Increased social media use not correlated with increased anxiety


Courtesy Photo/ The Bison

The journal ‘Computers in Human Behavior’ published the results from an eight-year long study that indicates time spent on social media is not linked to levels of anxiety and depression.

Zoe Charles

Assistant News Editor

Oct. 22, 2019 the results of an eight-year-long study were published in Computers in Human Behavior.

The research, led by professor of family life at Brigham Young University Sarah Coyne, found that the amount of time spent on social media is not related to levels of anxiety or depression in teenagers.

The find is surprising in light of the 62.5 percent raise of time spent on social media by teenagers since 2012, which was theorized to be a significant factor in increased anxiety and depression rates among teenagers.

“We spent eight years trying to re- ally understand the relationship be- tween time spent on social media and depression for developing teenagers; if they increased their social media time, would it make them more de- pressed?” Coyne said in an interview with

“Also, if they decreased their social media time, were they less de- pressed? The answer is no. We found that time spent on social media was not what was impacting anxiety or depression.”

However, while the time spent on social media may not be directly linked to levels of anxiety and depression in teenagers, there is no doubt that a link between social media and mental health exists.

According to an article on very-, “Researchers are just beginning to establish a link between depression and social media. While they have not actually discovered a cause and effect relationship between social media and depression, they have discovered that social media use can be associated with an intensification of the symptoms of depression, including a decrease in social activity and an increase in loneliness.”

While there is a certain irony associated with social media leading to very unsocial habits, the science be- hind the power of these applications provides no laughing matter.

For example, a study conducted by researchers at the UCLA Brain Map- ping Center concluded that “certain regions of teen brains became activated by ‘likes’ on social media, some- times causing them to want to use social media more.

Researchers used an fMRI scanner to image the brains of 32 teenagers as they used a fictitious social media app resembling Instagram. The brain scans revealed that in addition to a number of regions, the nucleus accumbens, part of the brain’s reward circuitry, was especially active when they saw a large number of likes on their own photos.”

Very Well Family also noted the significance of this study.

“According to researchers, this area of the brain is the same region that responds when we see pictures of people we love or when we win money. What’s more, researchers say that this reward region of the brain is particularly sensitive during the teen years, which could explain why teens are so drawn to social media,” Very Well Family’s website read.

Social media addiction is a growing problem among teenager in the U.S.

Social Media addiction and social anxiety disorder are strongly correlated and recent studies indicate that social media addictions can cause social anxiety disorder,” according to an article on

“Positive feedback in the form of likes or followers is a reward that stimulates the brain and rewards it with (highly addictive) dopamine. Social anxiety related to social media addiction has serious consequences and has even lead to the disruption of sleep, inability to manage weight, and a loss of interest in work or school among adolescents,”

While all teenagers are at risk for mental health consequences relating to social media, psychcongress. com warns “[t]eenage girls are twice as likely as boys to show depressive symptoms linked to social media use – mainly due to online harassment and disturbed sleep, as well as poor body image and lower self-esteem, researchers have found.”

Levels of online harassment experienced were also found to be linked to gender.

“When the researchers looked at underlying processes that might be linked with social media use and depression, they found 40 percent of girls and 25 percent of boys had experience of online harassment or cyberbullying.

Disrupted sleep was reported by 40 percent of girls compared with 28 percent of boys,” posted.

Teenagers already have unusual sleep cycles, which can be exacerbated by the demands of high school. Social media may be making this problem worse.

According to, “A study published in the Journal of Youth Studies surveyed 900 teens between the ages of 12 and 15 about their social media use and its impact on sleep. What they found was that one-fifth of the teens said they “al- most always” wake up during

the night and log in to social media. The study also revealed that girls were significantly more likely than boys to wake up and check social media on their phones.”

Lack of sleep reduces quality of life in all areas.

“In addition to reporting feeling tired all the time, [teenagers with disrupted sleep patterns] also report- ed being less happy on average than teens whose sleep was not disturbed by social media,” according to very-

“What’s more, teens need more sleep than adults do, so logging into social media in the middle of the night can be detrimental to their physical health as well. For instance, aside from feeling tired and irritable, lack of sleep can lower the immune system and make it more likely for a teen to get sick. 

