Latest News from Sul Ross August 2, 2013

    Sul Ross State University will host the University of Texas El Paso football team during a 12-day pre-season training camp, Aug. 8-20.
    The Miners will practice at the Jackson Field facilities, highlighted by an intra-squad scrimmage Saturday, Aug. 17. Players will stay in the Lobo Village residential complex and use the Morgan University Center dining services. Team meetings will be conducted in the Warnock Science Building.
    The UTEP contingent is expected to arrive in Alpine Thursday, Aug. 8, with workouts to begin the following day.
    A one-year agreement, which could be extended into a three-year contract, was reached between Sul Ross and UTEP earlier this year. UTEP had conducted its pre-season camp at New Mexico Tech, Socorro, for the past 14 years, but a scheduling conflict forced a change of venue. The City of Alpine helped to defray part of UTEP’s cost with use of hotel-motel tax revenues.
    “Sul Ross and the Alpine community are pleased to host the University of Texas El Paso football program,” said President Ricardo Maestas. “We are proud of our campus, our facilities and our community and we welcome this opportunity. I am confident of our ability to fulfill expectations and hopefully extend this agreement.”
    Nate Poss, UTEP assistant athletic director for football operations, worked to negotiate the agreement. Poss, a Big Spring native, received a Master’s degree in Education from Sul Ross in 1989, and served as an assistant football and men’s basketball coach while completing his degree. Poss was a member of the Lobo football coaching staff when James Showers, the father of Miner quarterback Jameill Showers, was on the team. Jameill Showers was born in Alpine, and his mother, Shauna, played basketball at Sul Ross.
    Poss noted that Sul Ross had contacted UTEP several times over the past few years in regard to hosting the camp. This fall, New Mexico colleges are starting classes a week earlier than in the past. This change would result in just a five-day training camp due to NCAA regulations had UTEP chosen to return to Socorro.
    “New Mexico Tech has done a good job for us, but moving 155 people for just five days was not feasible,” said Poss, who added that Sul Ross’ interest and available facilities were deciding factors.
    “I had not been there for 12 or 13 years, so I didn’t know about Lobo Village (the residential complex that opened in 2006),” he said. “Lobo Village is so nice and I thought this (Sul Ross) would be a good place to hold camp. That, plus the available classroom space in Warnock Science Building, enabling us to all meet together, was a huge selling point. Everything is within walking distance.”
    Poss also cited the welcome from the Sul Ross administration and coaching staff.
    “Dr. Maestas and Coach (John) Tyree (have indicated) they really wanted us to be here.”
    Poss said that Alpine’s size and location make it an ideal setting.
    “It’s a smaller town with a higher elevation and few distractions. It’s a great place to hold training camp.”

    by Steve Lang, News and Publications

    Sul Ross State University student Jim Wyche, Midland, spent several months “mending fences” with the Marathon Basin pronghorn population.
    Actually, Wyche’s McNair Program project studied how fence line modifications affected the movement of pronghorn –  both resident and relocated -- between pastures.
    The Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program is designed to encourage first generation, low-income students and minority undergraduates to consider careers in college teaching as well as prepare for doctoral study. Students who participate in the program are provided with research opportunities and faculty mentors.
    Wyche’s project, “Utilization of Fence Modifications by Pronghorn in the Marathon Basin, Texas,” was mentored by Dr. Bonnie Warnock, Sul Ross associate professor of Natural Resource Management. By using trail cameras at 23 different fence crossings, Wyche’s research monitored where pronghorn were most likely to cross.

Field cameras catch pronghorn crossing modified fences in Marathon Basin. (Photos Courtesy Jim Wyche)

    Fences are a deterrent – sometimes fatal – for pronghorn. Unlike deer which routinely jump fences, pronghorn resist crossing them at all. Different types of fences can be erected to make crossing easier, and during Wyche’s research, three types were studied: four-strand barbed wire, three-strand barbed wire and net wire.
    “There seemed to be more passes in the corners,” Wyche said. “Pronghorn tended to follow the fence to the corners, then crossed under to go to the next pasture.”
    Trail camera photos showed up to nine pronghorn going under a fence at one time.
    Wyche’s study began Jan. 31, shortly after the release of pronghorn captured in the Panhandle, and concluded in mid-April. During the previous October, he assisted with the modification of some pasture fences in the Marathon Basin.    
    The modifications were installation of “goat bars,” stringing the bottom strands of wire through lengths of PVC pipe. Wire was also raised 16-18 inches on 100-yard stretches of fences to provide wider openings and easier access for crossing.
    “We found the goat bars weren’t used,” Wyche said. “The pronghorn (based on photographs) would go down to another crossing.”
    Wyche noted that raising the fence wires generated considerable activity.
    “The resident pronghorn got used to them, and when the (translocated) pronghorn were released in January, they found them with ease.”
    Easier access through fences may be one of the reasons for an increased survival rate in the Marathon Basin.
    Wyche, who is a senior Natural Resource Management major, hopes to present his research on-campus at the McNair-Tafoya Symposium in October, as well as at the Texas Chapter of the Wildlife Society in Austin next March.
    He also hopes to undertake another McNair project before graduating in August 2014.
    “I had fun, and I encourage any student who is interested and eligible to apply for the program,” Wyche said.
    “McNair offers a great opportunity for student research, and at this stage of my (academic) career, there would be no chance for this opportunity for research anywhere else than at Sul Ross.”
    Named in honor of the astronaut who died in the 1986 space shuttle explosion, the McNair Program was established at Sul Ross in November 2007. It is funded through the Department of Education’s TRIO programs.    For more information, contact Mary Bennett, McNair Program director,  (432) 837-8478 or

