Mentoring Helps SOU’s First Year Students Succeed

Peer to Peer Support Program Sees Dramatic Growth
(Ashland, Ore.) – Southern Oregon University hopes to increase its first to second year retention rate by assigning academically successful mentors to help first year students succeed. First year retention at SOU is just short of 70 percent. The university’s goal is to achieve a rate in the mid-70s over the next few years.
Begun as a pilot project in the 2009-10 academic year, the mentorship program has seen strong growth. “Last year there were 35 students involved,” says program coordinator Jessica Rapport. “So far this year we have 121 participating.”
A new initiative driving growth this year is outreach to veterans, pairing up soldiers who are new to campus with fellow veterans who have more college experience and are academically successful. Research shows if students feel supported, connected and engaged on campus, they will perform better academically.
“Being a part of the first year mentor program is like having another family,” says mentee Robyn Eckert. “My mentor was more than a friend; She was the big sister I needed in college.”
Rapport says mentors are asked to meet with their mentee at least one hour a week, but are encouraged to do more. “We hope this relationship will help build campus community and strengthen student engagement.”
“For me, it was a chance to take a break from class and spend regular time with a first year student,” says mentor Reena Cramer. “It was amazing to see my mentee at the same time every week, and to hear what her week was like. Sometimes it was bad, and we would talk about it and discuss solutions. Sometimes it was good, and we would have some food and hang out. It was a rewarding experience because she told me I made a difference in her time at SOU for the better.”
The first year mentor program also hosts group activities such as rafting trips, visits to Science Works, and group study sessions. It also provides opportunities for first year students to work with community organizations.
Student fees and a partnership with AmeriCorps through Oregon Campus Compact provide the funding for SOU’s first year mentor program.
For further information contact:
Jesse Rapport

