UVU Needs Football

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New team might bring increased fan base

Sean MacCourtney | Sports writer | @seanmaccourtney

Sports column

America’s pastime is baseball and rightfully so, but football is the game of present times. Football has become the most popular sport in America and it doesn’t seem like that will be changing anytime soon. It has been the long and wide spread rumor that UVU could be getting a football team. Unfortunately, that is still just a rumor. In my opinion, our campus needs a football team and we need it sooner than later.

UVU has grown tremendously and will continue to grow. We are no longer just the small school off I-15. We are becoming increasingly credible, both academically and athletically. For instance, our wrestling team was just added to the Big-12 Conference. That is a huge achievement and one that should not be taken lightly, coming from a once cut and non-existent program at the university.

Our PRSSA club is one of the tops in the country and will continue to get better. Our campus has new buildings added each year.

The one thing that I believe will make us even more legitimate would be to add a football team to our school. This would add scholarships, new facilities and possible upgrades to current ones. More donors would want to be involved in the program. It would bring in new student athletes, and help to enlarge the fan base, especially among the students.

Yes, those opposed to UVU having a football team will say that there are too many costs associated with the program and that they already have enough athletics program.  They might also say that competing against Utah, BYU, USU, SUU and Weber State for recruits won’t help.

Here is the thing: USU struggled for a bit until Gary Anderson took over as head coach. He turned their program around and now they make some noise on the national scene.  BYU is a worldwide school, so they will always have a fan base.  Even when they lose a game, they still gain national attention.  Utah hasn’t won 10 games since moving to the Pac-12 in 2011, but they are currently 4-0 and ranked 10th in one poll and 12th in another.

Yes, soccer is a big sport here at UVU.  They are now nationally ranked and people are paying attention. What if that was a Division I football team being nationally ranked?  What if on ESPN people were talking about the UVU Wolverine football team upsetting BYU or Utah?  It may not happen overnight, but in the world of college athletics, anything is possible.

When you sit in a stadium such as Rice-Eccles or LaVell Edwards Stadium on a Friday or Saturday night and watch the spectacle that is college football, you may start to understand the need for a football team at Utah Valley University is a crucial one.