As if everyone already doesn’t know, there has been a lot of disturbing news lately. Not just nationally with COVID-19 and the racist murders of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and most recently, George Floyd, but in our own backyard as well. A photograph showed a prospective DU student, who was slated to enroll this fall, wearing blackface with a racist caption (his admission was later rightly revoked by DU), and a 40-year-old DU yearbook photo resurfaced showing a DU residence hall floor dressed in white robes surrounding a black student. In response, current DU students have initiated a petition and are demanding special accommodations for students of color during this time. Continue reading DU’s own response to racism juxtaposed with national reaction and reflection
The first sign of sports returning to DU comes from an unusual (but not unexpected) place – eSports.
The club participants will be playing League of Legends tournament in mid-June. League of Legends is a multiplayer online battle arena video game developed and published by Riot Games for Microsoft Windows and macOS. Inspired by the Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne mod Defense of the Ancients. eSports connect students and bridge social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Dave Brown of Midco Sports Network tweeted this afternoon the contents of email communication from the Augustana administration to their constituents. The letter acknowledged that Augustana University’s application had been rejected by the Summit League presidents, thwarting their plan to move from Division II to Division I NCAA competition. The decision was swift following a ‘virtual tour’ of the Augustana campus by member University presidents over the weekend.
Last week, forward Alperen Kurnaz (6’8″, 220 lbs.) announced his intention to transfer from DU. Kurnaz was a positive force on the squad but his overall contributions on the floor were modest last season with 3.4 ppg. and 2.8 rebounds in 16.6 minutes per game. Then, this week, center/forward David Nzwekwesi (6’9″, 240 lbs.) joined Kurnaz in the transfer portal. He scored 5.7 points last season with 3.3 rebounds in 16.6 minutes. Kurnaz and Nzekwesi mark the third and fourth Pioneers to transfer this offseason, as the first transfer was sophomore shooting guard Joe Lanzi, and the second was little-used freshman forward Owen McGlashan. None of the four have announced a destination after leaving DU. Continue reading Nzekwesi and Kurnaz Enter Transfer Portal
Last week set off a chain-reaction of schools dropping athletic teams as the result of COVID-19 and other cost factors. Augustana had a ‘virtual’ campus tour with Summit League Presidents this past weekend. Expect a decision on the Vikings application for admission within several weeks. Add to all this, Summit League commissioner Tom Douple said last week that he expects some members to drop sports as well as several members to add teams. Continue reading Examining the changes on the collegiate sports horizon
Athletic-department cuts have forced Bowling Green State University to drop its baseball program, saving the school a half-million dollars annually. The move will eliminate two full-time coaches and a part-time coach. There are also 34 student-athletes affected by the move. Continue reading College Athletics Adapt to New Financial Realities
After much of the country had called it a night yesterday, Ty Xanders of Inside Lacrosse reported that one of the most coveted graduate transfers in the portal – All-American Yale attackman Jackson Morrill – had made his decision on where to play for his final year of eligibility. Xanders reported that Morrill had defied the predictions and decided to come west to play at Denver. In Morrill, the Pioneers add not only the 2nd-best transfer in the portal – 2020 Tewaaraton frontrunner Michael Sowers was #1 and he chose Duke – but they gain the 2nd-ranked scorer in Yale history (220 points on 113 goals). Continue reading Denver lands Jackson Morrill, coveted graduate transfer from Yale
In a wide-sweeping Wednesday interview about league matters with KWSN’s “Sports Talk with Craig and John,” Summit League Commissioner Tom Douple said Augustana will receive a campus visit and interview from league officials in Mid-May, as planned, although it will now be a “virtual” tour and interview. The conference’s school presidents, presumably including DU’s Chancellor Jeremy Haefner, will then use the information from the visit and vote on a possible invitation to the Vikings in late May. Continue reading Augustana to Receive a Virtual Tour and Summit Membership Vote this Month
For years we have openly dreamed about DU membership in the Mountain West Conference or the BIG EAST, packed with schools just like the University of Denver. Sure, it means jumping onto a plane and traveling 1,000 or 2,000 miles for games, often in non-revenue sports, but this was in the old ‘normal’ and made good sense.
One of the unique things about college hockey, college sports in general, really, is the importance of Senior Night. This event, which highlights the accomplishments and contributions of every year’s graduating class, is held in sacred regard by programs and colleges alike. The NCAA, unlike its professional counterpart, provides student-athletes just four years of eligibility. At the University of Denver, seemingly in every sport, it’s constantly astonishing what every class is able to achieve in just four years. More than anything, it’s the student-athletes who compete on the ice, courts, and fields that have built these programs into the powerhouses and developing contenders that DU boasts. It’s during Senior Night that the program and fans have the opportunity to thank those student-athletes for their blood, sweat, tears, and other sacrifices that they’ve made for them. Continue reading Ian Mitchell signs with Blackhawks to forego senior year but his legacy will remain