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Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
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Auburn_Blazer Offline
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Post: #1
Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
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 for attendance to be

These are the sports that will be covered, in order. Please let me know if I should switch any around.
1) Football
2) Men's Soccer
3) Softball
4) Baseball
5) Women's Basketball
6) Men's Basketball

YEAR...RPI...WIN...LOSS
2018...201...21...33
2017...188...24...31
2016...155....21...34
2015...70....33...25
2014...72....35...21
2013...168....23...36
2012...106....32...30
2011...71....29...28
2010...115....28...25
2009...117...31...26
5 Year Average: 137, 10 Year Average: 126. This is out of 297 D1 Baseball teams.

RPI from 2018 to 2014 and 5 year average for other programs in the state:
Alabama: 82, 175, 64, 45, 24 = 78
Auburn: 9, 38, 148, 26, 75 = 59
Troy: 41, 108, 93, 125, 193 = 112
South: 51, 32, 39, 78, 156 = 71
Samford: 90, 102, 127, 104, 74 = 99
JSU: 124, 111, 92, 179, 94 = 120
UAB 5 Year Rank: 6/6

5 year RPI average for other CUSA programs:
Charlotte: 136
FAU: 41
FIU: 122
La Tech: 147
Marchall: 182
MTSU: 117
NTU: N/A
ODU: 119
Rice 38
So Miss: 59
UTEP: N/A
UTSA: 114
WKU: 139
UAB 5 Year Rank: 9 /12
07-02-2018 01:02 PM
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BAMANBLAZERFAN Offline
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Post: #2
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
Is there any correlation between states who use state gaming revenue to supplement their state university's NCAA scholarships (which everybody has) with additional baseball scholarships and their team's success in records or ratings?
07-02-2018 01:22 PM
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Auburn_Blazer Offline
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Post: #3
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
I'm not getting into this with you again.
07-02-2018 01:26 PM
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ATTALLABLAZE Offline
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Post: #4
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
Hard to answer.

Mine would be in two parts. What do I expect in relation to how it's funded and what would I like to see.

In respect to how it's funded and supported we are getting pretty much what we are paying for. We can't get people to go see it with free tickets. The only games that draw are the Gumps and Barn Owls. Hard to complain when we don't financially support the program.

What I would like to see is an occasional top 25, Championship and NCAA appearance. At last once every four years. that's a start until th program is built up better.

A successful football program helps support baseball in the long run.
(This post was last modified: 07-02-2018 02:28 PM by ATTALLABLAZE.)
07-02-2018 01:45 PM
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Auburn_Blazer Offline
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Post: #5
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
I think my biggest issue is how poor the program is in comparison to the rest of the state. The State of Alabama loves its college football first and foremost, but college baseball is the clear #2. (People are finally starting to come around on basketball but that's another issue.) Not only that, but there are so many other programs in the region at UAB's level that churn our excellent teams each year (So Miss, CCU, South, FAU, etc.), so I'm just curious what separates them.

From what I've observed in recent threads, it seems that people really like the coach, and appreciate what he's been able to do for the program thus far, but feel as though a change may be needed. I've seen others mention that UAB should only play at Regions field, is this possible, or should UAB upgrade its current facilities? I am most likely wrong, but I think I've seen the baseball field while doing some on-campus recruiting, and, IIRC, it has a great view of downtown but wasn't much better than my little league field.

AB, what do you mean by your football comment? That football generates money for the department, and, in turn, provides baseball? Or football builds up fandom for the school overall and trickles down to baseball?
07-02-2018 02:18 PM
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ATTALLABLAZE Offline
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Post: #6
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
All of the above for football but year it will help generate revenue through gate, better conference affiliation etc. You may also have a situation where you have a big football booster that loves baseball and you can cultivate that connection for additional donation earmarked for baseball. I know a few people that if we started DI hockey they would step up and earmark funds for hockey only. I know one football guy that dropped some on baseball. etc. Our problem is we have a young donor base so to speak and need to keep cultivating new donors. We don't have 100 years and multi generation rich folks blindly throwing money like the two cult's in the state have.
07-02-2018 02:35 PM
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hooverblazer Online
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Post: #7
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
I like Shoop, but it may be time to encourage him to retire. I'd love if we played all the games at Regions Field, but I'm sure that's something that would have to be negotiated with the Barons. We could use Young Memorial as a practice field without having to spend the major $$ necessary to bring it up to par.
07-02-2018 03:19 PM
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BlazerPhil Offline
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Post: #8
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
Football must be a major source of funding before Baseball will markedly improve. And I'm not sure even that will do it. It's damn near impossible to be competitive as an Alabama based team with all the good to great schools playing baseball here. Not to mention the MLB clubs having massive farm systems, and add to that the return of independent leagues and their dizzying number of teams.

