The Oberlin Review

Periods Still Taboo in Sports

Jackie McDermott, Sports editor

September 30, 2016

People who get their periods know the drill. Strategically hide tampons inside pocket of gym bag. Don’t wear white shorts. Chalk poor performance up to a stomach ache if a coach asks, but later confess the real reason to teammates. Or, don’t mention it at all. The menstrual cycle is often referred to as sports’ last taboo. Athletes compete while menstruating at some of the biggest competitions of their careers but shy away from any discussion of the impact their cycles have on athletic performance. Anyone who hosts a monthly visitor can attest to the fatigue, cramping, bloating, weakness, mood swings, tearfulness and anger it can bring. While severity varies from person to person, for many menstruating athletes,...

Individuality Ignored in NFL

Darren Zaslau, Sports Editor

September 23, 2016

Until recently, “twerking” and “football” have probably never been used in the same sentence. Thanks to Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown, they are now. In the team’s, 38–16 win over Washington in week one of the 2016 NFL season, Brown gave a performance to remember with both his athletic and dancing abilities. After burning down the sideline past Washington cornerback Bashaud Breeland to catch a 26-yard touchdown pass, Brown showed off his twerking skills in the end zone in celebration of his second touchdown reception of the game. Unfortunately for Brown, his moves cost him a steep price, $9,115 in fines. To add insult to injury, the Steelers were also penalized 15 yards on the ensuing...

Protests Power Positive Change

Jackie McDermott, Sports Editor

September 16, 2016

I’m not here to comment on whether or not Colin Kaepernick is a patriot. Why? Because I’m white. As Kaepernick puts his knee to the gridiron and closes his eyes during those first trumpeted notes of the national anthem, he contemplates stereotypes, fears, anxieties and obstacles that I could never fathom. He pictures the faces of people that looked just like him, splashed onto TV screens as the newest tragic casualties of police brutality. My America is not the same as Kaepernick’s America. The same goes for so many white fans and journalists calling his gesture everything from disrespectful to a heinous affront to veterans and current service members. Why are these onlookers so outraged about one football...

Mental Health Initiatives Reveal Where Student Opinion Heard Loudest

Editorial Board

September 4, 2015

Laundry prices and ObieID password changes notwithstanding, few things at Oberlin are as widely maligned as the College’s mental health resource infrastructure. While Student Health Services as a whole receives a significant amount of criticism from students year after year and while the College makes regular efforts to respond in due course, the way Oberlin handles mental health issues seems to consistently receive low marks. These resources are understandingly in high demand, since any environment in which academic pressure and personal stresses collide necessitates an effective outlet for seeking help. In line with the issue’s persistence, Dean of Students Eric Estes’ Aug. 25 email to students — which foc...

Shifting Sports Culture

Tyler Sloan, Sports Editor

May 8, 2015

As the end of my sophomore year winds down, and my tenure as Sports editor comes to a blissful conclusion as I move to News, I have been reflecting on how the Oberlin Athletics Department has evolved over the last two years. Playing on the women’s varsity soccer team, I have experienced firsthand what it really means to be part of a budding program. The team won only one game in 2012 and scored seven goals throughout the entire season. Statistically, my first year was not significantly better, with just four wins and 12 goals to our collective name. But this year, with an 11-person sophomore class, complemented by seven very talented first-years, our young team has started to evolve. Of course, this has not been w...

Tuition Hike Bears Consequences for Oberlin’s Accessibility

Editorial Board

May 8, 2015

At the “Occu-party” on the grounds outside the Cox Administration Building last Friday afternoon, students protested the recently approved tuition hike for next year, asking, “Can you afford to stay silent?” The Board of Trustees recently approved a $2,400 increase in tuition for the 2015–2016 school year, detailed further in last week’s front page story (“Students Meet with Frandsen After Protests,” The Oberlin Review, May 1, 2015). The increase would disadvantage underprivileged communities, furthering the inaccessibility of an Oberlin education. Increasing sticker prices aren’t an Oberlin-specific phenomenon; tuition prices at public universities have quadrupled in the past 35 years, while averag...

