Tag Archives: LSU football

NCAA proposes $2,000 increase for athletes

by Troy Gaulden

NCAA president Mark Emmert‘s proposal to increase grants to student-athletes by $2,000 has been approved in order to cover the full cost of attending college.

LSU chancellor Michael Martin disagrees with the proposal | Photo by Troy Gaulden

According to Louisiana State University chancellor Michael Martin, each conference will now vote on the matter, and it is expected that most will accept the proposal.

But Martin, a former chancellor at New Mexico State, disagrees with increasing student-athlete grants, because not all schools can afford to do so.  Martin says this will widen the gap between the haves and have-nots.

“I’m not sure that the $2,000 serves a particularly good purpose for those of us who can afford it, and it most certainly will have a negative impact on those who can’t,” said Martin.

Also, with conference realignment and television network deals, the landscape of college athletics is shifting.  The Southeastern Conference added Texas A&M and the University of Missouri, a move that Martin backs.

“Both Texas A&M and Missouri are AAU universities, which means that they are academically very highly regarded.  They both have strong traditions in the sports we play.  They are within reach of our smaller teams being able to travel successfully there.”

LSU chancellor Micahel Martin on SEC expansion:

LSU is cheering for Chico

by Troy Gaulden

To help pay for LSU Cheerleading associate head coach Chico Garcia’s medical expenses, LSU Cheerleading established Cheering for Chico, a website that shares updates on Chico and allows anyone to post to Chico.

T-shirt design by Tiger District

Also, T-shirts can be purchased through the website, with all proceeds going toward Chico’s fund.  LSU spirit director Pauline Zernott says they are striving to raise around $150,000.

Although Chico is currently hospitalized, he still manages to coach the LSU cheer squad with the use of FaceTime on an ipad.  The cheerleaders aren’t surprised by Chico’s determination.

“It definitely shows how strong of a person he is, and you know it takes a very strong-willed and determined person to sit there and know they might not be able to move or might not be able to walk for a few months or years even.  But, that hasn’t stopped him from what his ultimate goal is and that’s making us better as a squad,” said LSU cheerleader Courtney Begnaud.

According to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division, the 19-foot boat struck a private pier, severely injuring Chico.  Chico is currently paralyzed from the chest down after suffering a spinal cord injury in the cervical region.  There were four others on board.  Two people were released from the hospital, and two children remained hospitalized.  The cause of the accident is currently under investigation.

UPDATE (Oct. 5):

According to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, charges were filed against Jack Riffle for his involvement in the boating accident.

Riffle was charged with driving a boat while intoxicated, reckless operation of a moving vessel and four counts of first-degree negligent injury.

Chico is still paralyzed from the chest down.  He is currently in the Shepherd Center, a rehab hospital in Atlanta that specializes in spinal cord injuries.