Thursday, June 5, 2008

UNCC football: Punt or game-ender?


Chancellor Phil Dubois has punted, for now, on a decision about whether UNC Charlotte should start a football program.
He told university trustees Thursday he’ll continue to vet serious questions about the cost and benefits and get back to them in the fall.
That will not make vocal advocates of 49er football happy. But maybe he’s trying to figure out a way around this huge hurdle: Research showed 66 percent of the revenue needed for football would have to come from raising non-optional student athletic fees. Students could have to pay as much as $300 more to support football, putting that fee way out of whack with the other 16 campuses of the university system.
Daily Views predicts that’s a show-stopper (and it ought to be). Daily Views also predicts that’s a no-go with the grand poobahs of the UNC system, Erskine Bowles and the UNC Board of Governors.
What do you think? Is Dubois stalling for time? Or has he stopped the game to let the crowd down easy?

54 comments:

Paul said...

I am a 49er alum and the prospect of saying no to football seriously bothers me. I love how the Observer loves to put us down for even attempting football or praises DuBois during his decision phase, but has totally ignored the disparity in funding from the state. If the O was raelly that concerned about the school they would be pushing for equal funding. There are ways to make football happen - to decline a team now without even putting together a legit fund drive smacks of dishonesty. If DuBois is serious about no funding then show us the numbers, lets us put our money where our mouths are and have a campaign. If the money is not there then so be it. This school spent $250,000 on a branding study that DuBois walked away from because he did not like the results. I find it hard to believe that the football push is not worthy of atleast the same treatment. I am guessing he is afraid the response would give him little wiggle room. I do not expect the Observer staff (cough cough Chapel Hill grads cough cough) to realize any of this.

Ed said...

Dear Observer Editorial Board,

I agree with Paul. Since you're so interested in what is best for UNC Charlotte where is your expose on where the bulk of the money goes in the UNC system? Why doesn't the Observer Editorial Board call for more funds for poor UNC Charlotte?

How can a school who has the fourth most students (soon to be third largest)be in the bottom three schools when it comes to funding? Put your best on that question. While you're at it, find out why UNC-CH and NCSU are scared to play a basketball game at our gym.

We should have added football years ago, and now we're paying the price for not doing so. We're in a mediocre conference because we don't have it.

You've made it abundantly clear where you stand on the issue. You say it's in the name of what is best for the University and Charlotte. But could it be you're a little nervous that someone may steal a little thunder from your precious UNC-CH Tarheels? If there is a game in Charlotte your Heels wouldn't be the main focus, and we can't have that can we? The higher-ups in the system are scared of the same thing. You didn't hear a word from Spangler and Friday when Pembroke decided to add football. You should change the name of your paper to Carolina Blue Southern Edition.

Ed, Proud UNC Charlotte Grad '02

The Observer Editorial Board said...

Your point about loyalties is a good one. Two of eight members of the Observer's editorial board attended UNC Chapel Hill. To see where the other six went to college, go to http://www.charlotte.com/opinion/story/23564.html. - Mary Schulken

Normmm said...

Mary,
Why does the Observer continue to harp on the increased student fees, but never mentions that the total cost of tuition will still be less than other schools in the system?

Danimal said...

I'm sure if a fund drive was coordinated, many start-up costs would arrive from alums (such as myself) and some corporate sponsors. Charlotte is a 'can-do' city which I'm sure can find a way to make this happen. Now if we could get around all these thick-headed 'won't do' people'....

MeckDeck said...

I grow tired making the same point, but here it goes again:

UNCC athletics are dependent on student fees RIGHT NOW, they supply roughly 60 percent of the current budget. Further, because AD Judy Rose made a horrible decision to join the A10 -- and bank on the conference's NCAA tourney "money shares" from the men's hoops program to fund her department -- UNCC is virtually guaranteed to hike student fees -- perhaps as much as 20% -- WITHOUT football.

Football, properly implemented with sufficient guarantee game revenue and alumni support, can pay for itself at institutions similar to UNCC. Old Sun Belt rival UAB, for example, wound up about $500K in the black.

Here's a bonus point I've also made for, oh, about two years now: Add football and UNCC can aspire to join the Big East and ditch home basketball games with the Bonnies of the A10. Talk about a money sink. AD Rose blundered badly with the A10 alignment which provides UNCC with no natural rivals.

The status quo is not sustainable. That is why UNCC football "report" -- I hope no one paid much for a Power Point of the obvious -- kept bringing up men's basketball. Football may or may not fix that, but to pretend that football and football alone rides on the back of student fees is sophistry.

Later,
JAT
UNC '87

surfshark said...

Mary,

you say only two of the editorial board went to Chapel Hill. How many went to UNCC? Are there any newsroom editors who went to UNCC? Is there anyone at the Observer, outside of the sports department, who went to UNCC?

Michael E. McConnell said...

Chancellor Dubois "did the math", and his calculations have shown that UNCC would be better served by using the projected $85 million to start a football program, to develop the university into an academic powerhouse. Case closed.

Michael E. McConnell said...

Chancellor Dubois "did the math", and his calculations have shown that UNCC would be better served by spending $85 million on developing the university into an academic powerhouse. Case closed.

Tom said...

UNCC's inferiority complex should not drive a white-elephant effort that will waste hundreds of millions of tax dollars over the next several decades.

These are the facts:

1) Yes, there is a large funding disparity between UNCC and UNC-CH (among others). This should be treated as a scandal and the O should exert as much pressure as possible to change it. However, don't expect anyone in Raleigh to buy the argument that UNCC needs more money if its biggest institutional priority is football.

2) UNCC football would not be a powerhouse within our lifetime. There are many reasons for this, and most of those reasons (lack of history, lack of alumni backing, lack of facilities, lack of big-conference membership) are not going to change quickly or cheaply. D-I football is one of the most competitive sports on earth; UNCC would be a doormat for a LONG time to come.

3) On that note, football is always, universally a major money-loser unless your team competes for a championship annually. Being able to compete for a championship requires more money than UNCC can responsibly dedicate to a football program. So this would be a guaranteed loss of revenue every year, indefinitely. And considering costs are spiraling upward in nearly all football programs, the losses would grow with each passing year.

4) With the money spent to build a football stadium and program, we could instead establish a medical or law school that would be far more productive for our community.

5) Charlotte is a saturated sports market, not to mention that it is notoriously disloyal to college sports. College football is a weak "sell" in this city.

6) For every UNCC alum that would give money to football, there is another who would refuse to donate to a school that wasted so much money on sports when there are greater needs.

7) UNCC is a school, not a minor-league sports organization. Until it is academically competitive (like Chapel Hill) it has no business getting involved in being an NFL farm team.

I have heard the arguments against each of these, and they are weak, so save your bandwidth. UNCC is simply not in a strategic position to add football, at least not in a fiscally responsible manner. Any institution needs to focus on its first priorities -- in this case, being a competitive and effective academic center -- before adding frivolous side projects like this one.

Paul said...

Tom you make some good point but are off base:

1: Yes the O should treat the funding disparity as a major scandal.

2: The University of South Florida faced the same hurdles to being respectable in football - they have cleared those hurdles. Yes it is difficult, but Charlotte football could be competitive.

