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Let The UNT Baseball Debate Begin!


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I don't think I've ever talked to anyone who just flat out doesn't want Baseball. There are a lot of people who disagree about the timing of when Baseball should be added though. Some of us just think we have some things we need to do for our current sports before we start serious conversations about adding Baseball.

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No debate from me.  I've been waiting over 50 years for us to "step up to the plate."  We certainly have the land.  Title IX problem?  Women's beach volleyball.  Need another option? Women's bowling.  Problem solved.  Next reason why we can't have baseball?  Clemson started their softball program three years ago and made it to the NCAA regionals this year!

Fly Like An Eagle!

 

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8 hours ago, DentonLurker said:

I don't think I've ever talked to anyone who just flat out doesn't want Baseball. There are a lot of people who disagree about the timing of when Baseball should be added though. Some of us just think we have some things we need to do for our current sports before we start serious conversations about adding Baseball.

Yeah to me it's sort of the big UNT lie.  They claim we can't afford it but yet schools with much less resources like UTSA and La Tech and others can?  To me I have always believed that UNT doesn't want it because it would force them to run a tighter ship in the AD office and maybe not have as big of a bench.  Do people realize we have by far the biggest AD budegt in CUSA?  Not sure about the AAC but I'd bet we are up there. 

The sad thing is with our location we would immediately be a top flight competitor in the AAC.  And yet we just shut down shop every spring and summer like Wally World.  Countless donor opportunities are being passed up and more importanly connections to the students, fans and donors. BRING BACK BASEBALL!!

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First, I would also like NT to have baseball.

However, I realize it is a very expensive sport and any dollars poured into baseball come at the expense of other programs.

Just because x, y and z have baseball does not mean it makes financial sense for NT.

There is a thread about athletic fees elsewhere in this forum.   Well, NT  I believe has the max allowed already being charged to the students.

So where are the funds to build a baseball stadium and field a team that plays lots of games and has lots of travel.  Unless NT comes up with some massive donations, it is not going to happen.

NT never had a baseball program unless you want to cite the program that I believe was required to be a Belt member.

That program had volunteer coaches and had 1 or 2 scholarships to be shared by the team and played in a city park. 

Plus the ever present Title 9 fears that some think would make NT add an equal number of female athletes to offset the 111/2 for baseball. 

I suggest that more follow the softball team which IMO is a faster more entertaining game than baseball.  Plus NT is very good.   

 

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On 6/6/2022 at 11:46 PM, GrandGreen said:

First, I would also like NT to have baseball.

However, I realize it is a very expensive sport and any dollars poured into baseball come at the expense of other programs.

Just because x, y and z have baseball does not mean it makes financial sense for NT.

There is a thread about athletic fees elsewhere in this forum.   Well, NT  I believe has the max allowed already being charged to the students.

So where are the funds to build a baseball stadium and field a team that plays lots of games and has lots of travel.  Unless NT comes up with some massive donations, it is not going to happen.

NT never had a baseball program unless you want to cite the program that I believe was required to be a Belt member.

That program had volunteer coaches and had 1 or 2 scholarships to be shared by the team and played in a city park. 

Plus the ever present Title 9 fears that some think would make NT add an equal number of female athletes to offset the 111/2 for baseball. 

I suggest that more follow the softball team which IMO is a faster more entertaining game than baseball.  Plus NT is very good.   

 

I like a lot of the points here. A few things:

1. Yes, it kind of sucked to watch Southern Miss, La Tech, Texas State, DBU etc on ESPN (SMiss has some awesome fan support) going head to head with some P5 programs this past weekend and feeling like we're missing an opportunity.

2. I love the format of the NCAA baseball tournament

3. While our softball program was great (was really fun to watch the regional final on ESPN) theres that nice bridge a men's baseball program offers in the spring after basketball

4. I feel like Wren's strategy is get all the others sports in a row before adding more, which is respectable and puts us on a better track record for success and I feel like is already paying dividends (see: mens and womens basketball, softball, volleyball kind of) 

5. I'm sure baseball is expensive so the question is where would we find another donor(s)? 

6. I think its definitely a matter of when not if, it just might take 5-10 years. Feel like the priority is building other facilities and bolstering our current programs, which isn't a bad thing. 

