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Lynn Hickey newsletter

The AD's Corner — Wednesday, Aug. 19, 2014


Local Chambers Accept Arizona Game Challenge
More than a dozen local chambers of commerce have joined the effort to pack the Alamodome for the Thursday, Sept. 4, home opener against Arizona. All participating chambers will send a representative to the field along with the UTSA captains for the coin toss prior to the nationally-televised game that is slated to kick off at 7 p.m. The representative of the chamber that sells the most tickets will get to flip the coin. All tickets in the Chamber Night Challenge are $20. Chamber members also may join UTSA President Dr. Ricardo Romo on the field for a pregame party for an additional $10. Please contact your local chamber of commerce to join the effort to fill the Dome with orange-clad Roadrunners. If you need more information on the Chamber Night Challenge, please call Aaron Johnson at (210) 458-4188.  


Volleyball Earns AVACA Team Academic Award
For the second time in three years, the UTSA volleyball team has been recognized by the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) for outstanding work in the classroom. AVCA Team Academic Awards are given to high school and college volleyball teams that maintain at least a 3.30 cumulative team GPA on a 4.00 scale. The Roadrunners were recognized with the same award following the 2011-12 academic year. Head coach Laura Neugebauer-Groff’s squad will hold an exhibition match against former players at 11 a.m. this Saturday followed by a meet-and-greet gathering at the Convocation Center. UTSA will open the season at the Texas A&M Invitational from Aug. 29-30. Following eight consecutive road matches, UTSA will open its home season on Sept. 18 against Houston.  


“Larry Coker Show” Moving to Buffalo Wings & Rings
The first “Larry Coker Show” of the 2014 football season will be broadcast live on Ticket 760 AM from 7-8 p.m. next Tuesday, Aug. 26. Roadrunners fans are invited to join Coach Coker and host Andy Everett at the new location — Buffalo Wings & Rings (203 North Loop 1604 West) — for live broadcasts each week during the football season. The Larry Coker Show can be heard each Wednesday from 7-8 p.m. except for three Tuesdays — Aug. 26, Sept. 2 and Nov. 11. Tuesday night broadcasts are necessary when the Roadrunners play on Friday (Aug. 29 at Houston) or Thursday (Sept. 4 at home against Arizona / Nov. 13 at home against Southern Mississippi). The weekly radio talk shows are part of a recently extended agreement between UTSA Athletics, Learfield Sports and Clear Channel Media and Entertainment. All football game broadcasts will be carried live in the San Antonio area on Ticket 760 AM and feature two-hour pregame and one-hour postgame shows. All broadcasts also can be heard online at goUTSA.com and Ticket760.com or on a mobile device with the free iHeartRadio app.


Houston, Oklahoma State Tickets Still Available
Deadlines for requesting tickets to away football games at Houston (Friday, Aug. 29) and Oklahoma State (Saturday, Sept. 13) have been extended. Tickets in the UTSA section at Houston are $36 apiece and must be requested by this Thursday. Tickets for the game in Stillwater are $70 each and must be requested by next Friday, Aug. 29. Click here to request tickets to any UTSA away football game or you can call the UTSA Ticket Office at (210) 458-UTSA (8872). More detailed information about UTSA road game tickets, including request deadlines, pricing and Roadrunner Athletic Fund fulfillment policies, is available here.  


This ‘n’ That
Cheerleaders selling T-shirts — UTSA Cheer currently is selling T-shirts as a fundraiser for the upcoming 2014-15 school year. The cost is $12 with free shipping when you order from UTSACheer.com (all purchases must be made online). Sizes range from youth small to adult triple extra large. The order deadline is Aug. 22 and the shirts will begin to ship on Sept. 1. Each cheerleader is required to sell a minimum number of T-shirts and purchasers can select which cheerleader they want their order to sponsor at checkout.

Tailgate with UTSA Alumni Association — The UTSA Alumni Association and San Antonio Credit Union (SACU) will be bringing Roadrunner Station, the best tailgate in San Antonio, to Houston for the football season opener next Friday, Aug. 29. Join alumni and friends at 5 p.m. in Hofheinz Pavilion on the Houston campus for a pregame party with tailgate fare and drinks. The cost is $15 for members of the Association and $20 for non-members and guests. Children under 12 are free. Click here to purchase your tickets today.

UTSA grad joins Conference USA Digital Network staff — Recent UTSA graduate Kennedy Hardman has joined the Conference USA staff as Digital Media Coordinator. For the past four years, Hardman has been a frequent on-camera contributor for goUTSA.com video programming and helped establish the UTSA Student Sports Network. The Houston-area native will join program host Ron Thulin on the weekly C-USA magazine program on FOX Sports Southwest. She also will be producing and reporting on video features for the C-USA Digital Network. Congratulations to Kennedy and thanks for all that you did and will do for the Roadrunners.