If you or someone you know is struggling with anxiety or depression, please consider reaching out to OBU’s Kempt MFT Clinic as a free resource. The clinic’s phone number is 405.585.4530


OBU selects Heath Thomas as university’s 16th president


Courtesy Photo/ OBU

Dr. Heath Thomas will be OBU’s 16th president.

Press release

OBU Marketing

The Oklahoma Baptist University Board of Trustees voted Friday, Nov. 8, to select Dr. Heath Thomas as the University’s 16th president during its fall meeting on the OBU campus in Shaw- nee. Thomas currently serves at OBU as the dean of the Hobbs College of Theology and Ministry and the associate vice president for church relations. He will assume the role of president in January 2020.

In addition to his du- ties as dean and AVP, Thomas also serves as interim dean of the Divisions of Behavior- al and Social Sciences and Language and Literature, the Floyd K. Clark Chair of Christian Leadership and professor of Old Testament. He joined the OBU faculty in 2015 after serving as director of Ph.D. studies and associate professor of Old Testament and Hebrew at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, North Carolina.

A 1998 OBU graduate, he earned a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature with a religion minor.

He then earned a Master of Arts in Theology from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and a Ph.D. in Old Testament from the University of Gloucestershire (UK). He also earned a certificate for leadership in higher education from Baylor University in 2016. He has served on staff at churches in Oklahoma, Texas, North Carolina and in the United Kingdom. He preaches and teach- es regularly, and has served as interim pas- tor for several Oklahoma churches during his time at OBU, currently serving at First Baptist Church of Moore.

He and his wife, Jill, reside in Shawnee with their four children: Harrison, Isabelle, Simon and Sophia.

Thomas was selected following a nine-month process, which included the use of a national search firm in conjunction with the elected presidential search committee.

The committee was chaired by Ben Stew- art, member of the OBU Board of Trustees, and included seven additional trustees as voting members, along with four ex-officio, non-voting members representing OBU faculty, alumni, current students and the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma.

Thomas is grateful for the opportunity to lead his alma mater and excited to impact students in the years to come.

“I am thrilled and deeply humbled to serve as president of our University,” Thomas said.

“For over 100 years, OBU’s distinctively Christian liberal arts education has formed students so that they might meaningfully engage their world,” Thomas said. “I am excited to be a part of OBU’s story, and I believe the brightest days lie before us. I ask all to join me to pray that God would continue to bless OBU.”

Dr. Hance Dilbeck, executive director-treasurer of the BGCO, served as an ex-officio member of the search committee.

“The search commit- tee spent much time in prayer, asking the Lord for direction,” Dilbeck said.

“They also followed a very intentional and thorough process. The Lord has been faithful to lead them to a distinguished scholar, capable preacher and a committed Baptist churchman who exudes enthusiasm and vision for the future of OBU. Dr. Thomas loves the Lord and he loves OBU. I join all Oklahoma Baptists in supporting him. I believe we will see the Lord do great things in the years to come.”

Stephen Allen, chair of OBU’s Board of Trustees and senior vice president, general counsel and assistant secretary for ONEOK, also served as a member of the search committee.

“The Board of Trustees was delighted to elect one of our own, Dr. Heath Thomas, as the 16th President of OBU,” Allen said. “As a student, Dr. Thomas experienced OBU’s Christian liberal arts tradition. As a dean and a member of the faculty, he understands the importance of integrating faith and knowledge as we train the next generation. As a president, he has the vision to continue the mission of OBU well into the future.

“I would also like to express my sincere gratitude and appreciation to Dr. Taylor for his outstanding leadership as our interim president. His passion and love for OBU is extremely evident and his wisdom and years of presidential experience were a huge asset to the University.”





Bison athlete’s brother joins NFL with the KC Chiefs


Courtesy Photo/ The Bison

Running back and JMAS junior Rueben Thompson celebrates his brother, Darwin’s, success with the Kansas City Chiefs–number 25. Rueben’s number for the Bison is 26.

Anthony “Amp” WilliAms

Assistant Sports

While there are many athletes on campus who have family members living their dream, one Bison football player’s brother is currently living his dream being on a NFL roster.