3: Yes football may be a money loser, BUT lack of football is about to kill basketball. We fund our entire Athletic Dept off the back of men’s basketball and our current conference affiliation is about to kill the program. Until we can land in a bigger conference with better competition basketball is not going to excel. The presence of football might be a money loser, but the enhancements it will bring for basketball and other sports will help the cash inflow with all sports. Not to mention that without football student fees are going to go up anyway to make up for the lack of interest in seeing the Niners play St. Bonnies and a decrease in alumni giving tied to the current conference affiliation.

4: If you really want a med or law school then you need to go back to point #1, the UNC system is holding this b back NOT money. Having quality academics and athletics are not mutually exclusive. The school can and should do both. In the UNC system state funding can not be applied to athletics, so let alumni who want a football program donate and make that happen then lobby the UNC system to properly fund the school and approve these high level schools.

5: Charlotte is not as saturated as you would like to think. An affordable football choice could be a huge success. Most families can not afford to go to a Panthers game, but they could afford a Niners game. There are a TON of college football fans here and it would be a huge boon to this school to get this community involved in Charlotte athletics - they might even be more receptive to donating to academic programs!

6: It is not wasted money if Alumni who want it are donating and student fees that are going to increase with or with out football are used. Your argument only holds water if UNCC diverted academic funds for football, which as I said in the UNC system is not permitted.

7: UNCC is academically competitive. We have some top programs in engineering and nursing and architecture. We do need medical and law schools, but that goes back to point #1. You could say that Chapel Hill uses too much money on sports and should not do that until they are academically competitive with Ivy League schools.

Fact of the matter is Charlotte can field a quality football program that will enhance conference affiliation there by assisting ALL sports. This would also give UNCC students and alumni the complete college experience. The lack of medical and a law school is totally independent of the football team and most football backers are prepared to turn their attention to a name change and to obtaining these schools once the football program is established. Lack of vision such as yours is what has held UNCC down years. It is time that UNCC embraced a vision of the future that has it competed on the same level of the Chapel Hills and Raleigh both academically and athletically.

Tom said...

Paul,

While I respect your points which are obviously well-considered, I have to disagree on a very fundamental point:

The primary purpose of a public university is education, not athletics. Therefore any athletic enhancements need to come AFTER the academic needs are covered. In the case of UNCC, there are still major needs that affect the entire community, so it is not appropriate to spend hundreds of millions of dollars supporting a football program.

The entire argument in favor of football relies on the concept that alumni will foot the bill for whatever tax and corporate dollars won't cover. The problem is that there are only a limited number of donors out there, with a VERY limited amount of money... so for every person that gives $1 million to a football scholarship, you are making the donor pool $1 million smaller for the academic fundraisers. When you factor in the HUGE HUGE HUGE costs of building a stadium, building other team facilities, outfitting a full coaching and medical staff, establishing dozens of scholarships, housing a hundred athletes, advertising, and administrative overhead, the bottom line is:

We can't afford it.

It would be nice to live in a world where UNCC can afford football, but we don't. It would be completely irresponsible to ignore that fact and go right ahead with such a project, considering the bill would ultimately fall to taxpayers to cover the immense shortfall of funding.

Paul said...

You are making an assumption that the money being donated is coming from the same pool. That is not the case. The money I donate to the university academics I do out of duty, the money donated to athletics comes out of the same budget I have for entertainment. Again the school can and should do both. Corporations will donate to athletics because there is a return on their investment.

As for tax dollars, as I stated before tax dollars can not be used for athletics. The alumni have voiced they want it, the students have voiced they want it and the faculty have given their endorsement.

DuBois should allow a fundraising campaign. See what kind of corporate and alumni giving there is. If there is not enough then that is it. To sit on the sideline does the school, the students and the alumni a disservice.

Tom said...

You are making an assumption that the money being donated is coming from the same pool. That is not the case.

I am not making assumptions about anything. It's a pretty clear-cut fact that athletic fundraising encroaches academic fundraising. I know this because I have professional experience in the field and I have seen the metrics behind my statements. There is absolutely no possible way that UNCC would be able to raise enough money to support this program without having to scratch academic projects off the books.

And that doesn't even address one of the most significant losses that football would cause -- the lost of highly valuable acreage on the main campus. Think of the amount of irreplacable space that would be lost to a football stadium -- good for all of 8 Saturday events per year. Not to mention the practice facilities, which would be off-limits to the students, alumni and taxpayers who would pay for this boondoggle.

As for tax dollars, as I stated before tax dollars can not be used for athletics.

However, tax dollars WILL be used to cover the budgetary shortfalls caused by adding a program the University can't afford. Again, there is no rational way to argue that football funding will be completely segregated from academic funding. When you are spending tens of millions of dollars per year on a single athletic function (not to mention Title IX increases) you WILL have to make cuts in other areas. That's where the taxpayers foot the bill.

DuBois should allow a fundraising campaign. See what kind of corporate and alumni giving there is. If there is not enough then that is it. To sit on the sideline does the school, the students and the alumni a disservice.

Perhaps you would be willing to donate the several million dollars that such a campaign would cost. Hire a full-time staff, rent facilities, buy advertising space, pay for travel, pay for printing, pay for postage, pay for utilities, pay for events.

You clearly don't understand the true cost of these things, or you wouldn't be making such statements. Dubois would be out of his mind to "allow" such expenditure when all indications are that football is not feasible.

Paul said...

Well it is clear you and I are on opposite sides on this arguement. I will leave you with this. I have already canceled my basketball season tickets. Lack of quality competition has killed my desire to go out to Halton to watch basketball. Because I did not get season tickets I also did not donate to the 49er Club. My lack of time on campus has impacted my academic giving and next year I can easily see not giving anything. So for what ever it is worth, I am one alumni that is very close to releasing all connections I have with this school, money and emotion. I am not the only one that feels this way. It will be awfully hard to raise ANY money from the alumni if the few core supporters of academics and athletics walk away.

The costs and risks of football are huge, but so are the risks of not adding it.

As for the fundraising campaign - DuBois had NO problem shelling out $250,000 for a branding study, only to ignore all of it's reccomendations because he did not like them. There are enough supporters for football that any campaign could be lead by volunteers and the cost would be somewhere close to the branding study. Are you scared that the results might make football a possibility? Ironically the branding study told DuBois that the school is lost in the shuffle of UNC Chapel Hill, NC State and all the other schools. That we have no school spirit and that impacts alumni connections to the school (ie FUNDING).

We need football to assist with spirt, a name change to clear up confusion and a real leader that will fight to obtain proper state funding for a medical school and a law school.

Our current leader has simply sat on the sidelines while Chapel Hill prepares to set up a satellite campus for their med school in our backyard.

Tom said...

Because I did not get season tickets I also did not donate to the 49er Club. My lack of time on campus has impacted my academic giving and next year I can easily see not giving anything. So for what ever it is worth, I am one alumni that is very close to releasing all connections I have with this school, money and emotion.

In other words, your "philanthropy" (I use the term very loosely) is motivated not by a desire to increase the quality of local education, but by a desire for better basketball tickets. That being the case, a better fit for you may be the little-known local pro teeam, the Bobcats.

As for the fundraising campaign - DuBois had NO problem shelling out $250,000 for a branding study, only to ignore all of it's reccomendations because he did not like them. There are enough supporters for football that any campaign could be lead by volunteers and the cost would be somewhere close to the branding study.

