UNF's #1 Student-Run News Source

UNF Spinnaker

UNF's #1 Student-Run News Source

UNF Spinnaker

UNF's #1 Student-Run News Source

UNF Spinnaker

Surf team floats on money alone

In order for a club to get proper funding, Treasurer Matt Samra said Student Government asks a defining question: “What will your club bring to UNF?”

The UNF surf team replied saying despite having no funding and no coach, they still won a sixth place title at a national championship in California last June. The surf team also came home with second and third place finishes at the Eastern Conference competition in April where they faced schools like Flagler and Daytona State, which is more than some of the teams in the athletic department have achieved in the past.

They also achieved better rankings than some of the top colleges throughout the country with legitimate athletic surf teams that have top-notch coaches and financial support, according to Alex Kelso, a sophomore member of the UNF surf team.

“We normally raise everything ourselves through car washes and other fundraisers, and we’ll carpool to competitions to save money on gas,” Kelso said. “But the team registered with Student Government this year, so hopefully we applied early enough to get T-shirts and funding for travel.”

According to Samra, any requests for funding from Student Government must go through the budget and allocations committee, the senate and a six-week process for approval, but the surf team’s captain, UNF senior Keith Carnes, said he registered the team before any deadlines.

Therefore, Student Government should provide the surf team with the funding they need for their tournaments this year, after a two-year break without registration, Kelso said.

“There’s no discrimination when it comes to funding teams or clubs,” Samra said. “The surf team could get up to $2,500 for travel requests along with any other club at UNF.”

The UNF surf team has done well without funding in the past, but Carnes said funding helps them become affiliated with UNF and make it all the way to the top.

“This year’s team is one of the best we’ve had in a while,” he said. “There’s 18 people on the team, and I’m getting more and more calls every week from people who are interested in becoming a part of this.”

All the men and women of the UNF surf team have their own histories and backgrounds of why they love and got involved with surfing.

Carnes said he’s loved surfing for seven years, and Kelso added he started surfing in middle school. Kelso even turned down the University of Hawaii to come to UNF, where he really enjoys the fact that surfing has become a team activity.

“Normally surfing is a selfish individual sport, but I love the team aspect of surfing at UNF,” he said. “It’s fun to pull for each other and just a great way to meet and bring a lot of people together.”

The UNF surf team competes in three separate teams. Their starters make up the A team which consists of six short boarders and one long boarder. The B and C teams follow the same format, normally with a mix of male athletes and two to three women on each team.

There is also a surf club at UNF that practices alongside the surf team and helps them raise money, but they don’t travel or participate in surfing competitively. They just enjoy surfing around the Jacksonville area.

According to Jacksonville’s surf report Web site, Surf Jax Pier, Jacksonville Beach has one of the area’s best locations for surfing because of various sand breaks all over the beach. Although the beach is heavily crowded at times, Jacksonville Beach provides chest high to two-feet overhead waves, and peaks off the pier help spread surfers out down the beach.

In addition, the Web site said Jacksonville Beach is ideal for surfing because people can enjoy the water year-round. In fact, the surf is more consistent during the winter than any other season, it said.

“Unlike most schools, UNF is right near the water and has good surf,” said Brian Thornton, an associate professor in the communication department who enjoyed surfing in Hawaii when he worked as a reporter there. “The surf team brings a special quality to UNF.”

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

Spinnaker intends for this area to be used to foster healthy, thought-provoking discussion. Comments are expected to adhere to our standards and to be respectful and constructive. As such, we do not permit the use of profanity, foul language, personal attacks, slurs, defamation, or the use of language that might be interpreted as libelous. Comments are reviewed and will be removed if they do not adhere to these standards. Spinnaker does not allow anonymous comments, and Spinnaker requires a valid email address. The email address will not be displayed but will be used to confirm your comments.
All UNF Spinnaker Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *