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Don’t forget UTB’s athletics legacy

We all know that UTRGV is a new institution built upon the foundation of two legacy institutions that no longer exist, UTB and UTPA. So why did I recently–and several times before this last incident–read in The Rider that “with a year of experience under their collective belts, Vaqueros women’s soccer looks to improve on the 2014 season”? The Vaqueros women’s soccer team did not have a 2014 season, this is their inaugural season. The UTPA Broncs had a 2014 season, as did the UTB Ocelots, but this is the first season for the UTRGV Vaqueros.

The article referred constantly to UTPA’s last year’s season with no mention of the UTB program’s 2014 season. This, in my opinion, does a great disservice to the UTB women’s soccer team, which has been in existence since 2007. The new UTRGV program is built not only on the UTPA program, but also on the UTB program, which has a history of excellence, highlighted by their 17-1-3 record and trip to the national tournament in 2011. Yes, the new UTRGV soccer (and total athletic) program is located on the Edinburg campus, but it is composed of players from both the Edinburg and Brownsville campuses and represents this entire new institution in its first year.

I understand that there are many challenges in changing our collective mindset and thinking of the Edinburg and Brownsville campuses as parts of one institution, rather than the separate institutions they once were. But it seems to me that reporters for that one institution’s official student newspaper have a special responsibility to help us all do precisely that, think as one. This is UTRGV’s first year of existence, built on the foundation of two great institutions, both of whose legacy needs to be recognized and honored. Hopefully, this will be the case in future The Rider articles. Oh, and by the way, in Spanish doesn’t “os” denote males, so aren’t our female athletes correctly referred to as Vaqueras, not Vaqueros? Just sayin’. Judith D. Walton, Ph.D. Emerita Professor of Kinesiology, UTRGV

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