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The Sunflower

Starstruck: Be a Shocker, not a stalker

Sports Column

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There is no “us and them.”  The men’s basketball players are just like any other student, except with more national attention. 

The Wichita State men’s basketball team has been featured in numerous media sources across the nation following the success of the 2012-13 season, including newspaper headlines, ESPN, T-shirts and even the cover of Sports Illustrated. 

With this in mind, meeting one of the players for the first time could be intimidating. One might not know what to say or do when coming face-to-face with a Final Four contender. 

Being star-struck at first is typical, as most people do not get the opportunity to meet a celebrity athlete who has been on national television. 

Here are a few tips to help you stay calm and keep your composure.

First, remember that the players are people just like everyone else. Despite being recognized across the nation, you can still talk to any one of them as you would the person sitting next to you in biology class.

 Just because they have appeared on television doesn’t mean they behave like Hollywood celebrities. These young men are college athletes who attend this university with you.

Second, the players always appreciate more fans. When you express interest in the team or their recent success, the players are more than willing to talk to you. Never hesitate to congratulate a player or give a high-five for a recent win. 

Third, basketball isn’t all they know. They go to school, take classes and have a major, just like you. If you share a class or major with one of the players, there’s plenty of common interest topics just waiting to be discussed.  

Last, just chill out when you see them. Running into Ron Baker or Cleanthony Early may make your heart skip a beat, but try to remember that they are student athletes. As talented as the players are on the hardwood, they are here to get an education. 

Following these simple steps should help control the overwhelming feeling of being star struck. 

Keep calm and Shock On.

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