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Sunday, September 24, 2023

Column: Students, athletes can find common ground in Unite hatred

Cody Riggs is just like you.

Sure, he’s a cornerback on one of the nation’s most recognizable football teams and has a chance to play on TV in the NFL one day. But trust me, you and Riggs have plenty in common.

Forget the football stuff, forget that he suits up in orange and blue and plays in front of 90,000 on Saturdays. Riggs is more than a football player — he’s a person, a student. He’s someone every regular person on campus can identify with.

And when he walks through Turlington Plaza, especially during weeks like this one, Riggs is just as annoyed by those countless Unite Party minions who live for seemingly one sole purpose: cramming their one-party-over-all-others brochures and stickers down your gullet.

Don’t believe me? Check out his Twitter feed, @CodyRiggs31.

There you will find the following from last Friday: “I’m voting Students Party lol Unite party leave me TF alone it’s way too early to be talking to me going to class #teamjesseschmitt.”

And: “Like who TF are y’all even running against? Lol Don’t approach me again.”

Riggs gets it, and while an obviously overwhelming reason why Riggs and several other prominent Florida athletes have endorsed the Students Party instead of the Greek empire is because vice presidential candidate Jesse Schmitt is on the football team, that doesn’t mean he is wrong for stating his opinion.

In fact, he couldn’t be more right.

Riggs has that option because of the First Amendment, which was completely and literally trashed by a separate faction Monday when hundreds of copies of the Alligator were thrown in the nearest wastebasket.

Some people were so afraid of Students usurping the power from the Greeks that they stooped to the lowest level of all and made an effort to silence the free and independent press.

The motivation? Likely the statement released by UF football coach Will Muschamp supporting and endorsing Schmitt and the Students Party in today’s and Wednesday’s elections.

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From his release, Muschamp said, “I join his teammates in endorsing Jesse as VP for student government. I know that his leadership and drive for excellence will make him successful and in turn make campus a better place for every student.”

The Alligator ran a story about the endorsement on the front page of Monday’s edition, one you probably didn’t get to see unless you rooted through garbage.

There are plenty of reasons (roughly five million) why people didn’t want that story to be seen by the masses  of the student population.

By having total and complete domination in SG, Unite controls about $5 million of the more than $17 million in student funds and has done so without bipartisan representation for as long as I can remember.

The members of that party were responsible for the voter debacle during fall semester, and they routinely look out for what’s best for the Greeks, not what’s best for all students.

They control UF, and they want it to stay that way.

And what’s the biggest competition to that control? The real student population. The fans of Gators sports.

People at Florida have shown through dismal voter turnout that they couldn’t care less about SG, but that has to change.

Less than 5 percent of the enrollment of UF is affiliated with a Greek organization, but nearly 100 percent of SG is controlled by fraternities and sororities — otherwise known as Unite.

They crave that power, and as long as you — the everyday person who isn’t worried about the next gym sesh or tan appointment — don’t get involved, then Unite will continue its reign.

Do we really need more fluorescent tank tops and stupid neon sunglasses roaming campus?

Do we really need more dictatorial “leadership” and control? Or is it time for a real party that caters to your interests to take over?

We at alligatorSports know where our allegiance lies.

Just ask Cody Riggs.



Contact Matt Watts at

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