Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Ashton Hall: How I Get Ready for the Game

Ashton Hall is a junior forward from Tennessee (via Colorado).  She currently has 2 goals and 2 assists after missing the first few games this season with a leg injury.  Ashton is a great student and looking into the medical field after college.  She writes about her pre-game rituals and the mindset she brings to each match.

Because Game Days are not plentiful, pre-game preparation is key, especially conference pre-game.  Beyond team rituals and doings, I have my own pre-game “swag,” if you will.

Let’s begin with the 24-hour rule.  Starting 24 hours before kickoff, I only wear UTAH attire.  I like to look at the colors my team will be wearing for the game.

My night-before meal is pretty extravagant, and rightly so.  You have to feed the tiger to give him strength to fight. Something like outback steakhouse or olive garden is appropriate.

8 hours of sleep is always a necessity. Not too much more and definitely not less.

Upon arising, I flip on some music to get me rollin’.  Not necessarily pump up tunes, but more like feel good tunes.  And turn on the sub woofers on the system, of course.  A little bass for game morning is always a good idea.

After showering while feelin’ the good vibes from the music, I blow dry and straighten my hair.  Why? That’s easy, I believe in the saying “look good, feel good, play good.” 

Now I’m ready for a green smoothie.  Can’t beat fruits AND veggies for breakfast.

I purposefully do not have class on Fridays. Nothing will distract me from those Friday night lights.

Late morning is when I make my first trip to Tom for some game prep treatment.  Being proactive with making sure my body is ready makes the mental strategy easier.

Midday I grab a snack, most likely a bagel.  Gotta keep fueling the fire.

About 6 hours before game time I start listening to my beats and pulling out more pump up songs.  But I am careful not to get too pumped up this early on, just a song here and there to remind myself how much fun I am about to have. 

I start to visualize our field.  My team.  Specific plays.  Scoring goals.  Celebrating and, most importantly, winning.

Four hours before kickoff we have pregame team meal.  I eat lightly during this meal.  Best to not be too full when warm-ups commence.  This is the first time I see most of my teammates.  A positive aura spreads as we eat and chat.  Everyone is in red and black clothes, and the spirit is ignited.  And the Utah Utes are United, baby.

The second visit to Tom is next.  I get warmed up by doing rehab exercises.  This is my individual time.  Headphones on, music loud, pondering the game.  Smiles are floating throughout the room as others get themselves prepared.  I see laughter between other teammates.  Everyone uses this time differently, but for me, its 100% soccer focused.

Once treatment is over, it is about an hour and a half before kick off.  My jersey set is folded in my locker and I can feel the life of the team when I enter the locker room.  Life and love radiates. 

I put on my shorts first, then my warm-up shirt.  Then left sock followed by the right one.  Ankle brace then cleats.  Left shin guard, then the right one. 

I write two acronyms on my left forearm and then put my red sweatband on.  Everything goes in this order.

Next up is the famous locker room shenanigans.  A little droppin’ it like it’s hot and a little bump and grind.  We get a little sweaty, but we view it as a warm-up to our warm-up, so it’s not a problem.

The coaches enter the locker room one hour before kickoff to give us the game news. Now it is time for warm-up.  When the cleats get laced, it is time to shine.  Every ounce of effort, sweat, tears, and heart that has been put in and sacrificed is proven NOW.


Thursday, September 19, 2013

Utah vs. Utah State: Jill Robison faces sister Jayne this Friday....

My sister and I have been playing soccer ever since I can remember. Probably ever since we could walk. We have older siblings who played soccer so we grew up playing with them. Throughout our experiences with soccer we have never played against each other in a real game. The only time we played against each other was in the backyard messing around. In high school we obviously played on the same team. In club we played for different ages.

So, this Friday will be something totally new for us. Playing against each other.... For real. We've talked about this day for a couple years now and it's finally just two days away. I'm really excited! A lot of our family and friends will be there to support both of us.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Do you know the real story behind Title IX?

The following is taken from a speech given by Bunny Sandler at the annual conference of the National Association of Collegiate Athletics Administrators (NACWAA) in St. Petersburg, Florida on the 35th anniversary of the passing of Title IX.  Sandler provided an historical context to her five-decade career.


Bunny Sandler


The Real Story Behind Title IX

 It was the late 1960’s, the women’s movement was just a few years old and the terms “sex discrimination” and “sexism” did not exist.  There were no newsletters or conferences devoted to women’s issues.  Email was not available to help women communicate with each other.

