Duke close to heart, Pressler re-emerges far from spotlight

February 25, 2007|By RICK MAESE

The Duke men's lacrosse team returned to the field yesterday with a triumphant 17-11 victory over Dartmouth. A cool sun was shining on Durham, N.C., and 6,485 fans showed up, nearly setting a school record.

At the same time, nearly 700 miles up the coast, 610 fans braved near-freezing temperatures to watch Bryant University fall, 6-5, to visiting Adelphi.

More on Duke Defiance and sadness linger as Blue Devils lacrosse team returns with 17-11 win over Dartmouth in season opener. Pg 1a

Rick Maese -- Points after

Boo birds: It must be nice to build your pedestal just high enough so that you don't have to hear those dissenters shout from down below. The Orioles alternate between arrogant and oblivious, and it's clear that someone didn't pay close attention in Public Relations 101. The latest civic transgression is a big league wipeout on the radio airwaves. The Orioles are allowing their top bosses to be interviewed by radio hosts on WBAL, their former flagship, but they don't want fans to call in with questions or comments. It might sound stunning, but it shouldn't be surprising at all. The fact that the Orioles have zero interest in actually listening to their fan base is a reality to which those who grew up wearing orange and black have become well-accustomed. Supposedly, this type of dialogue is a privilege suddenly reserved for the new flagship station, but don't think for a second that the Orioles aren't mimicking a Cirque du Soleil routine, trying to dodge and duck mounting criticism. And here's the most ridiculous part: A sports team has complete control of public sentiment. You don't improve relations by picking fights all over town, alienating a fan base, pushing away past legends and telling radio listeners you aren't interested in feedback. Want to cut down on the criticism? Then field a team that wins games. Plugging your ears solves nothing and is insulting to fans who wonder whether their beloved team will ever love them back.

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