Archive for March, 2015

Dr. Connie Ledoux Book named provost and dean of The Citadel

March 26, 2015


Citadel News Service
26 Mar 2015

A respected senior leader from Elon University will become provost and dean of The Citadel early this summer. The MilitaryDr. Connie Book College of South Carolina announced today that Connie Ledoux Book, Ph.D., currently the associate provost of academic affairs and a member of the senior cabinet at Elon, will begin leading academics at The Citadel in July. Book began at Elon University in 1999 as an assistant professor, eventually becoming a tenured professor, department chair, and associate dean, before advancing to her current roles there.

“Dr. Connie Book is a student-centered educator with exceptional talent for academic leadership. During her time at Elon, she has earned the respect of her colleagues as a strategic and thoughtful administrator who strives to advance the university mission and strategic plan for the benefit of students,” said Elon University President Leo M. Lambert. “We will miss her many contributions but wish her well as she applies her talents in this new leadership milestone at The Citadel.”

Book, who has a strong record for strategic planning and execution, currently provides leadership for 12 areas of Elon University including the undergraduate and graduate curriculum, general and experiential education, faculty and staff leadership and professional development, and strategic integration of a residential campus. Her portfolio of responsibilities touches more than 6,000 students and 700 faculty members.

“It is an honor and exceptional opportunity to serve The Citadel as its next provost,” Book said. “I look forward to working with Gen. John Rosa, the president of the college, and the entire campus community to build upon The Citadel’s deep and longstanding tradition of excellence in higher education and building principled leaders.”

Book holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Louisiana State University, a master’s degree in education from Northwestern State University and a Ph.D. in journalism from the University of Georgia. She has served as a board member for the Agency for Public Television in North Carolina since 2008 and is also a member of the board for the North Carolina Open Government Coalition.

“We are pleased to welcome Dr. Connie Book as our new provost and dean of The Citadel,” said Citadel President Lt. Gen. John W. Rosa. “She not only has the leadership and academic experience we sought, but she clearly embraces our mission. She is the perfect fit during this exciting time at The Citadel.”

The provost is a vice presidential position responsible for all matters pertaining to the academic functions of the college and is the second-ranking official at The Citadel. As the college’s chief academic officer, the provost provides leadership in all academic areas, including curriculum and instruction, research and scholarly activity, accreditation, admissions and financial aid, and academic support services.

Book will replace Brig. Gen. Samuel M. Hines, Jr., Ph.D., who joined The Citadel as provost and dean of the college in 2007 and will be retiring from that position at the end of the 2014 -15 academic year. He will continue at the college as a professor of political science and leadership studies.

“Dr. Sam Hines has helped lead The Citadel to national prominence during his tenure as provost and dean of the college,” said Rosa.

Hines’ contributions to higher education have spanned a 45-year career. Prior to assuming the provost position at The Citadel, he was a professor and administrator for the College of Charleston for 34 years where he served in numerous positions including founding dean of both the School of Humanities and Social Sciences and the School of Languages, Cultures and World Affairs; vice president for Departmental Affairs; and associate provost.


1st step in makeover of The “Heart” of Summerall Chapel complete

March 19, 2015


March 18, 2015
First phase now complete and debuting at service on Sunday

CHARLESTON, SC – The heart of The Citadel’s historic Summerall Chapel is getting a complex makeover. The first part of a three-phase plan to rebuild the chapel’s organ is now complete and extensive sound tests to voice the organ have been conducted. Now, in its new, hand crafted console, the organ will debut with its new look and sound during the 9 a.m. worship service on Sunday, March 15, as part of Corps Day Weekend.

History of the organ
When the chapel was built in 1936, a 34-rank pipe organ was designed and installed. Throughout the years, more ranks (complete sets of pipes) were added until there were a total of 64 in 1965. The magnificent organ provided the music for thousands of cadets and visitors at religious services and weddings over a period of 50 years. It was last played in 1985, when that instrument suffered a total failure and an Allen electronic organ took its place.

