game on.

— Andrew Merritt

Andrew Merritt, Sports Editor, U.S.A. Head Coach Herb Brooks

It’s funny how a period of time feels in your memory. On one hand, it feels like it was about three seconds ago that Marzelli and I were dragging ourselves out to Amherst to put together the Back to School issue, scaring the crap out of management with our seat-of-the-pants flying. On the other hand, the receding hairline and general feeling of oldness reminds me that this year has been one of the longest, most punishing, and most rewarding of my life. I’d like to say that it’s all because of what I did, but that’s ridiculous. It’s because of the staff, and the Signal. With that, on to my Misty Eyes.

One year ago, the sports department said goodbye to some of its best arms, from the starters to the relievers, and we were left with a gaping hole. I like to think that the new blood has come in and done the job admirably, and that while we had to say goodbye to so many last year, the people we’ve welcomed in this year will make us even better than before. However, before we get to all that, it’s time to say goodbye to the graduates.

Brades: The third person I ever met at the Collegian, and you turned into my first really good friend. Coming to a “basketball school” as a hockey fan can be a tough life, but having another puckhead around to talk to certainly made things a lot easier. I thought you were out of your mind when you suggested we go get coffee at some ungodly hour, and now I cherish those meetings more than anything. Friend, mentor, and fellow insomniac, it’s been a blast having you around, and while I’m doing everything in my power to get Bob to lock you in the MedRel office until you take a job, I know you’re on to better things. Gimme a call if you want to get coffee at two in the morning some time.

Straub: Even though you are a traitor, it’s been great having you around this year. Arts was lucky to have you, and Sports still misses you today. Not the Knicks propaganda so much, but everything else, yeah. Good luck in all your future endeavors. There are some people who you wonder about, you worry they’ll never land on their feet. Glen, you’re decidedly not one of those people. Even if you are from New York.

Real quick, I have to add one more senior, who hasn’t actually written a story, but who certainly is an honorary sports department staffer. Why? Because I said so. Eldreehay, you’ve been a good friend all year, someone I can trust, and someone who I can talk to without struggle. You’ve been a confidant, a mentor, and a sage. I thank you for your years of service to the Collegian, but even more, I thank you for being one of my best friends. I know I don’t need to say it, but stay in touch.

Now, on to this year. To start with, some words for some of the rookies – I still get to call you that until September.

BHall, my prodigy, you’re the only one on this staff who can really get my blood boiling. If you go back and research the last few Misty Eyes, you might find out just what that means. I know you’ve got the talent for great things, and the head, as long as you keep working. And stay the hell away from Illinitch.

Howza, I’m still waiting for you to tear off the UMass gear and reveal the trusty UNH jersey I know you’re hiding, but it’s all good. It’s great to have you aboard, and while you haven’t been around long, you definitely have good things ahead of you, and it feels like you’ve been a part of this thing from the beginning. Now don’t screw it up.

Wyner, get your knee fixed as soon as you can, but in the meantime, start writing, huh? Pretty soon we’ll have to bump you back down to correspondent. I kid, I kid. It’s been a pleasure having you around, hopefully you stick with this thing and make something of your time at the paper.

Barstow, I’d say you’ve managed to be the quietest staff member in the history of the sports department. And in a group of absolute loudmouths, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Great to have you aboard, we didn’t use your talents enough this year. That will change, trust me.

Duggan and Ryan, you guys are still a mystery, but I suspect you’ve got some good stuff up your sleeve. Prove it next year. Paula and Becky, it’s a shame we couldn’t have you around more, but hey, it’s all about the future. Swing down sometime, wouldn’t surprise me if Marz has an intramural cricket match for you to cover. In all seriousness, it’s been nice having the female presence around the office, and I hope you guys got something out of it too. Don’t be strangers.

Now moving to the “not-so-much rookies” section, Frat Boy Foster, I know this year has been tough, and I know the future’s unclear right now, but stick with it kid, you’ve got talent in that head of yours, you just gotta figure out how to tap it. Come back in the fall, there’s always a seat waiting for you.

Bob: You’ve brought a very interesting mindset to the sports department. The fact that you think well enough to (nearly) outwit me is very valuable, even if I’ll always know more than you. Seriously though, there are times when it seems like you have no idea what you’re doing, and it’s those times when I realize that you actually have it all put together. Next year is your year, go make a name for yourself.

Marz: Well, here are the keys, see where you can take this thing. When you came to the paper last year, I was jealous because everyone saw all this potential in you. Fortunately, they were all right. Some people have a hard time shaking the “freshman” moniker, but you seemed to lose it before I did, and that’s just not fair. It’s right, though, because you’ve displayed wisdom and wit beyond your years. You’re the only member of this staff that I know not to argue sports with, because, well, I’ll just plain lose. If there’s a compliment that I can give you to sum up what I think, it’s this: I’m quite convinced that you’re doing to do a tremendously better job with this beast than I did. Spellman still sucks. Go Sox.

It’s been an incredibly long, hard year, full of memories and missteps, great moments and hours of toil. But I do want to thank the sports staff of the Collegian, 2003-04 edition. Using one of the worst sports clich

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All Massachusetts Daily Collegian Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *