Rabalais: LSU keeps from giving game away on day legend Bob Pettit gets his due _lowres

LSU legend Bob Pettit speaks at the unveiling of a statue honoring him, Saturday, February 27, 2016, at LSU in Baton Rouge, La.

When I was a student at LSU, no statues memorializing individuals existed on campus.

As an LSU alumnus, I encourage the LSU Board of Supervisors to adopt a matching statue policy that requires every monument erected for an athletic star be matched with a monument for an academic or national hero.

Balls and strikes, slam dunks and touchdowns should not be the only values guiding LSU’s policy for erecting statues.

Why not memorialize LSU leaders who transformed the life of the mind and our blessed nation?

Honoring scholarship, statues should be erected for Robert Penn Warren and Cleanth Brooks, two LSU faculty members who led the New Criticism movement in American literature. Warren also won the Pulitzer Prize.

Honoring nation building, a monument recognizing LSU’s first president and fabled United States military general who helped end American slavery and save our Republic is also appropriate. What better location than the parade ground to honor William Tecumseh Sherman?

Universities were founded to advance higher education and promote research. LSU has been blessed with outstanding champions in these areas. They deserve equal, if not greater, recognition than sports stars.

Lee Mikell

professional fundraiser

Edisto Island, S.C.

LSU committee unanimously approves statue honoring basketball legend ‘Pistol Pete’ Maravich