Written by Joshua Cresswell
Photo by Rob Speed
Dr. Daniel Gleason is the chair of the English department at Bryan College, but he is an alumnus here as well. From 2001 to 2005, he roamed the halls of Mercer as a student and the soccer field as a member of the men’s team. The latter was the source of some misadventure. During his playing days, Bryan had an intense rivalry with Covenant College, and it was especially fierce in soccer. One particular night, before a game between the two, a rumor spread that Covenant students were planning to drive down and vandalize the field in the dead of night.
He and his teammates got permission to keep lookout over the area despite the 11 PM curfew. He recalled the conclusion of the night: “I fell asleep, as you might expect, and I wake up soaking wet. And I’m like, ‘the Covenant people are here and they have water guns!’” No Scots had come to visit, but the water sprinklers had gone off, drenching everyone. The rivalry was likely fueled by a desire for something to do after classes.
There were no events organized by student life in Gleason’s day. “That department didn’t exist. I’m very grateful for them now, I think it’s amazing, but [in the past] students were in charge of their own entertainment.” Something he also appreciates is the expressiveness of the current student body, saying that students from the early 2000s would probably think “these kids are way cooler than us!” When asked what advice he would give to current students, his answer was a simple but solid mantra of wake up, show up, keep up. “If you can do those three things in college, you will be successful.”
Joshua Cresswell is a Politics and Government major from Cleveland, Tennessee. He is on the baseball team and chorale, and enjoys playing guitar during down time.