Players that are good enough to get drafted high and get a bonus, leave after their Junior year. If they come back for their Senior season, they might finish their school work but they kill their bonus money.

The Reds picks this past year is a perfect example.

Pick - Player - Position - Slot $ - Actual Bonus $
3 Brenden Spillane OF - $716,000 - $600,000
4 Mike Siani OF - $512,800 - $2,000,000
5 Ryan Campbell RHP - $382,900 - $10,000
6 Yomil Maysonet RHP - $287,700 - $250,000

The Reds' #4 draft pick, Mike Siani, was a High school prospect committed to go play for UVA. He got a $2,000,000.00 signing bonus to skip college. Ryan Campbell, the #5 pick for the Reds, was a Senior at UIC. He got $10k because he had no leverage.

So if you get a superstar, You probably only get 1.5 years out of him.

UAB vs. Everywhere else.

Junior College - More scholarships, facilities are equal to Young field or better, easier school work, less travel, equal exposure to MLB clubs.

Other D1 Schools in Alabama - Same scholarships, probably better facilities, except for the games at Regions; easier conference, probably easier school work, less travel, equal exposure to MLB clubs.

SEC Schools - Same scholarships, much better facilities or equal to Regions, harder conference, equal school work, better academic facilities, better training facilities, 1st class travel, 3x exposure to MLB clubs, dorm room walls might be papered with Ben Franklin's photo. Definitely more leeway in the checkbook to slide a few baseball players through on a hedge trimming scholarship.


IMHO, you've got to find the Bill Clark of Baseball, and pay him enough to keep him. And his name might be Brian Shoop. And he's doing the very best he can with one oar.

Coaching talent and discipline is probably the only reason we are .500 every year.
(This post was last modified: 07-03-2018 09:01 AM by BlazerPhil.)
07-02-2018 04:31 PM
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ATTALLABLAZE Offline
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Post: #9
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
and that oar is being held together with the wal-mart brand of duct tape. Not the good stuff.
07-02-2018 04:34 PM
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BlazerPhil Offline
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Post: #10
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
thanks Attalla, I meant to include facilities.
07-02-2018 04:43 PM
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the_blazerman Offline
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Post: #11
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
(07-02-2018 03:19 PM)hooverblazer Wrote:  I like Shoop, but it may be time to encourage him to retire. I'd love if we played all the games at Regions Field, but I'm sure that's something that would have to be negotiated with the Barons. We could use Young Memorial as a practice field without having to spend the major $$ necessary to bring it up to par.

This may come as a surprise to you, but part of the reason why we don't play all games at Regions is because Ingram and Watts (& Fess) don't want us to.
07-02-2018 07:00 PM
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Blazer4Life14 Offline
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Post: #12
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
(07-02-2018 07:00 PM)the_blazerman Wrote:  
(07-02-2018 03:19 PM)hooverblazer Wrote:  I like Shoop, but it may be time to encourage him to retire. I'd love if we played all the games at Regions Field, but I'm sure that's something that would have to be negotiated with the Barons. We could use Young Memorial as a practice field without having to spend the major $$ necessary to bring it up to par.

This may come as a surprise to you, but part of the reason why we don't play all games at Regions is because Ingram and Watts (& Fess) don't want us to.

Do you really believe this? I love to blame that group for just about anything, but it’s gotta be within reason....
07-02-2018 07:10 PM
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ATTALLABLAZE Offline
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Post: #13
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
It’s because of scheduling conflicts with the Barons. Can we play more there? Yes but we would have to work with the Barons to make it happen. Bottom line is that we would have to play some at YMF any way. Don’t think it’s fair to blame that on them.
07-03-2018 06:28 AM
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the_blazerman Offline
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Post: #14
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
I believe it could have been worked out. I just don't think the desire to do so it there from UAB administration.
07-03-2018 07:27 AM
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bigdunks Offline
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Post: #15
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
(07-03-2018 07:27 AM)the_blazerman Wrote:  I believe it could have been worked out. I just don't think the desire to do so it there from UAB administration.