Again, these are the kinds of statements that a person makes when he's playing with "house money". When you spend $250k, you are eliminating a program somewhere. Think about that: a program was eliminated so that UNCC could run a branding study to tell them what they already know -- that football will be a financial stretch that the University might not recover from in our lifetime. And you think it would be responsible for DuBois to CONTINUE spending money at that rate on such frivolous matters?

FYI - an experienced, competent development official costs about $60-80,000 a year in salary ALONE. Someone capable of asking for major donations is typically making over $100k. These are people who could easily make 50% more on the private market. Do you really think a bunch of volunteers will be able to run a full-scale capital campaign for a $100 million program involving major gifts, bequests, annual donations, etc.?

I hate to sound condescending, but it's clear that your point of view is based mostly on emotion instead of fact. UNCC simply cannot afford football, at least not at the significant expense of the academic and community programs. Not to mention that a successful football program cannot be shoestrung together with volunteers and good intentions. Big-dog programs, the ones which win national titles and make a profit, involve 10x more investment than what we have discussed so far. So even at best, UNCC would be cutting its academic standing in order to have a very mediocre football team -- is that really a responsible vision for the future of our major local university? Not in my book, and apparently not in the opinion of professionals in the UNC system either.

Paul said...

My continued donation to this school will be based on my faith in the leadership, which thus far has failed miserably on multiple levels.

Emotion plays a HUGE part in fundraising and it is the reason UNCC struggles as much as it does.

At it's current pace and vision UNCC will stay small time forever.

darkferi said...

Tom, thank you!
Your statements should be printed in the Observer on the front page. I've been shaking my head at the proponents for football at UNCC ever since taking their totally skewed survey last year. As an adult student who's going back for a degree, I definitely see the future success of the University as being intimately connected to academics.

We keep hearing about how Americans can't compete with graduates from the top Indian and Chinese universities. I believe that a large part of this has to do with the irrational fixation some American students have on being entertained over excelling in their own academics.

It is my hope that UNCC continues to strive for higher quality in their student body by raising GPA and SAT/ACT test score reqs. I've had the misfortune of sharing my classes with some incredibly stupid children. It's been a small but noticeable proportion.

Thank you for making this blog available for comment!

R.Moore, Concord, NC

Paul said...

Is it so impossible for you all to understand that quality athletics and academics can happen at the same time? Plenty of other schools manage to do both, why should UNCC be any different?

If the anti crowd spent some of their time lobbying the state for mone money maybe the academics would be where you want them to be. Like it or not the football advocates are the most passionate and supportive people of this school. When and if we get a med school and law school it will be because of the same group of people.

metroniner said...

Tom-
you are clearly ignorant about revenue streams for sports and academics. They are 100% separate and unrelated.

that said, I give to UNCC both to the Chancellors fund and athletics. If football gets turned down, my giving to the academic side is done.

you should really read Jim Utter's blog on this issue:
http://gmine.blogspot.com/2008/01/football-time-for-waiting-is-over.html

metroniner said...

http://gmine.blogspot.com/2008/01/football-time-for-waiting-is-over.html

Tom said...

you are clearly ignorant about revenue streams for sports and academics. They are 100% separate and unrelated.

Nonsense. It is impossible to completely separate one from the other, even if they are under different departments. If an alumnus has $1 million to give the University, and is being courted by both the athletic foundation and the Development Department, something has to give. And please don't be naive enough to claim that the departments will work together to eliminate conflicts of interest... conflict comes with the territory.

that said, I give to UNCC both to the Chancellors fund and athletics. If football gets turned down, my giving to the academic side is done.

In other words, like Paul, you are not really interested in the future of the University unless it does exactly what you want, when you want it, no matter the cost, for the sake of your own personal entertainment 12 days a year. How charitable of you.

Normmm said...

In other words, like Paul, you are not really interested in the future of the University unless it does exactly what you want, when you want it, no matter the cost, for the sake of your own personal entertainment 12 days a year. How charitable of you.

Tom,
How is that any different than you not wanting football? It's what you want and when you want it. Pot meet kettle. Just because you don't think it's best for the university doesn't make it right.

What other posters have mentioned about the money not coming from the same source is correct. The proposed raise in student fees CAN NOT be used for academics. It is to be used to increase a students college experience.

For you to not want for students to increase their quality of the college experience, how uncharitable and selfish of you.

Also, you should be advised that the Chancellor has already said that we can afford the yearly operations of DivIA football.

Normmm said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tom said...

How is that any different than you not wanting football? It's what you want and when you want it. Pot meet kettle.

Not sure what this is supposed to mean, but I hardly think I'm being a hypocrite here. I'm not the one saying that I'm going to stop supporting the University's students if the administration decides it can't afford football. So far in this conversation we've seen two people who claim to have the University's best interests in mind, but state that they will not contribute to academics unless they are rewarded with athletic entertainment options.

And that, frankly, tells you all you need to know about the pro-football argument. It rests on a faulty concept of the University as a provider of semi-pro sports entertainment, rather than as a provider of high-level education to all of our community. If you want local college football, I invite you to see a game at Davidson sometime.

What other posters have mentioned about the money not coming from the same source is correct. The proposed raise in student fees CAN NOT be used for academics. It is to be used to increase a students college experience.

I am not talking about student fees, I'm talking about the up-front and annual fundraising involved in creating and advancing a football program. Surely you understand that the student fees alone will not cover the multi-hundred-million dollar cost of having football over the long term... not to mention the dedication of land, staff resources and other collateral costs. And surely you don't think that the football program will be successful on the field with the minimal funding we've discussed so far. The upward spiral in costs will begin Day One and, to judge by other universities' experiences, will not stop until it consumes far more resources than the University can spare (see: USF).

For you to not want for students to increase their quality of the college experience, how uncharitable and selfish of you.

Which "students" are you talking about? Single mothers taking night courses? White-collar professionals seeking to advance their careers? The general population of undergrads seeking a degree that's worth the paper it's printed on?

Do you really think, in good conscience, that the general student body is better served by a football team than an investment in the academic profile of the University? Considering all the anxiety about competing with Chapel Hill, surely you recognize that nobody has ever decided to go there for its football team -- the fact of the matter is that Chapel Hill cleans the floor with UNCC academically and the disparity will be even worse if UNCC's inferiority complex starts driving it into expensive sideshows like this one.

Considering the extremely high stakes involved for the long-term health of our community, I hope that UNCC alumni will have the wisdom and foresight to invest in their alma mater's academic future first and foremost... because frankly, we simply can't afford a screwup of this magnitude.

Paul said...

So far in this conversation we've seen two people who claim to have the University's best interests in mind, but state that they will not contribute to academics unless they are rewarded with athletic entertainment options.

Correction I said that I would stop donating because of lack of leadership, not lack of football. This school has and continues to give me no faith in the direction of this school. If they do not see the importance of adding to the full experience of college students and are scared of the hill that needs to be climbed why should I expect them to fight for the medical and law programs? If I am really worried about elevating quality education in the area should I stop supporting UNCC I will give money to Belmont Abbey or my local private high school of which I am an alum, both of them are in my community.

If you want local college football, I invite you to see a game at Davidson sometime.

So Davidson is allowed to have and pursue football in your eyes but we are not?

