Rift between Rams and event staff is over (for now)

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By Shi Davidi

Ryerson’s event staff have kissed and made up with the athletics department, two weeks after sending a letter to The Eyeopener complaining about the way they’re treated by Rams coaches and players.

The relationship between the event staff and Ryerson coaches and players has generally been a good one, but it hasn’t been too rosy so far this year.

“I remember a time when I used to be excited about going to work as a member of Ryerson’s event staff. But lately, the job has become a lot less fun,” a member of the event staff wrote in the letter.

Some of the event staff’s responsibilities include keeping score, announcing the game and helping the referee at Ryerson home games.

Problems between the event staff and Ryerson athletics arose following a hockey and basketball game in early November.

“This weekend the hockey team demanded we help them with duties outside of our job specifications. When we declined one of our staff members was threatened by someone from the hockey team,” the letter said.

It also accused the men’s basketball team of making them “feel like it was our fault for fouling out of the game or turning the ball over or even missing a shot at the buzzer.”

The letter wasn’t signed because the event member feared repercussions from the athletic department.

Chuck Mathies, assistant head of athletics, said problems were discussed and resolved at a meeting between himself and three veteran event staff members last Friday.

“It was inappropriate for someone to have written a letter to The Eyeopener for something which should have been dealt with internally,” Mathies said. He added that he and the event managers are developing a plan to deal with future complaints.

The conflict with the hockey team occured after a 2-2 overtime tie with Royal Military College on Nov. 8. The event staff was asked to take the players’ equipment to the Rams’ practice facility. They refused, saying it wasn’t their job.

“There are job duties and things that need to be done,” Mathies said. “If you can help out, help out.”

Hockey coach Louie Carnevale conceded a conflict may have occurred but doesn’t put much stock in a letter that wasn’t signed. “They didn’t put their name to it, I won’t put any faith in it,” said Carnevale.

Men’s basketball coach Terry Haggerty admits one of his players told the timekeeper “that the clock could be clicked on and off a bit faster when you’re at home,” after a close loss to the Guelph Gryphons on Nov. 8. He said he was unaware of any other problems and has received no complaints from event staff.

The authors of the letter refused to comment this week about the details in the letter and the meeting with Mathies.

“There is always going to be friction at the end of a game when a team loses,” Mathies said. “Players point fingers at other players or at staff about mistakes that may or may not have been made.”

Mathies said all problems have been dealt with and it is now “a dead issue.”

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