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Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
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Auburn_Blazer Offline
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Post: #1
Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
Trying to keep the Blazer chatter going during the dog days of summer, so I thought of another concept to engage with everyone on the board. Each thread will focus on UAB's performance in a specific sport. I'll include some stats and references of where the sport has been historically, and will provide my views of where I think this specific program should be going forward. I'm pretty new to UAB and would love to get other, longer term, fan's perspectives of each program. I think some points to hit on would be:
1) Faith in the current coach
2) Win & Loss expectations
3) How frequently you expect to compete for conference championships
4) Where you expect to be in recruiting, relative to the conference
5) Where you expect for attendance to be


Year FPI Wins Losses Attendance
2018 95 7.4 4.8 TBD
2017 107 8 5 26,375
2016 N/A N/A N/A N/A
2015 N/A N/A N/A N/A
2014 90 6 6 21,841
2013 116 2 10 10,548
2012 112 3 9 15,271
2011 110 3 9 16,579
2010 97 4 8 18,360
2009 90 5 7 17,987
2008 105 4 8 19,062
2007 116 2 10 16,706
(This post was last modified: 06-14-2018 09:06 AM by Auburn_Blazer.)
06-11-2018 01:59 PM
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the_blazerman Offline
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Post: #2
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
I have faith in Coach Clark. Probably more faith in him than any other of our current coaches. Maybe more than anyone in our history outside of Coach Gene Bartow & Coach Mike Anderson.

8-4 seems like a reasonable goal.
Compete every year for the championship however 1 slightly down year every 3 to 4 years wouldn't be that bad.

UAB never will be consider at the top of recruiting for the conference, however that doesn't matter to me.

25,000 for crappy teams like Savannah State would be the goal.
06-11-2018 02:10 PM
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Auburn_Blazer Offline
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Post: #3
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
Anyone have suggestions on better ways to post tables? This series is going to involve collecting tables of data and I'd hate for them all to look like that. I tried to include the information for the past 10 seasons of play, and needed to throw in an extra couple to make up for 2015 and 2016. It seemed like UAB did a pretty good job supporting the program until 2011 or so, despite the records not really showing much. Does anyone know what specifically might have happened that seemed to break the fanbase?

1) Faith in current coach
I don't know how anyone could not have faith in Clark. The only concerns that I could think of would be how high his ceiling is...is he an 8-4 every season guy, or is he championship caliber? Given the overall history of the program, it's hard to be disappointed if his ceiling turns out to be rather low. The other concern would be how long he plans on staying at UAB. I have no inside knowledge of this, but I get the feeling that he's only leaving for a "big" job close by (i.e. Auburn, Alabama, Ole Miss, Mississippi State, etc.). We all know he had opportunities to actually coach during 2015 and 2016 but elected to stay at UAB. Just curious what that means about his longevity at the program.

2) Win & Loss expectations
I'm suffering from a recency bias with coach Clark, given that UAB has averaged only 4.11 wins over the past 10 seasons of play, but I think the program in its current state and against its current competition should be expecting between 7 and 9 wins every season. I'd also expect/allow for a down year with 4-6 wins every four years or so.

3) How frequently you expect to compete for conference championships
I'd like to see UAB competing every other year, or at least once every 4 years or so.

4) Where you expect to be in recruiting, relative to the conference
Alabama is an underrated state for football recruiting. Birmingham is in a good spot as well given its proximity to the football talent pool in Georgia. I'd hope that Coach Clark is able to be in the top third of the conference in recruiting. I realize this is a tough task with Kiffin and Davis being in the conference. Going to contradict myself a bit here as well, but I'm also perfectly content if Clark feels as though he's pulling in the players he needs to make his system work (i.e. Dantonio at Michigan State or Mike Leach at Washington State)

5) Where you expect attendance to be
I think it's going to take a dip overall this season, and will settle closer to the 23k-24k range that it was at after removing the 48k first game. Clearly 48k will be the ceiling, and the administration, fanbase, and city have to see that as the potential going forward. Actually that number made me a bit nervous...I was planning on holding out for cheaper ticket deals, but decided to suck it up and get good seats to make sure I'll have priority at the new stadium. I think the combination of Clark & the new stadium will cause attendance to jump to the 30k-32k range for the 2021 season, but we're quite a ways off from that.