Which "students" are you talking about? Single mothers taking night courses? White-collar professionals seeking to advance their careers? The general population of undergrads seeking a degree that's worth the paper it's printed on? Do you really think, in good conscience, that the general student body is better served by a football team than an investment in the academic profile of the University?

I am talking about the real students. The non-traditional students are not and should not be the focal point of this university. More of those students are using online courses anyway so why would they care about student life. The traditional student is the one who wants and needs a traditional college experience. The best way to increase our funding is to help our students make emotional connections to this school and give them a reason to return to campus. At this point we do not do either and that is part of the reason our alumni giving to both athletics and academics is so low. And again you start with the notion that academic and athletics can not coexist. If you are so worried about academics what have you done to help UNCC increase the money received from the state? I will tell you now that the football supporters have been and are actively pursuing our elected officials for proper funding. As I said before the football supporters are the most giving and most passionate supporters of this university and have only the best wishes for this school. If they perceive the administration to be incapable of properly leading this university then they have every right to with hold their giving.

Surely you recognize that nobody has ever decided to go there for its football team

Surely you recognize that MANY students apply to and attend Chapel Hill because of their athletics. Their basketball program drives plenty of interest in attending school there, which helps them be more selective in the quality of student. Take a look at the applications to App State after their 3 year title run in Boone. You don’t think that has allowed them to up the quality of applicant?
Like it or not athletics is the front porch of a university. It can and does drive interest in potential students. As long as UNCC does not offer fall entertainment (as you phrase it), they will continue to leave campus and attend games in Boone, Chapel Hill, Raleigh, Clemson, etc. They will develop those emotional bonds with those schools. Once they graduate guess where they will donate, it won’t be back to UNCC. If they donate at all it will most likely be to a school that they feel connected to, which UNCC has given them very little reason to feel connected and virtually no reason to ever return to campus.


I hope that UNCC alumni will have the wisdom and foresight to invest in their alma mater's academic future first and foremost... because frankly, we simply can't afford a screwup of this magnitude.

I hope that our leadership will for once stop thinking small time and realize that we have the capability of being on the same level athletically and academically as Chapel Hill and other schools. The only thing holding us back is lack of vision and lack of faith. Football should have been started 10 years ago and a medical and law schools should already be in play. Our leadership thus far has simply accepted where we are rather than fight for where we should be. I am patiently waiting on the sideline to see if our leadership sees what the alumni and students have vocally supported. They want football. We missed the boat 10 years ago because of your exact logic and now it is even more costly. We can not afford to fail again. If the leadership says they are unaccepting of the climb in football why should I have any faith in their willingness to fight the battle for proper funding? The name change so badly needed? Or a host of other issues. If we show the willingness to fight for football then I will see the passion needed to conquer those other issues. If that passion is not there then why should I continue to give to an institution that accepts the status quo and willingly takes orders from those in Chapel Hill. My money would be better spent at other institutions that I have more faith in.

Normmm said...

Not sure what this is supposed to mean, but I hardly think I'm being a hypocrite here. I'm not the one saying that I'm going to stop supporting the University's students if the administration decides it can't afford football. So far in this conversation we've seen two people who claim to have the University's best interests in mind, but state that they will not contribute to academics unless they are rewarded with athletic entertainment options.

You think football is not best for the university. Another poster thinks it is. You would be disappointed if they add football. He will be disappointed if they don't. You think adding football will take away from academics. He thinks that adding football will help academics. Just because you have an opinion doesn't make it right. That's how you're a hypocrite. And for you to not want to contribute to the betterment of the college experience because you don't want football, that is why you are uncharitable.

And that, frankly, tells you all you need to know about the pro-football argument. It rests on a faulty concept of the University as a provider of semi-pro sports entertainment, rather than as a provider of high-level education to all of our community. If you want local college football, I invite you to see a game at Davidson sometime.

And that, frankly, is where your whole argument loses legitimacy. For you to think that Davidson and UNC-CH can strive having football, but Charlotte can not is again hypocritical.

I am not talking about student fees, I'm talking about the up-front and annual fundraising involved in creating and advancing a football program. Surely you understand that the student fees alone will not cover the multi-hundred-million dollar cost of having football over the long term... not to mention the dedication of land, staff resources and other collateral costs. And surely you don't think that the football program will be successful on the field with the minimal funding we've discussed so far.

The upfront fees for stadium, land, start up, etc, are one time costs. They can be paid for by bonds or corporate sponsorships. The year to year costs that you mention are what is being suggested as a possibility to be funded by the student fees. So again, they ARE DIFFERENT pools of money.

And again, you seem to think it's OK for UNC-CH to do this but not Charlotte. UNC-CH is currently using bonds and student fees to help funds athletics.

I am not talking about student fees, I'm talking about the up-front and annual fundraising involved in creating and advancing a football program. Surely you understand that the student fees alone will not cover the multi-hundred-million dollar cost of having football over the long term... not to mention the dedication of land, staff resources and other collateral costs. And surely you don't think that the football program will be successful on the field with the minimal funding we've discussed so far.

Are you, in good conscience, serious in thinking that the population you mention should be the top priority of the university? The traditional students are who allows for the students you mention to get a degree.

Just because you may not be a traditional student or take advantage of having football, doesn't mean it wouldn't be the best for the traditional students as a whole. Again, how selfish and uncharitable.

Do you really think, in good conscience, that the general student body is better served by a football team than an investment in the academic profile of the University?

This perhaps is what you are probably missing the most from pro-football supporters. Yes, I think it is the smartest investment for the university. The university has always had an image problem.

Considering all the anxiety about competing with Chapel Hill, surely you recognize that nobody has ever decided to go there for its football team -- the fact of the matter is that Chapel Hill cleans the floor with UNCC academically and the disparity will be even worse if UNCC's inferiority complex starts driving it into expensive sideshows like this one.

This does not sound like a comment from somebody that truly supports the university. Exactly how does UNC-CH clean the floor with Charlotte academically, when they don't even offer programs like Engineering and Architecture?

And Charlotte supporters never use the "inferiority complex" term. Your true colors are accidentally slipping out. Charlotte supportes wanting football has nothing to do with UNC-CH having football. Besides, how can it be an inferiority complex when their football is so bad? If you would have used University of Texas in your example that would have made more sense.

metroniner said...

Tom-
you have proven in your posts that you are not a friend nor supporter of the Charlotte 49ers.

Come clean, whats your alma mater?

Justin Ritchie said...

This is not a choice between academics and athletics. It is a choice between relevancy and irrelevancy.

UNC Charlotte can continue to be seen as the school on the edge of town that is a second choice for high school graduates or it can be the cultural center and valuable member of the community that it deserves to be recognized as.

The cost of adding a team is compensated for many times over as a community comes together and creates the connections that will innovate the university city area.

Tom said...

So Davidson is allowed to have and pursue football in your eyes but we are not?

Davidson plays football at the D-III level, for precisely the reason that D-I is too demanding on the institution. Last I checked, Davidson is having no problems with its basketball program, despite the lack of big-time football there. Kinda refutes the arguments above, no?

I am talking about the real students. The non-traditional students are not and should not be the focal point of this university.

I am appalled at this statement, and the similar one by "normmm" below. This statement alone tells us all we need to know about the scope of "vision" that you expect from the University -- one which excludes nearly a third of the student population.

