Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Peach put off by BC's travel rep

Many of you have already read this. For those who haven't, here is the key paragraph:
Boston College – Obviously, Boston College is thinking Orange Bowl. We spent more time talking about B.C this week than any other team, but probably not for the reason you think. Let me say this first: We really like this team on the field and Ryan is a great quarterback. Period. But, in all honesty, our committee is leery of the Eagles and we’re not convinced their fans will support this team on a bowl trip to Atlanta – particularly after having to travel to Jacksonville for the ACC Championship Game. No one doubts that B.C will provide a great team for our game, but the Chick-fil-A Bowl has a long tradition of sold-out stadiums and an atmosphere that is as loud as any stadium in the country and we’re not sure a pro sports town like Boston can support their team at that level. We’re hoping the Eagles’ fan base will make a statement on behalf of their program and give us a reason to be high on them.

Looks like Orange Bowl or bust. I don't know why people didn't get motivated by the ACC Championship, but our showing this weekend is going to stay with us for a long time. We need to change the culture of BC sports. Any suggestions? I am all ears.


ORDEagle said...

I think the issue was well laid out before - if we were talking about a Bowl Game at the Meadowlands - BC could sell and fill 10k - 15k tickets. The fan base & alumni would be in a 4 to 6 hour driving radius and you could get in and out easily by plane. (Also true for ATL versus JAX) If the Bowl was in the midwest, I would venture we could get more people to it as their is a greater BC population in Chicago/Michigan/Ohio than the Deep South. There had to 10k at ND this year.

Be interesting to see how we would perform versus other teams for the Fiesta Bowl where everyone is getting on a plane. Still have a smaller base, etc. etc. but the geographic avantage would be gone.

Unknown said...

Yes, that's definitely true, but some of this is just going to take time. Why are there so many random Miami and FSU fans? Because they were good dominant teams with a great rivalry.

It's also worth noting what an anomaly the bowl selection process is in sports. Nowhere else does money actually factor into a teams playoff opportunities, and the effect is circular - good teams with big fan bases get better bowls, which generates even bigger fan bases.

andy d said...

in a perfect world everyone would go to both the acccg and the bowl, regardless of where it was.

we're always going to be at a disadvantage due to geography for a jacksonville acc, as everyone else has already mentioned. if the game was in DC or even charlotte, as a lot of posters are suggesting on EI, we'd see a much larger BC turnout. its just not affordable to fly last minute from boston to jacksonville and from boston to either miami/atl/orlando a month later. the traditional acc teams travel well because they only have to travel a couple hundred miles.

i think bc will see a solid turnout at our bowl game this year and this will help our travel image, as a lot of young alum friends of mine are planning on making that trip as long as we don't fall below the champs.

CHI_Eagle said...

I've been making excuses for our poor travel rep for a long time; I thought they were valid too. Anyone could figure out why no one went to Boise and the other toilet bowls we were in. I didn't think anything of it.

I'm starting to worry now, however, that maybe our support isn't as great as I always thought it was. I agree that a site in the northeast, or even chicago, would garner better support. But couldashouldawoulda. We can't say we travel well just because we'll show up to the game if you drop the bowl in our lap.

I've been so bugged by this that I finally forked over the money that I don't have to get a flight in and out of Jax on saturday, with my pops in tow.

I'm doing it:
1- because it will obviously be a blast and I'm a diehard fan
2- because I care deeply about the FUTURE of our program

There MUST be other eagles out there who care just as much about this program and have infinitely more money. WHERE ARE YOU?

I give ultimate props to those of you that purchased and donated tickets to the game. Solid move.

Showing up this weekend is really a great way to donate to the school. Instead of just writing BC a check every few years, come out and show what kind of fans BC has this weekend. An improved travel rep will bring in much more cash for the school as they're invited to better, more lucrative bowls.

Not to mention the fact that it's going to be an awesome time!

Go Eagles

CatabEagle said...

I've been curious why BC and other schools with significant presence in New York and Chicago don't put a push on one of the firms to sponsor a bowl at the Meadowlands or Soldier Field. You have to figure that if you had a Big 10 v ACC Bowl, you'd have to have enough guys/gals at one of the big finance firms to at least give it a shot. I'd much rather a cold weather game in a great city like NYC or Chicago than a warm weather game in a dump like Jax.
Just my opinion.