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Beyond infuriating that we haven't figured it out....... Years and years go by, nothing but an old rendering from an old Master Plan.

It makes 0 sense that UNT doesn't have a program... In DFW hotbed, relatively cheap tuition since most scholarships aren't full, NCAA male sport catered to the G5's to compete nationally, and the sparkle of a new program/park.

 

Email sent to Wren.

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6 minutes ago, UNTLifer said:

I read that baseball is a "very expensive sport".  Is it really?

Several costs:
1.  Stadium  -  It can't be some POS stadium either.   Do it right, or don't do it.   Very pricey.
2. Coaching Staff salaries  -  Again, do it right, or don't do it.
3. Scholarships  -  NCAA Baseball allows 11.7 scholarships to be awarded to a roster of up to 27 players.  So obviously some scholarships are split, some guys don't have one.  But they have to be funded.
4. Yearly operations  -  gameday staff, grounds crew, etc...
5. Travel costs  -  There are up to 56 games played per year in regular season.  Say we have a few more home games than we do away... we'd still likely have to pay for ~25 away games per year.  And if we do well, it could be upward of 35-40.
6. Title IX  -  RV navigated title IX really well, so we're doing OK here, but we'd still likely have to add a women's sport of some kind with a handful of scholarships (probably equestrian/bowling or something).  Then again, maybe RV had us doing so well that we could still be in compliance without having to add a women's team at all.

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9 minutes ago, MeanGreenTexan said:

Several costs:
1.  Stadium  -  It can't be some POS stadium either.   Do it right, or don't do it.   Very pricey.
2. Coaching Staff salaries  -  Again, do it right, or don't do it.
3. Scholarships  -  NCAA Baseball allows 11.7 scholarships to be awarded to a roster of up to 27 players.  So obviously some scholarships are split, some guys don't have one.  But they have to be funded.
4. Yearly operations  -  gameday staff, grounds crew, etc...
5. Travel costs  -  There are up to 56 games played per year in regular season.  Say we have a few more home games than we do away... we'd still likely have to pay for ~25 away games per year.  And if we do well, it could be upward of 35-40.
6. Title IX  -  RV navigated title IX really well, so we're doing OK here, but we'd still likely have to add a women's sport of some kind with a handful of scholarships (probably equestrian/bowling or something).  Then again, maybe RV had us doing so well that we could still be in compliance without having to add a women's team at all.

1.  Start up cost.  I do not factor this in to the equation of operating a team on an annual basis.

The remainder are annual operational costs and can be managed,  

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14 minutes ago, UNTLifer said:

1.  Start up cost.  I do not factor this in to the equation of operating a team on an annual basis.

The remainder are annual operational costs and can be managed,  

For sure.   But a huge cost nonetheless.   That would definitely pay for the Athletics Center Expansion project we desperately need.

As for the other points:
2. If we plan to be on the same level as DBU, we'd need to pay our coaches around the same.  Currently, the NCAA allows 1 HC and 2 Assistants.    Coach Heefner at DBU makes over $350k/yr, and most assistants are around $70k here in Texas.  So I would think a $500k budget for coaching would get a pretty killer staff.  (Tangent: That's $500k that, IMO, would be better put to use right now paying off Littrell.)
3. Scholarships would come out to around $20-25k/yr(that's IN-STATE tuition) * 11.7 =  $234-293/yr.  Let's just average at $300k assuming we might find some talent outside of Texas.
4. I have no idea how much gameday concessions/ticketing/sanitation/security/etc... would cost per game, but we'd ideally have around 30 games/yr to pay for.   Say $2k/gm?  I dunno.  That may be wildly inaccurate, but that would be another $60k/yr.  Then, stuff like uniforms, practice gear, team equipment...  Probably another $20k/yr.
5. Again, I don't know how much it would cost to travel 27 players, plus 3-6 coaches/equipment staff/trainers/etc... for 25 games/yr.   It would likely vary wildly depending on how far we're travelling... do we need flights?   If we're playing DBU/TCU/SMU/etc... we only need to charter busses & no hotels.  So let's average $5k/gm * 25gms = $125k/yr.
6. Again, this could vary wildly.   If we don't have to add another sport, then it's $0.   Something like Equestrian could cost a lot!   Bowling... I can't imagine that costing much more than the scholarships + travel.   Let's say we put a ladies bowling team out there.  That's 5 scholarships at $20-25k/yr again = $112.5k/yr. and who knows about travel...  let's say another $20k/yr? (again, that could be way off).