If the leadership says they are unaccepting of the climb in football why should I have any faith in their willingness to fight the battle for proper funding?

Well as far as I can tell the administration is simply accepting the reality that D-I football at UNCC is a terrible idea. It would be pretty hard for them to lobby the state for more funding if they ignore the direct and explicit advice of the most experienced administrators in the system to stay away from frivolous athletic expenditures and focus on improving their academic profile. There is simply no research to suggest that UNCC can simultaneously add a football team AND the grad schools/undergrad improvements that it more desperately needs. For the leadership to do anything OTHER than "punt" this idea would be insanely irresponsible.

Just because you have an opinion doesn't make it right. That's how you're a hypocrite.

Frankly, that makes no sense at all. I can disagree with someone without being a hypocrite.

However, when someone who claims to be a "supporter" of the University says they will no longer make any contributions toward the academic programs if they are unhappy with athletic issues, THAT is hypocrisy. You are not supporting anything if you attach unreasonable demands to your monetary donations.

And that, frankly, is where your whole argument loses legitimacy. For you to think that Davidson and UNC-CH can strive having football, but Charlotte can not is again hypocritical.

Don't put words in my mouth -- I never said I think it was great that UNC-CH has D-I football. You assumed that to be my opinion.

In fact, I would just as soon see UNC-CH move away from enormous football expenditures, particularly what it is now paying its coaching staff (which is exponentially higher than any faculty salary... again, the political fallout of such a salary structure is a hidden collateral cost). However, UNC-CH's program is not on the table in this argument. Similarly, I could care less about Davidson football, because it is a private institution. They can spend a billion dollars on water polo if that is what they want to do.

Stephen said...

As a recent UNC-Charlotte graduate, I have some concerns representative of many of the current students and recent grads from UNCC.

I am really getting upset at the way students are being shoved into the University without much requirement, and having a seemingly low academic entry standard. Look at enrollment for the past 5 years (22,000 in 06-07): it's going up at an alarming rate, and is this really the best approach for the University? More money, yes -- but at what cost? A depreciated educational value, and a horrible sense of community and involvement amongst the current student body. I want UNCC football as much as the next guy, but all I really care about is having a sense of pride when I say that I am a 49er alum. Having a larger student body by increasing enrollment is not the answer for creating a football team. Make the school more academically focused, which would give students a stronger devotion towards the University, and increase school spirit. Opinions of UNC-Charlotte are becoming depressingly negative, and the university is moving in the wrong direction.

Paul said...

Stephen - Your issue is the same as ours and it has nothing to do with football and everything to do with poor leadership.

My guess is that by becoming a bigger university it makes it that much more difficult for the State to ignore UNCC when it comes to proper funding. I have no idea if that is the right way to go about it though. Controlled growth with proper funding seems to be the best way to me, but our current leadership has no vision and no fight and simply bows to the pressure of Chapel Hill.

darkferi said...

Paul, honestly. What is it with folks like you and your animosity for Chapel Hill? 'Bow down' to CH? That's absurd. The leadership at UNCC, particulary Chancellor DuBois, is doing an excellent job of communicating a viable vision and direction for the university.

Like Stephen and many other students, though, I wish there'd be less emphasis on increasing the numbers of students and more emphasis on increasing the QUALITY of those students. I had the misfortune of reading a Powerpoint presentation last year written by a freshman who barely had a grasp of standard English. I thought it was a joke at first. But it wasn't.

As an adult returning student, I'm not really impressed with the overall quality of the first and second year students. A majority of them come across as kind of ignorant. But I'm assuming that most of these get filtered out in the advanced classes.

Normmm said...

I am appalled at this statement, and the similar one by "normmm" below. This statement alone tells us all we need to know about the scope of "vision" that you expect from the University -- one which excludes nearly a third of the student population.

The statement does not mean the nontraditional students are ignored or unimportant. It just means they are not the top priority. If you're "appalled" by that statement then that means you are essentially "appalled" by all large state universities in the country, because they have the same approach.

One of the biggest issues facing Charlotte is that naive people perceive the university as a commuter school. By using your approach you only compound the problem, not resolve it.

Don't put words in my mouth -- I never said I think it was great that UNC-CH has D-I football. You assumed that to be my opinion.

In fact, I would just as soon see UNC-CH move away from enormous football expenditures, particularly what it is now paying its coaching staff (which is exponentially higher than any faculty salary... again, the political fallout of such a salary structure is a hidden collateral cost). However, UNC-CH's program is not on the table in this argument. Similarly, I could care less about Davidson football, because it is a private institution. They can spend a billion dollars on water polo if that is what they want to do.


No, you were the one who brought up Davidson and UNC-CH having football. You suggested if you want football, then go to Chapel Hill to watch it. If you buy a ticket and buy concessions then you would be contributing to UNC-CH rather than the academics of Charlotte. Again, hypocritical.

Frankly, that makes no sense at all. I can disagree with someone without being a hypocrite.

However, when someone who claims to be a "supporter" of the University says they will no longer make any contributions toward the academic programs if they are unhappy with athletic issues, THAT is hypocrisy. You are not supporting anything if you attach unreasonable demands to your monetary donations.


So, are you saying that if Charlotte adds football, that you want be disappointed? And that you will still contribute to the university?

Your posts read that you would not contribute to football, even though if it is approved, it will be because the administration and students believe that it will improve the quality of the student life. So if you don't contribute to football than you would not be contributing to the betterment of the student life. Which, for the third time, would make you hypocritical, selfish and uncharitable.

Yes you are disagreeing with somebody. But your posts read that you not only disagree with football, you would not support it either. That is why your disagreement is hypocritical. Just because you have a belief for what is best for the university, doesn't mean you're right.

Well as far as I can tell the administration is simply accepting the reality that D-I football at UNCC is a terrible idea.

The administration has not made a decision.

It would be pretty hard for them to lobby the state for more funding if they ignore the direct and explicit advice of the most experienced administrators in the system to stay away from frivolous athletic expenditures and focus on improving their academic profile. There is simply no research to suggest that UNCC can simultaneously add a football team AND the grad schools/undergrad improvements that it more desperately needs. For the leadership to do anything OTHER than "punt" this idea would be insanely irresponsible.

Again, for the third time, the money that would be used for the programs that you mention will come from a different pool of money. The student fees CAN NOT be used
for academic purposes.

The money they would lobby from the state can not be used for football either. So that lobbying will happen with or without football

Just because you continue to mention the funding needed for academic purposes will not change the fact that it is two different pools of money.

The same experienced state administrators that you've mentioned support UNC-CH and NCSU having football. So, again, that would make their comments hypocritical and illegitimate.

Normmm said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
darkferi said...

Game-ender. Clearly, the dream is over. Hopefully we can move on to addressing REAL issues at the University, such as managing huge growth while raising performance standards.

Once the Board of Trustees makes their thumbs-down decision, will there be rioting on the campus? Methinks not. I, for one, think that the fees we're already paying for sports-related activities are exorbitant.

Perhaps the board can distribute free Panthers tickets... LOL

Paul said...

I, for one, think that the fees we're already paying for sports-related activities are exorbitant.