I agree. Playing all the games at Regions is the first step to elevate program to the next level. Then they must market the program to the community and attendance will increase.
I attended a college baseball game in late March, 2017, at the University of Louisville. They hosted a midweek kids day game where local school children were invited. They played popular songs from Frozen between innings and the 2K children in attendance had a blast. I called UAB baseball when I returned home and was told we can't have that type of promotion.
07-03-2018 08:55 AM
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Auburn_Blazer Offline
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Post: #16
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
(07-02-2018 04:31 PM)BlazerPhil Wrote:  Football must be a major source of funding before Baseball will markedly improve. And I'm not sure even that will do it. It's damn near impossible to be competitive as an Alabama based team with all the good to great schools playing baseball here. Not to mention the MLB clubs having massive farm systems, and add to that the return of independent leagues and their dizzying number of teams.

Players that are good enough to get drafted high and get a bonus, leave after their Junior year. If they come back for their Senior season, they might finish their school work but they kill their bonus money.

The Reds picks this past year is a perfect example.

3 Brenden Spillane OF - $716,000 - $600,000
4 Mike Siani OF - $512,800 - $2,000,000
5 Ryan Campbell RHP - $382,900 - $10,000
6 Yomil Maysonet RHP - $287,700 - $250,000

The Reds' #4 draft pick, Mike Siani, was a High school prospect committed to go play for UVA. He got a $2,000,000.00 signing bonus to skip college. Ryan Campbell, the #5 pick for the Reds, was a Senior at UIC. He got $10k because he had no leverage.

So if you get a superstar, You probably only get 1.5 years out of him.

UAB vs. Everywhere else.

Junior College - More scholarships, facilities are equal to Young field or better, easier school work, less travel, equal exposure to MLB clubs.

Other D1 Schools in Alabama - Same scholarships, probably better facilities, except for the games at Regions; easier conference, probably easier school work, less travel, equal exposure to MLB clubs.

SEC Schools - Same scholarships, much better facilities or equal to Regions, harder conference, equal school work, better academic facilities, better training facilities, 1st class travel, 3x exposure to MLB clubs, dorm room walls might be papered with Ben Franklin's photo. Definitely more leeway in the checkbook to slide a few baseball players through on a hedge trimming scholarship.


IMHO, you've got to find the Bill Clark of Baseball, and pay him enough to keep him. And his name might be Brian Shoop. And he's doing the very best he can with one oar.

Coaching talent and discipline is probably the only reason we are .500 every year.

I don't know if I agree with your MLB points. Every college program has this issue. It's not about being good relative to MLB teams, it's about being good relative to the other 300 D1 programs. If you're saying that UAB needs to keep its coach and improve its facilities, I'm fully on board with that. Here are some pics of other stadiums, clearly UAB has some work to do.
UAB
[Image: uab_bleachers3_preview-900x675.jpeg]
Troy
[Image: 1200px-Riddle_Pace_Field_9.jpg]
Samford
[Image: 4b92875829516796e62a32edd9100fe0.jpg]
South
[Image: IMG_9035.jpg]
Southern Miss
[Image: CkJ3YrJUUAA4v9q.jpg]
07-03-2018 09:00 AM
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bigdunks Offline
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Post: #17
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
My family enjoys going to home baseball game at Samford compared to a UAB game at Young Memorial. It is very frustrating as a end up at Young Memorial by myself. My kids don't like Young Memorial because of restricted space issues and they can't move around. They can run around at Samford.
07-03-2018 09:19 AM
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BlazerPhil Offline
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Post: #18
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
https://twitter.com/newhopebaseball/stat...0325035008

http://littletonelectric.com/images/proj...omPlan.jpg

I have first hand knowledge that Bob Jones High, New Grissom High, New Hope High, and Madison Academy here in Huntsville all have better facilities than UAB does. At least 2 of the 4 have a separate practice field for taking infield, bunting, drills and the like.

The reason I included the MLB stuff is that the demand for good players has spread out from what it was even 20 years ago. And we have to put big money into baseball before we are going to see results. Our competition has already made the investment.
(This post was last modified: 07-03-2018 10:19 AM by BlazerPhil.)
07-03-2018 10:18 AM
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Blazer4Life14 Offline
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Post: #19
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
(07-03-2018 07:27 AM)the_blazerman Wrote:  I believe it could have been worked out. I just don't think the desire to do so it there from UAB administration.

Lol, it couldn’t have been worked out. Once the Barons season starts, we can’t play there on a regular basis, simply due to their schedule. I don’t know why that’s such a hard concept to understand. We get to play over half our games there, that should be enough to be an advantage in recruiting.
07-03-2018 11:42 AM
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the_blazerman Offline
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Post: #20
RE: Status of Athletics & Expectations Going Forward: Baseball
Day games/night games, away games/home games.
(This post was last modified: 07-03-2018 11:56 AM by the_blazerman.)
07-03-2018 11:55 AM
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