The pipe organ was left in place for years, becoming further dilapidated due to the humidity and floods of Hurricane Hugo and the college’s Lowcountry marsh surroundings. In 2005, it became apparent that the Allen organ needed repairs. The Citadel Class of 1963 began an effort to raise money to restore the music in Summerall to its original grandeur by building a new organ console and adding refurbished pipes from the original one. What was to be a project lasting eleven years or more got underway.

Phase one of the renovations started in July of 2014 and cost $300,000. It was paid for by money raised by the Class of 1963, combined with $200,000 from the Chapel Activity Fund. The cadet chaplain controls the fund which consists of proceeds and donations from weddings and other events at Summerall Chapel.
“The Chapel Activity Fund was established to provide money specifically for the upkeep and enhancement of the chapel, and there’s nothing that I can think of that would enhance the chapel more than to have the organ restored,” said Chaplain Joel Harris, chaplain to the Corps of Cadets.
Spearheading the restoration effort is Mackay Salley, ’63, along with Associate Provost for Academic Affairs Mark Bebensee and Chapel Music and Director of Choral Activities Nancy Lefter.

“The rebuilding of the console included digital components for the stops which will be used until the funds can be raised to connect the pipes,” said Bebensee, who plays the organ for many of the college’s events and services. “That will allow classes in the future to expand the organ, long after this three-phase restoration is complete.”

For more information on The Citadel organ or to make a donation, please contact The Citadel Foundation by, or by calling Laura Jordan at (843) 953-9078.

Thank you to cadet James McManus, regimental public affairs NCO, for his assistance in writing this article.

Ninth-inning heroics lift Citadel past Winthrop

March 19, 2015
Stephen Windham has been a hot hitter for the Bulldogs

Stephen Windham has been a hot hitter for the Bulldogs Staff reports
Mar 18 2015 9:56 pm

Drew Ellis produced his second game-winning hit in as many nights, doubling home pinch runner Shy Phillips to cap a two-run uprising in the bottom of the ninth as The Citadel posted a 6-5 win over Winthrop on Wednesday at Riley Park.

The Citadel (12-7) won its seventh in a row by rallying against Eagle closer Joey Strain. Austin Mapes led off with a single and advanced to second on a passed ball. With one out, Stephen Windham singled to center for his third hit and second RBI, plating Mapes with the tying run. Ellis followed with a liner into the gap in left center that split the outfielders and rolled all the way to the wall. The speedy Phillips scored easily to give the Bulldogs their eighth straight win over their Upstate rivals. Winthrop (14-6) lost for only the third time in its last 14 contests. Roger Gonzalez had four hits for the Eagles.

Tuesday night against Georgia Southern, Ellis smashed a solo homer in the bottom of the sixth to break a 3-3 tie and give The Citadel an eventual 4-3 victory. The freshman first baseman had gone hitless in four at bats before his ninth inning heroics on Wednesday against Winthrop. The Bulldogs trailed since Winthrop put up four runs in the top of the third against starter Thomas Byelick to take a 5-1 lead. Byelick settled down after that and went 4 2/3 innings, striking out eight before giving way to six relievers. The last of that group, Brett Tompkins, worked a perfect ninth and was credited with the win.

The Citadel scored twice in the third, aided by two walks and two hit batters, to pull within 5-3. It stayed that way until the eighth when the Bulldogs got a run closer. Pinch hitter Mike Deese singled and scored on a throwing error by third baseman Brad Kaczka on a potential inning ending double play grounder.

The bullpen came through with several clutch pitches to keep the Bulldogs in the game. Ross White retired John Menken with runners at the corners in the fifth and Jacob Watcher also stranded runners at first and third in the sixth. Kevin Connell allowed a leadoff single in the seventh but induced Mark Lowrie to ground into a double play, and Zach Lavery got out of a two-on situation an inning later. Windham’s three hits raised his batting average to a team-leading .426 while Mapes also had three hits. Walsh drove in two runs with a sacrifice fly and bases loaded walk and has a team-best 21 on the year.