Well Darkferi get ready for those fees to go up. Without footbnall the fees will keep going up. The current conference alignmnet has impacted alumni giving and attendance at basketball games, so to maintain just the current level of athletics the student fees are going to go up. Should we add football the fees then might have a chance at going down in the future due to conference alignments and pay outs. If you are really worried about fees then you should want football because it is the only thing that can actually help lower the fees in the future.

Paul said...

Once the Board of Trustees makes their thumbs-down decision, will there be rioting on the campus? Methinks not.

And for the record I will not riot on campus if there is no football, but I also will not be setting foot on campus for anything and will be sending my money to other sources whose leadership I have more faith in.

Normmm said...

Paul, honestly. What is it with folks like you and your animosity for Chapel Hill? 'Bow down' to CH? That's absurd. The leadership at UNCC, particulary Chancellor DuBois, is doing an excellent job of communicating a viable vision and direction for the university.

Like Stephen and many other students, though, I wish there'd be less emphasis on increasing the numbers of students and more emphasis on increasing the QUALITY of those students. I had the misfortune of reading a Powerpoint presentation last year written by a freshman who barely had a grasp of standard English. I thought it was a joke at first. But it wasn't.


Darkferi,
You do realize that the admissions standards are determined by the UNC system, and not UNC Charlotte? That is why you often see hatred towards UNC-CH. The people in the UNC system that are against Charlotte adding football are the same people who determine what the admission standards for Charlotte should be, and in general they have UNC-CH ties. The clearly play a role in holding back Charlotte's full potential.

Mandeep said...

I hate when people make the argument that Academics needs to be high and then they say that football will not help out all...

Sports is a window through which one views a University. The bigger the window the better the view.

In other words, its exposure. That kind of exposure creates students who pick on University over another simply because they know it better, they've seen it on TV, they've heard about it on the radio etc.

Yeah academics is the reason we have higher education, but reality check, collegiate sports has become a huge part of the college experience.

USF did not have a football team 10 years ago or so. Call it luck, call it great planning, but look at where they are now. They were #2 in the country for a bit. Anyone who hadnt heard of USF knows about them now.

Sure, we might not be good in the first phase of the football program. But Rome wasnt created overnight either. Sure Rome was eventually toppled, but thats not relevant I think.

As for this "Its going to take away from Academic Funding" argument... Well its not going to take away the state dollars, I think we've already established that. As for academic donations, if those people stop giving to Academics, then its their own problem. They might not believe in Academics enough to justify the donations anymore. Who knows? But I really doubt that offensive linemen will be breaking down doors and holding people at gunpoint to get them to donate all their money to football.

I am a 49er alum, and I support football.

Tom said...

One of the biggest issues facing Charlotte is that naive people perceive the university as a commuter school.

And one of the biggest issues facing the football proposal is that it doesn't solve the "commuter school" perception. You are proposing that we take away campus space and create more traffic problems, not to mention reducing available dorm space and facilities to accomodate 100 new athletes. If anything this would only exacerbate the existing problems.

This is why experienced administrators, not bloggers, are in charge of bond issues.

You suggested if you want football, then go to Chapel Hill to watch it.

For the second time, please stop making things up. I didn't say anything about going to Chapel Hill to watch football. I specifically stated that NOBODY goes to UNC-CH for its football program. If you are going to mischaracterize everything I say, I'd rather you simply not respond.

But your posts read that you not only disagree with football, you would not support it either. That is why your disagreement is hypocritical. Just because you have a belief for what is best for the university, doesn't mean you're right.

The difference between our opinions is that mine are supported by hard facts, particularly the dollar totals involved, instead of emotion. I would love to see UNCC gain a football team except that it is not a good plan for the institution. It's nothing personal, just the way things are. I certainly wouldn't say that I withdraw all support from UNCC students over a pointless grudge.

Just because you continue to mention the funding needed for academic purposes will not change the fact that it is two different pools of money.

Again, you are exposing a disturbing level of naivete' regarding the way money moves in university systems. If the university has to tap into bonds to finance a stadium, do you think that will not affect academic funding? If it has to hire a whole office full of development staff to raise money for the team's startup costs, do you not think those resources will be pulled from other areas? Do you think it might affect scholarship allocations to add dozens of new athletic recipients? How about coaches' salaries... you think those won't make waves in the accounting offices? You think the team will support itself indefinitely without any cost to any other part of the university? Really?

A $300/student fee is not going to cover the costs of building a stadium, hiring a full staff (including fundraisers), operating expenses for a 100-player team, scholarships, housing, equipment, media, etc., etc., etc., for the indefinite future. There is NO WAY that a project this large can be pulled off without impacting academic departments... claiming otherwise is an outright falsehood.

Mandeep said...

... I believe the estimate is 300$ per student to take care of operating expenses. Yes the stadium is not part of that 300$.

but 300$ is an estimate for a Div 1a team. Cost for football will not reach that level right away.

Also, those 100 athletes are also students. I dont see how adding 100 more students will end up bringing down the University.

As for space... an on campus stadium, built on space across the street by 29, would be much better then if they had built the new CRI buildings out there. Think traffic will be bad on one Saturday a week? Imagine if you have thousands of students trekking or driving half a mile from central campus, crossing a 4 lane road, or trying to park somewhere.

Outside of that, the only other space football would take up is with the addition of practice fields. Since all students would be using those fields when the football team, and also other sports teams are not practicing, I imagine it would only allow for added recreation for students on campus.

Paul said...

Tom,

If the danger of having a major negative impact on academics was truly the level you seem to think it is the faculty would have raised numerous flags. Instead they backed the football committee's conclusion that football on the campus of UNC Charlotte is a good thing. It might be because they know they ONLY way to increase alumni giving to both academics and athletics is to make sure that emotional connections are made with the university and that alumni and supporters have a reason to step on campus and see all the good things this school does, both academically and athletically.

Tom said...

It might be because they know they ONLY way to increase alumni giving to both academics and athletics is to make sure that emotional connections are made with the university and that alumni and supporters have a reason to step on campus and see all the good things this school does, both academically and athletically.

For the record, I completely agree with the statement above. There is no question that UNCC needs to do a better job of engaging its alumni.

The question is simply what is the best way to make that happen. With the roughly $200 million (highly conservative estimate) that it would cost to operate the football program for its first 10 years, UNCC could instead perform transformative additions to campus. That kind of money would be enough to more than cover new graduate-level institutions in addition to major on-campus improvements.

As an alum, which institution would you support more readily:

a) One which has recently added nationally-competitive graduate schools, dramatically increased its undergraduate offerings, and made the campus generally a more prestigious and appealing place to receive a higher education, or

b) One which has recently added a football team, which gets trounced by mediocre competition in an unglamorous conference, is known as the 6th-best football option in a very weak pool of competition, and has prevented the kind of improvements mentioned above.

Again referencing my professional experience in educational fundraising, I can assure you that all industry research indicates that alumni more readily identify with the experience of students like themselves than with big-time athletic programs. The stats bear this out across the board. Any boost in donations due to football will last a year or two, until the reality of having a mediocre/bad team sets in and short-term support disappears (you might reference Charlotte's spotted history with pro sports as an analogy). Over the long term, while the athletic department alone might see an increase in donations, the academic departments at UNCC will be far more successful at gaining donors if it can show that it is effectively fulfilling its educational mission to the city of Charlotte and the state of North Carolina.

darkferi said...

