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 TXST Athletic Dept Reddit AMA - 1 Year Revisited 
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Post TXST Athletic Dept Reddit AMA - 1 Year Revisited
It's been about a year since Texas State athletics staff participated in a Reddit AMA. I figured I would revisit the questions and answers and see how much progress has been made. FWIW, the people from the athletic department answering questions were not high-salary employees.
I didn't include every single question. Some of them weren't very relevant or didn't have a serious answer. You can see the original thread here:

https://old.reddit.com/r/TxStateBobcats/comments/61scia/we_are_members_of_the_texas_state_athletic/

Question
We have several former baseball players playing at a high level in Major League Baseball - can we put together a 60-second clip that reminds fans of their accomplishments at TXST and updates fans on their MLB season/career and play on the videoboard them between innings at the baseball game?
Answer
This a great suggestion!
-Cedrique
Result
Nothing has changed. I went to probably 15 home baseball games this spring and didn't see anything that resembled what the question was asking for.


Question
Why is the TXST acronym not reinforced via the athletics website (TxStateBobcats.com vs TXSTBobcats.com), or through the athletics and individual team twitter handles (@TxStateBobcats, @TxStateBaseball, @TXSTATEFOOTBALL, etc)?
Answer
This is actually something we've been pretty actively working on for the near future. I can't speak too much on what's coming, but stay tuned!
-Nick
Result
Nothing has changed.


Question
What's up. Class of 2014 here. What do you believe is the best way to drive up fan interest and attendance for students, alumni, and even San Marcos locals outside of the obvious method (winning games). I truly believe we have a passionate fan base, but it seems every year our first football game or two is a packed house, and by the end of season our attendance hardly even justifies our recent north end zone expansion. I think many of our growth efforts have been a tremendous success in recent years, but there is still a ton of room for improvement.
Answer
First off great question. Like you we have noticed that trend as well, and you’re right there is an obvious answer. I also agree that there is a passionate fan base there just waiting to show it, just look at basketball this year. Another thing that supports that trend is by scheduling a big non-conference game each year at home. What we do to help fight that trend is to do our group oriented games later in the year to help balance that out. For example, our ticket office has done a great job in growing our youth football game, the numbers have increased each year and last year we partnered it with youth cheer and dance. We are growing our high school band day each year as well. I’ll also add that our student attendance is actually trending up which is opposite of the national trend, with a majority of our numbers coming from freshman and sophomores. Adding events to Freshman programming during Bobcat Preview has been a great way for us to help build a culture of school spirit as well. Thanks again for the question, we are always interested in hearing from the fans and we certainly know there is always room for improvement.
-Jeff
Result
I can't speak to a lot of what Jeff is describing, but I'll take his word that they are partnering with youth football, cheer and dance, and band. We have been doing the freshman pep rally as a part of orientation. We do schedule homecoming, parent's day, T-association weekend later in the year. Seems like a genuine (albeit half-ass) effort to get people to come to games later in the year. None of that really matters though. Fans will come watch a winner and stay home for a 1 or 2 win team.


Question
What finally pushed the decision to move from FCS to FBS?
How has it affected the program and athletic department?
What do you see in the future of Texas State and it's relationship with the SunBelt?
Answer
The biggest factor in going to FBS was the students. The students voted to make the push and increased the Athletic Fee to make it happen.

We have certainly had our growing pains in the move but we were one of the fastest teams to ever become bowl eligible after making the move, although we weren’t selected for a bowl. The move has obviously increased our exposure which benefits all sports on campus in recruiting as well as getting schools to come play road games here, an example is our softball and baseball schedule.

The Sun Belt is a great fit for us. With the addition of the North and South Carolina schools we now have conference foes in NC, SC, Georgia, Alabama, Louisiana, Arkansas and Texas. All within reasonable distance for our fans to travel to. Plus the Sun Belt has an agreement with ESPN you can’t say the same for all of the other G5 conferences. That agreement ensures that all of our conference football games will be carried on an ESPN platform.
-Jeff
Result
Answer clarified that the biggest push to move to FBS was the students, not the administration. I think most of us already knew that.


Question
Will we ever have a SWT night at Bobcat Stadium?