SOU in the News: Nov. 17-19

Guest opinion: SOU is unsustainable as a regional university
Mail Tribune November 18, 2012
Letter to the editor: SOU’s impact is widely felt
Mail Tribune November 18, 2012
Raiders football team wins first playoff game this season
Mail Tribune November 18, 2012
Raiders next football game is back in Iowa
Mail Tribune November 19, 2012
Men’s cross country team takes second at nationals, men’s basketball team wins
Mail Tribune November 18, 2012
Raider women’s basketball is on a roll, wrestlers do well at SOU Open
Mail Tribune November 19, 2012
Mr. Raider Football
Mail Tribune November 17, 2012
Full versions of print clips
SOU is unsustainable as a regional university
By By Timothy E. Dolan
November 18, 2012 2:00 AM
“It is difficult to make a man understand something when his salary depends upon him not understanding it.”
— Upton Sinclair
The chronic underfunding of SOU is structural in nature; a matter of being in an awkward tier between a community college and flagship university with a constituency insufficient to generate the political will to credibly assert its claim as Oregon’s public liberal arts university and properly support it as such. It would be unfair and wrong to blame its administration for its fiscal woes and conversely utter hubris for the administration to claim that it can blaze a path out of the wilderness it finds itself in.
Regional public institutions of higher learning are, by their nature, largely at the mercy of the fiscal climate and political landscapes where they are situated. This author’s experience at regional universities in Hawaii and Texas found similar problems. What compounds the challenges facing SOU over the past decade has been the aggressive expansion of Rogue Community College coupled with an ongoing and now acute squeeze on place-bound Southern Oregon households’ ability to afford sending their offspring out for an ever more expensive four-year degree. Clever and thrifty students can strategically take their general education course requirements at RCC. They can then transfer to SOU with these courses when they are ready to move into upper-division degree programs. If they are especially clever and talented they can then transfer after a year or so to a flagship university, taking the course credits earned at SOU with them. They can then receive a University of Oregon, Oregon State University or Portland State degree without undergoing the full expense of taking all of their coursework at those schools. This is why SOU’s retention rates, while recently touted as rising, still are significantly low by national norms (70 percent first-year student retention with a transfer-out rate of 23 percent and a four-year graduation rate of 13 percent according to the National Center for Educational Statistics). Compare this with the University of Oregon’s first-year student retention rate of 86 percent, transfer-out rate of 6 percent and four-year graduation rate of 44 percent. The result is that what most people might assume is a four-year university with a few professional graduate programs actually is more of a one- or two-year way station of sorts, or a place they can go to take courses on a part-time basis while working to pay the bills.
The problem is compounded by rampant grade inflation at RCC that floods SOU with underprepared students without the basic skills needed to perform at the undergraduate level. Plagiarism is up, and the need for remediation reflected in the amount of resources allocated to student support services (tutoring) is way up.
To make matters worse, we lie at the state’s political margins with a legislative delegation unwilling or unable to champion SOU in any credible way. We no longer have a Lenn Hannon to advocate effectively for SOU in Salem.
The bottom line is that U of O is just at the upper third of American public universities in student investment and SOU is right at the bottom third. (
Among those inside there is recognition that SOU is now under stresses that have been at least two generations in the making. Because of this, faculty and staff adapt to the fact that yet another shoe will drop or ax fall in the next budget cycle. A kind of crisis fatigue is firmly set in with employees at all levels immersed in a kind of bunker mentality to hold onto whatever turf they can in the face of consolidation, downsizing or whatever the master plan du jour holds.
One should not ask this administration for guidance out of this mess for the same reason one should not ask locals for directions. Their cognitive maps are constructed around their experience. They will invariably tell you to turn left at the laundromat oblivious to the fact that it is behind a 7-Eleven that they never go to and thus literally don’t see. It is beyond them the same way the Phyrigians could not untie the Gordian Knot, leaving it to an outsider (Alexander the Great) to provide his radical solution. This also would be a good time to reread the quote at the top of this piece.
This is the diagnosis. To cut now to prescription would take another article to effectively describe.
There is a way and it will not be easy, but playing musical chairs with existing schools, programs and departments is not going to resolve the problem. Expanding residential student capacity is especially ill-advised, as they are the most expensive segment to educate. The last thing we want is for SOU alumni to echo a comment made at another regional university: “It’s a beautiful campus … . Too bad there isn’t a university there.”
Timothy E. Dolan of Ashland was associate professor of political science and director of the SOU Master in Management Program from its inception in 1998 to 2005. He was most recently professor of public policy and administration in the School of Global Affairs and Public Policy at the American University in Cairo. He has written and presented research on higher education policy including at the Global Higher Education Forum in Penang Malaysia last December. He is an active member of the World Futures Studies Federation and sits on the editorial board of the Journal of Futures Studies.
November 18, 2012 2:00 AM
SOU’s impact is widely felt
SOU’s impact reaches out far and above the town of Ashland. There are people all over the world in the fields of science, business, the arts, academia, athletics and education who received their degrees here in our Rogue Valley.
Exciting things are happening at SOU, not only in Ashland, but here in Medford at their Higher Education Center. Concerts, lectures, plays, art shows, recitals and other venues are open to the public. There are youth programs from Academy for able fifth- to ninth-graders, to sports, Lego, science and ethnic camps.
As for athletics, SOU has nationally ranked men’s and women’s teams participating in everything from football to lacrosse. The games are exciting. The student-athletes and coaches are to be commended for their hard work and dedication to their sports and academics.
If you have ever attended SOU you are eligible to join the SOU Alumni Association. For less than the cost of one mocha a month you could be supporting the Alumni Association in providing scholarships for exceptional students and promoting the university, as well as receiving the benefit of special deals from local businesses. Details can be found at, or contact the alumni director, Mike Beagle at 541-552-6874.
— Carol Moody, Medford
No. 10 Raiders rally, knock off No. 8 St. Ambrose
By By Doug Green
Quad-City Times
November 18, 2012 2:00 AM
DAVENPORT, Iowa — The St. Ambrose football team went into halftime with all the momentum on its side.
In the second half, though, the Fighting Bees found none.
10th-ranked Southern Oregon knocked eighth-ranked Ambrose out of the NAIA playoffs 45-28 at Brady Street Stadium on Saturday. The Raiders scored 28 points in the fourth quarter while shutting out Ambrose in the second half.
“I don’t think they did anything special compared to what they did in the first half,” Bees junior quarterback Eric Williamson said. “They may have sent more pressure. We couldn’t get our run game going, and we got pinned down in our own end a couple of times.”
The Raiders (9-2), who have won seven games in a row, will find out who their quarterfinal opponent will be, and where that game will be played, today when the NAIA announces the elite eight pairings.
The Bees (9-2) rolled into halftime, scoring 22 unanswered points in the second quarter while getting good play from all three phases. The defense forced three second-quarter turnovers. On offense, Williamson threw a 46-yard touchdown to Sam O’Donnell and ran for another while senior running back Anton Wilkins scored on a 17-yard run. Freshman Quinn Treiber hit a 21-yard field goal as time expired to send Ambrose into halftime up 28-17.
“We game planned for most of it, but we didn’t get to spend the time on it like you normally do,” Bees cornerback Jordan Bell said. “You just got to touch things and go on the fly. In the first half, we took care of it, but in the second half, they made some adjustments and we couldn’t pull it out in the end.”
That good play in the second quarter would be the highlight of the afternoon for the Bees.
In the second half, St. Ambrose managed only 140 total yards with 12 of those coming on the ground. Freshman receiver Zach Grant was held to four catches for 38 yards.
Southern Oregon, the No. 1 scoring team in the NAIA during the regular season, took the opening kickoff and cruised down the field for an early touchdown. The Bees defense stymied the Raiders’ attack in the middle two quarters, but SOU found life in the fourth as sophomore Austin Dodge tossed two touchdowns and Manny Barragan ran for another before Josh Leff returned a Williamson pass 39 yards for a touchdown to ice the game.
Barragan rushed for 192 yards and SOU finished with 547 total, well below its average but good enough thanks to Leff (two interceptions) and the rest of the Raider defense.
“They had forced us to make some mistakes,” Southern Oregon coach Craig Howard said. “We were on the verge of panic. They pushed us right to the edge at halftime. I think our coaches and our players did a good job of not panicking. I take my hat off to their coaching staff. They had them well prepared, and their pass rush was the best we seen all year.”
For the Bees, it was all about failing to capitalize.
“We had some chances there to make a statement at the start of the second half and put some pressure back on them,” Ambrose coach Mike Magistrelli said. “We missed some opportunities there in the second half.”
Dodge completed 28 of 51 passes for 307 yards, including a 5-yard touchdown pass to Cole McKenzie on third-and-goal to give the Raiders the lead for good, 31-28, with 11:03 to go in the game. After the teams traded possessions, SOU’s Mike Olson returned a punt 37 yards to set up the Raiders at the St. Ambrose 34. Seven plays later, Barragan charged into the end zone on third-and-8 from the nine, extending SOU’s lead to 38-28.
No. 10 Southern Oregon 45,No. 8 St. Ambrose 28
At Brady Street Stadium
Southern Oregon 17 0 0 28 —45
St. Ambrose 6 22 0 0 —28
SOU — Olson 4 run (Amsler kick)
SAU — Wilkins 19 run (kick failed)
SOU — Olson 17 pass from Dodge (Amsler kick)
SOU — FG Amsler 20
SAU — Williamson 4 run (run failed)
SAU — O’Donnell 46 pass from Williamson (run failed)
SAU — Wilkins 17 run (Treiber kick)
SAU — FG Treiber 21
SOU — Donahue 32 pass from Dodge (Amsler kick)
SOU — McKenzie 5 pass from Dodge (Amsler kick)
SOU — Barragan 9 run (Amsler kick)
SOU — Leff 39 interception return (Amsler kick)
First Downs 31 23
Rushes-Yards 54-240 31-163
Passing Yards 307 309
Comp-Att-Int 28-51-1 26-43-2
Total Yards 547 472
Punts 3-24 7-37.6
Fumbles-lost 4-2 2-1
Penalties-yards 5-36 5-50
Southern Oregon — Barragan 30-192, Marshall 12-41, Dodge 3-7, Olson 7-3, team 2-(-3).
St. Ambrose — Kelly 22-143, Wilkins 2-36, Klingler 1-(-3), Williamson 6-(-13).
Southern Oregon — Dodge 28-51-1 307.
St. Ambrose — Williamson 26-42-2 309, Wilkins 0-1-0 0.
Southern Oregon — Donahue 6-83, Barragan 6-47, Olson 5-81, McKenzie 4-39, Marshall 3-21, Sierra 2-30, Kirkpatrick 1-5, Otaguro 1-1.
St. Ambrose — O’Donnell 9-157, Grant 4-38, Munro 3-43, Cappaert 3-30, Kelly 2-24, Overstreet 1-12, Friederich 1-7, Wilkins 1-(-1), Williamson 1-(-1).
Raiders to return to Iowa for quarterfinals
November 19, 2012 2:00 AM
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — After knocking off No. 8 St. Ambrose 45-28 in Saturday’s NAIA Football Championship Series first round, the 10th-ranked Southern Oregon football team will return to Iowa this weekend for a quarterfinal match, traveling to Sioux City to face No. 3 Morningside.
Southern Oregon was one of only two road teams to win last weekend, and the Raiders will be looking to hand the Mustangs their first loss of the season on Saturday. Since 2000, home teams in the FCS quarterfinals are 35-12.
Morningside, 11-0 this season, will be appearing in the quarterfinals for the seventh time in the last nine years and will host for the first time since 2009. The Raiders, 9-2 after Saturday’s win, will be looking to make program history with a win in the quarterfinal round for the first time. Southern Oregon is 0-3 all-time in quarterfinal games, while Morningside is 1-5.
The Raiders will again charter a flight from Medford to Iowa, with the plane set to leave the Rogue Valley on Friday morning and fly direct to Sioux City. The team will return immediately following the game on Saturday. This week, however, the plane will have 80 extra seats available for fans and family to purchase and join the trip.
Seats will cost $500 each and will include transportation from the airport to the hotel and game in Sioux City, but will not include the hotel costs. Southern Oregon Athletics will reserve a block of rooms for fans at the team hotel for those traveling to purchase.
For more information about joining the team on its trip to Sioux City this weekend, contact associate athletic director Bobby Heiken at 541-552-6824 or by email at
SOU takes second at cross country championships
November 18, 2012 2:00 AM
VANCOUVER, Wash. — Southern Oregon earned its third consecutive top-three national finish Saturday as the Raiders placed second at the 2012 NAIA men’s cross country championships at Fort Vancouver National Historic Site.
The Raiders, who entered the season ranked No. 1 in the NAIA poll, totaled 153 points to finish behind team champion St. Francis (138) by 15 points. California State San Marcos took third with 165 points in an extremely close championship race.
“I thought overall the team ran very well,” SOU head coach Grier Gatlin said. “We had a race plan and we executed it. There were just a few things that maybe didn’t go our way, and that’s the difference between first and second.”
Tyler VanDyke from Eagle Point High led the Raiders with a 19th-place finish (25 minutes, 6 seconds), followed closely by teammate Scott McIntyre in 22nd place (25:10) to give SOU a pair of All-American finishers. Eric Avila finished in 51st (25:40), followed immediately by Nathan Normo in 54th (25:41). Brett Hornig placed 63rd (25:47), Eric Ghelfi took 29th (25:57) and Jared Hixon finished 94th (26:04), as all seven Raider runners finished within one minute of each other.
“While we’re disappointed to not walk away with the title, taking a conference championship and finishing second at the national meet with two All-Americans is a huge accomplishment,” Gatlin said.
After claiming its fifth consecutive Cascade Collegiate Conference two weeks ago, Southern Oregon earned its second-best national finish in program history Saturday.
In the women’s race earlier in the morning, Anne Hagy represented the Southern Oregon women’s team with a 94th-place finish. Hagy ran the 5,000-meter race in 19:26 as the only Raider in the competition.
Men’s Basketball
SOUTHERN OREGON 82, WILLIAM JESSUP 70 — At Klamath Falls, 23rd-ranked Southern Oregon continued its hot shooting and held off a late William Jessup run to defeat the Warriors at the Midland Empire Insurance Classic.
Southern Oregon improves to 4-2 with the win, while William Jessup falls to 1-5. The Raiders return to action Tuesday evening in a nonconference rivalry showdown, hosting No. 2 Oregon Tech at 7:30 p.m. at Bob Riehm Arena.
Southern Oregon shot 56 percent in the contest (28-for-50), including 60 percent in the second half (15-for-25). David Sturner connected on 8 of 13 shot attempts to lead SOU with 19 points, while Eric Thompson scored 15 points on only eight shot attempts. Terriel Thomas tallied 11 points with eight rebounds, and both Kyle Tedder and Dex Daum added 10 points for the Raiders.
SOU women rout Hope International
November 19, 2012 2:00 AM
ASHLAND — Southern Oregon opened the game on a 35-4 run and shot better than 60 percent as a team in a 99-58 nonconference women’s basketball victory over Hope International Sunday evening at Bob Riehm Arena.
Southern Oregon improved to 6-0 win the win, while Hope International fell to 4-1 with its first loss of the season. The Raiders return to action Friday afternoon at the 2012 Flagship Inn Classic, hosting Lewis-Clark State at 3:30 p.m.
Alexi Smith scored a game-high 23 points and grabbed nine rebounds for the Raiders, while Carly Meister connected on eight of nine shot attempts to score 17 points. Allison Gida scored 14 points, Angelica Cahee added 11 points and Molly Doran finished with 10. Andrina Rendon tallied a double-double for Hope International, scoring 13 points with 15 rebounds, while Rina Towne scored 17 points and Brittany Bauman added 13 points.
The Raiders connected on 60.9 percent of their shots (42-of-69) while limiting the Royals to 22.2 percent shooting (18-of-81). Southern Oregon scored the first 10 points and stretched its lead to 31 points when a Meister layup made it 35-4 with 8:50 to play in the first half. From that point, the Raiders coasted to a 49-22 halftime advantage and a 99-58 final score.
SOU OPEN — At Ashland, the top-ranked Southern Oregon wrestling team hosted the annual SOU Open Saturday and Sunday, with three SOU wrestlers coming away with individual championships.
Top-ranked Mitchell Lofstedt dominated the 125-pound bracket for the Raiders, winning all three of his matches by fall in a total of less than four minutes.
Jimmy Eggemeyer, ranked No. 1 in the 149-pound class but wrestling in the 157 bracket, won all three of his matches to claim the title for the Raiders. He picked up a pair of injury default victories and a 5-1 decision victory en route to the 157-pound championship.
Eighth-ranked Taylor Johnson, wrestling unattached, won the 197-pound bracket. He earned a first-round bye and earned a pin en route to the final match, where he won the title.
The Raiders are 1-0 in duals this season, defeating No. 8 Great Falls 23-17 on Friday at Bob Riehm Arena. Southern Oregon will have a break from competition for the next week, returning to action with a home dual against No. 15 Menlo on Nov. 27 at 7 p.m.
Mr. Raider Football
Stan Smith was on the last undefeated team in 1946 and remains an integral part at SOU
By Tim Trower
Mail Tribune
November 17, 2012 2:00 AM
Stan Smith did what he typically does on autumn afternoons when Southern Oregon University has home football games. He sat in the stands on the home side and watched his beloved Raiders.
Halftime was about to run its course last Saturday when the SOU players returned to the field.
The next thing Smith knew, a player, one he’d befriended the past couple years, veered from formation, headed across the track, up the steps and into the stands. Linebacker Daniel Breaux got to Smith, the 88-year-old patriarch of Raider football, and knelt to give him a hug and say a few words.
Smith, a World War II veteran and one of two remaining starters from the Raiders’ last undefeated team in 1946, isn’t one to mince words.
“They had dedicated the game or something to me,” he said Friday in his Medford living room. “S—-, I couldn’t even hear it. I didn’t know what the hell was going on. The damn kid comes running up the steps and the second half is about to kick off.”
Told of Smith’s reaction over the phone as the team holed up Friday in a Davenport, Iowa, hotel awaiting today’s NAIA playoff game against St. Ambrose, Breaux, a decorated linebacker, howled in laughter.
It was Stan being Stan, said the sophomore from Greenfield, Calif.
After his playing days, Smith coached at high schools from Cave Junction to Baker City, but for years he made his mark as a Rogue Valley restaurant owner and cook. He started the Raider Golf Tournament in 1990, and it’s become the university’s biggest fundraising event. He was on the Raider board of directors for years, served on coaching search committees, purchased equipment for the football team and generally, in step with his late wife, Tommie, has given of himself whenever possible.
So when SOU coach Craig Howard learned before last week’s game against Montana Tech that Smith will have surgery next month to remove an aneurysm, it weighed heavily on him.
Howard often calls Smith “Mr. Raider Football.”
Smith coached Gary Mires at Baker City, and Mires was Howard’s high school coach at Grants Pass. The three remain deeply connected.
“He is the most loyal alumni I’ve ever seen,” said Howard.
The coach was emotional when he informed the Raider players of Smith’s condition before the game and dedicated the contest to him. Breaux’s gesture was strictly his own, catching even Howard by surprise.
“I just told him thank you and we’re doing this for him,” said Breaux. “Stan is a big part of where our team is and all the success we’ve had. He’s one of ours. He’s a Raider and he bleeds Raider red.”
To what end? His doctor wanted to do the procedure sooner, but Smith — aware of the risks — asked that it be moved back until after football season.
He doesn’t want to miss a moment of SOU’s exhilarating ride.
The Raiders are ranked 10th in the country and have won six straight games on the strength of a dizzying offense.
It’s a far cry from Smith’s days in the game. His coaching playbook would look “pretty conservative” next to the Raiders’, he said.
Smith recalled a Baker High team reunion and a conversation with a former running back.
“He said, ‘Well damn it, coach, we only had six plays,’ and I said, ‘Well, that’s not true. We had 12 … six right and six left.'”
It wasn’t much different when Smith played.
At Medford High, his coach was Bill Bowerman, who would later gain fame as the University of Oregon track coach.
Smith recalled running sprints his junior year in front of Bowerman. The coach was impressed by his speed and agility for a big man — in college he played at 6-foot-11/2, 225 pounds — and suggested he might try out at fullback his senior year.
That year never came.
Smith went to war in August 1942, joining the Navy. His ship mostly convoyed from the Panama Canal throughout the Atlantic.
Upon his return, he joined a number of other war veterans at what was then Southern Oregon College of Education. The school was on the verge of closing because of low enrollment, but when the war ended, the number of students rose from 42 to more than 500.
A by-product was the resurrection of the football team. It had been suspended in 1939 after back-to-back winless seasons, then was shut down a year later when the war siphoned its male enrollment.
Football wouldn’t return until the soldiers did, and that was in 1946. The team was about 30 strong, said Smith, and “we were like brothers, you know?”
Most of them lived in veteran housing, and they quickly regained their football acumen.
Al Simpson was the coach. He took over the Medford High team when Bowerman enlisted, winning state in 1944. When Bowerman returned, Simpson was out of a job and SOCE needed a coach.
He ran a 6-2 defense — “Hell, it was real simple,” said Smith — and the T-formation offense, as opposed to the single wing favored by most teams.
Smith was a tackle on both sides of the ball. At the time, if you played one position on offense, there was a correlating position on defense, he said. Quarterbacks also played safety, fullbacks and centers were the linebackers, halfbacks were the defense backs.
“It was automatic,” said Smith. “Apparently you had some skill that had a connection with offense and defense.”
The Red Raiders, as they were dubbed then, went 8-0, coming from behind four times and claiming the inaugural Pear Bowl. Two of the victories were over the Oregon and Oregon State junior varsity teams, which included seniors and some players who saw varsity action, said Smith.
SOCE won its first seven games the next year for a 15-game winning streak but finished 1947 with a 7-2 mark.
During Smith’s career, from 1946-49, SOCE was 25-9-1 and captured three Far West Conference titles.
The success was unexpected by some.
Smith told of Simpson walking down an Ashland street before the season started when a man approached. He told the coach he’d seen a couple players drinking beer at the Elks Club, adding, “I don’t think you’ve got a chance with those guys.”
Simpson’s response?
“Well, I know fella, but it’s really difficult to tell a bunch of guys who spent two or three years in a foxhole they can’t drink a beer.”
“I thought that was classic,” said Smith. “Every day was like liberty.”
It’s a different time, of course, but one thing is constant: Smith’s affection for Raider football.
He’s weathered bad seasons. This is only the second winning campaign since 2003.
“I’ve had quite an interest in the program and many times I’ve been disappointed,” he said. “Not disgruntled, really, just wishing they could do better, you know, something to be proud of. It is very satisfying and fun for me to enjoy the success they’re having.”
How long it will last is anyone’s guess.
Based on recent conversations with Howard, Smith said the Frontier Conference title the Raiders claimed in their first year in the league doesn’t seem to be enough.
“He’s not satisfied,” said Smith. “He wants to win the national championship.”
Regardless of how it ends, there’s no doubt a big piece of this season belongs to “Mr. Raider Football.”
Reach sports editor Tim Trower at 541-776-4479, or

SOU Highlighted by U.S. Energy Department for its Investment in Clean Energy

Fourth video in the “Clean Energy in Our Community” video series

WASHINGTON – Today, the Energy Department released its fourth video in the “Clean Energy in Our Community” video series, highlighting clean energy investments by Southern Oregon University (SOU).  The school’s investments in renewable energy, sustainability, and purchasing Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) are benefiting residents and workers across Ashland, a city of about 20,000 people.  SOU is working to reduce its energy waste and deploy clean, renewable energy projects both on its campus and throughout the Ashland community.
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SOU in The News – Nov. 12-15

