Terps Football Recovery Plan – Step One, Check!

TerpsEarlier I wrote about the urgent need for the Maryland Terrapins football program to resurrect itself into a big time winning machine in advance of their entry into the Big 10 in 2014, and to solve for immediate financial difficulties.  Saturday, I attended the Terps season opener against FIU and witnessed the start of the recovery plan.  But there was one caveat to note.  I need to take the Maryland student body to task for their apathetic behavior and disappearance after half time.  Sure it was brutally hot, and sure the score was 40-10 at the break, but disappearing for the air conditioned comfort of your dorm room, or to the bars along Route 1 is not going to create the reputation of hostile atmosphere that will be sorely needed when B1G time arrives.  I stayed to the end, so get your butts back in the seats and keep them there!

At the 2013 UMD opener vs FIU

At the 2013 UMD opener vs FIU

Back to the recovery plan and the specific steps.

Step 1:  Tune up the tune ups.  The Urban Dictionary defines tune up as:

/verb/A beat down especially when administered by the cops.

It’s been quite some time since Maryland tuned up anyone and handily defeating inferior opponents is a must.  Your program can be set back several years by losing to a cupcake (see Michigan vs Appalachian State).  Crush them and do it with authority.

Step 2:  Schedule superior opponents early.  Most schools schedule the tune up games but early big game affairs provide prestige to your program and interest from the fans.  It’s less costly to lose to a big name opponent early and the upsides of a win are huge.   I realize college schedules are set years in advance, but the Terps have got to schedule quality opponents at every available opening.  The DC-based Terp fans know the value of their entertainment dollar and currently they treat tune ups with disinterest; not unlike NFL preseason games.

Step 3:  Get butts in seats at all cost.  Fill every available nook and cranny of Byrd stadium for every game even if you have to give away the cheap seats.  Proactively build a reputation for filling your venue and the demand for tickets will be self-perpetuating.  Else, come Big 10 time, you risk loading your park with 20,000 screaming Buckeye fans, etc.  The Terps have begun selling Family Fun Packs for $10/ticket and the response seems good for this Saturday’s game with ODU.  It’s a good start and let’s see if we can top 40,000 for this tune up that may turn into a trap game against a sneaky competitive opponent.  I’d also like to see them hand out the remaining 10,000 tickets to the Prince Georges Boys and Girls clubs and get some enthusiastic young screaming Terps fans in the seats.

Step 4:  Prioritize recruiting above all else.  Winning at football is the only thing that will save this athletic department and recruiting four and five star prospects is the mother’s milk of success.  Only sustained victories against quality opponents will increase ticket sales and fundraising and it’s a tall task for an institution known as a  basketball-first school.  Maryland needs to divert all available resources to fund football recruiting.  This may seem controversial and not politically correct, but all line items for non-revenue producing sports should be available for reallocation to football recruiting.  The short term loss of a sport or the pain of budget cuts will only be solved by a winning football program and the sacrifices must be made.  If Maryland is successful, the non-revenue sports will be supported, but if they fail, everybody looses.

Here We Go Maryland, Here We Go!

About Brian Penn

Avid sports fan and golf nut. I am a lifelong resident of the Washington D.C. area and love to follow the local teams. Also worked as a golf professional in the Middle Atlantic PGA for several years and am intrigued by the game to no end. I love to play and practice and am dedicated to continual improvement.
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3 Responses to Terps Football Recovery Plan – Step One, Check!

  1. Could not agree more with this post man especially when you said if “MD football succeeds everyone succeeds” and most finds should be given to them because that is the sad truth. It won’t happen because of Title IX as it is not fair to the other sports but it should happen.

    • Brian Penn says:

      Good point about Title IX I hadn’t thought of that. Hopefully it won’t be a slow bleed to death and they can get it turned around quick. So far off to a good start!

      • Oh man could not have been better start I have been say “CJ Heisman” all week haha. Before the season I predicted 7-5 but with West Virginia not playing great so far this year I think they have a chance to start off 4-0 and finish with an 8-4 record possibly better! One week at a time though.

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