Junior running back (and DMAR/JMAS major) Reuben Thompson gets to watch his brother Darwin Thompson on Sundays playing for the Kansas City Chiefs.


Darwin represents his family’s name on the field and off.


Since Darwin has entered the league, the Thompson family still approaches things the same as before.

“There really has not been any changes in my family since my brother got drafted,” Rueben said.

“My parents, my sister and I are still supporting him the same way we did when he was playing little league; now he’s just in the big league,” he said.

Reuben supports his brother and said he believes he can do anything if he puts his mind to it.

“My brother is one of the most determined and hard working people I know and there are so many people who can attest to that,” Reuben said.

“Since he was little, he al- ways wanted to be in the NFL and become a Hall of Famer,” he said.

“It’s funny because I’m younger than him, but I can’t remember him always talking about being one of the greats. He is humble and has his head on straight, so I do not doubt he can achieve his goals,” he said,



Rueben, brother Darwin and their parents Rueben (senior) and Lashonne take a moment after Darwin’s bowl game when he played at Utah State.

“Our family have been sup- porting him all his life and never turned our backs on him. That’s how it goes in our household; we believe in everyone’s dreams because we know with the right mindset one day, they will become a reality,” Reuben said.

Now this is more than just football for Darwin; it’s a career.

“The difference between college football and professional football is this is his career now, his job; he is get- ting paid to play a game he loves deep down. It does not get better than that,” Reuben said.

Rueben said he and his family not forget one April day in 2019.

“During draft day motions, we were rising when names were being called and when they called ‘Darwin Thompson,’ we went crazy. It was one of the best moments of my life and I wasn’t even the one being selected; I was so proud of him,” he said.

“After all the doubt he was able to prove everyone right, not wrong; we don’t focus on that,” Reuben said.

One of the first things Darwin wants to do is give back to his community, according to Rueben.

“For the future, my brother wants to start an organization for kids who are less fortunate, starting in Tulsa OK where we are from, and run a gym; also he loves old school cars so I know he will collect those and fix them from the bottom up and take them to car shows,” Reuben said.

Reuben’s teammates use Darwin as motivation and see the same athletic potential in Reuben.

“Reuben is a great teammate,” junior criminal justice and running back Holmer Thomas said.

“Reuben has great character in a good way; he’s a great player and brother,” Thomas said.

“He is a hard worker and motivates me to do better. With Reuben and I playing the same position, we really share a great bond because 95 percent of practice we are together. If you need any laugh, he’s the person to be around,” he said. “His brother Darwin is inspirational to me because I was at the same junior college as him. The grind behind being at a junior college alone is enough to show anyone re- spect for going through it. His brother is a prime example that anything is possible with hard work and dedication,” Thomas said.

According to, Darwin is a rookie running back in the NFL, number 25.

He was selected in the sixth round 214 pick by the Kansas City Chiefs, and he has received positive press about his performance so far.

God, Air Force, retirement, and everything in between

donna young_courtesy okbu.png

Courtesy Photo/OKBU

Retired English professor Dr. Donna Young now enjoys a slower pace.

Kaleigh Reynolds

Contributing Writer

“She who kneels before God can stand before anyone.” – Romans 8:31

Retired Oklahoma Baptist English professor Donna Young was raised in a Christian family.

She is someone who puts her faith in Christ and knows that whatever storm comes her way, God is going to get her through it.

She grew up as a country girl with three sisters.

“I am the best son my dad ever had,” Young said.

She was raised to reason things out, and she was more on the rough and tough side than her sisters.

Young succeeded academically though, with moving a lot, changing schools and helping out when needed is a lot to take on at a young age.

After graduating from high school, there was no clear path for Young.

She was suffering from a bad marriage, could not get a job with just a high school degree, but before joining the Air Force Young took a trip to San Antonio with a friend.

During her journey, she stumbled upon an Air Force base and just knew that was what she wanted to do.

“Part of it was patriotism, part of it was escaping a bad marriage. It was like a perfect storm, ” she said.

Life in the Air Force taught her a lot, not only about herself but about how to handle anything life throws her way.

