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Editorial: Clarification on Wednesday's editorial

By Editorial Board
On February 25, 2011

On Wednesday, The Daily Campus ran an editorial entitled: Student section needs more sportsmanship. Unfortunately, what ended up on the page as the official opinion of the newspaper was not what the six members of the Editorial Board had agreed upon. We had intended the editorial to be an over-arching viewpoint addressing some of the extremes demonstrated by some fans at all levels of all sports. Instead, what was distributed to the students of UConn was a highly-focused editorial that denounced UConn fans, specifically those who support the men's basketball team, for being unsportsmanlike.

We'd like to make it clear that the Editorial Board did not support this notion. As students, we must support our teams. They work hard on the field, on the court and on the track to perform to the best of their ability, representing UConn in venues across the nation. The fans that attend our home games, and even some away games, help to create the atmosphere that defines a great sporting event. The louder you are, the more chants, cheers and signs you have, the more motivated the athletes will be. We don't expect you to sit in your seats and exude apathy. No, we expect you to electrify the sports arena, giving our Huskies the kind of support that Dave Teggart received as he split the uprights and sent West Virginia packing. The kind of support that the women's basketball team received as they cruised to 90 straight wins. It's when things get out of hand – bottles thrown onto the field, objects hurled at opposing players – that fans need to think about their actions and realize that what they're doing is not only immature, but dangerous.

We'd also like to commend those who sent us well-thought-out letters of dissent. After all, the piece was not fact, it was opinion. While it was not the opinion we had meant to address, it fostered discussion amongst members of the community. We appreciate such respectful responses because, at the end of the day, The Daily Campus is a student-run organization that is just as much a part of UConn as the sports teams. Many students contacted us to express their opinions in a reasonable way, and that's exactly what we expect from UConn – intelligent discourse in the marketplace of ideas.

Many of you expressed very strong opinions against the stance taken by the original editorial. Thank you for using your voice. For some of you, this may have been your first time speaking out in such a way. Keep going. We needed you when we took a stance on Spring Weekend. We will continue to need you as we take a stance on things that directly affect your lives – parking policies, tuition and actions by the university, the town, the state and even the nation – because we can fight for a better world all we want, but without the strength of the students behind us, it's nothing but words on a page.

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