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Smaller, Leaner athletic program...

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12 minutes ago, clarkwgriswold said:

 

I would say that collectively the University of Akron as a whole cannot get past step one as the administration and students by and large do not give a **** about athletics.  Looking at the crowds tells you the students don't care.  Looking at history tells you that the administration has never made athletics a priority or acknowledged the benefits a strong athletic program can have on a campus.  They can't be uncomfortable with the current state as they don't care.

I respectfully disagree. I  think the University and many universities like ours care very much about their athletic programs. So many of them are making such bad decisions around their athletic programs it just looks like they don't care and historically don't care, but they do care.

 

I remember a time not that long ago when lot of students went to games. We haven't given them many good reasons to go to games in recent years.

 

They are very uncomfortable. They just need to follow the first rule of getting out of a hole...stop digging.  

Edited by GP1

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1 hour ago, kreed5120 said:

For the most part the people who I've seen posting that they wanted the football program to drop to a lower level are the ones who are very anti-football. The football fans for the most part are the ones who want to stay in the MAC. 


That may or may not be two different things. If there were a realignment like GP is discussing, part or all of the MAC would (should) be part of it. 

 

In a previous post I talked about growing up with ( and playing for) a D5 football high school. Nobody had delusions of grandeur, nobody wanted to get driven into the ground by Moeller, the goal was to win the WCAL and brag about it for a year (or a lifetime). A lot of us didn’t even know there were state playoffs, the competition was close and everyone had losses so nobody we knew went. These are “meat and potatoes” sports fans. What sport has the biggest potential for common fans to show up for a competitive product in NEOhio? Acme Zip ring a bell?

 

Only what, five college teams win national championships out of 730+ programs? That sounds like magical thinking, living so close to a powerhouse (and the jealousy that goes with that).

 

People see Ohio State football’s success in not only breaking even, but making the entire athletic Dept breaking even. What they don’t see is that is a result of winning. Winning national championships. Building a legacy over the decades. Smart advertising. That’s why the networks outbid each other to get the games, and why ticket prices are so high.
 

That’s not going to work with probably the worst mismanaged program in major college football. 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Spin

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32 minutes ago, clarkwgriswold said:

 

I would say that collectively the University of Akron as a whole cannot get past step one as the administration and students by and large do not give a **** about athletics.  Looking at the crowds tells you the students don't care.  Looking at history tells you that the administration has never made athletics a priority or acknowledged the benefits a strong athletic program can have on a campus.  They can't be uncomfortable with the current state as they don't care.


We have never had a functional advertising plan. Garbage in, garbage out.

 

Smart advertising made indoor soccer a hit in Northeast Ohio for years.  We had two franchises for a long time. The most profitable never won a championship.
 

Poor visibility makes a championship level traditional soccer program invisible to soccer fans. Including their OWN STUDENTS. I’ve seen 18,000 fans at “human pinball” Force games, in the “Richfield Mausoleum” and maybe 180 at some Zips games...

Edited by Spin

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21 minutes ago, Spin said:


We have never had a functional advertising plan. Garbage in, garbage out.

 

Smart advertising made indoor soccer a hit in Northeast Ohio for years.  We had two franchises for a long time. The most profitable never won a championship.
 

Poor visibility makes a championship level traditional soccer program invisible to soccer fans. Including their OWN STUDENTS. I’ve seen 18,000 fans at “human pinball” Force games, in the “Richfield Mausoleum” and maybe 180 at some Zips games...

 

...and the reason we haven't has been that no one in authority gives a **** or they would have devoted the budget to it to do it right.

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30 minutes ago, Spin said:

Only what, five college teams win national championships out of 730+ programs? That sounds like magical thinking, living so close to a powerhouse (and the jealousy that goes with that).

On the high end, there are only about 10-12 schools capable of winning the national championship. Everyone else is just playing games for their alumni, community and fans. At P5 schools, they do a good job of putting on those games for the fans, or I should say that those fans are in a position to enjoy a nice day at a game regardless of the outcome of the game.