Big Jack Krack said...

All these comments are great and well-taken.

Now let's get back to the task at hand - Boston College versus Virginia Tech in the ACC Championship Game this Saturday.

I’ve been thinking about this game a lot and what it means to me. More than anything it means that I am very proud to be a Boston College graduate.

I’m proud of this team because it represents all of the students and graduates who have personally sacrificed, along with their families, to attain a good education in order to make a difference in life - A difference within their own families and neighborhoods, and churches, and communities and businesses, and professions, etc.

The players sacrifice by devoting so much time to their practice and studies, etc. – they are not afraid to work hard. Guided by their coaches and teachers, they understand what it takes “Ever to Excel”. The students and graduates sacrifice because of the COST of a BC education. Like the “4th year grad student, $150,000 in debt” - such a sad reality for those striving to get ahead nowadays. They are not afraid to invest in themselves and understand that they have to take risks “Ever to Excel”.

I’m ramped up for this game when I read an article that begins “Anthony Castonzo just finished his class in multi-variable calculus and the biochemistry major was preparing for the fun portion of his day.”………

This kid is really interesting - 19 years old. Do you think his first 3 months in college have been something? He represents me and I represent him - we are Boston College. Sure we all know about Matt Ryan (a wonderful guy) and his 22 great classmates - Silva, Tribble, Dunbar, Calendar, Challenger, Poles, Larkin, Ayers, Cherilus, Loyte, Pruitt, Raji, Toal, Sheridan, Whitworth, and others. We are very proud of those guys and will rely on them when the whisle blows at 1:00pm in Jacksonville this Saturday. But you’ve got to root for this kid, because it’s an unbelievable story as far as I’m concerned.

I’ll be at the game as boisterous as ever. I feel a lot younger than my years because of this team and this school.

I'm proud and I'm going to enjoy the heck out of myself in Jacksonville with BC and VT fans alike! My wife's afraid I will go bonkers or something.

I'll see you there joc bc07 and many others. I'm 6'3", 250 lbs with white hair, but I still think it's dirty blonde - and even though I know I wouldn't stand a chance at 61 yoa - I always feel like running out onto the field and blasting some opposing players!

Go BC - bring home the victory.

CHI_Eagle said...

As a Chicagoan, I think if you could put a Big 10 team vs. just about anyone in a bowl game at Soldier Field it would sell out in a heartbeat.
Iowa opened their season on a "neutral" Soldier Field against Northern Illinois a few months back and it was a sellout. It seemed like all of Iowa decended upon the city that weekend, and it was the first game of the season against a non-conference, mid-major NIU.
Something tells me BC vs. a Michigan, Wisconsin, or Iowa would no doubt fill the place up.

ATL_eagle said...

The geography thing doesn't totally fly with me. Students think nothing of going to Notre Dame. Red Sox fans think nothing of flying all across the country to see the Sox. Alabama can send 15,000 people to a regular season game in Hawaii. I think it is the culture of BC sports. There are just very few diehards. I think it can change but it will take time.

Brian said...

I am going to this game. This is infinitely more important than any bowl game we will end up in.

Let's go down to Jacksonville, see BC win, prove everyone who has already handed the ACC to Virginia Tech wrong, and booking a flight to Miami.

For those of you who bought a ticket and donated it, thank you. For those of you going to this game, thank you. Let's do this.

Go BC!

Brian said...

When times get tough for BC sports (like this week), do you think Gene regrets moving to the ACC?

bceagle08 said...

how has this week been tough???? we are playing in the ACC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME... Who cares if you are having trouble selling a few tickets? Do you think it would be any easier to get people excited about teams like Syracuse, Cincy, Louisville, South Florida, UConn, Rutgers etc. No way! that was one of the dumbest comments I have ever heard about BC sports

EagleFan06 said...

In my opinion, there are some significant differences between traveling to Notre Dame and traveling to Jacksonville. First,for the students, it's an extra four hours driving in each direction. Second, it's impossible to plan the trip for than a week or two in advance because you don't know if you are going (unlike ND, where I purchased my plane ticket almost a year ago).

