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Old     (beckman)      Join Date: Jun 2008       08-18-2009, 5:31 AM Reply   
First of all we would like to thank you all for your continued support and dedication to collegiate wakeboarding! If you are no longer involved with your schools club/team please forward this email to someone who is. Thank you!

With the start of fall semester right around the corner, we would like to introduce the start of the 2009/2010 Collegiate Wakeboard year. As in years past we will be having regional tournaments in the East, Midwest, South, Southeast, and Western regions. These tournaments will act as qualifiers to the Collegiate Nationals (location and date TBD). The Eastern Regional Qualifier will be hosted by the University of Kentucky on September 12th, more details to follow. Within the next few days we will have the finalized locations and dates of all 5 of the regional events.

We have been addressing the future and direction of intercollegiate wakeboarding based on your comments and concerns. With that we need your help with a few issues. First of all I would like your teams input on the date of Collegiate Nationals. We have always had the tournament in April or May, but when is the best for your riders? Also, we have the ability to pick the site for this year’s event. The options on the table are San Diego, Miami, Madison, and Texas. Please let me know your opinions.

Also, I would like to extend another offer. I personally would like to have conversations with those of you who would like to discuss the future of collegiate wakeboarding. Please feel free to call or email me whenever it is convenient.

Finally, we have an interesting opportunity with This is the company that has hosted all of our web content to with CBS. They are extending their content to include wakeboarding on the collegiate level. They are asking for whatever information you have as far as events, videos, pictures, stories, etc. Please read the email below for more information. This would be a great way to extend the content and exposure we have for collegiate.

Again, thank you all for your continued support and dedication. Look forward to hearing from you soon.

Chris Beckman
Collegiate Wakeboard Association Email


My name is Michelle Walker and I work at CBS College Sports. I got your email from and saw that you were a captain of a college wakeboard team. CBS College Sports has an annual event that you may have heard of called the Alt Games which takes place in April. The Alt Games are the Collegiate Championships of Wakeboarding, Flowboarding, Skiing, Snowbaording, Competitive Eating, and Beach Volleyball. This year we are also trying to add Events in BMX, Kayaking, and Skim boarding. Our site ( is hosted by Some of you may have heard of as they are the home for many of these alternative sporting events.

The reason I am reaching out to you is to see if you want to participate in a project we are undertaking here at CBS College Sports. We want to build out the College tab on to include information about college athletes competing in these alternative sports all year round. Currently there is just Alt Games information on this tab, but we want to keep the tab relevant with information, pictures, videos, and other events leading up to the Alt Games in 2010. Ideally, we want to build out the Collegiate Alternative Sports world on this College Tab. We have already recruited a number of Alt Games athletes to blog on our site, and if you would like to be involved in this way, then please let me know! The bloggers have set up profiles, begun to upload pictures, and have started blogging about new things they are doing which are relevant to their sport. When the College Tab is completed, all of these blogs will live in the College Blog section.

We want to have not only an Alt Games and Blogging section on this College tab, but also a Wakeboarding, Flowboading, Skiing, and Snowboarding section. Hopefully all of these sections will have pictures, videos, and a few stories that we will collect every three-four weeks to upload to the site. This is where you can also help! We need as many volunteers as we can get in order to collect the proper amount of information to populate the site. We want to grow the awareness and popularity of these sports (specifically wakeboarding for your purposes), and in order to do that we need your help. If you would be willing to help us out on a tri-weekly to monthly basis, please let me know. It can be as simple as sending us pictures of a contest that you are competing in with their friends over the summer, or as involved as writing up a paragraph or two about something new that is going on in you sport (which could then get posted on the College tab as a story). We also need to stay updated on events in each of these sports that are going on this summer, fall and winter with college athletes. We want to have a “news and schedules” section which would be the home page of our stories and upcoming events. Once again, we need help in providing GO211 this information.

Our vision is to grow this tab out immensely before the next Alt Games rolls around, but without help from the experts in each sport like yourself, this will be a major challenge. If there is someone else you think we should speak with that would be eager to help out our initiative of growing each of these collegiate sports then please let us know!

Thanks so much for your time, and let me know if you are interested in helping!
Old     (lmcnary1)      Join Date: Aug 2009       08-20-2009, 2:30 PM Reply   
Have you guys been talking to Rob Mendieta from Empire Wake at all?
Old     (behindtheboat)      Join Date: Aug 2006       08-21-2009, 7:47 AM Reply   
Empire Wake's whole point is that they aren't this. That's their stance and marketing point
Old     (hoosairboy)      Join Date: Aug 2005       08-22-2009, 3:15 PM Reply   
I heard empire wake alienated the pro riders and sponsors. No pay outs like promised. Why fracture this sport any more. Please Rob, go away.
Old     (beckman)      Join Date: Jun 2008       08-25-2009, 12:47 PM Reply   
Rob Mendieta and Empire Wake is not associated with the Collegiate Wakeboard Association. We have been running the collegiate regional tournaments, including CBS Collegiate Nationals, for the past four years, and we continue to do so this year.
Old     (lkmitc2)      Join Date: Aug 2008       08-26-2009, 8:21 PM Reply   
Eastern Collegiate Regionals