‘New direction” sought in SOU program study
Mail Tribune November 15, 2012
Authorities serve search warrant at SOU family housing unit in connection with murder investigation
Mail Tribune November 15, 2012
SOU students undaunted by pay scale study
November 13, 2012
SOU student Simon Brooks. miraculously survives skateboard accident, urges skateboarders to wear helmet
Mail Tribune November 12, 2012
Former Oregon secretary of state to discuss climate change at SOU tonight
Daily Tidings November 13, 2012
Iranian to speak at SOU next week about his country’s future
Daily Tidings November 14, 2012
Hal Cloer, SOU emeritus professor of psychology
Daily Tidings November 14, 2012
Apartment in SOU family housing complex is searched as part of murder investigation
KOBI 5 November 15, 2012
SOU Associate Professor of psychology Doug Smith on the problem of bullying
KOBI 5 November 15, 2012
SOU’s football opponent this Saturday has a similar story to the Raiders
Mail Tribune November 15, 2012
Full version of print clips
‘New direction’ sought in SOU program study
Faculty, staff to evaluate current offerings with a focus on establishing priorities
By Sam Wheeler
for the Mail Tribune
November 15, 2012 2:00 AM
Southern Oregon University is embarking on a yearlong effort to evaluate and prioritize its academic programs and student support services to take a “new direction” academically and to ensure an optimal future for the institution, according to an SOU official leading the effort.
Two teams of about 20 faculty and staff members are carrying out most of the work, said Dan DeNeui, a psychology professor at SOU who is overseeing the effort.
The plan was announced to the campus community Nov. 6, a day after SOU President Mary Cullinan selected the two prioritization teams, DeNeui said.
The teams are slated to provide recommendations to Cullinan before June, according to a website established to disseminate information about the process to the campus community.
The university is still defining many of the details surrounding the effort, and the teams have yet to meet, said Chris Stanek, director of institutional research at SOU, who is overseeing the effort with DeNeui.
“We’re establishing priorities at the university “… this is not a cost-cutting type of initiative or endeavor,” said Stanek. “It’s a matter of making sure all of the programs that we have are the ones that we should have. “… We want to know where we would best be suited to put our resources in alignment with our new vision.”
The prioritization plan does not rule out cutting programs or services, according to the website.
DeNeui said the effort is a proactive response to the changing landscape of higher education in the United States — the ways in which it’s made available to students, and how it’s being funded.
“We’re consistently confronted with a pretty strong reality that we are going to continue to face budget challenges “… state support is always dwindling,” said DeNeui. “What we’ve decided to do is look at ways that we can transform the university to make us sustainable, and to make us attractive to students.”
Other initiatives that are part of the effort include strengthening ties between SOU and the Higher Education Center in Medford, remodeling SOU’s general education classes, bolstering student job opportunities on campus and developing a new four-year “house,” a program that groups students from their freshman through senior years for collaborative academic work and research.
“We’re trying to take one big look at all of our programs … and we’re going to try to create some consistent metrics to evaluate their relative contribution to the university,” said DeNeui. “We have to look at who we are, what we do and how we can do it better, and what we can do strategically to make the university distinct and recognized nationally, while still serving the needs of our regional students “… we’re breaking down the traditional barriers of higher education.”
Reach Ashland Daily Tidings reporter Sam Wheeler at 541-499-1470 or email
Authorities hunt Grubbs’ killer
Tip leads about a half-dozen agencies to search for evidence in David Michael Grubbs murder
By Sam Wheeler
for the Mail Tribune
November 15, 2012 2:00 AM
Police served three search warrants in Ashland and on the outskirts of Talent Wednesday looking for evidence related to the nearly year-old investigation into the brutal murder of David Grubbs.
Ashland police Chief Terry Holderness, who is leading the investigation, said police were acting on a tip but declined to say whether they were looking for anything specific or what may have been found during the searches.
Holderness also declined to comment on whether a suspect had been identified in the case.
“We obviously have somebody in mind or we wouldn’t be serving search warrants,” Holderness said.
“Just because we’re searching doesn’t mean the person who did this lives at one of these locations,” he added. “We’ve issued several search warrants in this case already.”
About 50 police and search and rescue volunteers from across the region, using dogs and armed with diving gear and metal detectors, combed over wide fields and thick blackberry patches on an 18-acre parcel at 225 W. Rapp Road Wednesday morning. They searched a home, old barns and sheds, junk piles and an irrigation pond on the property.
Leonard Parrish, who owns the home with his wife, Sally Parrish, wasn’t present when searchers arrived at about 10:30 a.m.
“That’s my property, and I don’t have a clue what’s going on,” he said early in the search, adding he was on his way to the property.
Neighbors said the Parrishes were a nice family and cared for grandchildren at the home.
“What I know of them, they are really nice people,” said neighbor Michele Bashaw, 59.
Jackson County Sheriff’s Department, Jackson County Search and Rescue, Talent and Medford police departments, Klamath and Siskiyou county sheriff’s offices, Oregon State Police and FBI agents assisted in the search on Rapp Road, Holderness said.
In Ashland, about a half-dozen Ashland police and Southern Oregon University campus public safety officers searched an apartment at 72 Wightman St., just a few blocks from where Grubbs was murdered, starting just before noon. The apartment is part of SOU’s family student housing complex.
Phone records list Rebecca Jeanne Doran, 44, as a resident at the apartment, which a neighbor confirmed. It was unclear Wednesday how Doran might be related to the Parrishes, but she owns a 2006 Jeep Wagon registered to the 225 W. Rapp Road address, according to Driver and Motor Vehicle records. Phone and court records list her as a resident at the Rapp Road address as recently as 2011.
Serving another warrant, police seized a vehicle from the Ashland residence, said Kip Keeton, APD community service officer, but he declined to say who the vehicle belonged to or what type it was.
Grubbs was 23 when he was killed with a bladed weapon on Nov. 19, 2011, while walking home at dusk from his job at Shop’n Kart.
His body was found on the Central Ashland Bike Path near Hunter Park by a passer-by less than 30 minutes after he was murdered, police said.
Reach reporter Sam Wheeler at 541-499-1470 or email Reporters Mark Freeman and Mandy Valencia contributed to this story.
SOU students undaunted by pay scale study
By John Darling
for the Mail Tribune
November 13, 2012 2:00 AM
In a survey of earnings of graduates from 95 West Coast colleges, Southern Oregon University has been ranked near the bottom at number 88, with grads in full-time employment earning an average starting pay of $37,000 and a mid-career income of $67,100.
Scientific and technical schools crowded the top ranks of the survey by PayScale College Salary Report, with Oregon Institute of Technology in Klamath Falls at No. 26 with starting incomes of $54,400 and mid-career salaries averaging $86,900.
Unfazed by the ranking, SOU spokesman Jim Beaver said the school attracts its students because it’s not a specialized science school but epitomizes the idea of liberal arts, with students able to get an “accessible and affordable” education at a place that’s “a college for everyone.”
Junior Lily Hammer, a business major, agreed.
Emerging from the Lenn Hannon Library on campus, she said, “I like SOU because it is liberal arts. It’s well-rounded and you can be involved in the community and lots of classes outside your major. It makes you a better candidate for jobs, in my opinion.”
Anthropology sophomore Sarah Lind dismissed the study, saying, “I know I can find a good job with no trouble. I have lots of interviews and volunteer experience and good self-advocacy training.”
Lind says she’s glad her studies are not highly specialized, as at OIT and that “My life is not going to be based on how much I can earn. I want a decent standard of living, where I’m comfortable and don’t have to worry. People with lots of money are not all that happy with their work.”
Chris Stanek, SOU’s director of institutional research, questioned the PayScale study. He said it is not comprehensive, uses “smaller data sets” and samples only those who return the survey, giving it a statistical reliability of plus or minus 10 percent.
“Their charts are plastered with ‘not enough data’ for all the large employers in the Rogue Valley,” he said. “In fact, that seems to be the case for many of the schools’ reports, including OIT.”
Beaver noted that the marketplace skews its financial rewards toward engineering, medical technology, science and math, while teachers are “unfortunately, notoriously underpaid.”
“Not everyone wants to be a med-tech or engineer,” he said. “We offer 36 majors to choose from. Some may not be the best pay, but pay isn’t the only measure of success in life. Happiness and challenge are the best measure of success for lots of people.”
SOU senior Chad Magruder, who is majoring in art, said he came home to Ashland, where he grew up, and gave up his corporate finance studies at an out-of-state university because “it didn’t have that passion and soul that art has.”
“I asked myself where I could get that passion and it’s here,” he said. “I love it and I’m much happier.”
OIT grads earn one of the highest starting salaries in the nation, placing the school 38th among 1,058 colleges in the U.S., with a starting salary of $54,600. That salary is also the highest in Oregon and the fourth highest in the western United States.
PayScale reports that OIT’s mid-career salaries average $86,900 per year, placing it first in Oregon and within the top 15 percent in the nation.
In Oregon, the mid-career rankings, in descending order, were: OIT, Oregon State University, Willamette, Reed, Pacific Lutheran, University of Portland, University of Oregon, Lewis & Clark, Portland State, Linfield, SOU, George Fox and Western Oregon University.
The top 10 majors for earnings were mostly in engineering, with a few in math, computer science or statistics, according to PayScale. The top earners in the nation came from Princeton.
The survey is at
John Darling is a freelance writer living in Ashland. E-mail him at
College grads average pay
Rank College Starting Mid-Career
26 Oregon Institute of Technology (OIT) $54,400 $86,900
27 Oregon State University (OSU) $47,000 $86,300
33 Willamette University $41,300 $84,800
36 Reed College $44,200 $84,400
37 Pacific Lutheran University $44,100 $83,500
39 University of Portland $47,700 $83,200
58 University of Oregon $39,500 $76,600
64 Lewis & Clark College $35,300 $75,700
82 Portland State University (PSU) $40,300 $69,400
85 Linfield College $45,800 $68,000
88 Southern Oregon University $37,000 $67,100
90 George Fox University $42,100 $65,100
93 Western Oregon University $39,200 $60,800
Chart is based upon PayScale Salary Survey data for bachelors’ degree graduates without higher degrees who are full-time employees in the United States. Salary is the sum of compensation from base salary, bonuses, profit sharing, commissions and overtime, if applicable, but does not include equity (stock) compensation.
Skateboarder lives to tell about necessity of helmets
By Greg Stiles
Mail Tribune
November 12, 2012 2:00 AM
When Simon Brooks stepped onto the Bear Creek Greenway to run a half-marathon on Sept. 23, he wasn’t just racing the clock.
Every stride the 20-year-old Southern Oregon University sophomore took was symbolic of the great lengths he’s covered in a remarkable comeback from the brink of eternity.
A year and a day earlier, on Sept. 22, 2011, Brooks was the focal point of two other races: One to extend his life after he suffered traumatic head injuries in a skateboarding accident, and the other by family and friends to reach Providence Medford Medical Center from hundreds of miles away before the clock timed out.
Simon Brooks doesn’t remember much about what he was doing on the Wednesday night a week before he was to begin his sophomore year at Southern Oregon University. There’s little doubt, however, that he was partying where alcohol and drugs were involved, obscuring the potential danger when he and a friend, Zach Lough, set off early Thursday morning on their longboards.
As they cruised down Mountain Avenue around 2 a.m., Lough dismounted because of the steep, curving nature of the road as they headed toward North Mountain Park.
“He decided to take it easy and didn’t realize I was less-skilled in my current state,” Brooks said.
Not only was Brooks careening out of control, he wasn’t wearing a helmet. As his friend walked down the hill, “he heard me make some unsettling noises,” Brooks related, as he lay bleeding on the concrete near Larkspur Lane.
Emergency responders took Brooks to Ashland Community Hospital, where triage was performed, but it was quickly apparent his head injuries required a higher level of response.
He was rushed to Providence, where a trauma team, including a neurosurgeon, awaited Brooks’ arrival. Louise Sakraida, who coordinates critical care activity, had just arrived for her shift when Brooks came in.
“It was a devastating head injury,” Sakraida said. “He was almost a certain donor candidate, and it’s not often you feel that certain right off the bat. The CT (computed tomography) scan showed pressures that were incredibly high.”
Initial readings and activity gave little hope to the medical team.
“With his injuries, we did not anticipate he would last more than a few days,” Sakraida said.
State law requires that hospital personnel who believe somebody may become brain dead to begin a review leading to organ donation.
“We did that, and we don’t often do that so early,” she said.
No surgeries were needed, but drugs to reduce swelling were applied, and Brooks was placed on a ventilator.
While the medical team fought for Brooks’ life, other hospital staff tried to reach his family — made more difficult because his cellphone was password protected.
“Three of his friends were there, and they were not able to offer information other than he was from Alaska,” said Alisia Howard, clinical coordinator for the Providence Emergency Department.
Eventually, with help from Ashland police, a Providence chaplain was able to track down Michael and Valerie Brooks, Simon’s parents, in Alaska at 5:30 in the morning.
“We knew when the chaplain called — and not a doctor — it was obviously a clue, but we weren’t told he wouldn’t survive,” said Valerie Brooks.
Was it serious enough for their older son, Andrew, to come? Yes.
Should his sisters in Portland and San Diego come? Yes.
“That’s how we knew it was bad,” she said.
Under the best of circumstances, Ketchikan to Medford is no easy task with iffy connecting flights. Standby flights are even less sure, but the Brookses found friends who were willing to swap out their seats to go standby.
“If we hadn’t made arrangements to trade tickets, we might not have made it that day,” Valerie Brooks said. “That was a marathon.”
Dealing with dying patients whose family members are hundreds of miles away is not unusual for Howard’s staff.
“I’ve held a phone to dying patients’ ears so their family members could tell them goodbye,” she said.
While older patients often have living-will instructions for medical staffs, that’s not the case with younger patients who have suffered traumatic injury.
“We’re using every life-saving measure available to us.” Howard said. “They don’t have a living will, per se, so we do everything.”
By noon, Kathryn, one of Simon’s two older sisters, arrived from Portland. Emily, who lives in San Diego, had hopscotched from Las Vegas to Portland and driven down from there.
Both were at Simon’s side when their parents arrived at 8 o’clock Thursday night.
While the medical staff didn’t share its prognosis with the sisters, Emily Brooks, a registered nurse, was able to size things up.
“She prepared us before we went in,” Valerie said. “It doesn’t look like him with the tubes and alarms. After we saw him quickly, that’s when we were told it was a nonsurvivable injury.”
Over the next couple of days, Simon’s parents faced a decision no parent wants to ponder.
“It’s a terrible process for parents to go through,” Michael Brooks said. “Simon is a strong, young man. If he was going to live, he had to have a chance to live on his own. We told the medical staff to take the breathing tube out.”
That step had to be delayed, however, because the sedatives first had to wear off, otherwise they might have kept him from breathing.
While the Brookses were away from the hospital at a friend’s house, the sedatives wore off, and Simon sat up and started removing his IV and other tubes.
“That was a definite sign things had turned,” Valerie Brooks said. “We had been sitting with the organ donor team all evening. Because he was so severely injured, we were told it could be involuntary sitting up and taking tubes off.”
Even though he wasn’t conscious, there was hope.
“We could clearly see he was attempting a comeback, and they removed his breathing tubes shortly after that,” she said.
In the days after that accident, Simon was attended by a dozen family members and friends. They had put together drawings and Facebook collections.
“The first thing I remember is waking up and looking at a picture my sisters had put on the wall,” he said. “Rodney Manabat, my good friend in high school, showed his graphic design skills when he made a silhouette based on a picture with blue hair and a red hat and ‘Go Simon’ on it.”
It was touch and go at times, but Brooks kept defying the odds. He remained under intensive care until Sept. 27 and left Medford long before anyone expected. By November, Brooks was heading north for rehab at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. What was supposed to be a monthlong ordeal was completed in two weeks.
Brooks returned to school last winter, becoming a creative writing major.
A few days ago, Brooks stopped by Providence with flowers in hand.
“It took a while, but his recovery was beyond anything we could have anticipated; it was off the charts,” said Sakraida. “He brought flowers … he’s back in college, has a job and a girlfriend. He’s totally articulate and can keep you laughing.”
Brooks retrieved his longboard from the police department, but he didn’t ride it. Instead, he parked it beneath his computer. These days he gets around on a Specialized mountain bike that has lights — and he wears a helmet.
There still are aspects of recovery ahead — his sense of smell hasn’t fully returned.
“If he simply would have been a breathing, functional young person,” his mother said, it would have been beyond great.
“The fact that he could be at school and have the wherewithal to train himself and finish a race is really quite incredible. He’s a quiet guy with goofy sense of humor, but he’s really determined. I think the race was indicative of the way he’s going to approach everything in the future. He’ not a perfect kid, but he’s a really good kid.”
Reach reporter Greg Stiles at 541-776-4463 or
By Greg Stiles
Mail Tribune