I hope some of you will also contribute, share your thoughts, and will tell me what a spoiled football fan I am.
(This post was last modified: 06-11-2018 02:27 PM by Auburn_Blazer.)
06-11-2018 02:25 PM
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BAMANBLAZERFAN Offline
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Post: #4
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
I will expect FBHC Clark to have more success than any past coach if only because he is the first to have reasonably state of the art training and conditioning facilities in the program's history. That fact alone gives him a leg up on his predecessors. The additional fact that he seems to be a superior judge of coaching and player talent is that much more in his favor. As long as UAB can keep him, UAB should contend for the conference lead every year. Whenever he leaves, UAB will be in a better place to seek his replacement than when he arrived on the southside.

Over the next few seasons, we should be better able to attract a fan following of our own without scheduling around the state's P5 schools. For the first time, the Blazers can see if winning is a marketing ploy that will improve attendance. There are over one million potential fans in the B'ham metro area who can drive to our games whenever UAB gives them good reason to attend games.

A lot of factors are coming together at a good time for UAB -- A superior coaching staff, new football facilities, a new BJCC stadium coming soon, improved competition in league play right now and more attention to UAB as a school and as a team.
(This post was last modified: 06-11-2018 03:02 PM by BAMANBLAZERFAN.)
06-11-2018 02:58 PM
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blazers9911 Offline
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Post: #5
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
1. All the faith in the world in Clark. He took a program that was shutting down and coming off a garbage season to .500 and then took a dead program to 8 wins. UAB fans were looking for ways to get to .500 in the past, now I feel like .500 is our floor.

2. I put us at 7-5 this year. There are several toss up games however, and there is only one game on the schedule I believe we have no shot to win. I expect under Clark we will be an 8-10 win team most years.

3. I expect to be in the west race every year. I don’t believe we have a shot at the CUsA title this year because FAU is that good, but i don’t see any reason to believe we can’t compete in the west every year. Once Clark builds the depth, things will be different for us.

4. I expect to do well in recruiting. I don’t really believe all the rankings and services do our level justice, so it’s hard to care too much about rankings.

5. I think attendance will be closer to 20,000 this year, but that has to do with Savannah State. I don’t see how we get more than 10k to that game.
06-11-2018 03:12 PM
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iam4uab Offline
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Post: #6
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
1. Clark has earned my trust simply by being the type of person he is. The loyalty he showed our program while getting the treatment he did says more about him than whatever he does in terms of wins and losses for the rest of his coaching career. While, I certainly couldn't blame him for moving on to a bigger program at some point, there's also a part of me that has to believe that he's one of those rare coaches that is cut from a different mold and he's going to be here for the long haul and cement a legacy that may rival that of Gene Bartow when all is said and done. So, yeah, I have faith in him.

2. This year, I don't see why we can't win 7-8 games. I definitely think we are bowl eligible again, and I think that should be the new benchmark for the program. We need bowl eligibility every year.

3. Okay, so I'm the eternal optimist, so I expect us to be in the hunt for the championship every year. However, I'll say that as long as every recruiting class makes a real push for it once in their time here, we'll be doing great!

4. A winning UAB...I don't see why we can't be at the top of our conference every year in recruiting. Now, I'm also throwing in the thought of updated and upgraded facilities. As long as we continue to do things the right way, and try to keep up with our peers, then there's no reason Bill Clark along with a winning program in great facilities can't be at the top of the recruiting in CUSA every year.

5. I expect attendance to either maintain or grow each year. This year will most likely take a bit of a dip, but that's because of the huge numbers at The Return. From this year on, I expect us to continue to do the things necessary to grow our brand. Especially once we move to our new home (hopefully with a CUSA title under our belts by then).

