The weather these days has been up and down in Alpine recently, but the low numbers are receding and staying with us fewer and fewer days each time we see them. Of course the weather is relative, and ours is a much more preferable and hospitable climate than most anywhere else in the country on most any given day. For example, earlier this week when I arrived on campus a little after 7AM on Monday it already was in the low 50s. But on TV in the University Center where Sasha customizes the coffee, Al Roker was shivering in New York City with hundreds of onlookers who looked way beyond just cold.
There is much to enjoy about Alpine in addition to the weather. In previous blogs I have mentioned the friendliness of the people and the natural beauty of the Big Bend area. I’ve also talked on numerous occasions about the campus community and how much I enjoy serving faculty who are dedicated to excellence in teaching, staff who have a genuine affection for Sul Ross, and students who have chosen the Lobo family over many others that they could have selected.
I also like being able to pop into the University Center and bump into our athletes and coaches having breakfast. It seems that Coach Pearce now has a full complement of coaches who are enjoying Spring training at Zero Dark Thirty each morning. Driving by Jackson Field this morning on the way to the office the bright lights of the stadium cut like a beacon through the darkness. As I got out of my truck, I could hear the sounds of young men practicing together at a time when most of the town was just starting to wake up. If the sounds I heard are indicative of the season we will have next year then I think we are in for a treat. They were not only loud, but upbeat and in synch, suggesting to me that Coach Pearce has them working well toward some important common goals.
I also ran into Antuan Washington yesterday in Graves Pierce and he mentioned he was enjoying the extra duties as our interim track coach. The team seems to be competing at a high level and I’m optimistic we may have some track team members that will represent Sul Ross at a national level. I also heard from AD Bobby Mesker that we have successfully recruited some volleyball players that will help make a difference in that program thanks to our very enthusiastic new coach, Dewayne Roberts. By the way, our women’s basketball team and senior standout Asrelle Anderson were both recognized by the American Southwest Conference for their outstanding sportsmanship.
On an unrelated note, I heard from my Executive Assistant yesterday that we may not be able to unveil the new statue of Sullivan Ross the week of Spring graduation after all. According to Paul Tadlock, the foundry will not likely have it finished until June which leaves us scratching our heads a bit wondering when the next best opportunity for an unveiling will occur. We’ll continue to monitor the production progress and consider likely dates, including our donor’s availability to visit campus.
There is lots to be proud of at Sul Ross!