Simon Brooks never gave helmets much thought before his near-fatal accident. Now he is a staunch proponent of helmet safety.
“I’m the epitome of a person who knows the importance of a helmet,” Brooks said. “My parents thought I was dead because of the lack of helmets. I want to tell whoever has the chance to ride a longboard or anything with wheels, they should definitely have a helmet, because there is no seatbelt.”
Last spring, Brooks participated in an Oregon State Public Interest Research Group safety campaign on the Southern Oregon University campus.
“I told the students I could think of only two reasons not to have a helmet,” Brooks said.
“One was a conscious decision not to buy one because they think it’s cooler not to wear one, or they can’t afford to buy one, and OSPIRG is selling discounted helmets.”
Skateboarders don’t like to be considered cowards and take severe risks to prevent that perception, he said.
“Recklessness is brave and cool,” Brooke said. “In my opinion, the most cowardly thing in the universe is disregard. If a person has the ability to easily take measures that can prevent his or her family’s pain and suffering, and these measures are not taken, this person is being really uncool. In society today, maybe we need to be brave against the people who think we are cowards for being safe. It is so much more cowardly to disregard the feelings of our loved ones so that our friends will think we look cool.”
Alisia Howard, clinical coordinator for Providence Emergency Services, has dealt with severe, disabling injuries involving skate- and longboarders in recent years. As a result, she is spearheading an effort by nurses to reach students before they suffer traumatic injuries. She was part of a group trained at Legacy Emanuel Medical Center in Portland, and hopes to launch a program here early next year, going into classrooms with presentations and videos to share with children.
“Simon has said he would work with us, which is really good,” Howard said. “Because it’s most impactful when it’s coming from someone who had it happen to them.”
— Greg Stiles
Former Oregon secretary of state to discuss climate change
Bill Bradbury says he’s seen skepticism diminish over time
By Paul Fattig
For the Tidings
November 13, 2012 2:00 AM
Bill Bradbury figures you don’t have to be a climate-change expert to know which way the wind is blowing.
The former Oregon secretary of state, who will discuss “Climate Reality” Thursday evening at Southern Oregon University, said he has seen denial over climate change slowly fade since he began giving talks about it in 2006.
“When I first started giving presentations, it was very normal to have a small group of deniers attending,” said Bradbury, 63. “Now I don’t need to convince anyone that climate change is happening.
“The focus has changed to, ‘OK, so what are we going to do about it?’ ” he added. “There are some who believe there is not much we can do to change the direction we are going. But most believe we can change how we act and effect climate change.”
Bradbury was one of the first 50 people trained in Nashville to spread the climate-change gospel according to former Vice President Al Gore. Bradbury has given about 300 presentations on climate change in Oregon, outlining the need to reduce carbon pollution caused by dependence on oil and coal.
In addition to recent weather extremes, including the fact this past July was the hottest on record for the nation, Bradbury will talk about energy needs in Oregon and strategies to reduce carbon pollution. As part of Gore’s Climate Reality Project, he met with leading climate change scientists this past summer.
Recent nationwide polls indicate that about 70 percent of the population believes the global climate is changing because of human activity.
“Those polls are very encouraging,” he said. “Everyone acknowledges the severe weather we are having, that this is exactly what climate scientists have been talking about. Sandy is just the latest horrible example.”
Hurricane Sandy slammed into New York and New Jersey just before the general election, killing about 90 people and leaving some 7 million without power.
Although climate change was seldom mentioned by either President Obama or Mitt Romney during the presidential race, Obama has demonstrated he wants to reduce the nation’s dependence on fossil fuels, Bradbury believes.
“Obama very rarely mentioned the words ‘climate change,’ but if you look at his recovery program and strategies in terms of energy, about 90 percent is the kinds of steps we need to take in terms of reducing climate change,” he said.
“He is very committed,” Bradbury added. “He just has learned politically not to wrap the issue in climate-change paper. He just wraps the issue in energy-independence paper. I’m OK with that.”
Bradbury, who was a Democratic state representative from the Southern Oregon coast for 14 years, including serving as state Senate president in 1993, was appointed to the Northwest Power and Conservation Council in 2010, as one of two representatives from Oregon.
Created by Congress in 1980, the council is charged with developing an electric energy supply plan for Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Montana. Its mandate is to issue a 20-year plan every five years that guarantees adequate and reliable energy at the lowest economic and environmental cost to the Northwest.
He also serves on the board of the Ashland-based Geos Institute, a nonprofit group dedicated to educating the public about climate change issues.
In addition to finding alternatives to power sources relying on fossil fuels, there is a need to cut back on energy consumption, he said.
“The Northwest in general, Oregon in specific, has done more in energy conservation than most of the rest of the country,” he said. “We have become national leaders in terms of energy efficiency.”
However, while describing himself as an eternal optimist, Bradbury sees solving the climate change problem as extremely difficult.
“The challenges are quite daunting, both for the country and the world,” he said, noting that the U.S. uses 25 percent of the energy consumed worldwide.
“There are those in the rest of the world who haven’t enjoyed the economic success the U.S. has had over the years,” he added. “They want a taste of that, too. But the world cannot survive if everybody uses energy like we do. We have to change.”
Bradbury also will give presentations in Grants Pass and Klamath Falls this week.
Reach Mail Tribune reporter Paul Fattig at 541-776-4496 or email him at
If you go
What: “Climate Reality,” a presentation by Bill Bradbury, former Oregon secretary of state
When: 6:30 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 15
Where: Room 330, Stevenson Union, Southern Oregon University, 1250 Siskiyou Blvd., Ashland
Cost: Free
Sponsors: Ecology Center of the Siskiyous at SOU, Geos Institute, Klamath-Siskiyou Wildlands Center and Rogue Valley Climate Protection Organization
‘I want my country to be free’
Iranian to speak at SOU about his hopes for that nation’s future
By Teresa Ristow
For the Tidings
November 14, 2012 2:00 AM
Reza Mohajerinejad was a 26-year-old student at Iran’s Tehran University in 1999 when he and a small group of students began protesting the closure of the region’s reformist newspaper.
The newspaper supported the reformist beliefs of the country’s president, and organized opponents of the president had ordered the newspaper closed.
After the protest, more than 300 military opponents of the president came to the Tehran University dorms in response to the demonstration.
“After our peaceful demonstration, the dormitories of Tehran University were attacked by government-backed militia who ransacked the dorms, beating, terrorizing and shooting students,” wrote Mohajerinejad in his 2010 memoir, “Live Generation.”
Because the police and military in Iran are not controlled by the president, but by a greater political organization, similar attacks on universities in nearby cities took place, beginning the region’s first student uprising and showcasing a large divide in the country between Iranian youth and those in political power.
“In my mind, the Islamic regime had sunk to a new low in what they were willing to do to control the people of Iran, and particularly the youth,” Mohajerinejad wrote.
A few days after the original protest, Mohajerinejad was arrested and spent more than four months in prison, where he was tortured and nearly died, he said.
After escaping prison and leaving Iran, Mohajerinejad traveled through Turkey and Germany and sought refuge and protection in the United States.
He has remained in the U.S. since, where he continued his schooling at San Francisco State University, earning a master’s degree in political science last spring.
Mohajerinejad will speak Monday evening at SOU in an attempt to bring awareness to the current situation in Iran and conflicts between the country and the United States in a talk called “The Case for Not Bombing Iran: The Case for Peace.”
Mohajerinejad said though he can’t return to Iran and hasn’t seen his family for more than 12 years, he is determined to spread awareness about the country’s political state and the citizens’ desire for democracy.
Since the original uprising in 1999 and another, more widespread social uprising in 2009, Mohajerinejad said it’s clear that the people of Iran want to change the way the country is operated.
“This new generation showed they wanted a democracy,” said Mohajerinejad, now 40.
Bombing the country would mean that students and all citizens would be legally required to support the government, and acting out against the government or advocating for a regime change would be illegal, according to Kathleen Gamer, an SOU master’s student who helped organize Mohajerinejad’s visit.
“We have so much hype about the idea of bombing Iran,” said Gamer, who founded SOU’s United Nations Club six years ago.
Gamer said that SOU students should be better informed about international issues such as what is happening in Iran, especially because the uprisings there were led by students.
“We’re very far away from what’s really happening,” said Gamer, who lived in Tehran in the 1990s while her parents were in the U.S. diplomatic service.
Hosting a talk by Mohajerinejad shows that students from SOU support the students of Iran, Gamer said.
“We’re backing the students of that country,” she said.
Mohajerinejad said in “Live Generation” that he hopes to one day return to a different Iran than the place he left.
“I want for Iran a world where people don’t live in fear of their government,” Mohajerinejad wrote. “I want a secular, democratic government for Iran. I want to return to my home in Babol. I want to smell the salt air as it blows in from the Caspian Sea. I want my country to be free.”
Reach Mail Tribune reporter Teresa Ristow at 541-776-4459 or
If you go:
What: “The Case for Not Bombing Iran: The Case for Peace,” talk and discussion with Reza Mohajerinejad, author and participant in the 1999 Iranian student uprising
When: 5 p.m. Monday, Nov. 19
Where: Rogue River Room, Stevenson Union, Southern Oregon University, 1250 Siskiyou Blvd.
Admission: Free
Harold Angus Cloer
November 14, 2012 2:00 AM
Hal Cloer, 89, passed away October 5, 2012. Hal was an emeritus professor of psychology at Southern Oregon University. He resided in Ashland for 56 years. He grew up on a farm in Central California during the Depression. He attended the College of Pacific, joined the U.S. Navy after Pearl Harbor, was sent to the University of Oklahoma to complete a degree in electrical engineering, was commissioned an ensign at the U.S. Naval Academy, was sent to Bowdoin College for additional training in electronics, then served as communications and division officer on an attack cargo ship in the Pacific.
After discharge from the Navy, Hal obtained a master’s degree in electrical engineering from Stanford University and taught electronics at Eastern Arizona Junior College. He later returned to Stanford to obtain a doctorate in counseling and higher education. In 1952, he accepted the position of Director of Guidance Services and Testing at Southern Oregon College of Education. His professional focus was career counseling, social psychology, and adult development. His research in those areas resulted in presentations at regional and national psychology conventions. He attended international psychology conventions in Moscow and in London.
Hal spent a sabbatical year in Europe, attending the University of Grenada in Spain, skiing in Austria, and touring Western Europe in a Karman Ghia. He and Barbara Rankin were married in Carmel, Calif. in 1968, and spent a month touring Mexico. After his marriage to Barbara, and for a number of years before they both retired, Hal was a silent partner in Barbara’s gift shop in Medford. The couple made a three-month, 15,000-mile trip around the U.S. in a travel trailer; made six trips to Europe; five trips to Mexico; two to Asia; three to Canada; and cruised the Panama Canal.
Hal was president of the Ashland Library Board when it was a city department, then served on the board that set up the county library system. He was interim chairman of the committee of 50 that set policy for the $5.4 million Ashland Redevelopment Project; served on the Citizens Planning Advisory Committee that updated Ashland’s Comprehensive Plan; was a member of the Historic and Planning Commissions; and served as treasurer for several civic funding measures. In 2001, Hal received the Ragland Community Service Award. He was a member of the Ashland League of Women Voters, Rotary Club, and Ashland’s Charter Revision Committee.
Surviving are his wife, Barbara Cloer; brother, Bob Cloer; sister, Pat Chambers; sister-in-law, Jean Gorton; stepson, Bill Rankin and wife, Denise; and Rankin grandsons, Brian, Pat, Chad, Craig, and Will. Hal was a humble and kind man, who will be truly missed.
No services are planned. Memorial donations can be made to the scholarship funds, Southern Oregon University Foundation, 1250 Siskiyou Blvd, Ashland, OR 97520,
SOU’s opponent has similar story
By By Joe Zavala
for the Mail Tribune
November 15, 2012 2:00 AM
Southern Oregon’s season-long comeback from unranked and 2-2 all the way to 10th-ranked and playoff bound behind six straight wins is one of the feel-good stories of the NAIA Football Championship Series.
But the Raiders’ first-round opponent — the St. Ambrose Fighting Bees of Davenport, Iowa — has a pretty good story going in its own right.
The eighth-ranked Bees, like the Raiders, suffered a painful double-overtime loss in Week 4, to Grand View, but also like the Raiders won their final six regular-season games to secure a spot in the 16-team playoffs. Now, the two comeback artists will square off in a first-round game Saturday, at Brady Street Stadium in Davenport, Iowa.
“I think it’ll be a very competitive game,” St. Ambrose sixth-year head coach Mike Magistrelli said. “It’s hard to predict, but I know we’ll come out and compete and put our best out there.”
St. Ambrose (9-1), which finished in a three-way tie for first place in the Mid-States Football Association Midwest League, was riding high following two straight wins over ranked teams when it hosted then No. 18 Grand View on Sept. 29. The Bees were in good position after Eric Williamson threw a 13-yard touchdown pass to Zach Grant midway through the second quarter to give St. Ambrose a 15-3 lead.
But Grand View, thanks in part to St. Ambrose’s turnover woes, battled back to take a 26-23 lead with 1:12 to go. St. Ambrose, showing some of the poise that would come to define its regular season, forced overtime when Quinn Treiber drilled a 48-yard field goal as time expired, but eventually succumbed in overtime, 29-26.
St. Ambrose ran the table from that point on, dominating most of its opponents with a balanced offense that ranks 13th in the nation in yards per game (437.4). Williamson has been one of the main reasons. The 6-foot-1, 220-pound junior out of Springfield, Ill., has completed 63 percent of his passes for 2,676 yards and 34 touchdowns with only eight interceptions to rank third in the nation in passing efficiency.
Grant, Williamson’s top target, is also having a banner year. The 6-foot-1, 190-pound freshman out of Rochester, Ill., leads the nation with 87 receptions and ranks fifth with 1,132 yards receiving.
That, combined with St. Ambrose’s more-than-adequate rushing attack — the Bees average 164 yards rushing per game — makes the Bees one of the most difficult teams in the nation to defend.
“We’ll have to continue to maintain some of that balance we have in our passing and running game (Saturday),” said Magistrelli, whose team is scoring 33 points per game. “It’ll be a good matchup for us. And I think Southern Oregon, when they chose to bring pressure (on defense), they do it pretty well. So that’s something we’ll have to be prepared for.”
The Raiders’ defense certainly brought timely pressure last Saturday against Montana Tech, sacking Orediggers’ quarterback Nick Baker six times and forcing several hurried throws under pressure. SOU (8-2), which is surrendering 32.5 points per game, is hoping for more of the same Saturday.
“We’ve watched the film, we’ve analyzed it and we’ve been breaking it down to the point where we can see where their weaknesses are and where our defense can fit and what our strong points will be,” SOU sophomore linebacker Daniel Breaux said. “They’re a run-first team and our run defense has shown lots of prominence in the past. We’re really confident in that. We’re going to try to force them to throw the ball and our secondary will do their best to keep those receivers covered.”
The St. Ambrose defense allowed 16.3 points per game during the regular season and is led by junior linebacker Jeremy Wallace (6-foot-1, 215), who has 123 tackles to rank fourth in the nation.
The Bees appear to be well equipped to deal with Southern Oregon’s high-octane offense, which ranks No. 1 in the nation in both yards per game (657) and points per game (54.4). That’s because St. Ambrose has roughed up opposing quarterbacks to the tune of 27 sacks, good enough to rank 19th nationally.
Not that Magistrelli believes the Bees will be spending lots of time in SOU’s backfield — Raiders quarterback Austin Dodge, the nation’s leading passer, has only been sacked once this season.
“I don’t know that you’re going to sack (Dodge),” Magistrelli said. “He does a really good job getting rid of the ball quickly, so I’d be surprised. But I think what we’ve got to do more is just put pressure on him, make him have to make decisions a little faster than he wants to. At least try and pressure him.”
The Bees will be making their 12th playoff appearance and first since 2008. They last hosted a postseason game in 2006.
The Raiders will be making their first playoff appearance since 2002.
“I don’t think that’s a factor,” Magistrelli said. “We don’t have a kid in our program that’s been in the playoffs.”
There’s no telling how much of a home-field advantage the Bees will have at Brady Street Stadium, a gorgeous 10,000-capacity facility that has synthetic turf. The weather report calls for temperatures in the low 50s and sunny, so SOU’s pass-happy offense — Dodge throws 45 passes per game on average — will likely be unaffected by the elements.
The Raiders will take a charter plane Friday morning and practice at the stadium in the afternoon. To prepare for playing on synthetic turf, which SOU has yet to experience this season, the Raiders have been practicing this week at U.S. Cellular Community Park.
All things being equal, Magistrelli believes that the team that keeps its emotions in check will probably win.
“I think these are two good teams,” he said, “and any time two good teams play like this I think the team that handles some of the highs and lows the best will have an advantage. We talk to our kids about not getting too high and not getting too low and continuing to stay focused.”