Wear SWT throwback jerseys, get fans to wear SWT gear, and acknowledge the SWT alumni. I think it would help ease some of the pain for the alumni who were against the name change.
Answer
This is tough… and it is a very common question and something that we get asked every year, rightfully so. Right now our thought is that our Texas State brand is too young to cloud the market with a throwback game. Our office has worked hard to build the brand of Texas State Bobcats and you can see it on many levels from the uniforms to our branding with ESPN. We want everyone in the country to see our supercat logo and know that is Texas State. And we are making traction, you can see it in the amount of products that are available now throughout the state. We continue to add new licensees to grow within the region. I know this is not the answer you wanted to hear. But I hope that you will make it out to homecoming or other events and wear your SWT gear proudly. We like to say Once a Bobcat Always a Bobcat so I hope that you can be proud of your university either way.
-Jeff
Result
Of the many things they said they going to make happen that didn't, this is one they said wouldn't...and it did happen. Cool.


Question
I think this question is for John, the Video Production director. I'm an incoming transfer student looking to get involved in Athletics Videography here at state. At my last school I was really involved in filming for athletics and editing hype videos for social media and school news sites. I really love this aspect of videography and being able to feel involved in the team are there any opportunities like that available here?
Answer
We are always looking for talented incoming students that love working in athletics. We have a few different positions in Marketing available on the video side, our largest crew is our game day production crew. The production crew acts like a TV crew for the video board in game. We have also recently added an extra editing bay in our offices for our student interns to come in and edit so there are opportunities there as well. Thanks for the question, when you get to campus shoot me an email with your resume and we’ll go from there!
-Jeff
Result
We've only had one game with the new video boards, but it doesn't seem like much has changed as far as content. The graphics look old. Replays are rare, and when they happen, we see a 4 second splash screen, the replay starts in the middle, they rewind, the play starts, they jump back to the splash screen before the replay shows what we all wanted to see.

I've asked the question several times why we don't show controversial plays on the video boards during the game (e.g. a PI call that could go either way). I was told by an Asst Ad that it is disrespectful to the officials. Home teams use this to an advantage all the time. UTSA showed 10 close plays last weekend. We have the only college football in the country that I've been to that doesn't.


Question
What was it like hosting the CIT? It seems like the matchups for that tournament come in at the last minute so it must be a challenge coordinating everything.
Answer
Thanks for the question, this is Jake from Facilities and Game Operations. The CIT was a whirlwind for the entire department, especially the first couple of games that happened during and around spring break. We ended up running the games just like normal, but our preparation time for them was cut dramatically. This meant that emails to the referees went out later, any coordination with the visiting team was delayed and practices had to be scheduled at the last minute. The construction also complicated everything because we were conflicting with a planned Strahan closure. A bunch of different things made hosting the CIT complicated, but in the end, the tournament was very fulfilling to host and the crowds were the best basketball crowds I have witnessed at Texas State.
-Jake
Result
I remember the CIT games going well. He's right, it was a good atmosphere as well.


Question
I know that the railroad tracks near the stadium/Strahan parking lot are on land owned by Union Pacific, not TXST. Has their been any effort or coordination with them to get that area cleaned up?
I'm talking specifically about the area of tracks between Aquarena and Charles Austin - between the donor lot/practice fields and the student/Strahan lot.
Answer
You would be shocked at how fast stuff grows in this area. I feel like I see them out there multiple times a year cutting that stuff back. But to answer your question this is the first tie I have thought about it and heard anyone ask. We can look into it.
-Jeff
With the construction happening on both sides of this track it has been difficult to organize any sort of clean-up. Once the construction has been completed we are planning on working with the campus as a whole along with Union Pacific to clean up the area. -Jake
-Jake
Result
Nothing yet. Construction is pretty well wrapped up on the overpass but it's still going on at Strahan. I really hope this is something they address. I've been saying it for years, those RR tracks are an eyesore. There is a broken down chain length fence, a ton of litter, overgrown trees, homeless camps... They need to just clear it completely. Take out what is left of the fence, cut down most of the trees (they're crappy hackberry trees), plant new oak trees, do some minimal, easy-to-maintain landscaping. This area is the front porch to our university to pretty much everyone coming in on Aquarena.


Question
Hopefully the BobcatFans website works again as a couple of those guys had questions that they wanted to relay to me.
Answer
I would love if Saul Goodman (at least in spirit) could join us!
-Nick
Result
Yes, the AD office does read bobcatfans. At least some of them do.