“I approach everything with a ‘can- do’ attitude, especially when someone tells me I can do something,” Young said.

While in the Air Force, Young got her bachelor’s degree in English, which is how she got involved in teaching.

While completing her graduate degree at Oklahoma University, she met someone who had graduated from OBU, until then she had never heard of Oklahoma Baptist, but knew she wanted to teach at a Christ-centered university.

She applied for a position at OBU. Unfortunately, that position was filled by someone else.

Young started the following year as an adjunct for the English Department; she did that for four years. Then OBU hired her full time.

“OBU is where I wanted to be,” she said.

Young has made an impact in many students’ lives, being there for them through all seasons of life.

“She was the very first professor I met here, who was intentional with me,” junior communications major Sadye Booz said.

Booz moved here from overseas, and Young was someone who invested in her.

“She is one of those professors whose influence from the Air Force shows up in her teaching style, and she wants us to get the bigger picture in class. I took her four semesters in a row,” Booz said.

Young is currently residing in Missouri with her husband enjoying retirement.

She is still getting used to not being on the go as often as she was while teaching.

At first, Young had a hard time finding her purpose.

For years, she was either working or pursuing a career, and now she is navigating a slower pace.

“Changing from professional life to retirement is realizing I can do laundry whenever I want,” she said.

She is enjoying more time with her husband.

She thought retirement would be a good change in pace, she said but now she is taking care of certain things that was hard to do during the week during her years of teaching.









Senior Leighla Beteta presents “Journeys” exhibit


leighla beteta courtesy of her.png

Courtesy Photo / leighla Beteta

Beteta’s art exhibit will open Nov. 8 in the Art Building.

Morgan Jackson

Arts Editor

Senior Leighla Beteta is presenting her senior art exhibit entitled “Journeys.”

The art exhibit will be displayed at the Oklahoma Baptist University Art department gallery from Nov. 8-22.

There will be an opening night reception on Nov. 8 from 6-8 p.m. with food, drinks and fun.

The work that will be displayed comes from two illustration projects, rather than a culmination of work from her time at Oklahoma Baptist University.

“Senior art shows are required for students enrolled in an art or graphics design major. Essentially, it’s a required part of our degree in order to graduate, and to give us practice should we decide to exhibit work publicly,” senior art major Leighla Beteta said.

Beteta’s exhibit takes the form of illustrations inspired by different sources.

“Originally, I planned to do a general showing and just show some work throughout my time here at OBU, however I picked up two illustration jobs and thought that would be a great topic to cover,” Beteta said.

“One is a story my little brother wrote and the other is from a lady in New York.”

The title of the show gives insight into the nature of the work displayed at the exhibit.

“I’m also including bits and pieces of my other work from my time here at OBU. Hence the title ‘Journeys’. Both the books involve a journey of some sort whether it involves surviving a snowstorm or trying to find a doctor to save a mother’s son,” Beteta said.

“With the other pieces of art I add, it includes my artistic journey and marks my growth in art and life.”

Beteta acknowledges that the pro- cess of planning the details and logistics of the show have been stressful, but that the experience is a good one that is growing her as an artist and a person.

The experiences she has had at OBU have given her new outlooks and perspectives.

“Learning about other people and their beliefs and experiences. Having a relationship for the past two years has played a big role too,” Beteta said.

“I’ve learned how to socialize better, gain better public speaking skills, I’ve become more open and have come to understand that life really isn’t just a plain and simple black and white thing that is clearly visible. Things are complicated, people are complicated, bit it’s not bad.”

Beteta is always seeking growth in the things she does and how she does them.

This includes experimenting with different mediums and methods and knowing that constraint is an obstacle to creating.

“You will see a variety of mediums and pieces, maybe it seems to lack a style, and that’s okay. In graduate school you usually pick an emphasis like painting, drawing, etc,” Beteta said.

“I don’t believe in forcing a com- position to a medium. I create what I feel needs to be created in the medium it needs to be in.”

Beteta sees different mediums as a means of expression, and she high- lights the importance of getting out of your comfort zone.

