Macaluso continues as leprechaun
By TERESA FRALISH
Associate News Editor
University officials announced Tuesday that Mike Macaluso will continue to serve as the leprechaun for football and mens basketball games for the 2003-04 school years.
Macaluso, who has served as the varsity leprechaun for the last year, was chosen over Olympic leprechaun John Bisanz.
The two leprechaun positions, formerly named varsity and Olympic leprechauns, are now called blue and gold leprechauns.
Though the names have been changed, the respective responsibilities for the two positions will remain basically the same, said Bisanz. Macaluso, the gold leprechaun, will work at football and mens basketball games. Bisanz, the blue leprechaun, will continue working at the rest of the University's sports.
"Essentially nothing has changed," he said.
The leprechaun name changes were a part of larger changes made to the cheerleading program itself, of which the leprechauns are a part, said Macaluso.
Because of those changes, officials offered Macaluso and Bisanz, who will both be seniors in the fall, the opportunity to switch responsibilities for some events.
"Initially we thought that we could rotate that position. They're both really good and they're going to be seniors," said Jo Minton, head cheerleading coach at the University. "We left [the final decision] up to them."
The leprechauns receive points for their performance in various components of the tryout process. Macaluso clearly won the highest number of points and the two top scores were not close, said Minton.
Though the nine-member committee offered the two leprechauns the opportunity to switch events, Macaluso and Bisanz said they both agreed to stay with the traditional system.
"It would just create a lot of extra dialogue," said Bisanz.
The cheerleading program will undergo some reorganization for next year, although it is not clear now exactly what those changes will be.
"It came down from the higher levels of the University that there needed to be some changes in the cheerleading program. This is their way of solving it," said Macaluso.
The leprechauns are chosen by a panel and participate in a four-stage tryout process that included a cheering at a mock pep rally, game and service situation and answering questions from a media person and panel members, said Minton.
All News Stories for Thursday, April 17, 2003