Mandeep, I have no doubt that your heart is in the right place. I've been impressed with the way you've gotten the football initiative pushed this far.

Your comments, though, seem to imply that the new research buildings for Physics, Optics and Engineering, are misplaced. How much of the campus should be turned over to relatively irrelevant athletics? One of the things that has attracted me to UNCC is it's commitment to research done at the University. It's this research that attracts new startup businesses and additional resources that can really add value to the region. I look around the Charlotte area and I see very little real commitment to sports. It seems like sports teams are repeatedly shoved down the throats of tax payers, who are then told that they'll need to foot the bill for yet-another-under-utilized stadium. I don't have an MBA, but I have owned a business... and the basics must always come first. Right now, UNCC is growing into a decent research institution. I have no doubt that the research being done here will have a positive impact on the region.

As much as you'd like to think that a football program would be subsidized by alumni and current students (or more correctly, their parents!), the funds for such an undertaking will have a long-term and negative impact on the availability of other funds for more promising programs. The ROI for football is non-existent.

It seems pretty obvious that football won't be coming to UNCC anytime soon.

Mandeep said...

Actually DarkFeri let me explain what was said.

It was suggested that the land a possible football stadium would use would take away from Academic Buildings. My point was that the stadium would be built on the outter fringes of campus. Also, traffic congestion would not be a problem except for on Saturday's, and even then it would be no different then when there is a concert at Verizon.

As for where the new buildings are now, I find the CRI buildings are in a good location now. However if it is suggested that football takes away from Academic building land, then I argue if the CRI buildings were built were the proposed stadium might go...

Get it?

Thanks for the kind words though. We did work very hard to bring attention to the matter of football. I am glad that the school is taking the time to research the issue, to make a good decision.

saltydogmarsh said...

The Observer is just a rag written on an 8th grade level, at best. I cancelled my subscription. Go 49er Football! Cancellor Dubois is a good guy and good for our school. There's my two cents.

Normmm said...

And one of the biggest issues facing the football proposal is that it doesn't solve the "commuter school" perception. You are proposing that we take away campus space and create more traffic problems, not to mention reducing available dorm space and facilities to accomodate 100 new athletes. If anything this would only exacerbate the existing problems.

This makes no sense. So are you saying that all the schools that have a football program have a bigger commuter school image than Charlotte?

If you ask the general population what they think the college experience involves, a over whelming majority will say Saturdays on campus in the fall.

If football supporters strive to get that type of experience for students, similar to most of the notable state colleges across the country, which university do you think Charlotte should strive to be like without football?

This is why experienced administrators, not bloggers, are in charge of bond issues.

This is why I keep saying that you are hypocritical, not to mention condescending. You my friend are a blogger too. So using your own logic, your opinion doesn't matter either.

For the second time, please stop making things up. I didn't say anything about going to Chapel Hill to watch football. I specifically stated that NOBODY goes to UNC-CH for its football program. If you are going to mischaracterize everything I say, I'd rather you simply not respond.

I apologize if you didn't say that. You did say that Charlotte has an inferiority complex with UNC-CH.

I will say that I disagree with your comment about nobody going to Chapel Hill because of football. People definitely go to CH because of the total college experience, which one part of that is football. Some could easily argue would UNC-CH be what it currently is without football? I for one don't think they would be.

The difference between our opinions is that mine are supported by hard facts, particularly the dollar totals involved, instead of emotion. I would love to see UNCC gain a football team except that it is not a good plan for the institution. It's nothing personal, just the way things are.

Wrong. You are assuming that Charlotte won't be successful in football. That's not a hard fact. You are assuming the total cost is $80 million. Those are the high end numbers for football. Charlotte can have football without using the high end numbers. In fact we could start tomorrow with only having to increase the student fees. Even with the high end numbers, you are assuming we will not getting any corporate sponsors. That is not a hard fact. You are also assuming that every school with football is operating in the red. That is not a hard fact either.

I certainly wouldn't say that I withdraw all support from UNCC students over a pointless grudge.

For every UNCC alum that would give money to football, there is another who would refuse to donate to a school that wasted so much money on sports when there are greater needs.

This opinion was based on one of you first posts.

Again, you are exposing a disturbing level of naivete' regarding the way money moves in university systems. If the university has to tap into bonds to finance a stadium, do you think that will not affect academic funding? If it has to hire a whole office full of development staff to raise money for the team's startup costs, do you not think those resources will be pulled from other areas? Do you think it might affect scholarship allocations to add dozens of new athletic recipients? How about coaches' salaries... you think those won't make waves in the accounting offices? You think the team will support itself indefinitely without any cost to any other part of the university? Really?

A $300/student fee is not going to cover the costs of building a stadium, hiring a full staff (including fundraisers), operating expenses for a 100-player team, scholarships, housing, equipment, media, etc., etc., etc., for the indefinite future.


I believe my so called naivety is outmatched by your stubbornness. Most of the expenses you mentioned will be covered by the student fee raise.

Again, the largest chunk of money would be for building the stadium. A one time expense. Hopefully something the university would utilize for 50+ years. Part of those expenses, if not all, could be paid for by corporate sponsors. Again, the university doesn't have to spend $80 million up front to build a stadium. The stadium could be built in stages, maybe never even reaching the $80 million size.

There is NO WAY that a project this large can be pulled off without impacting academic departments... claiming otherwise is an outright falsehood.

Wrong, wrong, wrong. Again, just because you believe that, doesn't mean its correct. With your assumption then every school with football has made this "mistake" too, that their assumptions for building school pride is incorrect.

Tom said...

Some could easily argue would UNC-CH be what it currently is without football? I for one don't think they would be.

This statement is so laughable that I simply wanted to isolate it and let it speak for itself.

You are also assuming that every school with football is operating in the red. That is not a hard fact either.

It is a FACT that only the most successful D-I programs (those competing for a national championship year after year) operate in the black. You simply have not done the research on this subject, and it shows.

Paul said...

UNC-Ch is where they are because of alumni giving and MUCH of that is tied to the the success and connected feeling they have from sports. They would not be playing in the ACC with out football. If you don't understand this then you have not spent enough time around Chapel Hill grads.

That is true with regards to the actual athletics budget, football makes money at only a handful of schools. What is not counted though is the amount of revenue football brings in through other sources. All the general public giving, corporate support, TShirt sales and increased applications that come in after a school is on TV can be attributed to football, but the money comes in through other sources so it does not show up in the football budget. I have done my research on this topic, you just seem to have a a very narrow vision of what college athletics accomplishes.

Normmm said...

This statement is so laughable that I simply wanted to isolate it and let it speak for itself.

So if that is so laughable, please name for me one school, with out football, that has the same or better academic prestige as UNC-CH.

And if you're able to that, I'll be able to give 10 schools with football, for your 1.

It is a FACT that only the most successful D-I programs (those competing for a national championship year after year) operate in the black. You simply have not done the research on this subject, and it shows.

That's just not correct. Most schools in BCS leagues operate in the black. The schools share the revenues in their conferences from their bowl appearances.

From you statement, only about 5 schools, out of roughly 300, operate in the black. Now that's just silly.

That's also, once again, assuming we're playing Div1A. We don't have to be in Div1A. We can be in Div1AA and still have football.

Tom said...

So if that is so laughable, please name for me one school, with out football, that has the same or better academic prestige as UNC-CH.

