On the football team:
I've been reading the website for a pretty long time now but this is the
first time I have written to you. Thanks for all the work you do! My
brother lives in northern Virginia and has written you many times in
the past. (You posted his opinion about the proposed name change;
boy, does that topic get him fired up!)
I graduated from Rutgers in 1992 and was in the marching band for four
years. (I was in Happy Valley when we knocked off Penn State my
freshman year.) After that, I went to grad school at Georgia Tech where
I spent another four years in marching band. (What can I say? It's in my
blood!) So I've seen two programs up close for a long time and watch
tons of football.
I still live in the Atlanta area and saw something in today's Atlanta Journal-
Constitution that made me think of Coach Schiano. Tony Barnhart (you've
probably seen him on ESPN) is a writer for the paper. In today's column,
he mentions that a little patience can be a good thing. Iowa's head coach
Kirk Ferentz was 2-18 in his first twenty games at Iowa. Now the Hawkeyes
are 8-1, ranked #9, and have a real chance to make the Rose Bowl this
year. It's another piece of evidence that coaches can turn things around even
if the first two years on the job look real bad in the standings.
One other comment I had been thinking about for a while (but is probably a
moot point now) was that when I came to Georgia Tech, the team was middle
of the road (5-6) for two years and slumped off to 1-10 in the third season. They
started playing a skinny little quarterback that did not look special at all. Poor
decision making, not a great arm, but mobile in the pocket. Three years later,
he should have won the Heisman Trophy. Of course, I am talking about Joe
Hamilton. The point is that the coaching staff can follow players every day in
practice and see potential that make take some time to develop into results.
It definitely helped Joe to have a great offensive coordinator teaching him the
game. (That was Ralph Friedgen, who I think is one of the best offensive minds
in the game.) I know that Maryland was interested in at least one of our QB's
although I can't remember which one at the moment. I told my brother that if
Ralph wants a kid to come play QB for him, I would offer him a scholarship
sight unseen to do the same for me. We're getting more talent in this program.
All it will take after that is for the coaching staff to develop that talent, teach
these kids how to win, and let 'em go!
On the name change issue:
Seriously what's wrong with the name "Rutgers - New Jersey's State University. That at least makes New Jersey more prominent in the name.
Perhaps those who say "once we start winning consistently in football and men's basketball everyone will know that Rutgers is in New Jersey" are right. I have been waiting a lot longer than most posters to your board for that to happen, and while I am ever hopeful, it hasn't happened yet. Will it happen in my lifetime? (I'm in my mid 50's) Will it happen ever? I am quite hopeful and encouraged with Greg Schiano and Gary Waters on board, but based on our performance over the past 25 years, quite frankly, WHO KNOWS!!
More on the name change:
I just sent e-mails to my state senator and both assembly members stating my strong objection to the Rutgers name change. I informed all three I will be closely monitoring the developments in Trenton and support those who defend our Alma Mater and oppose those who try to destroy our university. Please send me the e-mail address of the Governor so I can express my opinion to him also. The reason it took me so long to take action is because I feel the action is predetermined and decided in advance. I still feel as though we will eventually see our Alma Mater destroyed but I at least tried to support our school.
More CC's on letters to those in power:
The merger of UMDNJ, NJIT and Rutgers is a good idea. The creation of a "University of New Jersey" is a bad idea.
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey should have a medical school and an institute of technology. However, these colleges should be merged into Rutgers as "Rutgers University of Medicine and Dentistry" and "Rutgers Institute of Technology".
Rutgers has a 200 year tradition and is regarded throughout the United States as an "Ivy League" school. Unfortunately, the state of New Jersey is a "joke" to many throughout the country. However, "Rutgers" is the gem of the state. Why would anyone even think of minimizing the prestige of Rutgers by making it part of something else? It will take at least 100 years for a "University of New Jersey" to gain the respect of Rutgers University. A name change will cost this state millions of dollars each year in financial support and tuition from out of state students.
Rutgers is the State University of New Jersey. LET US NEVER CHANGE IT.
I, along with my sister and father are Rutgers graduates. My family gives very generous financial support to Rutgers each and every year. However, I could never give financial support if the name of Rutgers University does not continue to exist in its present form. I will never support a University of New Jersey. I will never support a legislator that votes to change the name of Rutgers. In fact I will rigorously campaign against any candidate that votes to either change the name of Rutgers or creates a University of New Jersey.
More people are opposing the merger idea per se, here's another CC:
My wife and I are graduates of Douglass & Rutgers respectively, and are very
disturbed by the proposal put on the table last week. What has been proposed
has nothing to do with the undergraduate education and everything to do with
research and the health care industry.
Rutgers provides an outstanding liberal arts education to tens of thousands
of students, preparing them to think, not just do vocational training.
Additionally, having lived in many parts of the country I can tell you that
the name Rutgers has great meaning outside New Jersey and to even consider
losing it would be a travesty.
We have contributed over $100,000 to Rutgers since our graduation, but if
common sense isn't brought to bear on this proposal than RU will have seen
the last dollar from us.
Please act accordingly, since I know I am not alone in these feelings!
Mike Fasano: MikeFasano@comcast.net
Mike and the Big Dog's LLC