Question
What is the scope of the renovation to Strahan? I've seen the drawings for the renovation but they pretty much show the new section being built (in place of "the wall").

Will the rest of the arena get a facelift? Such as: -new seats, fresh paint, updated concourse, exterior facelift, new scoreboard, etc
Answer
Our goal is to give the arena as much of a facelift as possible, some of the things like new seats and fresh paint are still in the works. We can say that there will be a new 4-sided video board like most major arenas. In relation to the concourse, we are going to make the old parts match up with the new so they will be getting a nice facelift. There will be other changes around the Coliseum but a lot of them are still not finalized.
Result
I haven't been in Strahan since basketball season so I can't speak to what has already been revealed. The 4-sided video board looked pretty awesome in pictures.


Question
Now that the TXST golf course is officially closed - will we be able to use that area for tailgating for football games?
Answer
Tailgating is always a hot point of conversation. With construction this year there are so many things up in the air for tailgating. I hope we will be able to get you some answers soon. -JMc
Result
Nothing yet. I have also been a big proponent of opening a portion of the golf course to tailgating. I would make people reserve (and pay for) spots in advance. I would also enforce clean-up and since you know who reserved that area, you know who to collect from it it isn't clean.


Question
Hey guys, just curious if you all are expecting a big push for football attendance and promotion this year?

Of course football is a big sport in Texas but after a year like last year that was... rough. And having a lot of fans only hitting tailgate and going home, do you all have any unique steps you are going to take to bring everyone back in?

Especially considering Coach Withers former team performed exceptionally last year in the FCS, big time football fans like myself are really excited.

Also, as a soon to graduate student what do you recommend as a way to stay involved with what's going on athletics wise.

Thanks again for taking the time to do this!
Answer
Last football season was indeed "rough." While we have to operate as professionally and objectively as we can, most of us here in the office are genuine Bobcat fans, so we understand how the general fanbase feels. That being said, every season is a brand new opportunity for something big, and we will promote it as such. We hope that our fans will be patient and supportive, and the success at JMU is good evidence that this is a process, and the ends will justify the means.

As far as staying involved: I would highly recommend joining the Alumni Association, Bobcat Club and getting season tickets. Don't quote me on this, but I think you get a few years of free Alumni Association membership after graduating, and Bobcat Club will match your donation if you're a recent grad, so it's basically half-price for the benefit level that you want. Also follow us on social media, sign up for email and text alerts and come to as much as you can!
-Nick
Result
"We don't have any real ideas how to get people to the game."



Question
What kind of effort was put into getting students to the basketball game Saturday? Anything outside of the normal facebook, twitter mentions? Hard to believe we had a lower attendance for a Saturday game than we did for a Wednesday night game.
Answer
We did our typical social media push, even trying to spend some money on promoted tweets and Facebook posts (which, personally, I wasn't too impressed with.) On top of that we had SnapChat filters made and had those on the square Friday night and Sewell Park Saturday.

We also personally emailed organizations on campus, some of which even got personal phone calls from Coach Kaspar.

In regards to Wednesday vs. Saturday attendance, students tend to come to more games during the week, whereas non-students typically come out stronger on weekends. It was also a beautiful day in San Marcos and the game was against a relatively unknown opponent. I don't ever want to make excuses for low-attendance games, but sometimes external factors can be a lot to overcome.
-Nick
Result
Basketball attendance isn't really good at any university in Texas. Hard to blame the AD office for some of this stuff, but it just seems like we lack a lot creativity and effort and you can see it in some of these responses.


Question
Any plans to make the Pavillion bigger in the near future? That place is cramped on game days and was too small to begin with when it opened. Also, since the T-Association gets the Pavillion at half time, any thoughts around having another place for bobcat club members to go during half time? Maybe we could use the room above the dark side concession stands that was used before the Pavillion was opened (hint, hint).
Answer
There are no plans at this time to renovate or add-on to the Pavilion that I am aware of. We have done our best to utilize the current space and continue to look for ways to make it more comfortable. Some changes we made were to install a tent in the back courtyard of the pavilion where we made a make-shift food serving line and we offer a satellite drink station outside with alcoholic beverages. This year we added 15 cocktail tables throughout the courtyard to give more dining space and we installed a ‘drink rail’ along the fence so that guests could set their drink down, or a plate if they so choose, while they watch the team warm-up. The room above the concessions stand is now being used as an academic facility. It is set up with computers and space so that our football team can host their daily study hall.
Result
I've been in the pavilion a few times before the game and at halftime. It's a nice facility, free drinks - no complaints.