BuzzFeed Controversy Highlights Risk of Advertising in Journalism

Editorial Board

April 18, 2015

BuzzFeed Editor-in-Chief Ben Smith came under fire this week after he deleted an article written by staff writer Arabelle Sicardi which critiqued Dove Personal Care’s latest ad. In her April 8 post, published with the subheading, “Once again, soap is acting condescending,” she criticized Dove’s viral video, “Choose Beautiful” (“Dove Has Women Walk Through Doors Labeled ‘Beautiful’ Or “Average’ In Latest Campaign,” BuzzFeed, April 8, 2015). The advertisement, which is the latest video from Dove’s “Real Beauty” campaign, questions society’s definition of beauty and pushes viewers to see themselves as possessing the “Real Beauty” Dove advocates. Sicardi took issue with the company...

No. 1 Pick Up in Air

Nate Levinson, Sports Editor

April 17, 2015

The NFL Draft is less than two weeks away, and my favorite time of the sports year has officially begun. The MLB season started last week, but until the draft is over, baseball — though I love it so — won’t have my undivided attention. After months of rumors that Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston was the lock to be the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ pick at No. 1 overall, Ron Jaworski reported on Monday that his sources told him Oregon QB Marcus Mariota would actually be the first pick in the draft. Of course, on Tuesday, NFL insider Adam Schefter reported that Winston would be the team’s top choice if the draft were today. All that these conflicting reports mean is that it’s pretty likely that the Bucs h...

Badgers Burned by Refs

Tyler Sloan, Sports Editor

April 11, 2015

There are few aspects of sporting events as frustrating as a bad referee call that changes the outcome of a crucial game. The University of Wisconsin Badgers men’s basketball team is now all too familiar with this annoyance following a close 68–63 loss to the Duke University Blue Devils in the NCAA Division I Championship. After the dramatic conclusion to March Madness, sports news outlets flooded with a slow-motion video of a play that sparked controversy and potentially cost Wisconsin the national title. With just one minute and 26 seconds left in the final quarter of the year, the ball flew out of bounds off the hands of the Badger’s Bronson Koenig and forced a turnover — or did it graze the fingertips of ...

NCAA Losing its Edge

Tyler Sloan, Sports Editor

March 13, 2015

The NCAA is losing its edge in collegiate athletics. Once the brand of excellence and legitimacy, the organization now makes more headlines for its faulty policies than for progressive or inclusive reform. From the NCAA’s arbitrary regulations concerning the inclusion of trans athletes to its obscure eligibility requirements, rules are often muddled in ambiguous language that result in high-cost misunderstandings for some college athletes and athletics departments. Most recently, NCAA critics have expressed dissatisfaction over the case of a Baylor University football player, Silas Nacita, who was disqualified from the top-10 team. Nacita rose to prominence after Sports Illustrated published a story last December ab...

Westbrook on Fire

Nate Levinson, Sports Editor

March 6, 2015

For the past month, Russell Westbrook has been by far the best player in the NBA. In the month of February, the 26-year-old star guard averaged 31.2 points, 10.3 assists and 9.1 rebounds per game, all while leading the Oklahoma City Thunder to a 9–3 record and single-handedly keeping them in the race for the eighth playoff seed in the Western Conference. Westbrook notched three consecutive triple-doubles to end the month and joined Hall of Famer Oscar Robertson as the only other player to average 30 points, 10 assists and 9 rebounds in a calendar month. Since the All-Star break, he’s averaging a triple-double. Not too shabby. On the season, Westbrook leads the league in scoring average, is second in player efficienc...

Williams Controversy Highlights Perils of Fame in Objective Journalism

Editorial Board

February 20, 2015

Media lenses turned inward last week when NBC announced its Feb. 10 decision to suspend Nightly News anchor Brian Williams. Revelations that the Emmy Award–winning news personality had repeatedly misrepresented his experiences reporting on a 2003 Iraq War mission left the news network reeling, trying to assess damage done to the network’s credibility. Williams delivered an on-air apology on Feb. 4 for what he called a “mistake in recalling the events of 12 years ago,” but his words were quickly overshadowed by a media cycle determined to scrutinize stories from throughout the anchor’s Nightly News tenure. On the same day as the suspension, revered newsroom comedian Jon Stewart announced that he would be l...

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