“If that means I’m going to learn how to use a new medium, I will if it’s what is needed to make the piece what it needs to be,” Beteta said.

“If you’re artistic or want to be, don’t constrain yourself and say you ‘have to do this first’ we need to go out our comfort zone to grow for sure, but don’t let people tell you that you need to pick something and stick with it. You will do that naturally when you find your medium(s).”








Coping with the loss of a family member while away at college

Courtesy Photo/ The Bison

Peyton King

Features Editor

One of the biggest concerns that can come with moving away from home to attend college is:

“What if something bad happens and I’m not there?”

As someone who has just recently experienced this very situation through the death of a family member, I hope I can provide some in- sight as to what it’s like and how to deal with it.

Wednesday, Oct. 30 at 10:30 p.m. Dorothy Marie Hulsey, my family’s beloved matriarch, left the side of Gene Hulsey, her husband of 75 years, to meet the Lord.

My great-grandma “Dot” was a spunky, God-fearing woman that every member of our family admired dearly. She was quick-witted even at the age of 93, stubborn as a mule and a devoted prayer warrior.

About a month prior to her passing, she had fallen in the night and fractured a vertebrae in her spine. So after about a week in the hospital and three weeks in a skilled nursing facility, she decided she was ready to see her grandson-in-law and meet her God.

Though we knew the time was coming and that she was ready to go, the blow of loss wasn’t any less painful.

At 7:48 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 31, I received “the” call from my mom. I’ d been expecting it ever since I heard she wasn’t doing well earlier that week.

I didn’t cry. Of course, I felt sad, but I was also relieved to hear she was no longer in pain and that my great-grandpa had prayed her through it.

What I didn’t feel in that moment, though, was the feeling of isolation that can come with experiencing loss away from home.

So I texted my boyfriend a quick “Hey, this happened,” text and I went about my day. But as I did, I felt more and more weight building on my chest.

The first day of summer after my junior year of high school, I lost my dad to sud- den cardiac arrest while he was on a run around Lake Overholser with my mom.

It would be an understatement to say it turned my world upside down.

Prior to that day, I had been planning on going to college in Colorado much to the dismay of my dad. He had relentlessly tried to bribe and guilt me into going to a school in Oklahoma, but in my ignorance, I had blindly refused and brushed it off.

Obviously, after that event, my plans drastically changed and here I am attending OBU – a school just an hour away from home. But after such a loss, I had a major fear of being even an hour away from my family in the event of a tragedy.

So of course, as my day went on, the effects of that fear began to push on me more and more.

Let’s just say, I didn’t deal with it in a healthy way at all. If you want to dig your- self a hole of negativity, a great way is to not talk about it. So, naturally, that’s what I did. Besides sending that one brief, unemotional message to my boyfriend, I spoke to nobody about it. I didn’t say I was feeling sad, I didn’t call a family member, I didn’t tell my friends and I avoided the whole subject altogether.

Step two of my naturally unhealthy coping techniques was to isolate myself. Aside from going to class and The Bison office to do my work, I didn’t socialize with any friends and in my downtime I went to my room (sidenote: my roommate was gone on a trip at the time) to be by myself.

I had plenty of opportunities to see the people who love me, to tell them what happened, to ask for help or even just be with them, but I didn’t. Maybe it was because I didn’t want to cry, maybe it was because I didn’t want to be a burden, I don’t know what it was. But overall, I chose to hide and that lead me to a bad mental state.

o after a day full of un- healthy coping habits, stressful conversations about money, tests, lectures about the future, deadlines and home- work, I broke down.

By the grace of God, my mom called.

The first thing she asked was where I was in my room. Then if I was okay – no answer. If I had talked to anyone about it – only Carson. Then why – no answer yet again. She knew exactly what I needed to hear, what I needed to be asked and what I needed to be instructed to do.

The first thing I needed to do was to be with the people that love me. So in the spirit of Halloween, I got dressed up in a goth girl fashion and met my friends to go to the basketball game and the BOO-gie Ball.

Upon seeing me, the first thing that my friend Jessie did was give me a hug. My boyfriend had told her what had happened. This did more for me than words could’ve ever done.

