By Reed Graff
Assistant Sports Director
One of the biggest driving forces in college football are the fans. The majority of fans at college football games are typically made up of students. When you think of big-time college football, you think of schools such as Texas A&M, West Virginia, and Ole Miss as well as many others. All these schools have rich traditions of students attending games and being an active part of the gameday experience. But you do not see that here at Texas State. That made me question things. While the football team has not had much success, just seven wins over the past three seasons, the fan attendance at Jim Wacker Field at Bobcat Stadium has decreased. Just how interested are Texas State students? Do they know the Bobcats record? KTSW sports took to the quad to ask these questions and see just how informed the student population is.
After just a few hours of being on the scene, it quickly became apparent very few people had any interest in discussing Texas State football. The results from our on the spot quizzing of Texas State students brought expected, but disappointing results.
KTSW was able to get 28 students to stop and chat with us for five minutes about football. In that discussion, we asked students simple questions such as, “who is the starting quarterback?” and “What is the teams overall record?” The results were alarming. Nine students knew the teams overall record, 16 did not. Only three of the 28 students could name one of the quarterbacks the Bobcats roll out, Vitt and Jones III. Five knew the name of third year head coach Everett Withers as well as who Larry Teis was and what job he held. The highlight of the day came when the first player a student named was senior placekicker James Sherman. Only seven could even name a player on the team!
The final question these students were asked was simple, what does Texas State need to do in order to increase student interest? Outside of the easiest answer, win more games, came another response that majority of students stated in one way or another; marketing.
“Increase advertisement,” one student said. “Maybe fliers or posters. Just basically more publicity to get students to think about going out to the game.”
While this a miniscule sample size of the universities 40,000+ population, it still shows just how little many students at Texas State know about the football program. One individual was not even aware his student ID got him into athletic events free of charge! The Bobcats have struggled with attendance all season long, and even if the Bobcats were to win the next three games and become bowl eligible, it would be near impossible for the team to secure a bowl spot due to their attendance numbers. All in all, Texas State has to find ways to get their students involved in athletics.
Catch KTSW Sports out at the tailgate when the Bobcats wrap up their season November 24th against the Arkansas State Red Wolves in a few weeks if you want to share your thoughts on Texas State Football. Until then, stay tuned in to Bobcat Radio every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 11 am, and be sure to listen to Texas State Spit Talk, our weekly podcast that releases every Friday at noon.
Featured photo by Reed Graff.