  • WHAT: First-round NAIA playoff game.
  • WHEN, WHERE: Saturday, 1 p.m., at Davenport, Iowa.
  • OF NOTE: This is Southern Oregon’s first trip to the postseason since the 2002 season.

SOU in the News – Nov. 8 – 9

SOU enrollment drops while Oregon’s eight-university system expands overall
Mail Tribune November 9, 2012
Profile of Associate Professor Jackie Apodaca
Daily Tidings November 8, 2012
The Cecelia String Quartet performs tonight in SOU’s Music Recital Hall
Daily Tidings November 8, 2012
Enrollment growth slows at Oregon universities
Associated Press November 8, 2012
SOU archaeologists Mark Tveskov and Chelsea Rose to speak next Wednesday in Coos Bay
Coos Bay World November 9, 2012
Record enrollment at SOU
KDRV Newswatch 12 November 8, 2012
SOU sees second-largest enrollment in its history
KTVL 10 November 8, 2012
Deep thoughts at Southern Oregon University
Mail Tribune November 9, 2012
Letter to the sports editor: Eagle Point HS band and SOU football
Mail Tribune November 9, 2012
Full version of print clips
SOU enrollment drops while Oregon’s eight-university system expands overall
Officials can’t point to any one reason why enrollment might have fallen
By Sam Wheeler
Ashland Daily Tidings
November 09, 2012 2:00 AM
The number of students at Southern Oregon University this fall dropped from the previous year’s headcount for the first time since 2005, according to figures released by the Oregon University System Thursday.
The university didn’t attract as many Hispanic students, community college transfers or incoming freshman compared with the past few years, but enjoyed another increase of new Californian students, said James Klein, provost and vice president for academic affairs.
The university has 6,481 students enrolled compared with last fall’s 6,744, Klein said.
The 3.9 percent drop-off was the largest of any school in the Oregon University System, which saw a 1,077-student increase overall across its eight universities, which total 101,393 enrolled students.
SOU’s full-time equivalent numbers, a standard measure based on credits earned that accounts for full- and part-time students, fell 2.2 percent, to 4,573 this fall from 4,678 a year ago.
Hispanic student enrollment, which skyrocketed 82 percent in the last two year, fell by less than 1 percent compared with this time last year, and transfer students from community colleges and other universities dropped 19.2 percent compared with last fall’s student population, Klein said.
“Hopefully it’s because people are getting back into the job market,” he said of the drop in transfer students.
Klein said, it’s unclear why Hispanic student enrollment didn’t match increases SOU experienced at the beginning of the past two academic years.
The university can only speculate why fall enrollment didn’t increase for the seventh consecutive year, Klein said, but he didn’t attribute the decline to this year’s 9.9 percent tuition hike.
SOU students are paying $102, or 4.2 percent, more per term this year for 15 credits, accounting for reductions in student fees.
Klein said a recent change to eligibility for the Pell Grant also may have contributed to the decline in enrollment. Last fall, students were eligible to receive the Pell Grant for 18 semesters, that has been shortened to 12 semesters in an effort by Congress to save money.
The university enrolled 10.3 percent fewer incoming freshman, and 13.8 percent fewer graduate students compared to the previous fall term, but saw a 4.4 increase in students from California. Last fall, California-student enrollment was up 15 percent.
California students make up about 15 percent of the student population at SOU, Klein said, which is a record.
The university’s student population has swelled 40 percent over the past four years, enrollment reports show.
“That’s really unprecedented growth. “… It’s kind of nice to catch a breath,” Klein said. “It’s been really challenging to staff up, and find faculty, and get all of the support services that have to grow.”
During fall term 2010, SOU saw a 26.2 percent enrollment increase over the prior year’s fall term.
Compared with this time last year, Portland State University reported 227 fewer students, Eastern Oregon University reported 90 fewer students and Western Oregon University reported 30 fewer students.
All other OUS institutions reported slight gains in student population.
Oregon State University saw the largest jump, reporting 1,416 more students. The University of Oregon gained the second most students, with a 144-student increase.
“Overall, we’re happy with where our enrollment is at,” Klein said.
Reach Daily Tidings reporter Sam Wheeler at 541-499-1470 or email
Jackie Apodaca
By Evalyn Hansen
For the Tidings
November 08, 2012 2:00 AM
Actor, director and associate professor Jackie Apodaca directed Jose Rivera’s “Marisol,” which is playing this week at Southern Oregon University’s Center Stage Theatre. The production’s sensational staging, ensemble acting and stage movement blend bizarre and beautiful elements to create a compelling theatrical experience. Jackie and I met over breakfast at Greenleaf Restaurant in Ashland.
EH: What is unique about the theater experience?
JA: It is the live experience of it. Everyone is experiencing the exact same moment and will have the shared experience. There is something exciting about that fleeting and momentary experience. And you experience it as the actor, as the director, as the stage manager, as the run-crew, and as the audience. The experience is so close and intimate between the audience and the performers in that way.
Whereas in film, everyone experienced something, and then someone took it away, changed everything about it, and brought it back and showed you what it was. Film seems more intimate in that you see the actor’s face close up, but it has gone through so many processes before you got to see it. Did you really get to see what they did? Probably not.
I worked with filmmakers when I taught in the Film and Media Department at the University of California, Santa Barbara. I loved that, but film is completely the medium of the director and the editor. We would change the actor’s performance in the editing room. And we would talk about how we could make them seem to be doing different things. There is so much that can be controlled outside of the actor and outside of the moment. In post-production, the moment is gone and completely changed.
EH: What does a theater arts education give young actors?
JA: I teach a business of acting class at SOU so that they have some preparation for what’s coming. The reality of how much you are at the whim of other people, to do the thing that you consider your art, is really shocking. It can be a hard situation.
In theater training, in acting training, you learn to work in ensemble, with a group of people. Working in a group is complicated and difficult; and you learn to do it to a degree that most people don’t get an opportunity to prepare for, in any kind of a way.
You learn an incredible work ethic in theater. You learn basic human requirements for being a good worker. You also are working towards a common goal with a group of people, making this goal paramount, and getting it done. You learn to work towards a specific goal rapidly and with complete focus.
It’s true that most of them won’t go on to be professional actors. What we are giving them will make them successful doctors and lawyers, whatever they decide to do, more than pre-professional disciplines. If you pretrain for something, and you are only training to get into the profession, and you have not looked outside of it, it can be very limiting.
People are attracted to acting because they are interested in humanity; and they’re usually quite empathetic people. A lot of them go on and become social workers or psychologists because they care about people. In theater arts, we’re looking at the human condition and learning hard work and group dynamic skills that can take you far in whatever profession you decide to apply yourself to. To allow that kind of exploration is fantastic.
“Marisol”, by Jose Rivera, plays at 8 p.m. today through Saturday, November 8-10, and at 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Nov 10-11, in the Center Square Theatre at Southern Oregon University. For tickets and information, call 541-552-6348.
Evalyn Hansen is a writer and director living in Ashland. She trained as an actor at the American Conservatory Theatre and is a founding member of San Francisco’s Magic Theatre. Reach her at