That singular gesture al- lowed me to go about my night without negative thoughts or tears or need for isolation. My friends didn’t force me to talk about it, but I know they would’ve listened if I had wanted to. They were there for me and that was enough to help.

The next thing I needed to do was to accept help and go home.

In college, it’s difficult to be able to just pick up and leave when something bad happens, but sometimes it’s okay to do exactly that. So despite plans to stay at school on Friday night to finish papers and study, I decided I needed to have my mom pick me up. I needed to be around people who were go- ing through the same thing I was and share the grief.

So I went home that night. There, I was able to do all I needed to do as well as be with my family. The next day, I was able to wake up feeling strong and get ready for the funeral with my mom and sisters.

The last thing I needed to do was remember that being vulnerable isn’t being weak.

So here I am – writing something that absolutely terrifies me.

But I need to do it not only for my own health, but be- cause it’s important to share.

Grief is a strange sensation that can come in many different forms. People are different and cope in unique, personal ways. But I’ve found two techniques that have become the only ways that I know how to healthily grieve.

1. Be kind to yourself.
2. Give it to God.

For some reason, when grief come about, our natural tendency is to abandon all things surrounding emotion and care in favor of ant activity or distraction. Instead of allowing emotions to be a priority, we would rather throw ourselves into work, school, chores, to-do lists, etc.

But in order to take care of yourself, you need to take time to address your emotions, do things that are good for you and find ways to cope. Pray. Read. Eat. Exercise. Talk. Play music. Sleep.

Do anything that you know will be helpful for your body and mind.

Now I’m not saying that you should completely abandon all responsibilities – you shouldn’t. But if you don’t take care of your body and mind, all other things will fall through.

The most important thing to do as believers, though, is to give it to God. Even if you don’t feel like it. Even if you just say “I give it to you, Lord,” and hold onto it anyways. Even if you have to re- peat it every five minutes of the day. Give it to God. He can take it.

Matthew 11:28 (NIV) says: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

The Lord is our ultimate comfort in times of grief. Go to Him no matter what you are feeling.

If you’re feeling tired, go to Him for rest. If you’re sad, go to Him for a listening ear. If you’ re worried, go to Him for peace. If you’re angry, go to Him and don’t be afraid to both wrestle and embrace Him.

He can take it. He wants to take it for you as the loving father He is. But you have to surrender it to Him first.

“Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.” 1 Peter 5:7




OBU places in multiple categories at Red River Swing tournament


Courtesy Image/ OBU

The Bison Staff

The weekend of Nov. 1-3 resulted in many wins for OBU’s debate team.

The Red River Swing was sponsored by Louisiana Tech University and Louisiana State University Shreveport.

The competition featured over 200 competitors from 12 different University and colleges.

The debate team brought home their first tournament championship of the year in the novice division.

Violet Webber put in a perfect performance in preliminary rounds at 6-0, and first speaker, and perfect in elimination rounds winning the division.

The team also competed in individual events with competitors in impromptu speaking and informative speaking.

Freshman Gracie Pipes placed 3rd and 6th in the competitions of informative speaking.

In Novice individual debate, the team advanced five of their six competitors to elimination rounds.

Ashlyn Philpot made double octo finals.

Koal Mains made octo finals.

Gracie Pipes qualified for quarter finals and won 4th speaker.

Maggie West qualified for semi finals.

Violet Webber won champion individual speaking and first speaker.

n Junior Varsity, Canyon McGee one sixth speaker. Joy Rhodes qualified for quarter finals and won 4th speaker. Emma Busby made quarter finals and won 2nd speaker. Josh Morgan made quater finals.

In Varsity, Mitch Sadler qualified for quater finals.

Team awards included 5th place in Individual events, 3rd place in individual debate, 4th place overall com- petition across all events, and 3rd in sweeps which measured success in debate competitions exclusively.




Athletic risks may require on-site ambulances at games




Courtesy Image / Mustapha Muhammed

Jake Usry

Assistant News Editor

There are over 1.1 million high school students who participate in the game of football each year.

According to The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS), around two million injuries occur annually. Those lead to 500,000 doctors’ visits and 30,000 hospitalizations.

