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Chasse gets his football program
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mjs Offline
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Chasse gets his football program
Division I football is coming to the Rio Grande Valley. A borderland region in South Texas with a population nearing 1.5 million, the Rio Grande Valley is one of the largest and most-populated regions of the United States without Division I football.

That will change come 2025 when the UTRGV Vaqueros take the field for the first time in what will be a special moment for the university and its larger community. The university’s students voted to raise their tuition fees by a 60.5 to 39.5 margin to fund the creation of the football program, women’s swimming and diving programs, as well as marching bands (yes plural bands), and spirit squads.

At this time, the university is planning to split their games between stadiums in Edinburg and Brownsville, the two largest cities in the Rio Grande Valley. UTRGV has campuses in both locations, and is planning to have separate marching bands on both campuses.

The Vaqueros will compete in the Western Athletic Conference, where they will compete with Abilene Christian University, Dixie State University, Lamar University, Stephen F. Austin State University, Tarleton State University, University of the Incarnate Word, Utah Valley University, and Southern Utah University. With current members New Mexico State and Sam Houston State heading to Conference USA, the WAC may seek a 10th football member to create two five-team divisions.

While UTRGV VP and Director of Athletics Chasse Conque will have his hands full with planning and logistical decision making over the next three years, one of the most critical decisions Conque will need to make is to determine the university’s first head coach. With an anticipated four year gap between official approval and the program’s inaugural game, UTRGV is operating on a slower timeline than previous startups such as UTSA, South Alabama, and Georgia State, all of which started play within two years of receiving approval to launch their programs.

It sucks that Little Rock is such a lousy sports town. I wasn't a big supporter of football, probably because I never believed it would work here. If it was possible in LR, I think Chasse could have gotten it done. Still don't quite understand why LR is so much different than other southern cities that have started football in the past 20 years or so.
11-17-2021 11:05 AM
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eh9198 Offline
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RE: Chasse gets his football program
Must be nice. When our town and fans wouldn’t let football happen, the beginning of our programs downfall began. Chasse left, and now we’re looking to find any downgrade conference that will have us. So disappointed.

I’ll forever maintain that if these other tiny colleges can support football, so can we. And if it was such a disastrous money sink as everyone claims it to be, it wouldn’t be remotely as prevalent and there’s be fewer and fewer football teams - not more.
11-17-2021 11:27 AM
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eh9198 Offline
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RE: Chasse gets his football program
And you want to know what’s even more depressing? Going to the main conference board and seeing everyone offhandedly (or directly) brimming with excitement at finally getting rid of us and planning which conference we can get booted to as the Sun Belt grows and becomes more of a force in FBS. It’s like we’ve already been kicked out.
11-17-2021 11:30 AM
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mjs Offline
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RE: Chasse gets his football program
(11-17-2021 11:27 AM)eh9198 Wrote:  Must be nice. When our town and fans wouldn’t let football happen, the beginning of our programs downfall began. Chasse left, and now we’re looking to find any downgrade conference that will have us. So disappointed.

I’ll forever maintain that if these other tiny colleges can support football, so can we. And if it was such a disastrous money sink as everyone claims it to be, it wouldn’t be remotely as prevalent and there’s be fewer and fewer football teams - not more.

It would take an influx of many millions of dollars to start football. Then it would probably take 5 to 10 million a year (or more) to sustain it. Just don't see where that money would come from. On the hand, I agree many small colleges somehow support football. Not sure how they do it. I do know the results of the 110K study appeared to provide clear evidence that we couldn't do it. I also agree there is a lot to be disappointed about. I still believe it all comes back to the failure of a mid-sized city to fully embrace their local university and sports programs.
11-17-2021 11:48 AM
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