Question
What would be the chances of adding an NCAA Men's lacrosse team? I've noticed more and more schools in the Midwest and central US adding programs and having a lot of success (Denver University won the national championship two years ago).
Answer
I've seen our Club Lacrosse team is again doing well this year 5-2 with a win over LSU on Friday. As for them becoming an NCAA sport at TXST... it's not that easy, we can't just add one sport. There are scholarship rules in place that say there must be equal or close to equal amount of scholarships for Men's and Women's sports. So adding Lacrosse would involve adding another, I think it is 12.5 scholarships, on the men's side, we would then need to add a women's sport with equal scholarships to stay in balance. I however am not involved in any of those conversations I just know that rule. So what Women's sport would you theoretically like to see to balance that out?
-Jeff
Result
Title IX strikes again.


Question
Why is our football team not the best?
Answer
It takes time to build up a program, especially a football program in a great league like the Sun Belt. I have only been at Texas State for a few months now, but I can definitely tell you that Coach Withers and his staff are working tirelessly to turn around the program. It all starts with recruiting, and the Bobcats had the top recruiting class in the Sun Belt last month. That won't necessarily translate to wins on the field next fall, but it's great to see those outside of the program starting to take notice of what we're doing here.
-Cedrique
Result
Since this was posted a year ago, we've had another pretty good recruiting class and 0 FBS wins.


Question
We opened renovated Bobcat Stadium with Texas Tech, renovated Bobcat Ballpark with Texas, and renovated softball park with Texas A&M.

Who do we expect to open renovated Strahan Arena with a big opponent?
Answer
If everything stays on schedule Volleyball will be the first to play in the UEC (University Events Center). They typically host a tournament to start their home season so they will likely have a big opponent coming in!
-Jeff
Result
Volleyball opened that tournament with UTSA. Furthermore, it looks like MBB opens UEC with Air Force on 11/9.


Question
My friend noticed that Dr. Teis left the basketball game early on Saturday - he was pulling out of the parking lot with about a minute and 15 seconds left on the clock.

Did he have another athletic department function/game to attend or was he just trying to beat traffic?
Answer
I actually did that myself, more like 10 seconds left. Still got stuck behind a train.
-Thomas
Result
It all starts from the top, guys.


Question
Is there any chance of bringing back the super fan experience that the football team/coaching staff had two years ago? As in, getting to attend 2 a day practices, go to team meetings, and receiving the swag that was passed out?
Answer
This experience was part of the Touchdown Team benefits. Coach Withers and his staff are revamping the Touchdown Team right now. If you want to reach out to Director of Football Ops John Streicher [email protected] he can tell you more about it and you can express your interest in doing that again.
-Jeff
Result
I haven't seen anything about this. Streicher is gone.


Question
For each of you, what is the greatest strength/greatest weakness in your specific department?
Answer
In Marketing and Promotions - I think one of our strengths is our freedom to try new things, like this AMA. We have some freedom on social media to interact with fans and try new things, see what works and what doesn't. And like Nick alluded to earlier we are fans so we try to think about things from a fan perspective.

Weaknesses - man power, we are a small department and we want things to be the best they can be, sometimes that falls short due to lack of people to get them done.
-Jeff
Result
Manpower seems to be a really common compliant when you speak to anyone who works in the athletic department.


Question
Is there any reason our social media outlets tend to avoid posting about losses? I get that wins are better press, but I do personally like using our social media for news. For example, the @Txstatebobcats twitter posted a ton about our second round CIT win, but I didn't see a single thing about losing on Saturday.
Answer
Thanks for asking this, I think it is an important question! I think that it is easy for us to get caught up in success equating to wins, but there's a lot of other ways to succeed that we can certainly make a better effort to include in our social media posts. Thanks for the feedback!
-Nick
Result
I haven't really followed this too much. Are we getting better about posting final scores, even if we lose?


Fri Oct 05, 2018 11:14 am
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