I know that if this game was in Charlotte or Atlanta, the story would be different. First of all, Jacksonville sucks. But it's also not a direct flight. That is a big deal for people that can't take a day off of work on a Friday (which is pretty much required if you want to get down there).

All that being said, I'd have to agree that our fans are just not as fanatic...yet. In the interest of time, I think I'll just blame TOB for that one.

Finally, on the ACC v. Big East issue, there is no way that Gene regrets leaving the Big East. The money is way better. The schools are much more comparable in terms of mission. The only thing about that would be relatively better is that the other schools do not have a geographic advantage when the bowl matchups are being decided. That's one day a year. For every other day, I'll bet Gene is damn glad to be in the ACC, just as I am.

Big Jack Krack said...

ACC FanFest
presented by the Official Corporate
Partners of the ACC FREE ADMISSION!!!
Dates and Times:
Friday, November 30, 2007 5:00 p.m.–10:00 p.m.
Saturday, December 1, 2007 9:30 a.m.–1:00 p.m., 4:00 p.m.–8:00 p.m.
Location: Jacksonville Municipal Stadium Pepsi Plaza
Join the excitement and experience the thrill at the ultimate ACC FanFest! Fun is in store for the entire family to enjoy pregame pep rallies, live entertainment and interactive inflatable games.

Schedule: 11/30/07 8:45 p.m.
Phil Vassar Concert

10:00 p.m.

12/01/07 10:00 a.m.
Coastal Division Pep Rally

10:45 a.m.
Atlantic Division Pep Rally

11:30 a.m.
ACC Mascot Football Game

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Brian said...

bceagle08 - if you don't think this week has been tough on DeFilippo as an AD, you are wrong. Much more than ticket sales to 1 game hang in the balance. Because CFB is so screwed up as it is, this game's attendance will have a large bearing on our program's future. We can rise to the occassion, or perpetuate the BC travel myth, and be resigned to December trips to Boise, San Francisco, and car part bowls in Carolina.

As has been documented on this blog, the AD and the school could have done a lot more to pub and promote this game and get fans to Jacksonville.

Big Jack Krack said...

News Flash:

Ryan Named ACC Player of the Year

"I still feel like we have a lot of work to do," Ryan said. "We've got a big game this weekend against a very, very good Virginia Tech football team. We know that we've done some really good things at this point in the year, but our goal from the beginning of the year was to win an ACC championship, and we've got a chance to do that on Saturday. After Saturday, everybody will be able to look back and reflect a little bit."

See "y'all" in Jacksonville

Big Jack Krack said...

I agree that the publicity and promotion seem to be lacking in Boston. As they say "What's up with that?"

Where is this great Fenway Sports Group?

It was obvious fairly early in the season that BC would have a reasonable shot at getting to this game - the stated goal of the team!!!!

We are each and all learning our lessons on this deal.

Deacon Drake said...

I have friends that went to VA Tech that live in Jacksonville and they said not to bother; win or lose, Miami, Atlanta, or Orlando are all better for a trip.

Most people cannot haphazardly put together a trip to a place they actually WANT to go in a week's time, let alone shell out a grand to go someplace that sucks.

And why Jacksonville? Only 1 school is within 4 hours... it always should be Atlanta, Charlotte, or even DC.

There also is the issue of getting students down there by game time... you have to be able to use Friday as a travel day coming from Boston. That means either skipping classes the week before finals. The cheapest flights right now are $600. That was about a month's pay from the bookstore...

It will always be a tough draw, but Jacksonville is impossible... the Peach Bowl should at least give us a chance.

flutie22phelan20 said...

I wish I had an answer for you. I really thought BC fans would travel for a big game, and I'm at least mildly surprised that we will not be bringing that many people down to Jax. As I said earlier, and as Big Jack Krack noted on this thread, BC being in the ACC Championship game wasn't exactly an unforeseen event, and the school certainly could have done some better planning on ways to get people (especially students) down to Jax.

But, frankly, that's only part of the problem. It is a cultural thing, and one I can't explain.

