Thanks for the history. I wonder how much of the move was made by city officials prompting, rather than accommodating, the U. It also shows that Arlington has pursued stadiums as an economic development tool far a while now.
The real travesty is the Shorthorn editorial - and the lack of understanding that the DFW needs at least one Tier I university. Why turn away all the disgruntled alums, who might really contribute to the Tier I quest (or support the need for more funded research), if football was restored? I don't think some comprehend that the return of football - and the excitement that would come with it - could help propel UT Arlington (see; I'm being good and using the preferred name) to be the first Tier I school in North Texas.
I don't think there are a lot of disgruntled alums, at least anymore. This is the 28th year without football. That means the youngest alum is near 50. Most of my generation really doesn't care. Also, when you factor in that in 1985, the highest attended game was just over 7,000. For a school with 23,000 students, that isn't a lot. That also assumes that most of the fans weren't from near the area, rather than students. So, even among those students at that time, many didn't care then and are likely not disgruntled now. Another factor is the Mav Club, which lost 75% of its membership. But since it had less than 1,000 members, the number of those disgruntled is still quite low.
I see no correlation between football and an increase in academic stature. In fact, several independent studies have shown a decline in academic performance and football expenditures. I think we can all agree that just because Prairie View, North Texas or any Louisiana school offer football doesn't mean they are a premier academic or research institution.
[quote]And hey FoUTASportscaster, you are right that the enrollment has rebounded nicely without football; yet how many more students may have enrolled, how many more alumni may have contributed, if we still had FB? We'll never know.
You're right, technically, we won't know. However, looking at other schools can give us a good idea. I think the impact was minimal. UTA's enrollment pattern was very similar to other schools. When their's went up, so did ours and vice versa. The percentages weren't always the same, but the graph was similar.
There's a common problem with football boosters that I see and it is exhibited in this post. They want something so bad they magnify their positives and deny their shortcomings. I used to be a big booster, but when my analytical side kicked and I looked at the claims made by boosters to the reality of the numbers, I saw a huge gap. For example, I have seen only two correlations in enrollment growth, the economic cycle and population growth.
In this case, suggesting that academics or location do not matter to students, but rather a sport that plays 5-7 times on campus all year. I choose UTA because it was in the DFW area and had a good reputation.
Plus, I think boosters are myopic, as they project their desires onto the whole population, but UTA is too diverse to do that. Most international students don't care. Some ethnicities follow other sports, and some others just don't care about sports. While some do, having football would do nothing for the rest.
As a comparison, UT doesn't attract students because they have a football team. They attract students because they have a great academic lineup and college life. Part of that is football, but only part.
Like I said, I want football, but I do recognize that it is what it is, a sport. There are other improtant things for a University to consider. We are what we are and to project what goes on at UT or OU and extrapolate that to us is not reality. We have to recognize our strengths and move from there.