Of course, all of this is predicated by my answer to question one. I have faith in Bill Clark. He said we are going to do this thing the right way. In my mind, the right way is always trying our best to take the next step forward. Therefore, my expectations are to see unprecedented improvements to UAB football both on and off the field.
(This post was last modified: 06-11-2018 04:02 PM by iam4uab.)
06-11-2018 04:01 PM
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UAB Band Dad Offline
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Post: #7
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
1. I have a ton of faith in Coach Clark. He's brought in good assistants and decent talent. He proved his chops already in the past two seasons. Now he gets to actually build a program like normal. He'll be fine. I don't expect him to leave for less than a HC job at a competitive program, most likely in the Southeast. I don't think he'll take a crap job just for the money. I also don't expect him to leave before we're in the new stadium unless he gets an offer that he just can't turn down.

That's the coaching progression, and you can't fault him if it happens... but I fully expect him to be here for a few more eyars.

2. Won/Loss. Six to eight wins per season, somewhere in the top third of the conference. Might have a bad year where it drops to five or a particularly good one where we make nine or ten.

3. Conference championships. I'd hope to be in serious contention every three or four years, and more if the program continues to rise with the accompanying boost in recruiting.

4. Recruiting. I don't much care about rankings there. It's nice when we get ranked well, but so many times we've had players who were overlooked or underrated. I think we hang in the top third there, and that's plenty good enough.

5. The only thing I'll predict re attendance is that it drops this year. Last season's average was supported by the 48k opener. I'll be surprised if we reach half of that. We're probably looking at 20, 22k... but I hate to call numbers or be negative there. I just think that Savannah St. hamstrings our attendance this season.
06-11-2018 05:17 PM
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ATTALLABLAZE Offline
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Post: #8
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
Agree band dad.

We need to get folks there Thursday night. I’m working on getting our youth teams there. A ticket gets the kids in the camp Saturday with coach Clark.
06-11-2018 10:51 PM
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ICB Offline
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Post: #9
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
1) Faith in the current coach
Probably one of the most overachieving football coaches in America. Seat: Ice Cold.
2) Win & Loss expectations
I expect us to win between 7-9 games. Not including the bowl game.
3) How frequently you expect to compete for conference championships
Should compete for championships one out of every three years, mainly because of #1. Should be in bowls 2 of 3 years, again because of #1.
4) Where you expect to be in recruiting, relative to the conference
Because ratings are so subjective and get worse the further down the chart a player ranks. Recruiting rankings has never meant much on our level. Our current coach has an eye for talent and I expect the level of talent to keep rising.
5) Where you expect for attendance to be
Mid 20's is about all you can expect while in our current conference and without bringing in a well-known team to Birmingham.
06-12-2018 12:53 PM
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Auburn_Blazer Offline
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Post: #10
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
Was anyone on here an avid fan of the team pre-Clark? I'd love to hear from any of those people. How have your expectations changed since then?
06-12-2018 03:34 PM
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ATTALLABLAZE Offline
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Post: #11
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
Since Club Football. From just survive somehow to compete for Championships.
06-12-2018 05:16 PM
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linus Offline
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Post: #12
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
Here we go. Attended my first football game in 1996. My expectations have gone from hoping for success to reasonably expecting it.

Regarding Coach Clark. I have more faith in him than anyone not named Gene Bartow. I hope he tracks like Dan Mullen did at MSU and stays well beyond what folks expect, waiting for the dream job. If we’re lucky he locks in like Gary Patterson at TCU.

wins/ losses 7 or more wins unless something freakish happens

Compete for championships- I want to be in the mix most years

Recruiting-Don’t care about the rankings give me character and measurables and I think our staff will coach ‘em up

Attendance-27k- small drop off but better than 2014; 1st or 2nd in conference
(This post was last modified: 06-14-2018 05:03 PM by linus.)
06-13-2018 03:33 PM
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Shrack Offline
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Post: #13
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
(06-11-2018 01:59 PM)Auburn_Blazer Wrote:  Trying to keep the Blazer chatter going during the dog days of summer, so I thought of another concept to engage with everyone on the board. Each thread will focus on UAB's performance in a specific sport. I'll include some stats and references of where the sport has been historically, and will provide my views of where I think this specific program should be going forward. I'm pretty new to UAB and would love to get other, longer term, fan's perspectives of each program. I think some points to hit on would be:
1) Faith in the current coach
2) Win & Loss expectations
3) How frequently you expect to compete for conference championships
4) Where you expect to be in recruiting, relative to the conference
5) Where you expect for attendance to be


