Independent Student Newspaper of UW Oshkosh Campuses

The Advance-Titan

Independent Student Newspaper of UW Oshkosh Campuses

The Advance-Titan

Independent Student Newspaper of UW Oshkosh Campuses

The Advance-Titan

Titans take over basketball- Men’s

[media-credit id=188 align=”alignleft” width=”300″][/media-credit]The UW Oshkosh men’s basketball team had a busy week with three games over that span. It went 2-1, picking up wins against UW-Whitewater and UW-Eau Claire and falling to UW-Platteville.

@ UW-Whitewater 2/7

The Titans entered Wednesday’s contest with UW-Whitewater tied with the Warhawks for third in the conference.

The first half was a highly contested one as neither team could get a lead larger than seven points. Sophomore Adam Fravert came out firing as he scored six of the Titans’ first eight points. Fravert finished leading the Titans in scoring in the first half with eight points.

The Warhawks used a guard-heavy offensive scheme in the first half, as UWW junior guard Andre Brown scored 18 first-half points to keep the game close.

After a back-and-forth first half, the Titans led the contest at the break, 33-32.

After Whitewater made some adjustments, they held the lead for most of the second half, but the Titans didn’t allow them to get too far out of range. As the Titans faced their largest deficit of the game with just over nine minutes left to go, Fravert made a driving layup to trim the lead to five points.

UWO junior and leading-scorer Ben Boots then took the game into his own hands. Boots scored 14 points over the final eight minutes and 55 seconds to guide his team to the 69-67 victory.

Five missed free throws over the last five minutes of the game gave Whitewater a shot to tie or take the lead during the final seconds, but a last-second shot attempt was off the mark.

Vs. UW-Eau Claire 2/3

UWO hosted the Blugolds of Eau Claire on Saturday, staving off a late comeback effort by the visitors to take a 77-72 victory. The Titans started out on fire, hitting their first five shots, with a pair of threes from junior Brett Wittchow, and Fravert adding one of his own.

After building a 13-0 lead over the first five minutes of the game, Oshkosh relied on more strong shooting to carry a 14-point lead into halftime. After some adjustments during the break, Eau Claire dialed up the pressure on defense, forcing eight second-half turnovers. This allowed the Blugolds to close the Titans’ lead to just one point with 15 seconds left in the contest.

Stellar free-throw shooting by Boots ensured UWO a victory down the stretch.

Wittchow led all scorers with 25 points, taking six shots from behind the arc and making five of them. He added four rebounds and three assists. Boots contributed 17 points, shooting 10-12 from the free-throw line.

Fravert made some key athletic plays, swinging the momentum in the Titans’ favor. Fravert had a key chase-down block late in the first half to stifle the Blugolds’ first-half comeback attempt. He contributed 15 points while shooting 7-12 from the field.

UW-Platteville 1/31

The Titans lost a tough game in front of the home crowd last Wednesday against UW-Platteville, 68-62. The Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference is largely regarded as the best conference in Division III, and it showed as both Oshkosh and Platteville were ranked as they did battle last Wednesday.

Pioneer freshman Quentin Shields scored 19 points off the bench to propel the team to a victory over the Titans.

UWO sophomore forward Jack Flynn led all scorers with 21 points, shooting six of nine from the field and hitting 9 out of 10 free throws. After struggling from beyond the three-point line, the Titans had to make a conscious effort to get the ball to Flynn in the post.

Ben Boots poured in 14 points and added seven rebounds, three assists, and two steals throughout the game. After his (and the rest of the team’s) three point shots weren’t falling, UWO had to change up their game plan and get Flynn the ball down low.

“We’ve gotta play through Jack all the time,” Boots said. “He is the best post player in this country so we’ve gotta get him as many touches as we can no matter if our shots are falling or not.”

Flynn had to credit the depth of the WIAC as Platteville is right there at the top, challenging Oshkosh and Stevens Point for the lead.

“It’s just a great conference,” Flynn said. “Every night out you have to bring your ‘A’ game otherwise you won’t come out with a win.”

Flynn’s solid night ended with him sitting in double figures in both points and rebounds.

Boots also praised Platteville and the rest of the WIAC.

“It’s the best conference in the country in Division III” Boots said. “Every night out is a battle; you know they’re going to give you their best game and that’s just what you get every night out of the WIAC.”

Head coach Pat Juckem was excited the team was able to play inside out but wanted to see more of their three point shots fall.

“We have to play inside out,” Juckem said. “We had some good looks and we have guys who are capable of shooting it but we didn’t shoot it well at all from three tonight.”

“Our biggest bugaboo right now is our turnovers,” Juckem said. “We had 19 turnovers tonight and 13 in the first half. ”

The Titans will be in action again on Saturday for their last home game this season against UW-La Crosse and will travel to Stevens Point on Wednesday to try to take down the nationally ranked Pointers.