Brio Tuscan Grille to host "Back to School Bash" — Members of the UTSA Athletics Department and the San Antonio Chapter of the Former NFL Players Association will be on hand from 6-9 p.m. on Thursday at Brio Tuscan Grille at La Cantera (15900 La Cantera Parkway). All Roadrunners fans are invited to attend and receive free food and UTSA giveaways to help kick off the 2014-15 school year and sports seasons,. Rowdy and the UTSA cheerleaders also will be in attendance.

Coker to kick off San Antonio Quarterback Club fall lineup — Head football coach Larry Coker will kick off the San Antonio Quarterback Club fall lineup of speakers at 11:30 a.m. on Sept. 8 at Earl Abel’s (1201 Austin Highway). Each week a UTSA assistant coach will address the QB Club at 11:15 a.m. providing a review of the previous week’s game and a scouting report on the next week’s game. I am honored that the QB Club also has invited me to address the group on Oct. 6. To join the QB Club, attend the first meeting on Sept. 8 or call Rodney Hayden at (830) 491-1396. Membership for the entire nine-speaker QB Club season is $180.

Season ticket holder discounts continue — Dozens of UTSA football season ticket holders have been taking advantage of discounts offered by Advanced OnLine, the UTSA Athletics online supplier of Roadrunners merchandise. Season ticket holders should go to UTSAGear.com and click on “2014 Football Tkt Holder Merch.” Be prepared to enter your e-mail address and the password “UrTownUrTeam” to receive a discount on Roadrunners merchandise. This offer ends on Aug. 28.


Soccer Meet & Greet
Members of the UTSA soccer team hosted 6-year-old Matthew Jeffery from Bandera and other fans at a meet and greet dinner last week at Park West Athletics Complex. The Roadrunners defeated Incarnate Word, 2-0, in an exhibition match last Sunday.

Final Thoughts
Change is hard. Change is disruptive. However, change can be good.

During the past two weeks, two significant decisions were made that will significantly change NCAA Division I sports for the foreseeable future.

The NCAA Division I Board of Directors recently approved a plan to revise the division’s governance structure by streamlining the NCAA’s decision-making process and giving limited autonomy to five conferences: ACC, Big 12, Big Ten, Pac-12 and SEC. For descriptive purposes, let’s call them the Power Five.

A day later, a federal judge ruled that in the sports of football and men’s basketball the NCAA cannot cap the amount of a scholarship below the actual cost of attendance and must allow its members to compensate their student-athletes for the use of their names, images and likenesses.

The Power Five now will have the power to enact legislation to increase student-athlete aid, practice time, benefits to parents and size of coaching staffs. For the first time, a select group of Division I conferences can vote and give themselves a competitive advantage over other conferences.

Conference USA and other Division I conferences may adopt and utilize the same rules, but keeping up with the Power Five will be expensive, maybe too expensive. C-USA will review the Power Five’s first legislative efforts in October and will determine if its members will adopt the same practices.

The second major ruling — the Ed O’Bannon federal class action suit — bars the NCAA from prohibiting payment to student-athletes for the use of their names, images and likeness, such as on video games. The ruling is seen as a defeat for the NCAA. The NCAA legal team already has started the appeals process.

Somewhat overshadowed by these two landmark decisions was the NCAA’s approval of UTSA as an active member of the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS). The Roadrunners, who began play in the Football Championship Subdivision as an independent in 2011, spent the last two seasons reclassifying to FBS. UTSA will play its first season as a full-fledged FBS member and will be eligible for a bowl game this fall.

Congratulations to our staff members who spent the last three years assuring that we met all of the FBS standards and submitted the necessary documents to gain approval from the NCAA Division I Board of Directors.

There’s one final bit of NCAA-related news to share. The NCAA Men’s Basketball Division I Committee will make a site visit to San Antonio in September in regard to our bid to bring another Final Four to the Alamodome.

To assist in the effort to land another Final Four and other major events, the City of San Antonio has agreed to make significant renovations to the Alamodome. More floor space will be created and state-of-the-art video capabilities will be added. Overall, there will be better accommodations for fans, teams, media and sponsors. You can read about all the proposed changes here.

As a full-time tenant of the Alamodome for football games, UTSA will be a prime beneficiary of these important improvements. At the same time, paying for these improvements could impact future parking and ticket rates to help pay for these improvements. We will keep you informed as these changes and possible increases are encountered.

Change is often out of our control. What we can control is how we work to build the best program for our student-athletes and our fans. Please continue to be the best team of supporters for our student-athletes and coaches. We will work harder than ever to make sure that we put the best teams on the fields and courts.

See you at the games.

Go Runners!

Sincerely,

Lynn Hickey
Director of Athletics

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