All of that added together would be just over $1.1mil/yr to have baseball.

Now, I bet a decent amount could be made at the gates if good teams roll in on a weekend.  But a Thursday night game against SELouisiana or somesuch is only going to draw a handful of fans.   Of course, we'd have some sponsorships as well, so there's a little more money to be made.    Maybe $250-500k/yr.?   That would still leave us well over $600k shortfall.   
Considering the MGSF doesn't even collect enough now to pay for all of our student-athletes' scholarships, adding another 16.7 scholarships (11.7 baseball, 5 women's bowling) at $20-25k/yr. doesn't make a ton of sense.

 

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For those who are convinced we can afford baseball, where are you going to divert funds from to cover Baseball? College baseball is not a money maker so it won’t be self-sustaining. That said, where does the operational budget money come from?

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1 hour ago, DentonLurker said:

For those who are convinced we can afford baseball, where are you going to divert funds from to cover Baseball? College baseball is not a money maker so it won’t be self-sustaining. That said, where does the operational budget money come from?

OK as has been stated on here quite often, the hole in your theory is why do programs like UTSA and La Tech and Texas State with much lower budgets pull it off?  How does UTSA divert funds as you indicate?

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2 hours ago, Tom McKrackin said:

OK as has been stated on here quite often, the hole in your theory is why do programs like UTSA and La Tech and Texas State with much lower budgets pull it off?  How does UTSA divert funds as you indicate?

Let's see if I can break this down for you:

UTSA/TXST/La Tech already have resources committed to baseball.

We do not.

For us to add baseball and commit resources to baseball, you have three choices financially:

  1- Divert $'s you currently use to support existing programs

  2- Generate new $'s; this can be through ticket sales, donations, student fees, etc.

  3- Use a current operational surplus

Considering baseball does not typically turn a profit through ticket sales/donations and I can't imagine there's much of an appetite to increase student fees to pay for baseball, option 2 doesn't really work. This leaves you in a position where you would have to divert funds from other sports to pay for baseball. I guess you could say we can backfill money we divert, but our history does not support that we would be able to backfill those $'s either. We do not operate in a surplus, so option 3 is out.

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On 6/9/2022 at 12:00 PM, DentonLurker said:

Let's see if I can break this down for you:

UTSA/TXST/La Tech already have resources committed to baseball.

We do not.

For us to add baseball and commit resources to baseball, you have three choices financially:

  1- Divert $'s you currently use to support existing programs

  2- Generate new $'s; this can be through ticket sales, donations, student fees, etc.

  3- Use a current operational surplus

Considering baseball does not typically turn a profit through ticket sales/donations and I can't imagine there's much of an appetite to increase student fees to pay for baseball, option 2 doesn't really work. This leaves you in a position where you would have to divert funds from other sports to pay for baseball. I guess you could say we can backfill money we divert, but our history does not support that we would be able to backfill those $'s either. We do not operate in a surplus, so option 3 is out.

Baseball is now a revenue sport.  Don't believe me, listen to Wren's latest podcast.  The start up cost would basically be building a stadium.  Baseball will sustain itself.  

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On 6/12/2022 at 3:03 PM, Clinetort said:

Baseball is now a revenue sport.  Don't believe me, listen to Wren's latest podcast.  The start up cost would basically be building a stadium.  Baseball will sustain itself.  

So are football and basketball and both at NT are heavily subsidized with student and University fees. 

Sports are designated revenue sports because some schools actually generate a profit.  Football at UT or basketball at Gonzaga are examples, so some baseball programs make money.  Highly unlikely that NT would.  

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9 hours ago, DentonLurker said:

If you say so. The financial data doesn't really support this. As of 2019, 15 of 299 DI baseball programs made money.

Check the financial data, primarily TV money, in 2019 as compared to 2022.  College baseball at the division 1 level is exploding and so is the revenue.  

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1 hour ago, DentonLurker said:

I have. I've looked at a lot of it. I can't find anything that supports your opinion that Baseball would be break-even at UNT.

Probably will not be break even.  But it is certainly not the sunk cost that most college baseball programs where ten years ago.  There is a new day coming.  

 

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