Women needed much higher grades than men to get into a college and grad schools set a limit on the number of women admitted. Some 21,000 women were denied admission to state universities in Virginia, but no men.  The veterinary school at Cornell University NY admitted just two women a year, unlike today when 70 – 80% of vet students are women.
Women applying for faculty jobs routinely heard, “Your qualifications are excellent but we already have a woman in this department.”  Some departments had neither women nor plans to hire any.  Nobody would have hired a married woman. 
Bunny Sandler felt the discrimination.  As a part time lecturer at the University of Maryland, she applied for a tenure-track job but was told by a colleague to forget it, because “You come on too strong for a woman.”  She went home and cried.
Her then-husband understood.  “Are there any strong men there?” he asked.  “All of them,” she answered.  “It’s not you, its sex discrimination,” he told her.
Eschewing the nascent women’s movement, Sandler continued to apply for jobs and got two more rejections, including being told, “You’re not really a professor, just a housewife who went back to school.” Three times she got on the short list, but didn’t get the job.
Having been denied opportunities many times because of her sex, Sandler began to read about legal issues and sex discrimination.  “I naively thought that since sex discrimination was wrong, there must be a law against it,” she said.
But the 1963 Equal Pay Act covered women and men, but exempted education.  Title VI of the 1964 Civil Rights Act prohibited discrimination based on race, origin, color and religion, but not sex.  Title VII of the Civil Rights Act exempted educational activities at schools.  And the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution did not apply to women. 
Finally Sandler found a footnote to a law on federal contracts that prohibited discrimination based on sex. “Eureka!” she said.  She’d found the needle in the haystack of federal regulations that would support women.
In January of 1970, she and a small band of women (and a few “men of goodwill”) filed the first complaint against every college with federal contracts, about 250 of them.  “It was very easy to do,” she recalled, but it went unnoticed except by the Saturday Review of Literature, which listed it under the heading of “Women’s Activities.”
Sandler encouraged other academic women to compile data on the number of women in each department in their schools, and learned the percentages were dismal.  “At the time women received 22% of the doctorates in psychology, so you’d expect the number of women faculty to be comparable,” she said.  “But in Harvard University’s graduate school of humanities of sciences, the last time they’d hired a women was in 1924.”
She advised faculty women feeling the discrimination to contact their Senators and Congressmen, and the Secretary of Labor, Health and Welfare, demanding enforcement of the executive order forbidding discrimination in schools with federal contracts.  Staff members learned about the new issues, as did their bosses.
Within four months, many women had filed complaints, and the universities of Michigan and Harvard had been called on the carpet.  “The U.S. government became directly involved in the investigations related to sexual discrimination in higher education,” she said.  “Pandora’s Box had opened.”
Congresswoman to the Rescue
Representative Edith Green (D-Oregon) had long been interested in women and education, and in fact had proposed an equal pay act eight years before it became law.  As chair of the House committee on education, she introduced a bill requiring gender equity in education, on which her committee held hearings.  Sandler lined up women to testify about not getting hired - or receiving lower pay, no benefits or offices – even one who was not paid because her husband worked at the same school.
“The American Council on Education was the main player in higher education,” Sandler recalled.  “But the president at the time declared there was no sexism in higher education – and even if there was, so what?  Their reaction showed higher education wasn’t watching.”
Few members of congress were aware of the bill, and they certainly didn’t imagine its later effect on college athletics.  “It was easy to get data. We had 1200 pages of data on sex discrimination in higher education,” she recalled.
After Passage in the House, with the strong support on Rep. Patsy Mink (D-Hawaii), Title IX went to the Senate where Sen. Birch Bayh (D-IN) finessed it through with assurances that beauty pageants could still award scholarships “based on skill” and women would not be allowed to play football.  After Mink’s death in 2002, the law called Title IX was re-named to honor her.
What about Athletics?
Sandler was involved in a 1974 study that revealed some strong anecdotal evidence that in the1970’s women in athletics got only a tiny sliver of the pie.  For example, the University of Michigan had a $1.4 million budget for athletics, and none of it went to women’s programs, Sandler listed these examples:
·      Women sold apples at football games to pay for their uniforms.
·      Male athletes flew to contests first class, while women drove their own cars or rode with coaches.
·      In gymnastics, men saved their used tape for the women’s team.
·      Women athletes got negative messages, including a coach telling an injured player: “Put your foot in the toilet and keep flushing.”
It was not secret that men got newer and better uniforms, locker rooms, exclusive use of an intramural pool at certain times, better-trained coaches, academic credit for participating in athletic events and exemptions from taking physical education classes.
Why didn’t alarms go off about Title IX and athletics?
“Awareness of sex discrimination was so limited that nobody expected the impact,” Sandler recalled.  “In my 1970 testimony, I didn’t even mention athletics.  A year later, I mentioned athletics in just one sentence.  After it passed in June of 1972, five or six of us realized that Title IX would cover athletics as well, but we never considered its effect.  I thought that maybe on Field Day, there would be more activities for girls.”
Representative Green knew it would have great impact, but discouraged Sandler from enlisting women to lobby Congress.  “She said nobody should know about the bill or we’d get lots of amendments to it,” Sandler said.  Green wrote the bill to follow the style of Title VI, with “grand language like the Constitution and Bill of Rights,” Sandler said, adding sex to the list of prohibitions against discriminating by race, religion and national origin.  Since the NCAA covered only men’s sports at the time, it did not oppose the bill.
When President Nixon signed the bill into law, Sandler said, “A new era had begun, but few knew this would change education and schools forever.
Prior to Title IX (1970)                                                                        After Title IX
Women were 4% of law students                                                              Women make up over 47% of law students (2009 – 2010)
Women were 8% of medical students                                            Women make up 48% of medical students (2009)
Women were 1% to 4% of all other professional schools   Women make up 39% - 45% of other professional                                                                        