Year FPI Wins Losses Attendance
2018 95 7.4 4.8 TBD
2017 107 8 5 26,375
2016 N/A N/A N/A N/A
2015 N/A N/A N/A N/A
2014 90 6 6 11,293
2013 116 2 10 10,548
2012 112 3 9 15,271
2011 110 3 9 16,579
2010 97 4 8 18,360
2009 90 5 7 17,987
2008 105 4 8 19,062
2007 116 2 10 16,706
Our attendance in 2014 was 21,841

Sent from my SM-G900T using Tapatalk
06-13-2018 05:21 PM
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ATTALLABLAZE Offline
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Post: #14
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
yea, not sure where that 11K number came from but it was nearly 22K in 2014. Truth be known it was a bit higher as we were under reporting for some odd reason. Go figure...... Yes we were.
06-13-2018 05:36 PM
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Auburn_Blazer Offline
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Post: #15
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
Fixed it. The 11k came from the change in attendance from the previous season, and I mistook it as the actual attendance. That's a really good swing, and really helped my regression. Using ESPN's FPI ranking and projected W & L, and based on our historic data, we're looking at an average attendance of 25,932 - and a standard error of 2,185.
(This post was last modified: 06-14-2018 09:18 AM by Auburn_Blazer.)
06-14-2018 09:11 AM
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BAMANBLAZERFAN Offline
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Post: #16
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
Between Jim Hilyer's club teams and Watson Brown's first D1 team in 1996, UAB did not build or renovate any football facilities - and did not until FBHC Callaway's first year after the Bell gym was renovated. While Brown's final two seasons were very disappointing, he did very well for what he was provided to work with for most of his first decade. I believe I am correct that Brown is the only UAB FBHC to have any (in fact, two) former players on an NFL Super Bowl team.

With the system BOT working consistently against any UAB football success for its first decades and funding being short, Blazer football has had to wait for BOT attrition and growth of local business support before building anything new for its program. Had UAB been able to build in the 1990s what it has just built, we could have enjoyed the present success decades ago (and been ready for conference realignment when it happened the first go around).
(This post was last modified: 06-16-2018 02:26 PM by BAMANBLAZERFAN.)
06-16-2018 02:23 PM
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jcduncan13 Offline
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Post: #17
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
(06-11-2018 03:12 PM)blazers9911 Wrote:  1. All the faith in the world in Clark. He took a program that was shutting down and coming off a garbage season to .500 and then took a dead program to 8 wins. UAB fans were looking for ways to get to .500 in the past, now I feel like .500 is our floor.

2. I put us at 7-5 this year. There are several toss up games however, and there is only one game on the schedule I believe we have no shot to win. I expect under Clark we will be an 8-10 win team most years.

3. I expect to be in the west race every year. I don’t believe we have a shot at the CUsA title this year because FAU is that good, but i don’t see any reason to believe we can’t compete in the west every year. Once Clark builds the depth, things will be different for us.

4. I expect to do well in recruiting. I don’t really believe all the rankings and services do our level justice, so it’s hard to care too much about rankings.

5. I think attendance will be closer to 20,000 this year, but that has to do with Savannah State. I don’t see how we get more than 10k to that game.

Saying you don’t think we get more than 10k for the first game has to be a joke...
06-17-2018 06:47 PM
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Blazer4Life14 Offline
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Post: #18
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Football
(06-12-2018 03:34 PM)Auburn_Blazer Wrote:  Was anyone on here an avid fan of the team pre-Clark? I'd love to hear from any of those people. How have your expectations changed since then?

I became a fan in 2009 (when I decided I was going to go to UAB), and missed maybe 2 games from 2010-2014 when I was a student. I’m not sure I would have called myself an “avid fan” though. It was just hard for me to seriously care when I felt like we were going to lose every game, though I went to nearly every home game and even a couple road games. I was definitely more into UAB Basketball than football. That 2014 season definitely turned me into more of a fan though, both with winning and Clark’s personality. So much so, that I bought Season Tickets last year and drove down from Ohio for 4 games, plus a road game. Other than the Miami Dolphins, it’s probably the team I’m most passionate about now.
06-18-2018 12:01 PM
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