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Sports Profiles

A look at the unspoken awards on Oscar night

The 70th Annual Academy Awards have come to a close. As is so disappointingly typical of this awards ceremony, there were few surprises: only once did I leap off my cushions screaming, "What the hell!" and that time it was more in anger than in genuine surprise.As expected, "Titanic" cleaned house, grabbing the Oscar for eleven of its fourteen nominations, including Best Director (silly looking James Cameron) and Best Picture.

OPINION | 03/25/1998

Banks' newest novel triumphs

The moon had set, and the last stars, like silver nails, had pinned the canopy overhead." The sky is always on the verge of falling in Russell Banks' new novel, aptly titled Cloudsplitter (Harper Collins, $27.50). The title refers to Tahawus, a mountain, that towers over the home of the equally imposing hero of these pages, Captain John Brown, the messianic abolitionist whose death at Harpers Ferry sparked this nation's Civil War.Although Banks' "work of the imagination" does nothing to diminish the aura that surrounds this historical figure, he does go to considerable lengths with his fictional John Brown to show the debilitating personal consequences of greatness.

NEWS | 03/25/1998

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Professors remain hesitant to deflate

When a faculty committee issued a report in February detailing rampant grade inflation, the findings received national attention and had more than a few undergraduates fearing that the time when As and Bs flowed like wine was about to end.Nearly two months and dozens of departmental meetings later, it is looking increasingly unlikely that an across-the-boards rollback in grades will be happening any time soon.Although some professors seized upon the report as an opportunity to toughen standards, there are others who have expressed reluctance to take strong action to combat the trend."People say, 'Why should we punish our students?' or 'Why should we be the first to move?' " Wilson School Dean Michael Rothschild said, explaining why departments are generally not advocating immediate action.Rothschild said the school has held several meetings in recent weeks involving both faculty and students, but the conversations have not resulted in any kind of consensus as to what, if anything, should be done.He added that the school did send a letter to Dean of the College Nancy Malkiel explaining that it would be extremely difficult for the Wilson School to adjust grading standards this year, or even next year.To deflate or not to deflate?The Classics Department has reached a decision to take action about grade inflation, said chair Josiah Ober.

NEWS | 03/24/1998

Men's lax undergoes adjustments in faceoff specialists, midfielders

Following the men's lacrosse team's 9-7 loss to Virginia March 7, head coach Bill Tierney spoke of a forthcoming "rededication of Princeton lacrosse." Considering that the Virginia game was the Tigers' first loss in almost two years, there was no need for Princeton to undergo a complete overhaul.Tierney, however, sensed that certain changes needed to be made, and his major adjustment involved the faceoff specialists.

SPORTS | 03/24/1998

Track competes at outdoor competitions over vacation

After a successful indoor season in which both the men's and women's track and field teams won the Heptagonal Championships ? a feat last accomplished in 1981 ? the Tigers hope to produce similar results this spring.In order to prepare for the Ivy League outdoor season, Princeton traveled down to Florida International University in Miami this past weekend for the Adidas Invitational.The trip was the Tigers' first outdoor track and field competition of the season, and individuals fared well.The women took four first places and eight second places, while the men also had four top finishes and two seconds.In the 1,500 meters, junior Betsy Packard and sophomore Sarah Hendricks finished first and second, respectively, and sophomore Karen O'Neil ran the 3,000 in 10 minutes, 49.52 seconds, good for second place. In the airIn the field events, sophomore Shawneequa Callier topped her competition with a leap of 1.78 meters in the high jump, while junior Cecily Wilson triumphed in the long jump with classmate Aiyanna Burton right behind.On the men's side, several All-Ivy selections from the indoor season surfaced in the Florida sun looking up to form.Junior Justin Niedzialek finished second in the 5,000 with a time of 15:08.90, while sophomore Mich-ael Spence managed a fourth-place finish in the same event.Junior Dan Shimooka captured the top spot in the pole vault and junior Royce Reed was the top finisher in the javelin throw.

SPORTS | 03/24/1998

Slowly but surely

Students can take one big, collective sigh of relief. The initial storm of the grade inflation debate has passed and it appears that the University will not, after all, rush headfirst into a sweeping inditement of its current grading system.

OPINION | 03/24/1998