The University of Kentucky is hosting its second intercollegiate wakeboard tournament. This will be the Eastern Regional Tournament but will be open to all collegiate riders. MasterCraft will be the exclusive towboat. There will be prizes for podium finishers in all divisions. There are a limited number of spots so register early. Registration order dictates running order. First to register will be last off the dock. Boatworks Proshop will be on site with closeouts on 2009 gear.
Old     (empire_wake)      Join Date: Nov 2009       11-13-2009, 5:48 PM Reply   
So just learned about this forum today. First off Empire Wake is excited to help Collegiate Wakeboarding continue to grow. As all collegiate sports, we will NEVER pay out riders. That is not what college is about. That is what pro is about. This is also why we offer a pro/am tour that pays called the Atlas Wake Series. What college sport do you know of that pays? Paying = Pro.
We are here to encourage wakeboarding and help build it. Therefore we don't think there should only be one event. This isn't helping. We are happy that USA Waterski is continuing its events and has a great deal of respect for Chris Beckman. We hope that the level continues to grow, and we are going to do our part.
Empire Wake and the Collegiate Wake Series are supported by Alliance Wakeboarding Mag, Wakeboarding Mag, Wake World, Axis Wake, Malibu Boats, Freestyle Watches, Red Bull, Fat Sac, Urban Rider Winches, Ronix, Pro Tec Helmets, and many local board shops. Not to mention so many clubs!
Hope to see even more clubs in 2010! And the top 16 in the country in Austin Tx April 2010!!
Thanks for the support!
Old     (chamillionaire)      Join Date: Nov 2009       11-13-2009, 7:30 PM Reply   
Chris, you should have the finals in Austin for a change. San Diego is nice, but the east coast schools have to travel very far. Thanks in advance.
Old     (empire_wake)      Join Date: Nov 2009       11-14-2009, 1:10 AM Reply   
The Collegiate Wake Series finals are in Austin this year! Come check them out. The top 16 teams in the country will be there. It is 4 days of riding from April 15 - 18th, 2010.
Old     (lfadam)      Join Date: Nov 2008       11-14-2009, 9:13 AM Reply   
yea I dont understand the hate for Empire wake and Rob. He has been working really hard to build up collegiate wakeboarding this year. I had a great time at UK regionals, and am looking forward to nationals (any info on where and when this is happening??? details would be great), but that is only two events per year! Rob busted his butt to start a whole series of collegiate events. Who complains when there are more options to wakeboard, represent your school's team, and have fun? Not me. Although it may be strange to have two nationals (assuming the alt game nationals are happening), but who cares? Rob is putting in tons of time and money for us, collegiate wakeboarders, and has some super fun events. I dont understand why thats a bad thing. If you want payouts, there are plenty of other competitions to go to. Wakeboarders are always the first to tell you, its not about the money. If you want to have a great time at an event, have more opportunities to ride, and see a very organized series, check out the CWS.
Old     (flydenrict)      Join Date: Nov 2009       11-14-2009, 12:12 PM Reply   
Bringing up money and payouts is ignorant when we are collegiate athletes. Like Rob said, no one gets paid in college. And I agree, why is it a bad thing to able able to ride multiple events and go to multiple tournaments. If you're ragging of empire wake for setting up a sick series of comps, you probably wont be missed at their events
Old     (mastercraftsex1)      Join Date: Nov 2009       11-14-2009, 12:34 PM Reply   
First of all, the fact that Mr. Beckman has continued plugging his event after tasteless message have been posted about Rob and Empire Wake makes me question his character, I'm not %100 sure I want to be a part of something that is run by someone that conducts themselve or his business that way. As far as my contact with Rob, I haven't heard anything negative said about USA Waterski's Collegiate Wakeboard Event. As far as getting paid to compete goes, it is called going pro... Empire gives away sick prizes at the competitions, more than I can say for the USA Waterski events I have seen in the past. CBS aired about 26 seconds of Wakeboard competition last year. CBS is a big name but when you consider that you could have tons of magazine and web exposure or 4 and a half seconds of your school on CBS college sports channel (which isn't basic cable) on a Saturday morning at 9 a.m. I think we know what's better for the school and the sport. When Sun Sports or ESPN or Fuel picks up Empire's CWS what crutch will USA Waterski lean on?

Sorry to go on a bit of a rampage, but I hate to see people have no integrity in the way they conduct things that will affect many other people and students alike.