Shooting it for Luke

Although the Titans lost the game against Platteville, there was an overshadowing event that was bigger than basketball going on. Luke Peters has been an integral part of the team over the past four years, providing inspiration and giving the team something and someone to look up to. Juckem has especially taken Peters under his wing.

“He’s been inspiring,” Juckem said. “He’s a reminder of how fourtunate we all have it.”

Throughout the game, T-shirts and raffle tickets were sold with the proceeds going to the Fox Valley Brain Coalition.

Peters is a freshman at St. Mary Central High School in Neenah and was adopted by the team through the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation. Boots is one of the athletes who has really taken to Peters and his cause.

“Luke’s meant a lot,” Boots said. “All the things that he’s gone through really puts a lot of things into perspective for us and reminds you that even after a tough game like this, we really have to take note of the bigger picture.”

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Neal Hogden, Managing Editor
The College of Letters and Science at UW Oshkosh is proposing to increase teaching loads in 2019-20 in an effort to overcome a $1 million budget shortfall. Under the plan, announced Wednesday morning by email to the COLS faculty and instructional academic staff, full-time professors on curriculum modifications must teach at least 21 credits in 2019-20 versus the 18 credits they currently teach. The plan comes as part of a series of budget cuts to deal with declining revenue, decreasing state funding and lowered enrollment numbers. Advocates of the move say it will allow the University to continue to offer a variety of classes while not laying off any full-time faculty, while opponents say it will hurt student research opportunities and worsen faculty morale. A three-year recovery plan that was introduced last year called for the COLS to cut $1 million during the 2019-20 fiscal year. According to COLS Interim Dean Colleen McDermott, this is the second year in the three-year plan. “The first year of the cut is this year, academic year ’18-’19, and the academic units cut 30 percent of their total share of the cut,” McDermott said. “The second year, ’19-’20, we’re supposed to do 50 percent of the cut. Then the third year would be 20 percent. Right now, we’re working on the cuts we need to make for ’19-’20, and that’s where this $1 million number comes in. That’s about half of the total cut that the College of Letters and Science had to take.” Multiple factors have played a role in the need for budget cuts across the UW system. Declining enrollment rates have hurt UWO and other UW colleges in recent years. According to an article released by the Chancellor in early 2018, UWO’s undergraduate enrollment has fallen by 1,624 students, a 15-percent drop, from 2012 to 2017. However, in fall 2018, freshman enrollment was up nearly 200 students. In 2013, Gov. Scott Walker enacted a tuition freeze that prevents state colleges from raising the price of their tuition. If re-elected in November, Walker has already said he would extend the tuition freeze at University of Wisconsin campuses for four more years. That would mean the state universities would be facing 10 years of tuition freezes. This, as well as close to $500 million in cuts to the UW System budget, has crippled UW Oshkosh and other UW schools financially in recent years. McDermott said the college has worked to do the best it could to cut the budget without harming students’ experiences at UWO. “We’ve tried to be as lean and as efficient as possible while still getting students through the curriculum and allowing them to have a successful academic career.” History department chair and Interim Director of Student Research and Creative Activity Stephen Kercher said the added workload for professors in COLS will hurt the students more than the teachers. “Faculty are going to have even less time than they normally have to work with students on research,” Kercher said. “The only way that student research succeeds at a University like ours is if faculty are able to have the time they need to do research on their own and with students.” Kercher said the change in policy could also be very harmful to the research that is done within COLS. While professors might be frustrated by the policy, students are ultimately the ones that are damaged by it, he said. “We’ll have to teach more,” Kercher said. “We’ll survive. We’ll research less. Students are the ones who are going to be hurt.” Kercher said he believes a change in the policy that determines the teaching load at UW Oshkosh is tricky and potentially harmful. “It’s like messing with the college DNA,” Kercher said. “Research is very much a part of what professors at the college do. We have a very strong program of student research and we’ve been making gains. We’ve been improving and catching up to some degree [with] some of our sister institutions in the UW system that I’m afraid that changing the teaching load of faculty in our college will deal a very big blow.” Interim Provost and Vice Chancellor John Koker said this is just the COLS way of doing its part to help the college regulate its budget. “Decreases in enrollment and cuts in state subsidies over the last five years have lowered our revenue,” Koker said. “We need to bring spending in line with revenue. The College of Letters and Science is working to meet their reduction with as little impact on students and course offerings as possible.” In a statement released to COLS faculty and instructional staff, McDermott said this should be a temporary change and after the budget has been regulated, the staff could go back to having lighter teaching loads. “I fully understand the hardship that this change may present to faculty and instructional academic staff,” McDermott said. “We have exhausted every other route of cost cutting for the college short of laying off faculty or closing programs. Please remember that this is a temporary adjustment to teaching loads and the COLS dean’s office is committed to a return to the original spirit of the curriculum modification policy once University ‘right sizing’ has been accomplished.” UWO Chancellor Andrew Leavitt will be holding budget open forums next week.

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