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SBD/August 30, 2011/Colleges
Univ. Of South Carolina, ECU Expected To Split $2M From Neutral Site CFB Game
Published August 30, 2011
ROOT FOR THE HOME TEAM: Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game President & CEO Gary Stokan said that the “late nature of arranging this year’s matchup” between the Univ. of Georgia and Boise State “slowed the sales cycle at first, but the addition of a local school, Georgia, gave them a push that has led to an uptick in secondary sponsorship sales.” Stokan: “The growth of the game in the overall college marketplace has really helped us, and companies have stepped up. We’re fortunate that sales are up this year and certainly having Georgia helped, but it’s also the growth of the franchise itself” (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 8/29 issue). In Atlanta, Tim Tucker examines how Stokan arranged this year's Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game under the header, "How The UGA-Boise State Matchup Happened." Stokan unsuccessfully tried to land the annual Georgia-Florida game, then Georgia-Georgia Tech and finally Georgia Tech-Univ. of Southern California. He said, "This one was the most challenging of all to put together. We had to have a lot of help from a lot of people" (ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 8/30). SBJ's Michael Smith in this week's issue also takes a look into how the game was put together.
LIBERTY FOR ALL? In Memphis, Geoff Calkins notes the Univ. of Memphis has offered a free pair of tickets for Thursday's football game against Mississippi State to "everyone who contributed to the Tiger Scholarship Fund.” UM AD R.C. Johnson said school officials are "expecting between 30,000 and 35,000" fans for the opener at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium. Calkins writes, "Stop and think for a moment about what that means. The Tigers are papering the house for their opener. They are having to give away tickets for a home game against Mississippi State.” UM athletic department officials have made an "astonishing mess" of the football program. Calkins: "All over the country, football is king. … Memphis has somehow managed to ride this wave of passion to a place of utter irrelevance” (Memphis COMMERICAL APPEAL, 8/30).