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Date Posted: 10:28:20 03/12/04 Fri
Author: wiuato
Subject: Re: Western and Midcon???
In reply to: wiutsuoru 's message, "Western and Midcon???" on 16:13:13 02/25/04 Wed

Actually, the MVC is the only logical fit for WIU. If the MVC were to expand 2 more teams, WIU might reasonably be one of them. But in order for them to even be considered, the attendance needs to increase atleast to an average of 3,000 and i do not see why it cannot. As we all see in football, the team naturally sells itself but look at the promotional and advertising help that goes along with selling the program. it is obviously the bread n butter of WIU but the whole athletic department needs to focus on some similar ways to get students and the town out to watch a game for a couple of hours FREE. Western Hall needs improvements that make it a better more fan friendly place for college ball. The attendance of 5,000 or so is adequate but the atmosphere is not really that welcoming, it is not electric and believe me, the atmosphere of the game will attract people regardless of their interest or lack of in basketball. Alot of things can be done affordably and they are definitely necessary.

As for better schools coming in or playing WIU, it is and has always been an option. BUT, the MVC schools take a risk at playing a program like WIU who has been very down the last few years because talent wise there is alot of parity and if a decently rated conference like the MVC has teams losing to low rated conf. like the Mid-Con it really shocks their RPI and affects on potential post season considerations. The power conference teams who play WIU are not worried because right now those odds are very good that WIU will not beat them especially in their places. Having Northwestern in Western Hall about 6 or so years ago was not a big deal. NW was really bad and the attendance was good but not what you might expect. And besides WIU pummeled them as expected. I would like to see a DePaul, Illinois, SIU, Mizzou, UNLV or whoever on that level come in and WIU promote the crap out of the game and a big crowd might be in sight. Having Bradley, ISU etc. is not great and has been done times before because neither of them have huge followings outside of Peoria and Bradleys students do not support them either, they are lucky to be supported by the Peoria areas 400,000+ people to get them 6-8,000 a game.

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[> [> Re: Western and Midcon??? -- wiutsuoru, 11:43:42 03/12/04 Fri

Good post. I think you captured most of the thoughts of those interested in this.

I know that Oral Roberts has a very vocal group who would like to see them leave. They believe their facilities -and their strong baseball program - would also fit into the MVC. They do have good support in Tulsa, and seem to get good publicity.

Awhile back, there was talk of some of the privates wanting to leave the MVC, seems they have a feeling they can't compete with the larger state schools-year in and out in all of their sports.

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[> [> [> Re: Western and Midcon??? -- wiuato, 07:01:55 03/15/04 Mon

The only sport WIU may have a bit of a struggle unless things get turned around is basketball. The MVC has an overall advantage only in men's bball everything else is either equal or even lower than the Mid-Con, ORU and WIU would be at or near the top in everything else.

I think though the MVC looks at men's bball as their sole means of justification and rightfully so but they are a conference that sponsors other sports and if they use bball as a method for accepting or denying a school, it is just wrong. Besides, in WIU's case the MVC governs the Gateway Football Conference and WIU makes big dollars and exposure so the MVC move for them would only be logical for both parties.

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[> [> [> [> Re: Western and Midcon??? -- RockyBDog, 06:44:56 03/16/04 Tue

I think Coach Thomas will turn the program around. WIU was better than 3-25 this year, but it didn't show due to injuries. BTW, does anyone know anything about next year's schedule? I've heard possibly Indiana @ home and Iowa @ the Mark of the QC.

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[> [> [> [> [> Re: Western and Midcon??? -- wiuato, 07:13:19 03/16/04 Tue

No but Indiana would be a great draw and may even fill the Hall to 5000, hell maybe even 8000. Iowa at the Mark, WIU has done that a couple times before. Good game but will do nothing for WIu support. Get them at home in Macomb also and people will come. Again, not to knock any of the Mid-Con schools but it is a proven fact that nobody in Macomb is interested in seeing WIU vs. Oakland, UMKC, IUPUI, SUU etc. When the Mid-Con included UIC, UNI, SMS, Clev. St. and even NIU there was more interest because of regional rivalries and the talent level was higher and better to watch. Valpo is the only Conf. game of interest to WIU fans and because of WIU recent slide, it is not that big of a deal anymore.

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[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Western and Midcon??? -- gremlin, 12:25:30 03/17/04 Wed

Let's see - the Mid-Con is holding WIU back. That is laughable. The only thing holding WIU back is itself. MVC is not going to be interested in WIU and the Horizon is not going to be interested in WIU. Why - well location is a big starting point (if you havent noticed, you cant get to Macomb and it is a media market of absolutely no consequence). Football is important, but I-AA football only generates so much publicity. If you do not have I-A football, basketball drives the publicity bus and of late the Leathernecks have not done too well. Even when the team was going well and the Mid-Con tournament was in Moline, WIU did not travel particularly well.

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[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Western and Midcon??? -- wiutsuoru, 15:49:59 03/17/04 Wed

My comments around Western and the Mid-Con relate to the entire athletic department, not how it might effect one sport,and, how this relates to benefits for the entire insitution i.e. interest,publicity,recruiting,rivalries etc.

I will stand behind my comments regarding this.

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[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Western and Midcon??? -- Leatherhead, 16:09:17 03/17/04 Wed

The alumni newspaper lists a pre-game social for a basketball game against Iowa on November 19 (it doesn't say where).
Regarding other schools being one-sport schools, I wouldn't say that is true. We won the commissioner's cup last year; I think Oral Roberts won it a couple years before that. Oakland and Valpo are always competitive for it. Outside of men's basketball, WIU is pretty close for everything else.

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[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Western and Midcon??? -- Smack, 22:48:35 03/17/04 Wed

November 19,2004 against Iowa is at the Mark of the Quad-Cities. Book it. What will it take to get WIU students interested in basketball? It's a great University, but only 1,000 to a game? What else is there to do in Macomb during the winter?

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[> [> [> [> [> Re: Western and Midcon??? -- RockyBDog, 09:45:09 03/25/04 Thu

So the Iowa game is a book it? Great! I will certainly try to go that game.Perhaps more students would attend if a charter bus took them. I also heard from a reliable source WIU will travel to UCLA. Is that a "big money" game like Coach P. tries to get. I'm looking forward to next year's season. GO NECKS!!

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[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Western and Midcon??? -- Smack, 21:18:46 03/25/04 Thu

All True. Iowa then UCLA, the MECCA of college basketball.

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