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StudCo promotes athletics

Athletic Affairs Committee works to raise student interest in football, basketball games

Student Council's Athletic Affairs Committee previewed its plans to promote the University basketball and football programs at Council's general body meeting last night.

Initiatives discussed mostly involved the upcoming basketball season, including a mixer between the basketball team and students, simplifying the SHOTS ticketing website and improving visibility of interaction with men's basketball coach Tony Bennett.

Before the Committee becomes too entrenched in the basketball season, though, Chairs Ben Powell and Chris Schulz are still hoping to increase attendance at the final home football game against Maryland this Saturday. It is unusual for the Committee to plan extensively for only one game, but this game is worth it, Powell said.

"It's the last game of the season, it's a rivalry game [and] the last home game, we came off a great win versus a ranked team," Powell said.

Plans to promote the Maryland game include painting Beta Bridge with paint supplied by the athletic department, creating a Facebook group and spreading the plans through word of mouth.

With the onset of basketball season, Schulz said he hopes to find "the most spirited student at a basketball game" and reward that student with a lunch with Bennett somewhere on the Corner. The Athletic Affairs chairs hope this will bring attention to Bennett and increase turnout at basketball games.

"We think it'll be a cool insight for students to see into the life of Tony," Powell said.

Powell and Schulz will meet with Bennett next week to discuss this proposal.

Also involving Bennett is a proposal to carpool to Chili's Restaurant, the site from which Bennett's radio show - "Coach's Corner with Tony Bennett" - broadcasts weekly on Virginia Sports Radio Network.

"It's just a fun thing for students to witness. Fun and delicious," Schulz said.

As a more general initiative, Committee member Jared Arrington proposed the formation of a club sports council to streamline communication between teams. In addition, he proposed the creation of a website to help students obtain information. The website would allow students to apply for appropriations, post schedules and advertise games and sign out field use, equipment and gym space. It also would post contact information for the club sports and certified officials.

"Throughout my first year, I started to notice a problem with club sports," Arrington said. "Namely the problems centered on things like transportation, funding and the appropriations process in general."

To attract attention to this council, Powell said he hopes to emphasize to each club sport member that the time commitment would not be large.

"I think the goal is to have a person assigned ... to be a representative from each team," Schulz said. "I'm on a club sports team and I would love to go to a meeting"


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