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Last Case from College Bribery Scandal Goes to Trial

Quote of the Week:

“It’s not whether you get knocked down, it’s whether you get up.” –Vince Lombardi

Fact of the Week:

As summer approaches so too does beach season, and with beach season comes digging holes. There is something satisfying about removing sand and going deeper and deeper into the Earth (even if it’s only a few feet). If you’ve ever done this, you’ve probably also wondered what the record is for the deepest hole. Unfortunately, your impressive excavation at the beach is pretty far from it.

The deepest hole on Earth is the Kola Well in Russia, which goes about 40,000 feet into the ground. The drilling began in 1970 for research purposes and ended in 1992 when the drill became stuck in rock. The total cost for the project was around $100 million, but scientists gained valuable information. The hole has since been covered and welded shut, but if you ever manage to get the lid off, you’d have some fun dropping rocks down a nine-inch hole that’s nearly eight miles deep.

News Update:

This week, we’ve recapped three stories for you. Kyle Rittenhouse says he’s going to Texas A&M, but is he really?; the final case from the college bribery scandal is headed to trial; and a scholarship at an Israeli university is effectively excluding Arabs.

Gordon Ernst, implicated in the "Varsity Blues" scandal. Via Providence Journal. Credit Steven Senne/AP, File

Kyle Rittenhouse’s College Plans:

Kyle Rittenhouse became a household name after he shot and killed two men and wounded a third. The killings took place during a protest in Wisconsin after a Black man was shot by a white police officer. At the time, Rittenhouse was just 17 years old, and he would go on to be exonerated of all charges. It feels strange that after such national attention he is doing something as simple as choosing a college---however, he must see if the colleges choose him.

On the “Charlie Kirk Show”, a conservative podcast, Kyle Rittenhouse claimed he would be attending Texas A&M. According to NBC News, Rittenhouse said in the episode, “I’m going to be going there. It’s going to be awesome. Beautiful campus, amazing people, amazing food.”

Kelly Brown, a spokesperson for Texas A&M, said in response, “He has not been admitted as a student this summer or fall.”

This prompted Rittenhouse to change his statement, amending it to say, "Unfortunately, the end of my high school career was robbed from me. I didn’t have the time other students get to properly prepare for the future. I look forward to attending Blinn College District this year, a feeder school for Texas A&M. I’m excited to join Texas A&M in 2023!"

NBC said a Blinn College representative did confirm that Rittenhouse applied to attend the open-enrollment system, which regularly sends students to Texas A&M.

Kyle Rittenhouse. Credit: Sean Krajacic / The Kenosha News via AP Pool

Final Case from College Bribery Scandal Goes to Trial:

Amin Khoury, who paid over $200,000 to have his daughter admitted to Georgetown as a member of the women’s tennis team, is finally headed to trial. Khoury’s case isn’t technically part of the “Operation Varsity Blues” because he wasn’t involved with ring-leader Rick Singer, but the allegations are similar and the Georgetown tennis coach, Gordon Ernst, was involved in “Varsity Blues”.

Khoury, who sold his aircraft cabin interiors company for over $6 billion, worked with a middleman and Ernst to get his daughter a spot on Georgetown’s roster despite her not being a Georgetown-caliber player.

Ernst already pleaded guilty and will serve no more than four years in prison. He will not be testifying at Khoury’s trial, invoking the right against self-incrimination.

Of the 56 people involved in “Varsity Blues”, 51 plead guilty. Their punishments ranged from probation to 15 months in prison, according to The Washington Post. Of the remaining five, one was pardoned by then-president Donald Trump, one coach got a deferred prosecution agreement, and three went to trial (all were found guilty). Rick Singer is expected to be sentenced in August.

University in Israel Offers a Questionable Scholarship:

The University of Haifa, a school in Israel, has received backlash for offering a scholarship that effectively excludes Arabs. According to Haaretz, the scholarship is valued at $2,000 per year and is awarded to students who pass matriculation exams in subjects related to Judaism, which are mandatory in Jewish schools.

This scholarship is essentially unavailable to Arab students because they are not tested on these subjects. Arabs make up 41 percent of the university’s student body as of 2018, according to the Council for Higher Education in Israel University of Haifa.

The scholarship is funded by Brazilian businessman Elie Horn, who contributes to a number of ultra-Orthodox groups. While some people have cried against the scholarship, others have said to let it be.

According to Ilan Saban of the university’s law school: “If the donor wants to give to donate to some particularlist-Jewish-religious-national causes– let him do so himself. The university should not adopt these goals.”

NBC, The Washington Post, i24 News, and Haaretz contributed to this article.

Sports Update:

OU softball team. Via Heartland.

The Women's College World Series is finally here after a 60-game season. As expected, Oklahoma is in the final with a 57-3 record. Their opponent is a surprise. The University of Texas became the first ever unseeded team to make the WCWS, using a remarkable playoff run to get there.

Texas dropped one game in the double elimination format to none other than Oklahoma. In the semifinals they beat Oklahoma State (who swept Texas earlier this year) 5-0 in the first game, forcing a second one to decide who would advance. Texas fell behind 5-0 but came back to win 6-5, earning a berth to the finals.

Oklahoma dropped just their third game all year when they lost 7-3 to UCLA in the first game of the semifinals, but they followed it up with a 15-0 mercy-rule win to reach the finals.

Game 1 is tonight at 8:30 on ESPN.

Want to win 50% off Last Cup Scaries’ new Fire Island t-shirt? DM the correct answer of this riddle to lastcupclothing on Instagram, and if you’re the first person to respond correctly, we’ll send you a code! Previous winners are excluded.

What belongs to you, but everyone else uses it?

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