I hate to pick on Deacon Drake, but seriously, is anybody going to Jax to see the city? Does anybody go on any football trip to see the city? We bring 10k people to Notre Damne--we sure as hell don't go to see South Bend, we go for the game, the atmosphere, and the party. So long as a city has a stadium, a big football game, and a bunch of know what? It'll be a good time. Especially if it's 70 and sunny like it's supposed to be on Saturday.

Part of the issue is getting people to go on their first trip, and to see how good of a time it is. Once they go, they'll go again. We're now in a conference with a ton of great away game destinations, and an ACC Championship Game. It's time for people to step it up. It wouldn't kill the school to make it somewhat affordable to do so--ie. no more exceedingly expensive Dodd travel trips, or at least scale the trips for recent grad prices, etc.
But it's up to people to realize that we have a pretty cool thing here, one that could use our support, and one that will be adversely effected (in bowls, and likely recruiting) by our failure to do so.

Big Jack Krack said...

I agree that Jacksonville is not the best place for this game. However, that's where it is this year.

Personally, I'd like to see Charlotte or maybe D.C. get the bid.

For those who cannot make the game - watch it with your friends and family - you will be with us in spirit.

For those of us able to go - see you there. Let's bring home the victory. We know there will be many BC fans from the Northeast and around the nation watching this game.

Go BC!

Moose said...

I'm just conjecturing here, but it seems possible to me that football just isn't as deeply revered in these parts as it is in parts of the country where college football crazies travel for their teams. Sure you have the recent astronomical success of the Patriots and the consistent 9ish win seasons by BC in the last ten or so years, but the majority of people (not that there's a huge amount because of relatively small enrollment) with the money to travel are older and thus might not have weighed football that heavily in their decision to come here. Makes me think they wouldn't be likely to travel to see a football game after graduating. Times have changed a little with the media craze and marketing. I almost went to a Big 10 school just because of football, and a lot of southern kids root for their schools their whole life. I would guess the amount of undergrads at BC who banked on going to Boston College their whole lives is fairly small. BC's travel rep will probably improve in the long term simply because of the effect that ESPN and the current over-emphasis on sports will have on BC alums. I don't want to act like my argument is backed up by facts cause I wasn't around in 1989 asking people why they chose BC but I'm just thinking out loud.

EagleInTheCuse said...

As I said in earlier posts, I'm one of those grads who can't afford to go to both, especially flying from Upstate, NY. I did what I thought was the next best thing and bought and donated my ticket.

What I can say now, is that I think when all is said and done this weekend, we need to start rallying the troops for the bowl game - whatever game it is. All of our options are better than where we've been the last several years. If we can get people out in numbers for that game, we can start the trend, and that's the first step in winning this bad reputation battle.

And concerning BC getting good numbers to ND, I think there are other things that factor in. All the kids who road trip it there in RVs don't have to worry about paying for hotel rooms, as they do in Jacksonville. Also, a lot of people have friends there, who they can not only see, but stay with if they do fly. Lastly, I'd say a couple thousand came up from Chicago, and we simply don't have a hub down in Jax.

At this point it's a waiting game, but it'd be damn nice if we could take VT down and not have to worry about all this crap! For those of you going to the game, have fun, be loud, and wear GOLD.

CHI_Eagle said...

What hotels are you guys staying at?

CT said...

The problems of a small, northeast private school travelling "well" anywhere outside the region so close to the holidays and exams are well articulated on this site. As are, I think, the opinions from those who rightly regard this week's game, at the risk of sounding alarmist, as a watershed moment for BC's football program.

Both sides are right.

Ironically, these are some of the same issues that Georgia Tech faces (people in Atlanta should know this), largely because I think a good part of their student body (of over 12,000) is from overseas and would rather be solving equations than solving transportation obstacles on their way to a bowl game. BC is operating in a professional sports town as everyone on here knows, and Atlanta--due to UGA alums and all the SEC'ers in the city--is decidedly the biggest (SEC) college town in the country.

The problem is exacerbated by the fact that there are no bandwagon BC fans. We're not the University of Miami, which has been cashing in on its sullied reputation for years now. You're either a part of BC or you're not. We're very insulated in that respect, in that we feel we have a mission that goes beyond simply holding a diploma from the school--a wonderful byproduct, I think of a Catholic institution. Ironicaly, I've only begun to appreciate that unique sense of belonging since I graduated back in '96.