The Citadel returns to action Friday at 3 p.m. when it opens a three-game series with UMBC at Riley Park. The time was changed from the original 6 p.m. first pitch due to the possibility of a doubleheader on Saturday.

Citadel player DaSean Daniels: ‘Support has been overwhelming’ since collapse at practice

March 18, 2015
#48 DeSean Daniels is on the mend.

#48 DeSean Daniels is on the mend.

Photo by Marjorie Maxon

By Jeff Hartsell,

The row of staples starts near the front of DaSean Daniels’ skull, running back over the top of his head and behind his right ear to form a ‘C’. That’s where doctors cut out a piece of his skull to remove a blood clot that formed after a vein burst inside his head a week ago. “I’m getting a lot better every day,” Daniels said Monday while sitting up in bed in his room at Medical University Hospital. “I have headaches now and then, but that’s about the worst of it.”

Daniels, a freshman football player at The Citadel, remembers little about the March 10 practice when he collapsed and nothing about the two-hour emergency surgery he underwent that night. “I just remember waking up in the hospital and wondering what was going on,” said Daniels. The 21-year-old Daniels was facing the second fight for his life in two years. The 5-10, 220-pound fullback from Lawrenceville, Ga., had already survived a bout with bone cancer in 2013. Now, he faced a comeback from a life-threatening brain hemorrhage. “He’s the toughest guy I know,” said DaSean’s father, David Daniels. “The most resilient kid I know. I tell him these things only happen to a special person, because 90 percent of us would not make it through the things he has.”

Since collapsing near the end of a spring practice session last week, DaSean has advanced from critical to serious and then fair condition, moving out of intensive care at MUSC last Friday. He was able to listen to the Bulldogs’ spring game on Saturday via the internet. The windowsill in his hospital room is crowded with get-well cards, and his cell phone has been flooded with messages from well-wishers. “It’s been overwhelming,” DaSean said. “There are cards all over the place, a ton of visitors. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter have been blowing up, and it really means a lot.”

‘Dire circumstances’

Medical University neurosurgeon Dr. Alex Vandergrift performed the surgery on Daniels last Tuesday. “His recovery has been very good,” Vandergrift said Monday. “A lot of patients with this type of injury are in high-speed accidents or tremendous falls and have additional brain injury that is not present here. Gee whiz, he’s doing great. He came in under very dire circumstances, with pretty significant neurological dysfunction, so he’s a very fortunate young man.”

Vandergrift said DaSean had a “blood clot between the inside lining of his brain and the surface of the brain.” The size of the clot makes him believe that the injury was related to something that happened during practice that day. “It’s not the sort of thing that happens spontaneously,” the doctor said. “It’s usually reflective of a deceleration injury of some sort. With the size of the clot, it’s very reasonable to say that it was related to the activity that was going on that day. It was not something that could fester for a week or two or something like that.”

The timeliness with which DaSean was treated was key, Vandergrift said. “The athletic staff on the field did an excellent job in recognizing what was going on and getting him here in emergent fashion,” he said. “Our ER staff did a good job diagnosing the problem, and I happened to be in the hospital doing another operation. Our team was able to get him into the operating room quickly.” Said Citadel coach Mike Houston, “Things fell into line for DaSean that night, however you want to believe that happened. I have my opinion.”

‘Another hurdle’

While DaSean was in surgery, his mom and dad were making the long drive from Atlanta, knowing their son faced another life-threatening situation. “You’re just thinking, this kid has been through a lot, and now he has one more thing to get through,” said David Daniels. “That was the only thing I was thinking as a parent — here’s another hurdle for this kid, who does not deserve it.”

