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Date Posted: Fri, October 01 2004, 15:08:42
Author: FoUTASW and Student
Subject: Also thinking in the NOW
In reply to: UTA_alum 's message, "Re: Very good find!" on Wed, September 29 2004, 14:50:38

My thinking is, if UTA is going to bring football back from the dead, and it will be at the level of Florida State in 12 years, the university won't need the city's help in financing a stadium.

The UT-System will want to push as much money as needed into the program that grew to a Top 25-caliber program in 12 years, at a university that has had trouble shaking off the commuter school image and averaged 1,000 fans at basketball games last season, an increase over the previous year.

And if UTA's program was able to become a Top 25-caliber team in 12 years, the alumni will start coming out of the wood work to help contribute. According to the university's master plan, if I read it correctly, there is already of bunch of land that they have claimed for expansion behind the stadium. If that is correct, then they won't need the city's approval to use it for stadium expansion.

I was researching on the Internet to check on GBM's basketball arena question and I found this:

Doak Campbell Stadium

From a maximum capacity of 15,000 in 1953 to a record crowd of 83,042 against Florida in 2000, Doak S. Campbell Stadium has risen alongside the Florida State football program to the top of the college football ladder.

Doak S. Campbell Stadium Capacities (Since 1950)
Years Capacity
1950-53 15,000
1954-60 19,000
1961-63 25,000
1964-77 40,500
1978-79 47,413
1980-81 51,094
1982-84 55,246
1985-91 60,519
1992 70,123
1993 72,589
1994 75,000
1995 77,500
1996 80,000
2001-2002 82,000
2003- 82,300

So even Florida State built their first stadium three years after their program started in 1947 and it took them 16 years to reach the 25,000 mark as far as stadium capacity. at the 30-year mark, they were finishing making the capacity just over 40,000.

And something else I found on the Florida State athletic website:

In its last 86 home games, FSU is 81-4-1. Bobby Bowden's Florida State teams have lost only 18 games at home in 26 years, giving the coach an impressive 132-18-2 record and an .875 winning percentage in Tallahassee ...
But the winning tradition of Doak Campbell Stadium ... goes back before Bowden. All-time, Florida State is 214-68-4 in 284 home games for a winning percentage of .755.

So it sounds to me like Florida State had a pretty strong team before Bowden came along, 134 home games after the program started.

And I know Jones is a greedy business man, but if UTA's program grows as quick as Florida State's, then he will be wanting them to play their games in his stadium.
He would have fans coming from all over to see thisTop 25 team play the nation's best at his stadium, and every car parked and every butt in the seat would put a little more money in his pocket.
It would also give his scouts an unfair advantage over the NFL as far as scouting the star players playing in his backyard.

But that shouldn't be the argument, the argument should be that no matter how big the team could get in the future, they should build to suit the team now. This university already gets laughed at for having a 13,000+ stadium and no football team, could you imagine if they lost the team and had a 30,000 seat stadium?

Chances are, if the team comes back, it will play in the Southland Conference, or possibly lower.

Here is what I have found about the football schools in the Southland Conference:

Capacities

UTA
football 15,000
basketball 4,200

Texas State capacities
football 15,218
basketball 7,200

Stephen F. Austin
football 14,574
basketball 7,203

Sam Houston
football 14,500
basketball 6,110

McNeese
football 17,410
basketball 8,000

Northwestern St.
football 15,970
basketball 3,900

Nicholls St.
football 12,800
basketball 3,800

* - - All of these numbers came from either the schools website or worldstadiums.com

So I will try to condense all of this down in a Reader's Digest condensed version. Here we go:

A team doesn't have to take 30 years to become a success, but it will be hard for a team to need a 30,000-seat football stadium or an arena bigger than the one the Dallas Mavericks use right off the bat.

Pete Carlon has said many times that he doesn't want to bring back football if it is going to take away from the other sports, and if the university builds a 30,000-seat stadium and a 18,000-seat arena, there will be no money for the coaches and scholarships.

It will be hard for the city to support building a 30,000-seat stadium in the near future, because many already had to deal with the university losing a team once, why would they want to pay for a university to build a bigger stadium?

The university can follow Florida State's lead and use its original stadium for several years, it has new turf and would need some improvements, but pretty much is game-ready.
Then as the team gets better, students will want to come to the university and the UT System will notice and put more money into UTA in order to get more money from the students.


But like I said in a previous post, the university is growing leaps and bounds, but I have talked to many alumni that have no idea of this, even though they are in the metroplex.
If Jones builds his stadium here, chances are those alumni will drive into Arlington to see the stadium and probably drive by their old stomping grounds. When that happens, they may see that UTA is becoming a great university and want to start putting more money into their old school.

I was talking to a fellow former Shorthorner about the loss of football at UTA and he said that that is why he never joined the alumni association and when I told him that the students approved a fee increase, he said that he is seriously considering joing again.
I'm sure there are more people like him out there and if the university doesn't go overboard with this and the team is a success, in 15 to 20 years, they won;t need any help from the city to expand the stadium.

I'll quit for now because if you have read this far, you are probably really tired or need to be committed.

Thanks for the time.

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