Friday, March 1, 2013

Preparing for Big Things....

We've been working hard over the last 2 months....getting ready for big things this fall...check out some of what our days look like...and stay tuned as we preview more about the Utes.  Credit for video to Cheyanne Mulcock and Molly Poletto.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Baby Sitters For the Crabbe's...apply here!

Well, Baby #3 for Assistant Coach, Ryan Crabbe and wife, Jennifer, has arrived!
Owen, joins Mason and Matthew in the "Boys Club" at home.

The Crabbe's will need some expert baby sitters for the 3 young ones...Of course, our players want the job for some spending money.  Check out the audition tape and help Ryan and Jennifer pick the best candidate.

(Recommendations can be made on our Facebook page (click here).

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Webster: Cool Customer in the Back

Maddie Webster - Colorado Springs, CO - Rampart HS - Colorado Rush

 Varsity starter as a freshman at Rampart, lead the team in assists…played club soccer for the nationally-ranked Colorado Rush program…Rush finished as the Mountain West Conference Champions in the Elite Club National League and was a top 16 national finalist in three consecutive 2011, the team was the State cup and was a Region IV championships semifinalist…member of the Colorado State ODP team from 2008-2011…region IV ODP member in 2008…earned honor roll status all four years…Executive Student Body Secretary/Treasurer as a senior, Class Treasurer as a junior…daughter of Jeff and Lisa Webster…has three brothers, Bryson, Bradley and Blake, a sister-in-law, Ashley and a niece, Ava.

Manning on Webster:
“Maddie is a versatile player and a leader.  We see her playing at center back, but she is comfortable anywhere in the back or midfield.  We like our defenders to be confident on the ball and Maddie is great at starting the attack.  She also hounds defensively well and has a great understanding of team defense.  We think qualities like good communication, poise and leadership are critical in center backs, and Maddie embodies these things.  She plays on one of the most skillful and successful club teams we’ve seen in the last few years.  Because of that, we think she will have a quick transition to the college game.”

Slattery: Bringing Offensive Drive and Flair

Taylor Slattery - Gilroy, CA - Gilroy HS - Orchard Valley Storm

Four-year varsity starter at Gilroy HS and currently competing in her senior season…two-time TCAL League MVP (2011, ’12)…TCAL Freshman of the Year in 2010 after setting a TCAL freshman record with 10 assists…played club soccer for the Orchard Valley Storm…named team captain…in 2012, Storm were finalists at the Northern California Spring Showcase, California North State cup and Pleasanton Rage Showcase while finishing as a quarterfinalist at the Blues Cup…also posted a semifinalist finish at the Nor Cal State Cup in 2011…named to the ODP State Team in 2005 and District II team in 2004…honor roll student, also named to the President’s List and earned Scholar-Athlete distinction.

Manning on Slattery:
“Taylor is a skillful attacking player. She can pass, receive, dribble and shoot with great quality. She is a threat to both create chances for her teammates and to score herself. She plays forward most of the time, but has the ability to shine in any of the front two rows. Taylor’s competitive nature is one of her most impressive qualities. She hates to lose. Her overall game fits in perfectly with our team’s style of play and fans will enjoy watching her in a Utah uniform.”