DaSean cleared his first hurdle in 2013, when he was diagnosed with Ewing’s Sarcoma, a rare bone cancer that affects mostly young people. DaSean, then a linebacker, had played a season at the U.S. Naval Academy prep school with a discomfort on the left side of his torso. After the season, an MRI revealed a tumor on one of the ribs on his left side, and he underwent a course of chemotherapy. “The biggest thing was being told I might not be able to play again,” DaSean said. “But they told me from the beginning it was curable, so I never really had a doubt I would come through.”

The cancer prevented DaSean from returning to Navy, so he signed with The Citadel last year and redshirted last season. He moved to fullback this spring and was running with the first-team offense when he was injured. Since then, the family has been overwhelmed by the support they have received. “It means the world,” David Daniels said. “People I’ve never crossed paths with before have been coming by. The Citadel brotherhood is awesome. Graduates from as early as the Class of 1963 have come by and let us know he’s being thought of. We had a lot of visitors from Atlanta this weekend, and all his brothers from The Citadel, the cadets and players. It’s been a ton of support and it’s been awesome.”

DeSean's dad David

DeSean’s dad David

Now, DaSean faces a future that might not include football. Houston said DaSean’s place with the Bulldogs and at The Citadel remains secure, even if he does not play again. At mid-term, he’s got a 3.8 grade-point average with seven A’s and a B, majoring in business administration. “We’ll ensure that he’s taken care of,” Houston said. “He’ll have the opportunity to graduate from The Citadel and remain part of our program so that he retains all of our academic services.”

Meanwhile, DaSean will take the next steps on his road to recovery. Doctors are scheduled on Thursday to reattach the part of the skull they removed last week. “Then, hopefully, I’ll be out of here soon,” DaSean said. And then he’ll start the rest of his life — again. “From the beginning, my prayer has been that he’ll have the same options he had last Sunday, before this happened,” David Daniels said. “But no matter what, I know he’ll be a shining light for people who go through the same thing.”

DaSean Daniels Update

March 12, 2015
DaSean Daniels

DaSean Daniels

an update from campus

Isn’t is strange how things can change for someone’s life in the blink of an eye. No matter your age, your status, or how good of a condition your body is in; life can deal you a deadly blow at any time. The 19 year-old running back for The Citadel Bulldogs, DaSean Daniels coming out of a huddle collapsed on the football practice field, and did not recover immediately. He could not be revived, EMS was summoned, and he was rushed to The Medical University of South Carolina where he was taken into emergency surgery to drain blood to relieve the pressure on his brain. As of last evening, DaSean was progressing a lot faster than expected. He has become very conscience, and is responding to the doctors and what they ask him to do. One Doc said the kid gave him a “thumbs up”.

Coach Mike Houston; “The play before DaSean collapsed was a normal football play. He had no direct contact to the head, and there was nothing during the day that was different from any other practice. In talking to the players in the huddle with him, it seems like everything was completely normal with him up until the moment he collapsed. Andy Clawson tried to revive him and examine him. When it became clear that something potentially was serious we called 911 immediately and they were here very quickly. The surgeon did tell me that it was very fortunate the we were close to The Medical University, and that he received medical care quickly. “

DeSean Daniels survived a bout with bone cancer that was diagnosed when he was at the ‘U. S. Naval Prep School’ in 2013. He underwent chemotherapy to treat a tumor on one of his ribs. DaSean was cleared by his doctors to play football, but the Naval Academy would not clear him after the cancer to attend the Academy, and he signed to play football with The Citadel.

DaSean’s father David Daniels: “We looked at the tape from practice, and the play right before it was a regular football play. A defender dragged DaSean down from the side. The doctors do not know exactly what happened, but they said it could have been a situation where the vein in his head became detached maybe due to hypertension. The episode had nothing to do with the cancer. From everything the doctors are telling us – this is a random out of the ordinary deal that happened. He will be fine. He is going to get through this.”

Coach Houston; “ There was a lot of shock among our players. It hit us all because that is something you do not see often. I don’t think I have ever been so scared for a kid in my life. He is a bright young man, a bright spirit. You hate to see anyone in that situation, so it is tough.’