But that's part of my point: at BC, that feeling of being involved in an education that's different cultivates an "us against the world" mentality, or at least I think it should, when it comes to competition. We're not playing on an even playing field when it comes to recruiting, facilities, and money. Our student-athletes do graduate; especially our football team, which in this day and age, given our success, is downright remarkable (sadly, those statistics aren't beaten into the ground at ESPN--like everything else--or by the cliched sports writer turned television star of the moment). BC does the job that colleges are supposed to do and in the process makes each of us who have passed through campus very proud.

Unless and until there's a playoff system, nothing is going to change, so complaining about the bowls is good for a release but inevitably resolves nothing.

It's time to find out what BC--its students, the parents, the alumni, the faculty, the administration--wants to be.

Truth be told, part of the problem is the ACC Championship game location and the difficulty in getting there at this time of year, part of it is the bowl system (you mean they want to make money? No way!), and part of it is BC itself. The fact of the matter is, we don't travel well. Sure, we've been stuck in some mediocre bowls in some mediocre locations, but here we are in the one game we've wanted to be in and there are more complaints resulting in slow ticket sales. I understand the complaints, too. But this is how the current system works. Everybody operates under the same system.

The question is: how bad do we want it?

How bad do we want to be mentioned with the FSUs, and the Virginia Techs and the Michigans of the college football world? True, we'll never be able to recruit the kids the SEC does, but that's what makes BC different from them and, in my opinion, better. Yet, here we are, on the precipice of doing and being an FSU or a Va. Tech, or a Michigan, if only for a moment--and how BC decides to suppport that moment will probably go a long way in determining if we're in this for the long haul, or just in it to be talked about every once in a while. And anybody can check the most recent Div. 1A college football graduation rates: we've gotten to this point without compromising what or who we are.

So, how do we want to be talked about?

I guess we'll find out in two days.

As a sidenote: Atleagle--thanks for your work on this blog. I'm a '96 grad from Atlanta, so it hits close to home. Except for your affinity for UGA, it's a nice read for me.

I grew up going to Tech games downtown and even had season tickets during the '90 National Championship season. Went to Orlando for the Citrus Bowl that year, too--45-21 win over Nebraska. That was the year of Colorado's infamous 5th down game against Missouri, and the clipping call on Rocket Ismail's punt return for ND in the last minute that would have beaten Colorado in the Orange Bowl--but who says I hold grudges?)

It's almost like being with family every time I come on here--and I'm currently halfway around the world in New Zealand, glued to Gamecast every Sunday keeping up with the game.

If I was home, I'd be in Jax! As it is, I'll be there in spirit!

Go BC!!

Big Jack Krack said...

Great post, CT - best of luck in New Zealand - follow your bliss!!!!!

We are who we are - Boston College!

Let's enjoy the hell out of this "moment" wherever we are!

CHI_Eagle said...

Is the Riverwalk generally the place to be for hotels, victory celebrations? Just booked flights down! Need a hotel...

Shippin off to Jags!

ps- students, get your act together. christmas is around the corner and odds are your family celebrates it. otherwise ask for an early channukah present.

BCDoubleEagle said...

I am flying down to the game from Boston early Saturday morning and returning late Saturday night. The flights are not direct. I booked the tickets just a few days ago. Cost: $230. Time off from work: none.

Please stop complaining that (to quote some comments on this page) "its just not affordable to fly last minute from boston to jacksonville" and "it's impossible to plan the trip for than a week or two in advance" and that it's "required" to take a day off work to get there and "you have to be able to use Friday as a travel day coming from Boston" and "The cheapest flights right now are $600."

I'm not saying it's cheap and easy to get to Jacksonville, but please stop acting like it's impossible. Thanks.

Sr.Atlanta said...

Bottom line: BC's destiny is in its own hands. Win in J'ville and we get our first (in my adult life time) BCS bowl. Lose...and no shot at a post Jan 1 bowl.

BC hasn't and probably never will get the benefit of the doubt when it comes to bowls. Like the old commercial said....we will have to EARN it!!

I just got my tix today...Go Eagles!

See you guys this weekend!

Ever to excel.

Big Jack Krack said...

