Wednesday, August 24, 2016

2016 Sun Belt Volleyball Season is Nye!

After the summer break that seemed a bit longer than normal to me, UT Arlington is set kick its athletic year with the volleyball team competing in its first match of the year on Friday, concluding a tough first week of classes that begin on Thursday (phew).

The Sun Belt Conference released its preseason poll on Monday, so that's as good a place as any to start this entry. the 2016 season marks the first time the Sun Belt will go to divisional play since the Mavs joined the conference in 2013. Parenthesis is first place votes.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

High School Football Facility Arms Race

In my last post, I mentioned how many folks in the UT Arlington Athletic Department consider Maverick Stadium a sub-par NCAA DI stadium as a lead in to what I think is possible to help make Maverick Stadium a quality FBS venue. Today, I want to look at a bit why Maverick Stadium has gone from a modern college football venue to needing renovations to become one again.

I don't think anyone but the most casual observers would be shocked if I said there was a facility-arms race in college athletics. Everyone has plans and/or has recently brought something to state-of-the art. Since 2010, UTA built a brand new indoor arena with College Park Center, completed several major renovations to Clay Gould Ballpark as well as Allan Saxe Field and have more on the drawing board (sign me up for the petition to get a shaded grandstand at ASF).

No sport has seen more in the last decade to decade-and-a-half than football. Locally, SMU has built Gerald J. Ford Stadium, which opened in 2000 and has since seen renovations twice since 2010. TCU's Amon G. Carter Stadium has almost been a constant construction zone, seeing renovations in 1985, 1991, 1992, 1996, 2002 and 2008. All that was then dwarfed by a $164 million rebuild of the stadium coinciding with TCU's entrance into the Big XII in 2012. North Texas opened Apogee Stadium in 2011, a very nice venue built primarily with student fees (I used to be able to comeback against my UNT associate's when they let me be know UTA didn't have a football team that at least the Mavs stadium was still better).