Football is a fascinating beast. It is the quintessential manly-man sport. You take 22 of the most buff, sweaty, and surly men you can find, dress them in tight spandex and spikes, toss them an inflated pig bladder, then watch them beat each other into a bloody, pulpy, mess of men. It’s Freud’s Id complex in an American nutshell – the primitive urge to seek and destroy.
I’m sure I wasn’t the only one wetting myself with excitement when Dave Wolk announced that CSC would FINALLY be getting a football team. It’s a huge step forward for the college, which is well on its way to becoming one of the hottest colleges in New England. The addition of good ole’ football couldn’t have come at a better time, and there has never been a better time to be a Spartan.
But this is about more than just football. It’s about pride, too. In recent years, Castleton students have really been given something to be proud about. Years ago, I remember having conversations with my former high school peers from Middlebury, easily one of the most overly hubristic and undeserving towns I’ve ever stepped foot in. They’d poke fun at Castleton, branding the entire institution a bunch of social “retards” and “rednecks.”
No really, that’s what they said. That’s how they think in that kingdom.
But anyway, fast-forward to now, and not only do I hear whispers around town about what a great school Castleton has morphed into, but that they actually feel threatened that CSC may one day become — gulp — a university.
That’s a rumor for another time.
But it really makes you stop and think, doesn’t it? Where will CSC be in another five, ten, or 20 years? Things have changed so much since I was younger -10 to 15 years ago — when my family and I would make trips down to CSC from Orwell to swim in the pool from time to time. That was long before the new fitness center, FAC, dorms, academic buildings, snowboard park, and CSC’s newfound popularity.
We know that football, a new campus center, and maybe/hopefully an on campus lounge/pub/concert venue/café are on the horizon. But what’s next? Personally, I’d LOVE to see a hockey rink on campus. We’ve got one of the best teams in the division, but they still have to commute 20 miles to Rutland for “home” games. Think about that for a second. Hockey and football ON CAMPUS. I’m getting tingles just thinking about it.
And parking! Oh Lord won’tcha buy me some new parking spaces! It’s inevitable that CSC will need to create more to combat students’ biggest complaint each year. It’s just a matter when, where, and how much.
I know CSC loves to sell itself as the “small college with a big heart,” but one really has to wonder how much longer we can keep this school at a fit and healthy population. There are just so many good things going for it right now: academics, athletics, and a student body that is changing with the times. CSC will, thankfully, never be one of those 20,000-plus schools. It will always be smaller than most, which is one of the reasons misanthropes like myself find comfort in it.
But it’s growing. Sooner or later it’s bound to burst at the seams, and we may see even more cars on campus than we do now. The addition of football means more applicants, more competition with other schools, and a greater spotlight on the college that used to enjoy its privacy.
Is that really such a bad thing?