Despite these risks, no high school or college in the Unit- ed States is legally required to have emergency medical services present during football games.

Most schools do usually have an EMS certified per- son present at football games, but because it is not enforced by state law, the job is either a voluntary or low-paid position.

When a player is injured, the individual tasked with treating the player may be certified to do so, but without proper tools or the proper environment that an ambulance and team of EMS first responders provides.

Without those resources, there is only a certain amount that can be done for an injured player.

“It would be that much safer by having an ambulance there that will know what to do quicker than a coach or a trainer that is certified,” OBU journalism and mass media major, Harvest Court King and former high school foot- ball player Anthony Williams said.

“I think that it is really crazy that they [ambulances and EMS staff] are not at the games. All sporting events should have them present and I feel like there isn’t really a reason why there shouldn’t be a law saying that they have to be there.

According to The Center of Disease Control and Prevention, approximately one in one thousand high school athletes receive a traumatic brain injury within their four years.

“I think that it should even be a law that they are on the field,” Williams said. “I think they should be there to make the decision that if a player is too badly hurt in a certain area, then they shouldn’t get up […] or if they have a shoulder injury don’t take their pads off.”

“I feel like if you have to call the ambulance or have to go all the way outside of the stadium to get them that could not be good for the athlete.”

Although there are no states that currently have a law mandating that EMS be at football games, there are some states that are passing laws that are taking the physical wellbeing of high school football players more seriously.

in 2009, Washington became the first state to pass a law stating that if a player under 18 is suspected of having a concussion, then they have to be removed from practice and are not allowed to participate in games until they are cleared by a medical professional, according to an article in the Journal of Medical Emergency Services.

The same article explains that Pop Warner, the largest youth football organization in the world, requires the home team to provide medical coverage at each game.

“In the absence of a physician and or ambulance on site, the minimum safety requirement will be the presence of an individual associated with the home team/host organization who is currently EMT qualified or certified in Red Cross Community First Aid and Safety, the P.R.E.P.A.R.E. Course by the National Center for Sport Safety, or their equivalent,” read the article, quoting Pop Warner’s regulations.

In the year 2014 (the latest date that data was recorded), there were no known fatalities of any Pop Warner football players.






Bison football leaves Homecoming weekend victorious


Above: Bison running back Isaiah Mallory stiff arms his Arkansas at Montecello opponent during the Saturday Homecoming game.

Bison won 33-31.

Anthony williams

Assistant Sports Editor

The Oklahoma Baptist University football team took on the University of Arkansas at Monticello, Saturday October 26 at 2 p.m. at Crain stadium. The head-on matchup took place homecoming weekend.

“It’s always a special feeling playing in front of alumni just because of the history of the former Bison,” senior business management major and safety Myles Russell said.

The Bison want to perform at a high level for the alumni, playing against a team that has a 5-2 record.

“A lot of former guys that I have a lot of respect for come down to watch the game,” Russell said. “It definitely means a lot and it’s a game that holds a lot of weight. Personally, my motivation is the guys that led the path before me. Getting a win for this is something that means something to me,” Russell said.


Above: Freshman quarterback Keilahn Harris looks for an opening.

The team prepared for this game as if it was just like any other.

“We prepared like we do every week,” senior occupational therapy major and defensive back Ke’ landus Culton said.

“[We] know our assignment, our opponents, what we did wrong last week so we won’t make the same mistakes twice, and overall just have fun being out there. The coaches really keyed on being confident and playing fast each play,” Culton said.

“Each week we set out our game plan on how we’ re going to dominate the opposing team,” Russell said.

“We had a really good practice Monday and Tuesday especially on the defensive side of the ball. We were communicating in pursuing faster. Even with all the rain we were still going 100 mph. Coach says all the time control what we can control,” he said.

The team was prepared to play in the rain, but luckily the weather cooperated.

“The weather is one of those things that are just a part of the game,” Russell said.



 Above: Sophomore defensive back Felipe Alvear executes a draw play up the middle.

“It influences the game as far as defensively expecting more runs just because it’s harder to throw and catch the ball in the rain. With the rain, you have to be more detailed and mindful of what you’ re doing on the field because it’s much easier to slip and make mistakes. It’s a challenge that I think whichever team responds better to the rain will win,” Russell said.

