Calling All Students: Athletics Wants Your Support


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Day after day, night after night, Jacksonville University athletes leave their blood, sweat and tears on the court or field for the school. But who actually witnesses all the hard work?
If there is a lack of student involvement university-wide, it is most noticeable at sporting events.
The arena downtown is close to empty aside from the parents and supporters who regularly attend. The baseball and softball stadiums are barren and the Swisher Gymnasium is left begging for its seats to be filled.
Where are all the students? Yes, many games fall on a week night more times than not, but who couldn’t use a brief study break now and then?
I’m not saying to drop everything on the spot every time you hear that there is a sporting event taking place, but maybe some effort could be made once in awhile.
Athletes, coaches and athletic department staff are all left wondering what they have to do to draw students to the games.
I was approached by Brian Freshley, Director of Marketing and Promotions, who asked me to write this and beg for responses.
They’ve tried multiple ways to draw students out but nothing seems to work. If you don’t think what they are doing is helping, speak up. The athletic department wants your feedback.
If there is something you want to see done, propose it to them and they will be more than happy to try and accommodate all requests.
All home games are held on-campus aside from the basketball games that take place at the arena downtown. The arena is a short 10 minute drive right over the Mathews Bridge.
JU is a small school, we all know this. Odds are, you sit beside a JU athlete in one of your classes or have lived on the same hall as one of them at some point. They’re begging for your support.
Having people in the stands is much more exciting for the players as opposed to playing in an empty gym where the only noise heard is the bouncing ball and squeaking soles of their shoes on the hardwood.
If you have any suggestions or concerns, the athletic department is located on the bottom floor of Botts Hall on the south side of campus.
Reach out, ask when games are, get a group of friends together to go watch and cheer. Take pride in your school and your classmates. They can not do it on their own. It begins with you, the fan, and resonates down through the team.
Bottom line, next time you’re sitting around and looking for things to do, visit and check the schedule. Get out and catch the fever. Fin Fever.

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