Now you're shifting targets. Your original statement was that UNC-CH would never have gotten so far without football. Never mind that they're the oldest public university in the country, that they are the flagship institution in an excellent statewide network, that they have financial numbers to boggle the mind, that they employ the highest-level experts available, etc etc etc...

...no, it was football, and cover-your-eyes godawful football at that, which made Chapel Hill so successful.

That's just not correct. Most schools in BCS leagues operate in the black. The schools share the revenues in their conferences from their bowl appearances.

Again shifting targets. I said that D-I programs, not D-I schools operate in the red. You are failing to distinguish an institution from a program.

On the same subject, a response to Paul's post above -- while it's true that there is some collateral income centered around these programs, the majority of their revenues go directly to the program (ticket sales, official merchandise, etc). And it has been shown repeatedly through hard data that only the best programs make money. Take the followinig link, for example: http://www.fanblogs.com/ncaa/006237.php

Note that even mighty Miami makes only a few million per year -- and that's a premier ACC team playing weekly on national TV. Do you think, in your heart of hearts, that UNCC football will ever approach the prestige of a program like Miami? Be realistic... this program WILL be a money-loser or at best a very marginal profit for the University, but it will tie up massive amounts of money and energy that could go toward truly worthwhile endeavors like cancer research.

That's also, once again, assuming we're playing Div1A. We don't have to be in Div1A. We can be in Div1AA and still have football.

But that's not the plan being offered. The pro-football contingent will accept nothing less than D-IA, no matter the cost to the University. That is one reason why their position is completely untenable -- why not start at the DIII level if it's no big deal to play at a lower level? No scholarships, smaller facilities, and plenty of access to all students. Why not? Because this isn't about the students, it's about a small contingent of alumni trying to force a gimmick/boondoggle on the taxpayers.

Normmm said...

So if that is so laughable, please name for me one school, with out football, that has the same or better academic prestige as UNC-CH.

Now you're shifting targets. Your original statement was that UNC-CH would never have gotten so far without football. Never mind that they're the oldest public university in the country, that they are the flagship institution in an excellent statewide network, that they have financial numbers to boggle the mind, that they employ the highest-level experts available, etc etc etc...

...no, it was football, and cover-your-eyes godawful football at that, which made Chapel Hill so successful.


Exactly how am I shifting the targets? You said Charlotte would be better focusing their resources elsewhere. So I asked for you to name one school with out football that Charlotte should aspire to be like.

You shifted targets because you couldn't name at least one school.

And once again your are showing your true colors about your lack of allegiance towards Charlotte by mentioning Chapel Hill as being the flagship university. A true Charlotte supporter would not feel that way. Charlotte is the most important school in the system to me.

If a person's true allegiance isn't towards Charlotte then I don't think their opinion counts, because they obviously don't have the best intent for the university.

That's just not correct. Most schools in BCS leagues operate in the black. The schools share the revenues in their conferences from their bowl appearances.

Again shifting targets. I said that D-I programs, not D-I schools operate in the red. You are failing to distinguish an institution from a program.

On the same subject, a response to Paul's post above -- while it's true that there is some collateral income centered around these programs, the majority of their revenues go directly to the program (ticket sales, official merchandise, etc). And it has been shown repeatedly through hard data that only the best programs make money. Take the followinig link, for example: http://www.fanblogs.com/ncaa/006237.php

Note that even mighty Miami makes only a few million per year -- and that's a premier ACC team playing weekly on national TV. Do you think, in your heart of hearts, that UNCC football will ever approach the prestige of a program like Miami? Be realistic... this program WILL be a money-loser or at best a very marginal profit for the University, but it will tie up massive amounts of money and energy that could go toward truly worthwhile endeavors like cancer research.


I may have said schools but my comments were for programs. It is not shifting targets. You said that only teams competing for a national championship operate in the red. There only about 5 teams able to win a national title. That would mean that only about 5 teams operate in the black.

Your comment is simply wrong. I mentioned that most(if not all) teams in a BCS league operate in the black. And there are roughly 70 teams in a BCS league. The teams in a league share the revenues of the league.

And for the 100 millionth time, THE FUNDS FROM STUDENT FEES CAN NOT be used for things like cancer research. I refuse to argue that with you any more if you continue to try to bring up belittling comments like that, when it's not even an option.

That's also, once again, assuming we're playing Div1A. We don't have to be in Div1A. We can be in Div1AA and still have football.

But that's not the plan being offered. The pro-football contingent will accept nothing less than D-IA, no matter the cost to the University. That is one reason why their position is completely untenable -- why not start at the DIII level if it's no big deal to play at a lower level? No scholarships, smaller facilities, and plenty of access to all students. Why not? Because this isn't about the students, it's about a small contingent of alumni trying to force a gimmick/boondoggle on the taxpayers.

Again, your completely wrong. I'm a proponent for football, and I'm ok with playing in a smaller league.

Those who tend to mention Div1A are those who are against football, like yourself and the chancellor, trying to make the numbers larger than they actually are.

Tom said...

You shifted targets because you couldn't name at least one school.

*rolls eyes* If you say so. In the future, try and keep your line of questioning a little straighter and we won't have to quibble.

BTW, I would look no farther than NYU for a large public university with no football.

If a person's true allegiance isn't towards Charlotte then I don't think their opinion counts, because they obviously don't have the best intent for the university.

Let's get this straight: I have no allegiance to Chapel Hill. No affiliation of any kind. Zero. None. Zilch.

And if I may say so, your knee-jerk accusations to that effect make you a posterchild for the UNCC inferiority complex. It's damning that you're unable to defend your infeasible football plan without dragging the old "you must secretly love Chapel Hill more than me" story out of the closet. It's like arguing with an insecure girlfriend.

You said that only teams competing for a national championship operate in the red. There only about 5 teams able to win a national title. That would mean that only about 5 teams operate in the black.

To be clear: I said that only teams capable of competing for a national championship in any given year operate in the BLACK. In the past 10 years, 9 teams have had at least partial claim to the national title (making your statement above factually incorrect).

And if you bothered to read the link I provided above, and compare it to the list of national champions, you'll find that the lists are basically the same with the exception of a few programs like Notre Dame and Auburn who make money off pure tradition.

And for the 100 millionth time, THE FUNDS FROM STUDENT FEES CAN NOT be used for things like cancer research.

It has been very clear from the beginning that the program, especially the stadium facilities, would be funded heavily by corporate and alumni donations. If you go to Bank of America and ask for $25 million toward a football stadium, you cannot then go back to them and ask for another $25 million toward a medical research center.

As I have said from the beginning -- ask for a professional fundraiser's opinion of the situation. There is a LOT to lose beyond a simple student fee (which is, itself, more than UNCC should ask of the many students who have nothing to gain from football).

Those who tend to mention Div1A are those who are against football, like yourself and the chancellor, trying to make the numbers larger than they actually are.

Give me a break. It's been clear from the very beginning that DIII was never on the table. No plan has been advanced with any goal other than a D-I program, and you and I both know that nobody goes into D-IAA without the intention of eventually moving up to D-IA. It's in every strategic plan.

Again, you have either not done the research on this subject or you've been totally snowed by pro-football boosters. The numbers don't line up, it's as simple as that. There is no way to start this program without significant sacrifices in other areas of the university.