Rob seems to work hard and hasn't bashed USA Waterski as far as I have seen. Rock on for having integrity!
Old     (landowakettu)      Join Date: Nov 2009       11-14-2009, 1:21 PM Reply   
Guys, after personally attending one of the Empire Wake, collegiate comps I have to say that the way they are run and advertised surpass everything that Mr. Beckman has done. Empire Wake and Rob have put forth the time and the effort for collegiate riders to go out and represent their school! The amount of time that Rob personally spent on the comp. was crazy, that guy was running everywhere trying to make sure that all the riders had the best time possible.

On the point of pay-outs, what college athlete gets paid to represent their school? None! So the same should be true for collegiate wakeboarders. Period!
Old     (nesteele)      Join Date: Nov 2009       11-15-2009, 9:03 AM Reply   
just like everyone said, thinking collegiate athletes should get payouts is ridiculous, they never have, they never will, thus why there is the Atlas Wake Series and the Collegiate Wake Series. Two different intentions. College is about the team more than the individual.

Rob is trying to revolutionize the Collegiate Wakeboard World, and he is doing it. Because he is starting something new and conducting it in a manner that college students want, he is doing well! He has dedicated his time to a series that WE want and has done his best not to step on anybody's toes along the way. He is not here to take place of the USA Waterski competitions but instead start his own, a different style of competition atmosphere inspired by the college students that it is meant for.

As far as any negative comments about Empire Wake or anything in the past, what organization doesn't mess up every now and then? Rob started the Cape Fear Classic only 6 years ago because he had a vision, not because he already knew how to host an event and make it flawless. His series and organization continues to grow and gets better every year so to anyone that wants to complain if something doesn't go over perfect, they should try it themselves and see just how hard it is to put on these competitions.
Old     (lfadam)      Join Date: Nov 2008       11-16-2009, 9:38 PM Reply   
To be fair, lets not bash the USA Waterski events or Mr. Beckman. It seems to me that he is trying to help us out and produce quality events too. I am a freshman, so I dont have personal experience with nationals, but from what everyone in our club said, nationals in san diego this year was an awesome event. It sounds like there were a couple glitches but overall, everyone had a great time. Im looking forward to experiencing nationals myself (hopefully in san diego again) and enjoy both series for what they bring to us, the riders.
Old     (empire_wake)      Join Date: Nov 2009       11-17-2009, 6:45 PM Reply   
Guys, Let's not forget Chris Beckman was one of the original founders of college wakeboarding. Him and Barrett started all this and it has been a couple years since they have been involved. Empire is fortunate enough to have Barrett working with us to help make events bigger and better. She is so dug into wakeboarding, I couldn't have found a better helper.
It was a great move for USA Waterski to bring Chris back on. They needed that kind of knowledge and experience.
Major props to Chris and all he did for the sport. We are going to keep doing our thing, and let USA Waterski do theirs.
2 tours are great for the sport. One leaves us in the place it was the past couple years.
Old     (beckman)      Join Date: Jun 2008       11-23-2009, 11:59 AM Reply   
Let me start by saying in no way was I ever “bashing” Rob and Empire Wake. I have had and continue to have a great relationship with Rob and Barrett. By me saying, “Rob Mendieta and Empire Wake is not associated with the Collegiate Wakeboard Association. We have been running the collegiate regional tournaments, including CBS Collegiate Nationals, for the past four years, and we continue to do so this year” that is not a personal insult, it is rather a statement of facts.

It is true that Empire Wake has created its own tour. We will continue to have the Collegiate Wakeboard Association series, which has been around for the past 5 years. This series includes events in the 5 regions (East, Southeast, Midwest, South, and West), 3 of which have been run this year. We will be having the Southeastern and the Southern Regional events in the early spring of 2010. These Regional events will continue to be the qualifiers for teams to compete in the CBS Collegiate Nationals. Which again will be held in San Diego in May. This event has always been run as a team style event. Where teams go head to head in a bracket format until one team is crowned the National Champion.

I understand there has been some confusion as to how to qualify for this event and the normal processes. I have decided again to volunteer my time to help progress this sport above and beyond what has been seen. The collegiate scene has grown by exponential rates since Barrett and I created this just a few years ago. The purpose continues to be for the enjoyment of the student athletes. I mean, what is not fun about hanging out with fellow riders, enjoying a weekend with a little competition and some other ”activities”.

As for the “payouts” people are complaining about. In the past and as it has always been, those “payouts” are scholarships. Usually benefitted towards the compensation of team travel. We have managed every year, except for last year to help schools to get to the National tournament. No one, including Empire Wake’s tour has ever said we are paying out collegiate riders. Any compensation comes in the form of scholarships which are distributed to help your school travel, host events, and progress your own club.

Collegiate Wakeboarding in general exists for the student’s enjoyment. That is really what this is all about and has been since day one. We are not here to promote negative vibes into a sport that we all love to do. So please help grow your schools team, promote collegiate wakeboarding in a bright light, and let’s make sure this idea is here to stay.
Old     (chamillionaire)      Join Date: Nov 2009       11-28-2009, 9:45 AM Reply   
So when and where is the southern qualifier Chris?


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