Did the soccer team lose to UMass 2 to 1? I was looking forward to supporting them if they made it to Cary, NC for the Final 4 - too bad.

tuesdaymorning said...

If you are coming from DC (and maybe even NYC...leaves 315pm) amtrak has a couple options getting you there at 935AM if you leave friday night at 730pm. Not bad. Get some Night Train for the road.

Joe Bags said...

I think the number one problem is attitude and the culture at BC.

I believe it starts the first weekend freshmen set foot on campus, and that is ground zero for change. I think that there are two kinds of freshmen that show up BC - those who grew up in parts of the country where college football plays second fiddle to the NFL, and those from parts of the country where college football is popular and already have allegiances to certain teams growing up. It doesn't matter, because to both groups it becomes obvious from their first home game that the games are less about football and more about socializing and tailgating. Look no further than our late arriving crowd and "down in front" yellers for evidence of this. The non-football fan freshmen are naive and just go with the flow, the football fan freshmen realize the atmosphere sucks and hold on to their old allegiances (I lived next door to a guy who would skip BC home games whenever Oregon was on TV at the same time). I admit that the crowds have improved immensely since my first home game 11+ years ago, but we have a long way to go before establishing a culture of caring about the team and the game and not the party.

BCNorCal07 said...

I feel like a lot of the student apathy boils down to the athletics department not reaching out to students when teams travel. I graduated in May and the only time I remember athletics really encouraging students to go to a non-Notre Dame, non-Beanpot off-campus contest was the San Francisco Bowl in 2003. And that run included three other bowl games, four NCAA tournaments in basketball and two national title games in hockey. I was at one of those title games with the band and I think there were maybe a dozen other students there.

Joe Bags is right, the apathetic culture hits when freshmen arrive. One of the best ways to change this is to encourage students to travel with the team. It's a blast, so much fun, and a great break from school. I was lucky that I got to follow the teams so much with the band and it was one of my favorite parts of my college career.

Gene, et al, need to offer cheap tickets to students, travel packages such as buses, and even get discounts on rooms at cheap(er) hotels. And I'm not just talking about for bowl games or the ACCCG. I'm talking every football road game and NCAA tourneys for basketball and hockey. Tie these purchases to increased priority for future season tickets/Beanpots and you've got a positive feedback loop for increasing fan-dom.

bceagle08 said...

brian- not saying it hasn't been a tough week for gene, no one can deny that. but to suggest that he is regretting the move to the acc is absolutely ridiculous. BC's traveling reputation is a problem regardless of what conference we are in- do you think it would have been an easier sell for gene if we were traveling to Pittsburgh this weekend for a chance to win the Big East? Either way, the millions of dollars and TV exposure the ACC brings us every year easily outweighs any "tough weeks" for our AD.

EagleFan06 said...

Double Eagle,
My intent was not to suggest that the trip was impossible. It clearly isn't. However, because it's not cheap and easy, to use your words, we will get 5K and not 15K going to the game.

But the point of your post is well taken - at some point you can't make any more excuses; you just have to show up.

Some posters have brought up the angle that BC does not have any casual fans across the country, or even in Boston. The Boston thing has always puzzled me. Is there a reason why the majority of Boston hates BC? Is it simply a matter of jealousy, or something slightly more understandable?

Joe Grav said...

A majority of Boston does not hate BC. A majority of Boston follows BC the way they follow the Revolution - they hear about something good they did and think 'oh, that's nice.'

There is a vocal minority of BU/UMass/Holy Cross mongoloids out there who voice their dislike of BC constantly, but they don't speak for the public at large

Brian said...

I won't get into the lack of creativity from the AD on getting fans to big sporting events, as that seems to have been well documented on this blog.

But doesn't part of the blame fall on the ACC? Playing in a conference championship should not hurt your bowl prospects. I can understand getting passed over for the Peach Bowl but for the Gator Bowl to not consider us because we played in Jacksonville three weeks earlier?

Why are we having a conference championship in the same city as one of our better bowl tie ins? Not to mention in the 49th largest tv market (Jacksonville).

There's only 3 BCS conference championship games. San Antonio, Atlanta and Jacksonville. In my opinion, there are plenty of bigger stages and larger media markets within the borders of the ACC, that do not have ACC affiliated bowls, to play in. DC, Tampa, Baltimore, Charlotte are all larger media markets.