DaSean’s parents and family are all here and some of the football players and Cadets from his company came by to see him last night. His parents want to be very open with the players and friends, and keep them informed on how he is doing. Mr. David Daniels said he is confident his son will recover.

Citadel football player hospitalized after collapsing during spring practice

March 11, 2015

Our thoughts and prayers are with DeSean and his parents.

March 11, 2015

CHARLESTON, SC – A Citadel football player is hospitalized after collapsing during practice yesterday. Freshman DaSean Daniels collapsed on the field between plays. He was taken by ambulance to the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) where he underwent emergency surgery to relieve pressure on the skull. Daniels is currently in stable condition and progressing well in the MUSC intensive care unit. His parents, who are from Lawrenceville, Georgia, are by his side.

“DaSean is an outstanding young man from a great family,” said Citadel Head Football Coach Mike Houston. “The entire Citadel football community is praying for him and his family. He is an important part of The Citadel and our football family. We’ll support DaSean and his family during this difficult time.”

Daniels graduated from Greater Atlanta Christian High School in 2012 and joined The Citadel football program in the fall of 2014. He plays fullback and is majoring in business administration.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with DaSean and his family,” said Citadel President John W. Rosa. “The Citadel is a family, and we will ensure that DaSean receives the best possible care and that his parents are fully supported.”

No further details are being released at this time.

Retired Citadel mascot, General, brought joy to thousands

March 4, 2015
General surrounded by some of his admirers.

General surrounded by some of his admirers.

Dedication of The Citadel Bulldog Memorial planned for March 14


CHARLESTON, SC – The Citadel lost an important member of the family this week.  Retired bulldog mascot, General Thomas Curtis Metsker* passed away in the arms of his caretaker on Feb. 26, late in the evening. He was born June 18, 2003, and was 11 years old.

General served the college faithfully as it’s mascot from 2003 – 2013, with his co-mascot Boo IX by his side. The pair formally retired in the fall of 2013 at a ceremony held during one of the South Carolina Corps of Cadets military dress parades.  At that time, two new bulldogs who had been raised and trained with General almost since their birth, took over the official duties.

“General was a great ambassador for The Citadel whether it was with the cadets, with fans at the hundreds of events he attended in a decade, but also for the organizations for which he helped raise funds,” said Mike Groshon, assistant athletics director for facilities and caretaker of the bulldogs. “And, he was my best friend.”

General lived in a house on campus with Groshon, Boo IX, and the newest mascots General Robert P. Carson (G2) and Boo X.  “Everyone on campus looks forward to seeing them. It’s almost impossible to just walk by and not pet them,” said Logan Hester, Regimental Public Affairs Officer. “Cadets loved watching General being driven around in his personal golf cart and seeing him at games. They are an important part of the culture here.”

The Citadel began using bulldogs that belonged to alumni as the mascots starting as far back as 1928. It wasn’t until the Class of 2003 created the mascot program and raised $1,000 toward the program’s startup that the college actually owned and cared for its mascots full time. A mascot hadn’t actually lived on campus since the 1950’s. Private funds and donations provide sole support for the mascot program and Cadets volunteer to work on the mascot detail.

“Our class recognized the value of the mascots to the morale of the corps as well as the joy they brought to alumni, fans and the Charleston community. The bulldogs are a symbol of strength for The Citadel but they are also gentle, approachable animals,” said Al Buddin, Citadel Class of 2003 and assistant business manager for the colleges Athletics Department. “General is definitely going to be missed.”

Since General joined the college, he, Boo IX and the new mascots have helped raise more than $23,000 for the college and for charities such as the ASPCA and a bulldog rescue organization. The mascots participate in athletic events, parades, and community service events to help raise money for animal rescue organizations.

General was donated by the late Hazel Groshon of James Island, South Carolina. He was the nephew of UGA V, the former mascot for the University of Georgia. General is also related to the line of bulldog representatives for the United State Marine Corps and Mississippi State University.