 

Let's crawl first. How do we accept our reality and move forward in a way that gives the best experience possible to our fans, students, alumni and communities?  Crawl-Walk-Run

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1 hour ago, GP1 said:

I respectfully disagree. I  think the University and many universities like ours care very much about their athletic programs. So many of them are making such bad decisions around their athletic programs it just looks like they don't care and historically don't care, but they do care.

 

I remember a time not that long ago when lot of students went to games. We haven't given them many good reasons to go to games in recent years.

 

They are very uncomfortable. They just need to follow the first rule of getting out of a hole...stop digging.  

 

Fair enough.  I respect a respectful disagreement!

 

I just think if you pull an average UA student or faculty member off of the street and ask them how the basketball team did this year or who the starting QB is, you will get a blank stare.  Unfortunately, that's the environment in which these decisions will be made. 

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I hope there is a way to salvage the program.  I don't want to throw it out just because of last year's season.  All MAC schools must be in the same boat with this.  Just because a team was 7-5 or 4-8 doesn't mean the state of that program is much better or makes more $ for the school.  The MAC needs to find a way for the schools to protect their best programs and have flexibility with the others.

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1 hour ago, clarkwgriswold said:

I just think if you pull an average UA student or faculty member off of the street and ask them how the basketball team did this year or who the starting QB is, you will get a blank stare. 

That doesn't mean it always has to be like that.

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1 hour ago, jupitertoo said:

Can the opinion writers of NE Ohio do anything else to harm the school? My goodness are these people the enemy.

 

What do petty morons like Pluto, etc. think their endless articles about cutting sports do to recruiting, enrollment, etc.  It's a conveyor belt of stupidity in NE Ohio opinion writers.

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52 minutes ago, GP1 said:

That doesn't mean it always has to be like that.

 

Agreed, not at all.  I just point to it as an example of the environment in which these decisions will be made.

Edited by clarkwgriswold

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Arth and Groce are Akron's 2 highest paid employees. Just because the student body doesn't care about athletics doesn't mean the administration feels the same way. In fact, Akron has tried bribing students with things like free tuition just to get them to games. Nothing has seemed to work. What I really think we're seeing is people losing their pride in their local community. ESPN has preached for decades the if you're not first, you're last mentality. Their viewers have bought in. Cable tv has made it easy for Akron alum and area residents to sit at home on a Saturday and watch what they believe to be a superior product instead of going out and supporting the local team.

 

People have proposed dropping down divisions in hopes that being more competitive at a 3rd rate division would make people care. Mount Union has been the Bama of D3 for decades. Below are their attendance figures from last season. I'm seeing home attendance as low as 1840 and as high as 4631 for their home games. I've lived within 20 minutes from their stadium for virtually my entire life and I've never attended a game, nor do I have any desire to attend. Not a single one of my friends who attended Mount have been to a game neither. I know I certainly would never attend a game of watching Akron playing Otterbein, Capital, or Heidelberg. Granted I haven't attended a football game in 2-3 years, but I would attend if they were ever to consistently become competitive in the MAC. 

 

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2 hours ago, GP1 said:

Can the opinion writers of NE Ohio do anything else to harm the school? My goodness are these people the enemy.

What do petty morons like Pluto, etc. think their endless articles about cutting sports do to recruiting, enrollment, etc.  It's a conveyor belt of stupidity in NE Ohio opinion writers.

Once in a while I think I should subscribe to the ABJ, but then I realize that I would be supporting Bob Dyer's salary.  If they ever fire that arrogant, blow hard, who can only build a column from a complaining reader's email, I will sign up again.  

 

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On 4/30/2020 at 11:19 AM, kreed5120 said:

It should be in pristine condition. Very little wear and tear as we've been practicing social distancing at games for the past 10 or so years. 

 

 

 

When we were there 3 years ago, the stadium seemed to be in good shape.  In fact, I recall being impressed at its "newness." 