Cecilia String Quartet
November 08, 2012 2:00 AM
Based in Toronto, the quartet is winner of the 2010 Banff International String Quartet Competition and takes its name from the patron saint of music. The group will present works by Ludwig van Beethoven, Antonin Dvorak and Dmitri Shostakovich at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 9, in the Music Recital Hall on the Southern Oregon University campus, 1250 Siskiyou Blvd. Tickets cost $30 and $35, $5 for students and Oregon Trail Card holders, and are available or by calling 541-552-6154.
Deep Thoughts
At Southern Oregon, the deep ball’s the thing
By Dan Jones
Mail Tribune
November 09, 2012 2:00 AM
ASHLAND — A plane was leaving its contrails high above the practice field at Southern Oregon University just as head football coach Craig Howard was explaining one of his favorite things — the deep ball.
The smile that was already on Howard’s face began to widen as the aircraft whizzed by. He had found his simile.
“The threat is the shot,” he says, his twinkling eyes looking skyward. “A vertical shot downfield where the ball goes up like that jet right there and drops down 40 yards down the field.”
Nearby, one of Howard’s favorite people — SOU sophomore quarterback Austin Dodge — cranked out darts to open receivers during a passing drill.
Together, Dodge and Howard have helped pilot the 12th-ranked Raiders to a season brimming with video-game statistics, shattered records and momentous wins.
The Raiders’ weapon of choice has been the deep ball, which Dodge wields early and often.
When the smoke clears most Saturdays, SOU has left its own contrails in the sky.
Few can find comparisons for what the Raiders (7-2) do on offense. They aren’t like the Oregon Ducks, who rely heavily on a rushing attack, and they aren’t the same as quick passing teams seen at Texas Tech, West Virginia or Houston. SOU is Nick Saban’s worst nightmare, a frantic menace to the society of traditionalists, a no-huddle up-tempo raid that begins in the air with brash passes unleashed relentlessly and with remarkable success. With the defense on its toes, SOU will blend some running and short pass plays into the boiling stew before dropping another rock deep inside it. Will there be a trick play? Yep, Howard guarantees it. Will it return next week, next month, or get buried for a year? Howard’s not telling.
Defenses are left to guess.
The Raiders average around 94 plays a contest while most college squads execute around 65, offensive coordinator Ken Fasnacht says. Once this year, they had 110.
“We get another quarter’s worth of offensive output,” Fasnacht says.
The Red Bull system leaves opponents flustered.
“There have been a couple teams and a couple defensive backs actually where we’ll make catches and they just can’t believe it,” receiver Cole McKenzie says. “I heard a defensive lineman a couple weeks ago say, ‘Not this again.'”
SOU’s numbers are disorienting.
The 6-foot-2 Dodge, in his second season with the Raiders, leads the nation in passing yardage (3,839 total, 426.6 per game) and total offense (3,933 total, 437 per game). He has 862 more passing yards than the NAIA’s second-best arm. The 2010 Skyview High graduate has already set new program records for season passing, completions (266), attempts (402), touchdowns (31) and total offense.
The snapshots of his success are astounding. He registered 42 completions against Montana Tech last month and 550 passing yards against Eastern Oregon last week. Against Carroll earlier this year, Dodge recorded 10 passes that went for 22 or more yards — 62, 48, 47, 46, 44, 43, 37, 30, 23, 22.
SOU, which has broken more than 10 team and individual game and season program records, has tallied 498 total points this season, 24 more than the 2001 team’s previous program record. The Raiders’ 5,873 offensive yards broke the old team record by more than 1,300 yards.
“We are gonna stretch the field 100 yards in length and 53 yards and a-third in width, and we’re gonna try to use every bit of it through the passing game first, and then have the running game come in second,” Fasnacht says. “And when it’s all said and done we’ll actually be balanced.”
Howard has dreamed up wild football notions and Dodge has put them into action. The two need each other, like a pilot and co-pilot. Dodge is a quietly confident athlete who transferred from NCAA Division II Central Washington University. Howard is a flamboyant coaching veteran of 38 years. The eccentric style that results from their synergy is electric, and it’s put a buzz back into a program that just two years ago finished the season 3-7.
The Raiders have not ventured into the postseason since 2002 and were picked to finish fifth in the coaches preseason poll. Things changed though. In a hurry.
SOU hosts No. 7 Montana Tech (8-1) on Saturday with a chance to clinch a share of the Frontier Conference championship with a win.
Howard and Dodge both moved to Ashland prior to last season. Dodge says he never felt entirely comfortable at Central Washington. Howard, a Grants Pass native, came from Florida, where he coached Tim Tebow.
“Central was great, but at the end of the year it wasn’t the place for me,” says Dodge, who first caught wind of SOU after talking with a former high school teammate who was going to be a freshman here.
Dodge called Howard.
“It was the second kind of phone call I’ve got like that in my career,” Howard recalls. “When I took the Nease (High) job (in Florida), a young fellow named Tim Tebow called. And so building the program goes hand in hand with finding the gunslinger. So Tebow came to me and won the state title. Dodge came here and all of a sudden we are leading the nation in scoring, we are leading the nation in total offense and we’re playing for a conference title on Saturday.”
The team went 5-5 in 2011. When preseason camp began, eight quarterbacks were competing for the Raiders’ starting job, with Dodge No. 8 on the list. But after an 0-3 start, Howard called upon Dodge, who hasn’t missed a start since.
“When I took this job, I knew we wanted to be exciting, we wanted to be wide open, and we needed a gunslinger to do it,” Howard says.
He’s got one now.
The Offense
Taking a note from the popular comedy film Talladega Nights, Howard refers to his system as the “Ricky Bobby” offense.
“We are going to try to play the game as fast as humanly possible,” Fasnacht says. “We have the need for speed.”
With proven power and accuracy, Dodge has been given the keys to the car at SOU. Each possession, he makes split-second decisions after the play is signaled in, based on how many defenders are stacked in the box. Poise amid the storm is essential.
“He is the master of that,” Howard says. “He is really calm, cool and collected.”
The dagger in Dodge’s arsenal is the deep shot, which Howard defines simply as a pass that gains a good bit of yardage. Howard says Dodge took 18 against Carroll and completed 16. The momentum that the heaves create, Howard adds, can not be underestimated.
“The momentum they create is uncanny,” Howard says. “I’ve done research and some schools attempt that many deep passes in an entire season.”
For SOU, it’s a typical day on the job.
“We’ll take shots on second and short just to keep them on their toes,” McKenzie says.
Potential recruits and coaches have taken notice. Howard says he receives 30 to 50 emails a day from athletes around the country interested in playing for him. He speaks with Division I coaches often. At Florida, he got to know Urban Meyer, who was recruiting Tebow. He shared ideas with Rich Rodriguez when Rodriguez was at Tulane. Here, he’s bouncing ideas around with UO head coach Chip Kelly.
“We actually run more plays than Oregon,” adds Howard, who also coached at Oregon Tech. “We’re sort of creating our own little Oregon here.”
Credit Spread Around
On Tuesdays, Dodge participates in a pass-under-pressure, or PUP, drill. The offensive line has kept him upright all season long, allowing just one sack. Dodge has plenty of time and space to find his top receivers, McKenzie and Patrick Donahue. Both excel at hauling in deep throws in a hurry.
McKenzie has 1,215 receiving yards, the most in SOU history. His 14 TDs are two more than the previous record. Donahue has a school-record 78 receptions, with McKenzie’s 68 close behind.
“Everyone wants to be a play-maker in this offense,” Dodge says.
The system, the quarterback, the linemen and the receivers make for the perfect storm.
“It’s easy to say you want to take shots, but it’s easy to drop back and get sacked and throw to the wrong guy or an incomplete pass,” Howard says. “That really doesn’t do you any good. You are punting after three plays. We have the guys to do it.”
The players love the idea of going deep, Dodge says. The trick is getting used to it. Donahue transferred before last season from Glendale Community College and didn’t grasp the offense until the ninth week.
“When I got here I was dog tired,” says Patrick, a senior from Los Angeles. “The offense was mind boggling. I was all over the place.”
Adds Howard: “It’s no different than a biology or science class.”
To catch up, Donahue, McKenzie and many of their teammates improved their stamina during the offseason. Donahue returned home only for the Fourth of July during the summer.
“I can go fast, but it’s not how fast you can go one play,” Donahue says. “It’s how fast you can go on multiple plays.”
Now, he’s like Dodge: a player who can adjust on the fly.
“There is never just one route you run,” Patrick says. “When a backer does this, you do this. If a corner does that, you do the opposite. I feel like the offense is one now.”
The receivers’ comfort level is evident.
“That is the bonus of this season,” says McKenzie, a senior from Red Bluff, Calif. “We all know the playbook and know what to expect and where to go for certain routes.”
Dodge continues to do his part to get better, too.
“Not all players go to that level where they get up at 6 or 7 or 8 o’clock on Sundays, come in and break film down before he goes to church,” Howard says of Dodge.
Howard and Fasnacht worked together in Florida, where they guided Nease to a 76-23 overall record and broke 30 school records. They won a state title with Tebow in 2005.
“But (Dodge) is the best quarterback I’ve ever been around as far as talent level and being a student of the game,” Fasnacht says.
Off the field, Dodge is easy-going and grounded, teammates say. He’s funny — well, “he’s funny sometimes,” Donahue says. “He’s not as funny as he thinks, but he’s a cool guy.”
Dodge recently visited a local pizza parlor with his parents. Upon entering, he observed members of the 1962 Raider squad that was inducted into the SOU Hall of Fame last month. The former players whom Dodge chatted with came away impressed with his attitude, SOU alumni director Mike Beagle says.
“He’s kind of old-fashioned,” Beagle says. “A great kid.”
The encounter made Dodge think about his own future, which seems to be moving as fast as a jet streaking across the sky.
“It was crazy knowing that 40 years from now I’ll be doing the same thing,” he says. “This is going to be a special year and I feel like we are gonna be the team that comes back in 40 years and celebrates our reunion and gets in the Hall of Fame.”
Reach reporter Dan Jones at 541-776-4499, or email
WHO: Southern Oregon University sophomore quarterback.

  • WHAT: Dodge and the Raiders are demolishing records this year in head coach Craig Howard’s up-tempo offense.
  • UP NEXT: Saturday, Montana Tech at Southern Oregon, 1:05 p.m.

November 07, 2012 2:00 AM
Eagle Point High School band and SOU football
This year the Eagle Point High School pep band has played for Southern Oregon University football. Truly an amazing group of outstanding young people who are proud of their school and their band. We, the SOU fans, are proud of them, too, and thank them so much for supporting our team.
SOU, having joined the NAIA Frontier Conference this year, was picked to finish last but with a win over No. 7 Montana Tech this Saturday at Raider Stadium at 1 p.m., the No. 12 (in the nation) Raiders would earn a share of the Frontier Conference championship. Quite an honor for a very young team with our second-year coach, Craig Howard. This combination has truly brought great excitement to SOU fans.
If you like fast-paced, no-huddle, U of O-style football, come to the game this weekend. This team has four 60-plus-point games. Our quarterback is NAIA national player of the week; leads the NAIA in passing yards per game and total passing, amongst other titles. Our receivers are awesome; in fact, the whole team is. Come join us, the 3,000-plus fans and the EP pep band, to cheer the Raiders on to victory. Go Red Raiders!
— Dana Smith Tuley, Medford

Korean Traditional Dance Troupe to Give Free Performance November 13

Dankook Dancers(Ashland, Ore.) – Dankook University’s (DKU) traditional dance troupe will present a free performance at SOU’s Music Recital Hall Tuesday, November 13 at 7:00 p.m. The program, “Open Our Hearts and Become One,” includes ten dances, each featuring colorful and elaborate costumes and traditional Korean themes.

Read more

SOU Sees Second-Largest Enrollment in its History

FTE Dips, Overall Retention Up, Record Number of Californians

(Ashland, Ore.) – Southern Oregon University’s 40% growth spurt over the last four years has paused to take a breath. Headcount that reached a record 6,744 in fall 2011 dipped to 6,481 this fall, a 3.9% decrease. Although down compared to fall 2011, fall 2012 represents the second-largest enrollment in institutional history. The numbers declined in most categories with the noticeable exception of California students, who reached a new record headcount of 969, a 4.4% increase over last fall.
“Enrollment growth has not been a straight line,” says SOU President Mary Cullinan. “Although this year’s numbers show a decrease, our numbers two years ago were the largest increase in the Oregon University System. The state economy has been on a bumpy road the last four years, and enrollment numbers are bouncing as well. We look forward to stability in state revenue and funding for higher education, as well as more predictability in the enrollment pipeline.”

