Transportation for Cheap
By Nathan Giese
With high gas prices and limited parking space on the SDSU campus, student-athletes have started to opt for a cheaper, more efficient form of transportation.
Scooters, consisting of one seat, a set of handle bars and two wheels, have been spotted around campus more frequently in the passed few years. Most of these miniature motor vehicles belong to the student body.
One of the main reasons the student-athletes have opted for a scooter rather than a car is cost efficiency.
“They’re a lot cheaper, especially in the summer,” said Tiara Gibson, a junior on the Jackrabbit volleyball team. “It gets great gas mileage, so it’s really cheap to drive it around.”
Gas prices have been known to hover around the $4 per gallon mark in Brookings, making the scooter a better option for students looking to save a few bucks. Josh White, a redshirt sophomore on the men’s basketball team, said he only has to fill up his scooter once very two weeks, with the price never going above $3. “If I fill it up over three bucks, it overflows,” he said.
Using a scooter has other benefits. Chloe Cornemann, a junior on the women’s basketball team, enjoys the perks of being able to park right next to the doors of Frost Arena. This also cuts the costs of a parking pass on campus, which can be expensive.
Busy schedules have made scooters the preferred form of transportation. With class, practice, studying and other activities on campus throughout the day, student-athletes must get from one end of campus to another in a short time. Their scooters allow them to cut through campus and cut down on travel time.
However, it’s not just the student-athletes that have decided to ditch the four-wheel rides for two. Head football coach John Stiegelmeier was actually one of the first to utilize the scooter around campus.
“I ride one for a number of reasons,” said Stiegelmeier. “As a family member, it shows our kids that you don’t have to have the fanciest vehicle to get around. Its efficiency around campus is unbelievable.”
His players have started to follow his lead, with the Dykhouse Center having the look of a mini-Sturgis Rally on most days. Stiegelmeier says that the scooter craze caught on with the football team about four years ago.
“At times during fall camp, it looks like they’re the Hell’s Angels. We’ve got these massive guys coming down the road, except they’re on scooters, not Harleys,” Stiegelmeier jokes.
Some refer to scooters as mopeds, but the student-athletes agree that the name doesn’t really matter.
“Sometimes I call it a scooter, sometimes I call it a moped, but it doesn’t even matter. Everybody knows what you’re talking about,” said White.
A scooter is not the flashiest form of transportation, but Stiegelmeier says the scooter use is a reflection on SDSU.
“That’s how I’ve grown up here at South Dakota State. Here in our program, we find a way to get the job done. With a scooter, it gets the job done and more,” said Stiegelmeier.