The following is a republished press release and not an article written by The Cortland Voice … to submit a community announcement, email Peter Blanchard at [email protected].
CORTLAND, N.Y. — SUNY Cortland’s basketball teams will look to fill Corey Gymnasium on Friday night by honoring an all-time fan favorite: College President Erik J. Bitterbaum.
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They’re hoping President Bitterbaum Appreciation Night turns out to be as popular as the College’s top administrator has proven to be among students. As an incentive, the first 100 students to show up at both the women’s and men’s basketball games against Buffalo State will receive a free, limited edition t-shirt honoring President Bitterbaum.
The action tips off at 5:30 p.m. with the women’s game, followed by the men’s game at 7:30 p.m. In addition to the free t-shirts, two halftime contests will encourage fans to “Dress Like President Bitterbaum” in exchange for prizes. Red Dragon supporters also can receive commemorative posters and small cardboard cutouts of the president’s face.
“SUNY Cortland students always talk about how invested President Bitterbaum is in the College, taking the time to attend events and remember names,” said Jaclyn Lawrence ’12, the College’s assistant director of athletics. “We thought this would be a fun way to thank him, while also cheering on our basketball teams at the same time.”
Now in his 13th year as president, Bitterbaum has built a strong bond with students, alumni, employees and community members thanks to his outgoing personality and sharp memory. A biologist by trade, he has guided major campus transformations during his tenure and has helped expand the College’s role in the community — all while regularly attending athletic events and staying connected to the classroom.
Friday’s games against Buffalo State mark crucial conference match-ups that could have major SUNYAC playoff implications for both Red Dragon teams. The men’s squad currently sits tied for fourth in the 10-team conference, while the women’s team is tied for fifth. The top six teams qualify for the league’s postseason tournament.
Here's the t-shirt design:
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