    Seventeen cadets – nearly double the spring total – are enrolled in the fall 2013 Law Enforcement Academy at Sul Ross State University.
    Classes began Monday (Aug. 5) and will continue through Dec. 6. Sul Ross presently offers two day academies, from January-May and August-December, as well as a night academy at Fort Stockton. The next night academy, offered Monday-Thursday evenings from 6 -10 p.m., will begin Jan. 6, 2014.
    Sul Ross LEA director Lloyd Dragoo noted that a memorandum of understanding between Sul Ross and Midland College has been a factor in the enrollment increase. The agreement enables qualified cadets to enroll in all three Sul Ross academies and receive financial aid as well as earn up to 12 semester credit hours in criminal justice through Midland College.
    “This agreement provides both financial and educational incentive to enroll,” said Dragoo. “In addition, word of mouth advertising for the level of training received at the Academy and an ever-growing job market are other factors.”
    Since Dragoo became director of the LEA in November 2011, Sul Ross cadets have maintained a 100 percent first-time pass rate on the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (TCOLE) examinations.
    Cadets and their hometowns are: Jaime Aguirre, Jr., Alpine; Victor Alonzo, Jr., Pecos; Kassandra Conners, Alpine; Kossandra De Leon, Guymond, Okla.; Esmeralda Davilla, Marfa; Leroy Granado, Alpine; Robert Harding, Alpine; Michael G. Jurado, Alpine; Chad A. Kretschmer, San Angelo; Cassandra Martin, Presidio; Estevan Marquez, Marfa; Jason Mcghee, Iraan; Michael Grant Miller, Georgetown; Kenneth Rayos, Barstow; Nathaniel E. Sanchez, Sierra Blanca; Colby S. Scudder, Alpine; and Yahaira Uranga, Midland.
    For more information, contact Dragoo, (432) 837-8614 or

    Sul Ross State University football fans are urged to make their plans for Arlington as the Lobos will battle Eastern New Mexico University Friday, Sept. 13 in Cowboys Stadium.
    Registration deadline is Monday, Aug. 26. A detailed schedule, registration/payment and information about accommodations is found at
    A pre-game social, stadium tour, lunch and post-game party are among the special events planned in conjunction with the Lobos-Greyhounds contest in storied Cowboys Stadium.    
    “We encourage Lobo fans, alumni and friends to register now to ‘Run with the Pack’ to Arlington,” said Karen Brown, Director of Alumni Affairs. “Playing football in Cowboys Stadium represents a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and a number of events have been planned to make this occasion truly memorable.”
    Round trip bus travel has been scheduled, departing Alpine at 8 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 12 and returning from Arlington on Saturday, Sept. 14. Rooms have been reserved for Lobo fans for Thursday and Friday evenings (Sept. 12-13), with Lobo fan headquarters at the Crowne Plaza Arlington Suites, 700 Avenue H East.
    Scheduled events are:
    Thursday, Sept. 12
    8 a.m.: Buses leave Alpine from Sul Ross Campus.
    5-10 p.m.: Registration at Crowne Plaza Suites (Lobo Fan Headquarters).
    8-11 p.m.: Welcome social and pep rally at Crowne Plaza.

    Friday, Sept. 13:
    10-11:30 a.m.: Sul Ross private tour of Cowboys Stadium.
    11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.: Pre-game lunch.
    1-4 p.m.: Sul Ross vs. Eastern New Mexico football.
    6:30-7:30 p.m.: Honorary Committee thank-you reception, Cacherel Restaurant.    
    7-11 p.m.: Post-game dinner/dance party, Cacherel Restaurant.

    Saturday, Sept. 14
    9 a.m.: Buses depart for Alpine.

    Fans may purchase tickets for any or all of the events. In addition, purchase of a $100 tax-deductible Honorary Committee ticket will sponsor a Sul Ross student’s attendance at the game. In recognition of their support, ticket purchasers will be invited to a special reception Friday evening (Sept. 13) prior to the post-game party, and be listed in the Lone Star Conference program, to be distributed to all ticket holders at Cowboys Stadium on Sept. 12-14.

    Sul Ross State University’s Athletics Department will host a Century Club appreciation reception and kick off the 2013-2014 membership drive on Thursday, Aug. 8.
    The 5 p.m. event will be held in the Pete P. Gallego Center, Room 129. Refreshments will be served and the public is invited to attend. For over 40 years, the Century Club has provided financial support to Sul Ross athletic programs.
    “The event has several purposes,” said John Tyree, Sul Ross head football coach and director of athletics. “We wish to show Lobo athletics’ appreciation for the long-standing support of existing Century Club members, as well as to extend a public invitation to new prospective members and to unveil new membership packages with expanded levels of support.”
    In addition to the annual $150 Lobo package, new Scarlet ($400); Silver ($1,000); Platinum ($3,000, including a one-year endowment); and Diamond ($5,000, including a two-year endowment) packages have been added. All packages offer benefits of parking stickers, free use of the Sul Ross swimming pool and free admission to all Lobo sporting events. Each package also includes Sul Ross athletic memorabilia and clothing.
    “Lobo athletics could not move forward without the tireless efforts and generous support of the Century Club membership,” said Tyree. “Managing our resources is one of our biggest challenges. Faced with increasing costs, our department strives toward entrepreneurial revenue sources.
    “Sul Ross athletics operates as a self-supporting auxiliary unit without funding from the state government or the university’s general fund,” he said. “At the same time, our operations directly support the mission of the university and have a positive impact on the economy of the university and community. As we move forward, we continue to invite and welcome all members of the Sul Ross community to invest in the future of Lobo athletics.”
    The Century Club endowment allocates funds for recruitment, team travel, awards, graduate assistantships, coaching staff salary support, equipment and supplies, coaching clinics, academic scholarships and other related athletic expenses.
    For more information, contact Janice Moss, (432) 837-8226 or