BMas90 said...

As much as we would like to think that the BC fan base can make a miraculous turn-around this year for the ACC Champioship and bowl games, it is probably not going to happen. But it's not without good reason. There are plenty of diehard BC fans out there and they go to games or (like myslef, when other factors prevent us from going) buy and donate tickets to help the cause. The problem is that demographics are against us. On average, BC has about 25%-33% of the student base and living alumni each year compared to almost all of the other bowl teams - which tend to be state universities. So, if half the undergrad student body goes to a game, which is a huge percentage, we get 4,000-5,000 people. Other schools' football programs are THE attraction throughout the state, regardless of how far the actual college is located from the home of the fan. I traveled to Birmingham, AL for business this fall and all people talked about was 'Bama football (and a little about Auburn football). You can't get a ticket to a game because the whole state is interested with almost nothing else to compete with (no offense to SEC basketball, of course). Add in the fact BC alumni live all over the country (which is the exception for most of the other schools) and are typically a flight, instead of a drive, away from most bowl games, and your recipe is set.

I know these sound like excuses, but it is the reality. To combat unfavorable demographics, for years to come we will most likely be forced to win our way into a good bowl game - unless the almuni and university provide assistance where they can, like maybe by starting a fund dedicated to buying tickets and helping fans "travel" to these games. I would gladly pay a $1-$2 charge for every season ticket seat to get it done.

BaldEagle90 said...

Have to agree with a couple of comments here. First of all BC athletics has never actively engaged the student body to travel with the team / get to the game. Outside of a game in Ireland in the late 80s and ND trips, there isn't a consistent effort made to the student body that would allow them to easily and affordable travel.

This instills the apathy towards varsity sports. The road trips are seen as "rich alumni" events.

Secondly, working in Boston I would have to say that the majority of Boston sports fans DO hate BC. Unlike other towns where there is only one university to follow, Boston has the advantage / disadvantage of having 100s of colleges. So the loyalty base is splintered across all sorts of D3 schools. Thus when the mighty D1 team (BC) losses it unites these small school alumns against BC. It's true. It exists.

Lastly, as a veteran of last years Meinecke Who Cares Bowl, I would not look at Charlotte as an ideal bowl city. It has the same atmosphere as any second tier midwest city whose downtown clears out at 5pm. Put the ACC championship in Miami, Orlando, or DC. Make it a palatable family trip (Orlando), a crazed party time (Miami) or a metropolitan event (DC). Or how about rotating it? ACC game at Gillette anyone? Let's hear the rest of the ACC bitch about travel for a change.

Finally, why does BC travel to ND - because of the perceived rivalry. Give it time. The rivals will develop and we'll have more of an impulse to travel. I now friends that have gone to Clemson, love it for the atmosphere and will go again.

Remember that BC really hasn't had a historical rival for 21 years now. 86 was the last time we played Holy Cross. Since then we've changed football conferences twice. 10 year is not a long time for rivalries to develop. Give it time. They'll come.

morrina said...

I would like to see BC form a partnership with the Patriots, like or instead of the one they have with the Red Sox. I know the Red Sox (Fenway Sports Group) is marketing BC, but I don't see a lot of evidence or results. I'd like to see us play a game at Foxboro every year. I agree that there should be a more NE bowl game, and maybe the Pats/Kraft play into that scenario.

This isn't directly realted, but I also can not get over how the BC fans that go to games (I'm a season tix holder for fball and bball) almost never provide any real vocal support, even the students. There's very rarely any real sense of (crowd) excitement at BC games. Why is that?

Deacon Drake said...

From my comments above...

I'm glad few people ripped them a new one, because if you really wanted to be at the game, the money/time is negotiable. I threw some excuses out there for slow sales, but when it comes down to it, it is simply numbers. I'm not sure how many tickets Wake sold last year, but hopefully we far exceed that (I bought 4 tix, just in case DC had to be evacuated). I have been to 3 this year, and the bowl game will be 4. Unfortunately, it could not be 5, because of a previous engagement.

I think now that BC knows that we can be in this game, more alumni will make the effort.