After the past couple of Cougar football games, I think I know what we could all use and that's a little break from the pigskin and present you with an issue that hits, both metaphorically and literally, a little closer to home.
Over the summer, university president Elson S. Floyd made a proposal to the Pullman City Council about creating a university district on College Hill. For those of you who haven't been to Pullman in a while, think south of Stadium Way, east of Grand Avenue and north of downtown.
The city council decided to endorse the measure but wanted to wait until school was back in session so students could voice their opinions, probably something Floyd was trying to avoid - and he had good reason to want the proposal passed without a peep from the student body.
The proposal included increased enforcement of city ordinances, a parking permit program for people inside the proposed district and better street lighting. Save for the increased enforcement, all sounds like a pretty decent deal right?
Oops, forgot one little key detail. Under normal circumstances, only Pullman Police officers could respond to noise complaints in this part of town because it is not part of the university. University police could only be called in for assistance. Part of extending the university district means that not only can Pullman Police and WSU officers now respond to a complaint, they can also treat the houses as if they were on university grounds and enter the premises with no previous complaint.
This, my friends, is a big load of bull pucky. We all know this is meant to crack down on parties on weekends. They can just walk right up to a house they hear a lot of noise coming from and decide that they want to take a look around, and I'll be a son of a monkey if most of the time; they aren't going to find a bunch of modestly dressed kids listening to rag time music sipping a cola. We all know what they are going to find.
Luckily though, the city council has decided to delay the vote on this proposition since over 100 people showed up at their meeting Tuesday to protest the vote. Pullman mayor, voice of the Cougars and professor Glenn Johnson said he'd like to get some more input from residents.
What bothers me most about this, though, is not busting up parties - we all know that, in order for all the parties in Pullman to occur every weekend, a few must be sacrificed to the lambs - it's the fact that the police can just walk right up to your door, have a knock and decide they want to take a look around.
Last time I checked, a home was pretty much the only place any of us could go without being searched against our will. There is a certain amount of privacy that comes along with living in a private residence. If you choose to have a beer while underage or even indulge in a little marijuana, fine, as long as you're not bothering the people living around you. Should this proposal pass, it doesn't matter if you weren't bothering anybody, you were bothering the boys in blue and they just won't allow a bit of college age fun.
Worst of all, there could be joint police patrols. Why is this bad? Don't all police have the same stick up the same tush that all police have? Well, not really. From experience, Pullman Police generally have better things to worry about, like patrolling the rest of town. If they are coming to your house for a noise complaint, they will likely tell everyone underage to leave and tell the residents of the apartment/house, "Don't do this again" and wag their finger at them.
WSU police have nothing else to do. They get a certain satisfaction out of writing tickets and issuing citations, the same satisfaction a Texas judge probably gets from handing down the death penalty. Part of their job description must be "Stop all fun of any kind being had by students during the one time in their life they can be irresponsible."
The Pullman City Council would be wise to decide that the university district is a poor idea. They don't have enough jail cells in the city to house all the people WSU police would arrest with a smile.
Before I get to the picks, a brief aside on the drawing of a comparison between the football team and the battle for Stalingrad in the Second World War. I have only this to say:
Well done. I think the coaches could've done a better job not allowing their "soldiers" to throw themselves under the bus (German tank, I suppose, in this analogy) last Saturday and really should taken some of the blame. That loss was a devastating one and the commanders need to take some of the blame, not just let their soldiers take all the hits. But at least the football team doesn't have to eat sawdust to survive.
On to the picks!
Sorry, I can't help but ham it up for the Cougs. Now that the perfect season is no longer a possibly, the wild predictions can abound.
I just have this to say about Cal and Maryland. Calling it a Terrapin doesn't make it more manly. It's still a turtle.
Osos de Oro 45, The Yertles 21
Stanford followed up their semi-upset of Oregon State by getting spanked in Tempe. Well done, now go play a TCU team that beat Stephen F. Austin like a drum.
Sharp Edged Amphibians 38, Arbor Day Foundation 10
Purdue's mascot is frightening. Their football team is not.
Phil Knight University 48, Really Hot Water 21
There are absolutely no casinos in the great state of Utah. Rick Neuheisel isn't going to win, but at least be won't lose money.
Joseph Smith's Boys 28, Westwood Bears 10
I'm counting on Oregon State in this match-up, gives me some hope for the Cougars game in Hawai'i considering I'll be there and would like to see a win.
Lodge Builders 27, Warriors (formally with Rainbows) 13
Mike Stoops is well on his way to getting to that bowl game he so desperately needs to stay employed.
We Love Lute Olson 31, Does Lobos Mean Crazy 20
The most fickle fans in the Pac-10 get themselves a guaranteed win this week, even though their students don't actually know who their quarterback is (his name is Rudy Carpenter).
No Real Academics 51, Las Vegas College 17
Ohio State and USC. Buckeyes and Trojans. Tradition and tradition. Two teams I absolutely cannot stand. Not nearly as bad as Notre Dame, but I still don't like them.
The Old Greeks 34, Poisonous Nuts 20
Last week I thought it would be a blowout. I was wrong. This week I think it will be a blowout. I won't be wrong.
OOOOOOOOOOklahoma 48, Locker's Lardy-Dardies 10
(Lardy-Dardy: characterized by excessive elegance)
And now, your Cougar football match-up.
Baylor 28, Washington State 25 says old friend and New Mexico State Aggie Aaron Karr
Washington State 14, Baylor 13 says Cougar sports lover and (in the words of Dickie V) sensational sophomore Allie Demopoulos
Washington State 18, Baylor 10 says the other roommate and old guy Jason Wendlandt
Since the game has been moved up to tonight, expect it to be fairly windy from the approaching hurricane. That means the ball stays on the ground. That means Baylor, with a very mobile quarterback and good rushers hold the advantage. I'm hoping Lopina can give the Cougs a nice change of pace and lead them to a victory.
Cougars 17, Bears 10
Here's hoping everyone in Texas stays safe and the hurricane passes swiftly with little damage. Everyone in Pullman wishes you the best.
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