In the DMN archives, I ran across this story, which I post because it gives a great synopsis of what pre-football sports had to go through.
[quote]SECOND WIND - UTA baseball program back in the running after relief help comes from football 's demise
The Dallas Morning News - Wednesday, March 18, 1987
If there was a trip to arrange or equipment to order, Butch McBroom was the man. If the baseball field needed some tender loving care, McBroom grabbed a rake or started up the mower. Then there were classes to teach, recruits to scout, paper cups to pick up from beneath the stadium benches.
"It's a seven-day-a-week job, from daylight to dark,' said McBroom, baseball coach at the University of Texas at Arlington. "I always thought basketball coaches should have to coach baseball for just one year. There's so much physical maintenance in baseball.'
Fiscal maintenance as well -- a job made tougher for McBroom when that money-guzzling machine known as UTAfootball was still coughing and sputtering. Back then, McBroom had to get by on three to five scholarships a year, plus a recruiting budget that could have been drawn from a piggy bank.
But now, Maverick baseball is no longer a one-man, no-money operation. McBroom has two assistant coaches this season, a budget that has nearly doubled in two years, a bulked-up salary and 13 scholarships -- the NCAA Division I limit. He occupies the office that once belonged to Chuck Curtis, the former head football coach. His team dresses in the old football locker room, wears new uniforms and plays on a renovated field that McBroom considers the finest in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. There is talk not only of UTA 's first Southland Conference title, but of a second, third and fourth in years to come.
"It's nothing but improving, that's for sure,' said John Deller, first baseman and designated hitter for the Mavs. "We're going to be bringing a lot of recruits in, and they're going to like what they see. We're going to get better talent out of the deal.'
This upsurge, however, has a bittersweet taste. To a large degree, it can be traced to the death of the school's football program after the 1985 season.
Football was the No. 1 sport at UTA even as the plug was being pulled. Since the sport was dropped, the Maverick Club -- boosters who support UTA athletics -- has gone from 900 members to 266, according to club president Ruth Davis. But football drew money as well as people, and those precious dollars have not been wasted.
"We were told that with the loss of football , there was going to be a total upgrading of all the other sports,' said McBroom, who is in his 14th season at UTA . "I know that my sport has benefited greatly from it. I'm a football fan; I hate to see it go. But I'm not going to gripe if they're going to help me out. I've toiled around here for a long time with just a shoestring to operate on.'
With that shoestring, McBroom has tied up winning records in each of the last eight seasons. Four times the Movin' Mavs have come within a game of an SLC championship.
"Now, looking back, I don't know how we did all these things,' McBroom said. "You can't have a top-grade program with just one guy, because something's going to suffer.'
McBroom did not get a full-time assistant coach until 1983, after he lost his left leg to cancer. John Mocek, a former Maverick first baseman-DH under McBroom, moved from the UTA athletic business office that year to the third base coach's box.
This season, McBroom used his additional scholarships to land a second assistant -- David Chalk, a former University of Texas and major-league shortstop. Chalk is helping out the team while working toward a degree in economics.
Both coaches help care for the field, in addition to working with the players. Mocek handles finances and scheduling. "Plus, we can go in three directions recruiting now,' McBroom said. "We can cross-check each other. All your major schools have three coaches, and it's not too many, either.'
When recruits come for a visit, McBroom can show off a field that recently got a $53,000 facelift. Arlington Athletic Center had been plagued by drainage problems since it opened in 1974, McBroom's first season with the Mavs. McBroom tried to patch things up, but standing water continued to be a standing joke.
Until football died, however, McBroom figured the project had no chance of winning approval from school president Wendell Nedderman. "They wouldn't have even listened to me,' he said. " Football was taking the money.'
Not anymore. Jim Anglea, the Rangers' head groundskeeper, turned a field that one player said was high-school quality into a 14-carat diamond. In addition, McBroom raised $30,000 for a new scoreboard and other frills. "Right now, I don't know if there's a better grass field in college baseball,' said Bill Reeves, UTA 's athletic director. "It was a bad one.'
So far, the Mavericks' first season on new grass and dirt has gotten mixed reviews.
After the loss of football forced UTA out of the Southland Conference, McBroom lined up a killer schedule that includes such powerhouses as Pan American, Oklahoma State, Louisiana State and Texas. The Mavs lost 12 of their first 14 games, but have rebounded to 10-15. Next season they return to the new-look SLC, which will lose a pair of good baseball schools in Lamar and Louisiana Tech.
The team is also fighting the same battle lost by the football program -- the battle for fan support at a commuter school. McBroom said he believes attendance is slightly up this season, and the Mavs did draw 400 on the Sunday afternoon when the new field was dedicated. Weekday games, however, can attract as few as 30 or 40 people.
"People around here are just interested in getting their grades in, and that's it,' pitcher Chris Mosley said. "A lot of students don't even know there's a baseball team.'
Help is on the way. The university and the city of Arlington will soon team up to improve the lighting at UTA 's stadium, where midweek night games could become the norm. "This will be a first for us,' Reeves said. "People will be able to come who have to work all the time.'
The future would look bright even without the extra candlepower. Initially, all of McBroom's new scholarships were divided among veteran players, leaving only five partial grants for incoming freshmen -- and two of those newcomers have already left school. As more scholarships open, more of the best local players will be looking at UTA .
"We're going to be a real solid Division I baseball program,' Reeves said. "We have the potential each year to go the playoffs. That's exactly where we want to be.'
It's also where they're expected to be. "We've got to build a winning program now,' Chalk said. "There's more pressure on the coaching staff.'
According to Reeves, UTA 's baseball budget has increased from $97,000 to $172,000 over the last two years. McBroom, however, said that most of those dollars represent scholarships and salary increases. McBroom's recruiting budget has quintupled since football died, but it's still only $2,000 per year.
"Thirteen full scholarships means nothing if you don't have the money to recruit the 13 full scholarships,' McBroom said, who called his overall budget "basically adequate.'
But he is also optimistic: "We could be a major power.'
And the demise of UTAfootball is one of the major reasons.
If baseball had these kind of handicaps during the football years, I can't imagine what the lower profile sports like tennis or cross country had to go through.