General will be remembered with a tribute video at this weekend’s baseball and basketball games and a wreath for General was placed by the big bulldog statue at Johnson Hagood Stadium. General’s ashes will be interred along with those of four mascots from the Boo lineage during the dedication of The Citadel Bulldog Memorial. The unveiling of the new memorial had already been planned for 10 a.m. on Saturday, March 14 at the stadium. The parade of bulldogs during the spring football game that will compete in the Beautiful Bulldog Contest will also be dedicated to General.

*Captain Thomas Curtis Metsker graduated from The Citadel in 1961. During the Vietnam War, he was in the battalion that led the first search and destroy mission ever to be conducted using airmobile (helicopter) warfare tactics. Metsker, who was wounded in the shoulder, was shot and killed when he gave up his seat on a helicopter to another soldier who was more seriously wounded.

The Citadel Mascots

Mascot Mike, 1928-1930

Mascot Mike II, 1930-1934

Mascot Duke, 1937-1939

Mascot Sonny Sue, 1939-1946

Mascots Suzie and Jake, 1947-1948

Mascot Joker, 1949-1951

Mascot Plebe, 1952-1956

Mascot Plebe II, 1957

Mascot Plebe III, 1958-1961

Mascot Plebe IV, 1962-1963

Mascot Boo, 1964-1971

Mascot Boo II, 1972-1973

Mascot Boo III, 1974-1975

Mascot Boo IV, 1975

Mascot Colonel Ruff, 1977-1985

Mascots Colonel Ruff and Boo V, 1985-1989

Mascots Colonel Ruff and Patrick, 1990

Mascot Boo VI, 1991-1995

Mascot Boo VII, 1996-2001

Mascot Boo VIII, 2001-2003

Mascots General and Boo IX, 2003 – 2013

Mascots General Robert P. Carson (G2) and Boo X, 2013 – present

Message to Alumni on Hazing incidents

March 3, 2015

The following was sent out this afternoon by Lt. General John Rosa on the recent hazing allegations.

Citadel Alumni and Supporters—

Since I arrived in 2006, I have been consistent in my message and actions with cadets, families and you that there is no place for hazing in a leadership model that produces principled leaders. As you know, our system is based on a disciplined and challenging educational environment that emphasizes our core values of Honor, Duty and Respect. I reinforce this message with the Corps every time I speak with them, as has every commandant with whom I have served, including Captain Geno Paluso.

Many of you may be following the recent media coverage and discussions regarding our decision on 8 February to remind the 4th Class of our rules regarding hazing and their responsibility to report any known violations. In today’s world of social media, it is often hard to determine the facts, so I wanted to provide you with the latest information regarding this issue before we share it with the news media.

As a result of the commandant’s meeting, 83 allegations were brought forward. Fortunately, most of these were 4th Class System violations, not hazing. Of the 83 cases, 39 resulted in on campus punishments (tours/confinements); 7 cadets have resigned or withdrawn; 28 cases will go before disciplinary hearings; 5 have been reviewed and are being processed; 2 allegations involve cadets currently studying abroad; and 2 cases were investigated, found to be unsubstantiated and dropped. I have instructed the commandant’s office to make sure the remaining open cases are handled expeditiously, while ensuring that the rights of the accused are protected.

An environment that challenges our cadets mentally, physically and ethically is the foundation of The Citadel Experience. But we shortchange our cadets if the focus is only on one year. Ours is a four-year system where the most important are the final three. The responsibility that comes with rank enables cadets to put into practice what we teach in the classroom and develop the leadership skills that set our graduates apart. Allowing upperclass cadets to haze does nothing to challenge them as a leader, build character or give them the tools they need to succeed in life. This is why I remain firm in my position that there is no place for hazing in the development of principled leaders at The Citadel.

Thank you for your continued support,

John W. Rosa, Lt Gen (Ret)
President, The Citadel