The following are highlights from fall term 2012 enrollment figures:

  • Headcount is 6,481, a 3.9% decrease from fall 2011, and similar to fall 2010 enrollment of 6,444.
  • Full-time Equivalent (FTE) enrollment is 4,573, 2.2% less than the record in fall 2011.
  • Overall retention of continuing students, who comprise 73% of the undergraduate student body, is up 0.9%.
  • Latino enrollment, which had leaped 82% in the last two years, dipped 0.9% this fall.
  • Transfers from community colleges and other universities were down 19.2%. New freshmen were down 10.3%. New graduate students were down 13.8%.
  • California student enrollment is up 4.4% over last fall, hitting another record. Total non-resident enrollment is up 1.5%.
  • On-campus housing is again close to capacity this fall.
  • International student enrollment dropped 2.9% this fall, but will increase over the remainder of the school year

Looking ahead, construction continues on the new North Campus Village, a 700-bed student residential project that replaces the aging Cascades Housing and Dining Complex. Opening is anticipated in fall 2013. Recruiting has begun for the new Honors College at Southern Oregon University, also scheduled for a fall 2013 launch. The renovation of the Churchill Hall administration building is complete, and offices are being reoccupied. The SOU Science Building is scheduled for a major remodel beginning in the spring.
“We just celebrated SOU’s 140th birthday on November 4,” says President Cullinan, “and we look ahead to a bright future. Certainly, there will be challenges but this is a wonderful university with strong local support, a dedicated faculty, and engaged students eager to learn. Great things are still to come.”

SOU in The News – Nov. 1-5, 2012

140 years of SOU
Mail Tribune November 4, 2012
SOU students help make a movie
Daily Tidings September 3, 2012
John Thomas ’73, successful local car dealer
Mail Tribune November 5, 2012
SOU celebrates 140th birthday
The Siskiyou November 3, 2012
SOU introduces new smartphone app
The Siskiyou November 5, 2012
Photos from the Raiders’ most recent home football game
Steve Babuljak photography November 1, 2012
Second half of OUS Chancellor George Pernsteiner on Five on 5
KOBI 5 November 2, 2012
Raiders football tied for #12 in latest national poll
NAIA November 5, 2012
Men’s cross country team ends regular season ranked #1 in nation
NAIA November 4, 2012
Full version of print clips
The school has seen numerous changes — and name changes — over its proud history
By Paul Fattig
Mail Tribune
November 04, 2012 2:00 AM
The Rev. Joseph Henry Skidmore wouldn’t recognize the old place today.
Back on Nov. 4, 1872, the Methodist minister was the president of the Ashland Academy, which opened its doors to provide a place of higher learning in Southern Oregon.
Tuition per term was $4 for primary, $5 for preparatory, $6 for sub-junior and $8 for senior, according to the 2002 book “Remembering: A History of Southern Oregon University,” written by emeritus professor Arthur Kreisman.
The small academy, which also offered language classes for $3 a term back in the day, would morph into what is now SOU, albeit it took more than a century and nearly a dozen name changes. “We’re a wonderful story about a group of people in 1872 realizing they wanted to have higher education opportunities in the Rogue Valley so the residents wouldn’t have to make that long trek up to northern Oregon,” observed SOU President Mary Cullinan.
The school, beginning with only a handful of students in a small building that looked remarkably like a typical Methodist church, now is spread across 175 acres with nearly 7,000 students. There has been a bit of a tuition hike: Full-time undergraduate tuition is $7,521 per term for residents and $20,238 for nonresidents.
While 70 percent of the student body is from Oregon, students from 35 countries are expected come winter term, Cullinan said. The school has 143 international students.
One of seven institutions in the Oregon University System, SOU consists of the College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Business and the School of Education. It also is the home of Jefferson Public Radio and the public access station Rogue Valley Television.
In addition to the main Ashland campus, classes are available at the school’s satellite campus in downtown Medford, as well as online.
The university, with a total annual revenue of $92.1 million, offers 36 majors and more than 100 areas of study.
“We were founded to train teachers,” Cullinan explained. “That was our original mission. We still train the majority of teachers in Southern Oregon.
“But we also a train a huge number of business owners and bankers — the business community is fueled by our graduates,” she added. “And we are the spirit behind the tremendous arts community in our region.”
In 1935, a faculty member named Angus Bowmer created a summer Shakespeare program that blossomed into the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, one of the largest theater companies in America. Since then, the school has helped create the Rogue Valley Symphony Orchestra and the Rogue Opera.
Some of the school’s history is just plain unusual. For instance, in the summer of 1953, a butterfly collector — lepidopterist — named Vladimir Nabokov rented the home of SOCE professor Arthur Taylor. When he wasn’t hiking the hills above Ashland in search of butterflies, Nabokov worked on a novel, “Lolita,” which was published in Paris in 1955.
The school’s notable graduates include Ty Burrell, Emmy Award winner for his role as Phil Dunphy on ABC’s “Modern Family”; Paulann Petersen, Oregon poet laureate; Mark Helfrich, offensive coordinator for the University of Oregon Ducks football team; Virginia Linder, the first woman elected to the Oregon Supreme Court; and Michael Geisen, 2008 National Teacher of the Year.
Medford resident Mike Finley, 65, earned a degree in biology in 1970 from what was then Southern Oregon College.
“Several of the professors I had there made a huge difference,” he recalled.
A graduate of Medford Senior High School, Finley chose the school because of its proximity to the apartment he was living in above his parent’s garage in Medford. He drove to school in a 1962 Volkswagen Bug.
“It was local, and I didn’t have a lot of money,” he said. “The cost was only $125 a quarter.”
Finley now is the president of the Turner Foundation Inc., based in Atlanta, and the former supervisor of Yellowstone National Park.
“Over the course of my two careers, I have been engaged in negotiations, court settlements and difficult planning issues with opposing parties, many with degrees from Ivy League and more prominent schools, and I never felt lacking in any way,” Finley said of his college education in Ashland. “I had no trouble understanding any of the issues I’ve faced.”
Flamur Vehapi, now 28, arrived in the Rogue Valley from war-torn Kosovo in 2005 to attend Rogue Community College. He transferred to SOU, where he graduated in 2010 with a bachelor’s degree in psychology. He has since earned a master’s degree in conflict resolution from Portland State University and now teaches at RCC.
“I really enjoyed my experiences at SOU, especially because I was very involved with the community there,” said Vehapi, author of the poetry book “The Alchemy of Mind.” He is working on another book of poetry.
Dan Bulkley, 95, who coached track and cross-country at the school from 1950 until he retired in 1979, originally came to the school because of its size.
“It was a small college when I arrived, only about 600 students,” he recalled. “That’s one reason I liked it so much. “We had some great kids over the years — it was a very enjoyable experience,” he recalled. “Every now and then I run into one of my students. It’s always nice to see them again.”
Meanwhile, Cullinan predicts the university will continue to draw students from the region and beyond.
“We are going to continue to grow incrementally,” she predicted. “We have to continue to balance the needs of Oregon students with out-of-state and international students.
“We’ve come a long, long way, but we still have a regional community that understands the importance of higher education,” she added.
Reach reporter Paul Fattig at 541-776-4496 or
A university by any other name
Southern Oregon University started out on Nov. 4, 1872, as the Ashland Academy. The following are the dates of the name changes as the school evolved to become what it is today:
1872: Ashland Academy
1878: Ashland Academy and Commercial College
1879: Ashland College and Normal School
1887-90: Ashland State Normal School
1895-1909: Southern Oregon State Normal School
1909-1926: The school closed because of lack of funding
1926: Southern Oregon State Normal School
1932: Southern Oregon Normal School
1939: Southern Oregon College of Education
1956: Southern Oregon College
1975: Southern Oregon State College
1997: Southern Oregon University
Boom town: Ashland sets a cinematic scene
By Sam Wheeler
Ashland Daily Tidings
November 03, 2012 2:00 AM
Southern Oregon filmmakers are hard at work capturing scenes at an Ashland retirement home for an independent movie called “Redwood Highway.”
The film follows 75-year-old Marie on her 80-mile walk down the renowned stretch of road to lay eyes on the Pacific Ocean for the first time in more than four decades.
“Two sticks “… we need it low,” mutters director Gary Lundgren, motioning to the cameraman before the scene comes together. “Cut! That’s great. … OK, get the leaves “… quick break everyone.”
The whine of a leaf blower drowns out everything until the leaves are rustled to perfection at the entrance to Mountain Meadows Retirement Community, then the actors reset, and the cameras refocus.
“Action!” Lundgren shouts.
Ashland-based production companies Jump Time Pictures, Joma Films and Elsewhere Films are producing “Redwood Highway,” which should be wrapped up and ready for the big screen by July 2013, says producer and co-screenwriter James Twyman.
The crew plans to have a scaled-back version of the full-length film ready in time for April’s Ashland Independent Film Festival, says Twyman, who owns Jump Time Pictures.
Lundgren, who owns Joma Films with his wife, Anne Lundgren, co-wrote the screenplay.
Friday was day nine of a 20-day filming schedule that already has taken the cast and film crew through Talent, Phoenix, Grants Pass and Cave Junction, says producer Gary Kout, who owns Elsewhere Films.
It should be the crew’s last day in Ashland, Kout says.
“The movie is kind of like the greatest hits of the Redwood Highway,” Kout says.
In the movie, the Ashland retirement home will be depicted as being in Grants Pass, where Marie, played by two-time Emmy Award-winning actor Shirley Knight, 76, begins her journey, Twyman says.
The film also will star Tom Skerritt, 79, who is known for roles in “Alien” and “Top Gun.”
Producers would not reveal further details about the movie’s plot.
On Friday, cast members James LeGros and Zena Grey, who play Marie’s son and granddaughter, put in 12 hours outside Mountain Meadows.
“We’ve just discovered that Marie, my mother, is missing,” says LeGros, who lives in both Los Angeles and New York City. “The shoots have been going well, so far.”
LeGros, 50, is a former cast member of “Ally McBeal,” a TV series that ended in 2002.
“This is a beautiful place to shoot,” says Grey of New York City. “I had a chance to take a walk through Ashland. Everything is so colorful right now.”
Grey, 23, is known for roles in “Snow Day” and “Max Keeble’s Big Move.”
Both actors agree now’s a good time to be away from New York, as the city continues to recover from Hurricane Sandy.
The cast includes several actors from the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, and the crew includes a half-dozen interns from Southern Oregon University who are helping behind the scenes, Kout says.
The movie will be screened in about 2,000 retirement homes throughout the United States and Canada before it’s released,” says Twyman, because the story is geared toward an older audience.
“So often, our older generation gets told they can’t do this, they can’t do that,” Twyman says. “We can all do whatever we set our minds to; your age isn’t important. “… The film carries an important theme for a senior audience.”
In 2009, the Lundgrens and Kout collaborated to produce “Calvin Marshall,” a full-length comedy about an unrefined baseball player, which was shot entirely in Southern Oregon.
“We have very supportive communities around here for filmmaking, which is great because most independent filmmaking happens in public,” Kout says.
The movie “Night Moves,” written and directed by Kelly Reichardt, also is being filmed in Southern Oregon. And Reichardt directed the recent movie “Meek’s Cutoff,” which is set in Oregon.
“This region is becoming known as a premier spot for filming independent movies,” says Twyman. “You have having amazing locations, beautiful scenery, the people are friendly “… it’s everything you could ask for.”
Reach reporter Sam Wheeler at 541-499-1470 or email
Home Grown: Ashland Motor Co.
November 05, 2012 2:00 AM
Editor’s note: This is one in a weekly series of profiles on locally owned and operated businesses in Southern Oregon.
What do you do and how long have you been doing it? (John Thomas speaking) We’re a used car sales business. My brother and I have been involved in auto sales for 40 years. I’ve been an auto dealer since 1991, but as Ashland Motor Co. at this current location it will be 10 years in March.
How long have you lived in the Rogue Valley? I went to school at Southern Oregon University, starting in 1969. Then I left the area and moved back in 1985. Bob has lived here for the past 25 years. Bob and I both graduated from South Salem High School.
What inspired you to go into this line of work? Our grandfather was a car dealer in Madras and our dad owned dealerships in Madras, Southern Oregon and the Willamette Valley. My brother and I got into the car business when our dad started a Chrysler/Plymouth/Dodge dealership in Lebanon when we got out of college in 1973.
What decision or action would you change if you could do it again? We probably wish we would’ve done it sooner. We’re happy to be self-employed, and we enjoy being self-employed at this point. But we could have set out on our own sooner.
What’s the toughest business decision you’ve made? For me, it was leaving the security of the family business and striking out on my own in 1985. Part of the motivation was to be on my own and be in a town I grew to love when I was in college. I think my brother had the same motivation, too.
Who are your competitors? We are more designed to be small and have direct interaction as owners with our customers because we don’t have salesmen. We’re an alternative to the very large stores that have a chain of command. With our clientele, we lean toward specialty and imports. … Medford has many independent used car dealers; we’re the only independent lot in Ashland. It was not easy to find a location that worked because new and used car sales businesses are a nonpermitted use in the city of Ashland. Our location is a couple blocks outside the city limits. We had a rough time finding a location, and honestly, it’s the best we could’ve dreamed up.
What are your goals? We usually have an inventory of 35 to 45 cars, but in recent times it has been very difficult to get cars. There are multiple reasons for that happening. Depending on the month, we sell 20 to 25 cars. We’re happy to sell as many vehicles as we can personally to take care of the buyers. The slowdown in the economy affected us, but we’re small enough to adjust to it. It certainly has gotten better in the past year or so. Part of what we like about our size is that we’re able to adapt to what is going on. Eventually, we would like to sell the business and lease the property. We bought this property as undeveloped dirt and designed the lot from scratch.
What training or education did you need? I majored in sociology, so there is no correlation to what we do. For being in the car business — and being self-employed — the best education is being in the car business. We learned the business during our years working at various places, including our father’s.
What’s your advice for budding entrepreneurs? Do a good business plan, really identify what all your goals, challenges and obstacles will be. I would probably start small, so you can have a hands-on approach and not delegate as much so you know what’s going on. It allows you to be more flexible and make changes. It’s probably easier to grow than to shrink. We are sensitive to how stressful it is to look at a car; what we really do is treat people the way we would want to be treated. A vocation doesn’t dictate your character, your character dictates how you run your business.
To suggest ideas for this column, about businesses that are at least five years old, contact reporter Greg Stiles at541-776-4463 or email
Business card
Business: Ashland Motor Co.
Owners: John and Bob Thomas
Address: 1705 Highway 99 N., Ashland
Phone: 541-482-2600
Employees: Four