 

But what do I know?  I drove 16 hours one-way for an Iowa State/Akron game (and tailgate)!  

Edited by Cykron

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1 hour ago, kreed5120 said:

Just because the student body doesn't care about athletics doesn't mean the administration feels the same way.

 

But administrators are in part politicians (except Scarborough, LOL) and part of their decision making involves where they'll take heat from and what decisions won't draw criticism.  The students and the teaching unions aren't marching on the President's office over cuts to sports.    Don't get me wrong guys, I don't want to see drastic changes, I'm just saying in a world of pay to play and criticism of the finances of athletics that a winless football program is an easy target.    Hopefully, there are enough donor alumni to apply enough pressure to prevent drastic changes.

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Times are tough now. Its easy for these writers and naysayers to take pot shots at a struggling/rebuilding program. Hopefully by mid-summer, fall things will get back to normal. I hope Arth will get this program back on track. His recruiting classes so far are encouraging. Winning cures a lot. Its not just Akron, but other MAC schools going through the same things. 

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I'm not sure anyone would advocate moving to DII or III.  What makes the most sense (and a plan I would certainly support) is the MAC move TOGETHER and play somewhere between the P5 and DI-AA.  

 

Pluto used a terrible example of Dayton and the Pioneer Conference.  I enjoy his stuff for the most part and I'm a bit surprised that some on this board disagree.  He has always championed the little guy and seems fair in his assessments.

 

Unfortuanely, I agree with another poster that men's soccer/MAC conference are finished.  Not enough schools have a program and budget cuts are going to take a toll.  I hope that UA futbol can somehow find a home elsewhere.

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6 hours ago, Cykron said:

 

 

 

When we were there 3 years ago, the stadium seemed to be in good shape.  In fact, I recall being impressed at its "newness." 

 

But what do I know?  I drove 16 hours one-way for an Iowa State/Akron game (and tailgate)!  


There is some expansion damage to the wall surrounding the field, especially at the base of the “grassy knoll”. It’s to be expected in this climate.
 

The U thought the construction company was suppose to come back and cover that as it happens. The construction company disagreed. 

 

Time for a flop-out in court.

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I have been warning you all about this for years and crucified for it.  Stupid, fiscally irresponsible decisions have been made for years.  Building dorms and stadiums we couldn't afford and wouldn't be supported by the community (Joe Akron) to firing and paying coaches half a million to not coach.  I supported transitioning to more of an online curriculum for undergrad courses.  That would be looking pretty good right now huh.  It goes on and on.  My alma mater is being destroyed.  Indefensible  

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45 minutes ago, a-zip said:

I have been warning you all about this for years and crucified for it.  Stupid, fiscally irresponsible decisions have been made for years.  Building dorms and stadiums we couldn't afford and wouldn't be supported by the community (Joe Akron) to firing and paying coaches half a million to not coach.  I supported transitioning to more of an online curriculum for undergrad courses.  That would be looking pretty good right now huh.  It goes on and on.  My alma mater is being destroyed.  Indefensible  

I guess you told us.  Maybe write an email to Bob Dyer.  He will be happy to take up your cause.

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I hate to disturb the lovely quiet over here but here's a Beacon article on the anticipated budget deficit.  

 

The original article is short enough to paste here-

 

The University of Akron’s financial woes as a result of the coronavirus outbreak are “at least a $65 million to $70 million challenge,” President Gary Miller said in a video message to campus Monday.

 

That number takes into account both “real and anticipated” loss of revenues for next fiscal year, Miller said.

Miller also announced an initial plan to consolidate the university into five colleges.

 

Newly appointed Provost John Wiencek will announce further details within the next week, he said.

 

The announcement came a week after Miller released a similar video sharing plans for substantial cuts to athletics and a reorganization of departments. Executives will also take a 10% pay cut.

 

The university was already expecting financial uncertainty, as enrollment has continued to drop for the last decade to just under 20,000 this year. The budget approved for the current fiscal year, which ends in June, called for dipping into the university’s reserves by about $11 million.

 

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