LEXINGTON -- Five Washington and Lee athletes will be participating in the Renaissance Games which begin today at Bates College in Lewiston, Maine. W&L Athletic Director Mike Walsh is also a panel member at the event which runs through Sunday.
The Renaissance Games concept was conceived by the Institute for International Sport at the University of Rhode Island and involves the integration of scholarly and athletic pursuits. Students will be placed on one of two teams, Athens or Sparta, and take part in competition in which every activity, from playing a basketball game to writing a poem, from delivering a speech on the environment to running a five-kilometer race, earns points for the team.
The concept for the Renaissance Games has been developed as a response and alternative to the emphasis of specialization that seems to permeate education and sport in the United States. The pilot Renaissance Games this weekend will involve the participation of 150 students from 25 U.S. colleges and universities and six other countries.
The students participating from W&L are freshman men's basketball player Will Ballard (Elkin, N.C./Elkin), sophomore women's tennis player Ashley Buck (Englewood, Colo./Cherry Creek), sophomore women's basketball player Jessica Morton (Midlothian, Va./Clover Hill), freshman men's basketball player Eric Owsley (Santa Barbara, Calif./San Marcos) and senior women's swimmer Bligh Wollner (Fairfax, Va./James W. Robinson).