SOU in the News – Oct. 26 – Nov. 2

SOU professor Michael Parker leads another deer count in Ashland
Daily Tidings November 2, 2012
SOU president named to association board
Mail Tribune October 31, 2012
SOU opens Jose Rivera’s ‘Marisol’
|Mail Tribune October 26, 2012
SOU students ‘Rock the Vote’
October 31, 2012
More SOU cuts looming
KOBI 5 November 1, 2012
Men’s basketball opens the season this afternoon
Mail Tribune November 2, 2012

 Full version of print clips

Deer counters find more critters than last year
192 spotted thus far, with more results due from 2 data sheets
By Vickie Aldous
Ashland Daily Tidings
November 02, 2012 2:00 AM
This fall’s deer count revealed an uptick in the number of the animals spotted in Ashland, even though there were fewer volunteers fanning out across town.
Last fall, 96 volunteers covering 67 sections of the city spotted 187 deer during a half-hour count at dawn. This October, 65 volunteers covered 56 sections and counted 192 deer.
Two deer-count data cards have yet to be turned in, so the count could rise, said Southern Oregon University Biology Department Chairman Michael Parker, one of the organizers. “It will be comparable to last year. We did see more deer, but not a substantially different number,” he said.
The counts are meant to give residents and scientists a baseline of information about deer numbers in town.
Some residents welcome the creatures, while others say they gobble up gardens and landscaping, collide with vehicles and threaten pets and people.
Ashland also has had several incidents of deer — especially does during fawning season — acting aggressively and attacking dogs.
The deer count covers animals that volunteers can spot, not deer hidden in backyards, dense vegetation and other secluded spots.
Parker said the counts can be used to estimate deer population sizes.
He estimated there were 280 to 340 deer in town last fall, and 296 to 356 deer in town this fall.
Parker said this fall’s count revealed that deer numbers remain high in and around Lithia Park and above Siskiyou Boulevard out to Walker Avenue.
Below the boulevard, deer numbers are highest in the North Mountain Park area, he said.
The fewest deer were spotted in Oak Knoll Public Golf Course neighborhoods, which border Interstate 5 and light industrial areas, Parker said.
Parker said there were probably fewer volunteers for this fall’s deer count because interest naturally wanes.
Some fall 2011 volunteers asked to be dropped off the deer count’s email list after a debate erupted last spring over how the count results might be used.
A spring count was canceled in the wake of the arguments.
Parker said organizers plan on having the first spring deer count in 2013.
A handful of residents have advocated hunting deer with bows and arrows in town. City officials have no plans to institute a deer hunt.
Instead, the Ashland City Council adopted a deer feeding ban this year and also allowed higher fences so residents could protect their property from deer.
Past research has shown that deer feeding bans don’t necessarily reduce deer populations in cities, but they can cut down on the risk of deer clustering around feeding sites and reduce deer vs. vehicle collisions.
Biologists and wildlife agency officials generally warn against deer feeding, which can cause the spread of diseases among the animals and habituate them to humans.
Ashland’s deer feeding ban also covers wild turkeys, raccoons, bears, cougars, coyotes and wolves.
People can still feed wild birds, except for turkeys.
People who get caught knowingly feeding wildlife will get a written notification and then must remove the attractant within two days. People who don’t comply can be cited for a Class 1 violation.
The total fine plus fees for a Class 1 violation can reach $435, according to Ashland Municipal Court staff.
People cannot knowingly place, distribute or store food, garbage or any other attractant, such as a salt lick, to draw in deer or other wildlife listed in the ordinance.
Parker said some residents have reported that the deer-feeding ban is working and they are seeing less damage to neighborhood gardens.
Staff reporter Vickie Aldous can be reached at 541-479-8199 or
SOU president named to association board
October 31, 2012 12:00 PM
Southern Oregon University president Mary Cullinan was selected to serve on the American Association of State Colleges and Universities board of directors at the association’s annual meeting Tuesday, Oct. 30, according to a news release.
Cullinan will serve on the board through 2013.
AASCU is a Washington-based higher-education association made up of more than 400 public colleges and universities.
SOU opens Jose Rivera’s ‘Marisol’
By By RobertA Kent
for the Mail Tribune
October 26, 2012 2:00 AM
An angelic revolt, urban chaos and social disorder shape playwright José Rivera’s Obie Award-winning drama “Marisol.” It’s a strange and unusual tale set where real and surreal overlap. Marisol, a young Latin woman, and others must find their way through a violent wasteland as a war in heaven spills onto Earth.
“The play deals in themes of oppression, class warfare, human rights and revolution,” says Jackie Apodaca, theater-arts professor and director of the Southern Oregon University Performing Arts production. “While it was written almost 20 years ago, those issues seem particularly relevant in the days of the Arab Spring, ongoing recession and the Occupy movement. Happily, the production is filled with unexpected bursts of laughter and levity — cracks of light in the darkness.”
“Marisol” will be presented at 8 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays, Nov. 1-3 and Nov. 8-10, and 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 10-11, in the Center Square Theatre on the SOU campus, 1250 Siskiyou Blvd., Ashland.
“I wanted to recreate the play’s emotional feel — urban, crowded, loud,” Apodaca says. “This production gave me the ability to work with students in a different way. We approached it as an experimental piece, very collaborative between director and cast. In ‘Marisol,’ we are playing with reality.
“We’ve worked to contemporize the play from 1993 to the present,” Apodaca adds. “What is scary now? I expanded outward from the play’s original, strong, Catholic imagery to create a more universal parable: How do you hold on to what’s important in your heritage, and what do you let go of?”
Surrealism is a strong element in the play’s set, designed by SOU professor Sean O’Skea.
“Jackie and I felt strongly that the setting should be very presentational and surreal,” he says. “We came up with our ‘tidal wave of doors’ — some functional, others simply adding to the fragmented environment. Audiences can look forward to a lot of surprises onstage with all the wires showing.”
Costume designer Hanna Wisner, a theater-arts major, describes the guardian angel’s battle armor as “designed with modern and ancient elements, which I hope will make her seem more powerful.”
Playwright Rivera was nominated for an Academy Award in 2004 for best adapted screenplay for “The Motorcycle Diaries,” the story of a road trip taken by Che Guevara, an Argentine Marxist revolutionary. Rivera’s other plays include “The House of Ramon Iglesias” and “References to Salvador Dali Make Me Hot.”
Apodaca’s credits include direction of many new plays in New York City and Los Angeles, and she recently staged “The Taming of the Shrew” at Shakespeare Santa Barbara.
SOU’s cast includes Anasazi Bhakti, Jimmy Dix, Blair Fraser, Sierra Faulkner, Kurt Langmeyer, Corey Porter, Alyssa Rhoney, Leah Sanginiti, Danny Walker, Grace Wolcott, Rusty Yamamoto and Kevin Young. Sound design is by Joel Ferrier.
“Marisol” is intended for mature audiences.
Tickets cost $21, $18 seniors and $6 for students. Subscribers to three or more plays receive a discounted price of $17, $15 for seniors. Tickets are available at the campus box office and or by calling 541-552-6348.
Roberta Kent is a freelance writer living in Ashland. Reach her at
If you go
What: “Marisol”
When: 8 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays, Nov. 1-3 and 8-10, and 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 10-11
Where: Center Square Theatre on the Southern Oregon University campus, 1250 Siskiyou Blvd., Ashland
Tickets: $21, $18 for seniors and $6 for students
Call: 541-552-6348 or see
No. 23 Raiders ready for season opener
Raiders ready to embark on tough nonleague schedule
By From staff, wire reports
November 02, 2012 2:00 AM
The Southern Oregon men’s basketball team opens the 2012-13 season with the lofty expectations that go along with being ranked in the NAIA Preseason Top 25 and having the Cascade Collegiate Conference Preseason Player of the Year.
Southern Oregon is No. 23 in the NAIA poll, marking the first time the Raiders have cracked the rankings since February of 2006. With honorable mention All-American Eric Thompson leading a strong corps of returners, the excitement going into this afternoon’s season opener is justified.
“We have a very good group of guys coming back,” SOU head coach Brian McDermott said. “We’ve got three of our top four scorers back and we’ve got our top rebounders back, so we’re really excited about that.”
The Raiders head to the Bay Area to begin the season with a 1 p.m. matchup against Pacific Union today, and a 4 p.m. game against Menlo on Saturday.
McDermott mentioned four top nonconference opponents that await SOU in the next several weeks, as the Raiders will travel to Florida next week to face No. 11 Davenport and No. 16 Embry-Riddle (Fla.). Southern Oregon will then host defending national champion Oregon Tech, ranked No. 2, in a Nov. 20 nonconference game, and NAIA Division I Lewis-Clark State will come to Ashland for the annual Flagship Inn Classic on Thanksgiving weekend.
Thompson set a Southern Oregon freshman scoring record with 587 points last season, when SOU finished with a 17-13 record. He returns for his sophomore year after averaging 19.6 points and 7.6 rebounds per game as a freshman.
“Eric obviously is a very key part to our success; he’s going to be one of the leading scorers and rebounders in our league,” McDermott said. “I think probably the biggest thing about Eric right now is he has got a much better understanding and is much more calm about the game. He’s much more comfortable, and that’s probably not great news for the Cascade Conference because he’s quite a bit better than he was last year.”
Other returning starters for the Raiders include Jeff Bush and Kyle Tedder. Bush returns to the point guard position after leading SOU with 92 assists during his sophomore campaign, and McDermott believes he’s taken a big step forward in the offseason.
“He’s a bigger, stronger version of himself now, and he’s much more confident,” the SOU coach said of Bush. “He’ll be our leader and he’s one of our team captains. He’ll get a chance to do some things that he didn’t do so much the last couple of years as we get him down into the post and take advantage of his size.”
As for Tedder, McDermott calls him “probably the most versatile of our guys. He’s someone who can really get hot, and when he does he can carry a team for a while.” Last season, Tedder started 23 games and ranked third on the team with 305 total points, including a team-high 49 3-pointers.
Terriel Thomas returns for his senior season after averaging 7.8 points and 6.5 rebounds per game last year. After he started 10 games last year, Thomas will go into this season slated as the first man off the bench for the Raiders.
“We feel very strongly about having somebody come off the bench that’s going to deliver a whole bunch of energy and also can score some for us,” McDermott said of Thomas’ role.
Southern Oregon’s top newcomer is expected to be Oregon State transfer David Sturner. The 6-foot-8 junior has “guard skills — he can pass the ball from the outside, he handles the ball very well and he shoots the 3 very well, which plays into what we’re doing this year.
“David will be one of those guys who is going to have numbers in every stat column and is going to help us in a lot of different ways, and he’s a wonderful teammate,” McDermott added, comparing Sturner to graduated SOU All-American Jordan Highland.
McDermott also praised a pair of international recruits, with freshmen Jordan West and Joel Spear, both Australian imports, joining the team. The 6-foot-8 West will serve as one of SOU’s backup post players, while Spear will back up Bush at the point guard position. While the SOU head coach mentioned that Spear will need to some time to grow with the Raiders, he praised his natural ability as a point guard.
“I really like his approach to the game and his understanding of the game,” McDermott said. “He’s had a lot of international experience, and I think that’s helped him. He’s not really scared by anything, and he’s just really calm on the floor. He’s a true point guard, always looking to get his teammates a shot first.”
While the preseason accolades — Tedder and Sturner joined Thompson on the preseason all-conference team — reveal that the Raiders are getting some recognition both conference and nationwide, McDermott stresses the importance of not getting caught up in rankings set before the season starts.
“It means very little on the face of it, because nobody has played any games yet when that got picked,” McDermott said. “But what it does say is that we’ve made some progress in rebuilding this thing the last couple years, and I think people are aware that we’re on an upward swing as opposed to a downward one. Now it’s up to our guys to get out there and prove that.”
That all begins this weekend down in California. While McDermott acknowledges that Pacific Union and Menlo probably can’t compare talent-wise to some of SOU’s upcoming opponents, he says that the gameday atmosphere in both gyms will present a challenge. It will mark the first test for an up-and-coming SOU squad that hopes to prove it can compete with the top teams in the conference and NAIA.
“We’re really excited,” McDermott said. “We’ve got a tremendous group of young men. They’ve been working hard, they get along and like each other, I think they like their coaches, or at least they’re listening to them a little bit. I think it should be a fun year, and we’ll see if we can continue to climb.”