Despite being 3-4, the Bison were up for the challenge.

“The motivation for this weekend is just like the others, to go 1-0,” Culton said.

“[We] do not think about our record or the opponents record, but really just to control what we can control in to give 110 percent effort each Saturday,” Culton said.

“Our goal is still achievable and that being winning the state of Oklahoma and potentially going to a bowl game with that in mind every game is crucial,” Russell said.

It seems Bison Hill appreciates the homecoming weekend game.

“OBU homecoming is a great tradition we have here on campus,” junior nursing major Brittney Hodges said.

“The whole homecoming week you get to see old friends coming back to campus and there are a lot of activities that happen during the that week. The homecoming game is the biggest part of homecoming week. During the game, the fans are going wild, and you really get to see how fun OBU is. The football team plays hard against the opponent, and the alumni get to be part of cheering on the football team once again. OBU homecoming is just lot of fun.”

According to obubison. com this is the seventh installment of homecoming for the Oklahoma Baptist football team since returning to the gridiron in 2013.

Non-traditional student Dustin Miller shares his story

dustin miller_courtesy dustin miller.png

Courtesy Photo/Dustin Miller

Above: When Miller became a student at OBU, he was already married and had two children.

NaamaN HeNager

Faith Editor

Every Christian has a story to tell and, for one OBU student, college has shaped his story.

Dustin Miller is a junior nursing major, but how he got here is the work of God.

His experience at OBU is one example of the diverse range of people that OBU’s work has impacted.

Miller and his wife have been married for thirteen years and he said that his wife has been very supportive of his journey.

They have two kids whom they both love dearly, and he said that he is doing all of this for them.

However, while it is very trying on him, it also is trying on his kids.

“Between school, volunteering and what little bit of work that I do, it’s trying,” Miller said.

He said he considers himself a non-traditional student because he is married, and he has two kids, yet he enjoys it.

“It’s been neat coming here and experiencing, even though there is a huge age gap between me and the underclassmen,” Miller said.

His journey towards his time at OBU began in 2013 when he joined the fire department and realized he enjoyed the medical portion of it as well as the firefighting portion.

“During that time, I was 434 pounds,” Miller said.

And so, in 2016, Miller decided that he was going to have weight loss surgery.


“I was a Christian [at that time], but I wasn’t going to church, I had lost connection with God there in that time,” Miller said.

Following his weight loss surgery, Miller decided to change his life spiritually as well. He decided to get back into church.

“In July of that year I told my wife, if I am changing mentally and physically, I am going to go ahead and change spiritually,” Miller said.

November 2016, Miller had the weight loss surgery and then by February of 2017 his wife lost her job. He encouraged her to become a stay at home mom, then he set out to complete his business degree from OBU.

“At the time I was working at Tinker Air Force Base as a supervisor, ad a mechanic, making goof money,” Miller said.

Miller had to trust God throughout this process, as it was difficult to go back to school and also work full time.

“I looked up to the sky one more time and I just said I wonder about nursing,” Miller said.

“As soon as I said that everything became crystal clear.”

Following that he called his sister-in-law wondering what his next steps were to become a nurse. Miller said he was worried about the toll it would take on him and his family as he was going to try to work full time and go to school.

The he was sitting at work one evening and came across an ad for OBU’s master program. He did some research and found out they had a bachelor’s program for nursing.

“The following day I applied and basically a week later I was accepted to Oklahoma Baptist University,” Miller said.

Miller said he believed OBU was the right school for him.

“It is there that I realized that God had set forth a plan for me to be here,” Miller said.

God gave Miller a love to help people and he is from a town that does not have many opportunities for volunteers, so he always has had a drive to serve.

“Next thing I know I am in a school that is going to allow me to serve, but also be able to worship Christ,” Miller said.

Miller’s journey, he said, has been crazy.

However, he looks back and he can see how God has led him to where he is.

Miller loves sharing his story and it is because of the impact that it has on the people listening. He believes every person has a story to tell.

“I love sharing my story, I try to tell it every chance I get,” Miller said.