BSU brand flying high

December 9, 2008
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hokeBall State University, thanks to its football team, is flying high. The school has received more television exposure in the last 60 days than it has gotten in the last decade as its football team rattled off 12 straight victories and ended up 12-1. Last night, BSU football Coach Brady Hoke was featured on The David Letterman Show, which airs nightly on CBS. But the team has been in the spotlight longer than that.

The Ball State victory over Central Michigan Nov. 19 televised live on ESPN2 ranks as the most viewed and highest rated college football game ever for a Tuesday or Wednesday night on the network. The 1.6 rating means the game was watched in more than 1.6 million homes nationwide. The game also ranks as the Mid-American Conference’s most viewed regular season college football game ever on ESPN or ESPN2.

Earlier this year, the Sept. 5 (Friday night) ESPN televised game between Ball State and Navy was viewed in 1.2 million homes, making it the third most watched game involving a Mac team in the last four seasons. Due to the MAC contract with ESPN, and the Cardinals’ stellar season, Ball State was on national television more than most Big Ten teams. Average attendance for BSU’s six home games is up this year, near 20,000 per six home games.

Ball State Athletic Director Tom Collins is quick to point out the football team’s success has benefitted the school far beyond athletics. “We used the weekend of the Navy game to publicly kick-off our Ball State Bold Campaign,” Collins said.

The $200 million capital campaign will go for almost entirely academic uses, including funding scholarships, endowed chairs and professorships among other things.

“To have an alum like David Letterman talk about you every week doesn’t hurt, and we’ve used the attention to put the spotlight on the larger university,” said Collins, who came to BSU from Arizona State three years ago.

BSU officials are already drawing up a game plan to capitalize on this year’s success. Collins said BSU will launch a more aggressive marketing campaign for next season targeting not only all of Delaware County, but the Indianapolis metro area and Ft. Wayne as well.

 Maintaining momentum is one thing, keeping Hoke, who has also been mentioned for at least two job openings, is another. "They'll have to be creative to get him as much money and autonomy as possible," said Milt Thompson, president of locally based Grand Slam Cos. "Brady Hoke right now is the face of the program, so they need to do what they can to keep him."
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  • This has been such a great season, I would hate for it to all go down the drain a few years down the road. Brady is a Ball State guy and I hope they can find enough to make him happy for at least a few more years. He actually likes it in Muncie, and doesn't expect to get rich - although $240,000 (as a base salary) does go a ways in Muncie. While I don't expect 12-1 seasons every year, it would be nice to keep Ball State in high standing with the MAC -and raise the profile of the entire conference. Brady gets it. He played at Ball State on a darn good team and has the pride to do things right. He also knows how to recruit. Let's hope the school makes him feel wanted. And for crying out loud, build the guy his own office!
  • His ability to Keep Hoke will be Collins' first big test. Let's hope he passes. Otherwise it will be back to the drawing board, and it's not easy to get lightning to strike twice.

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  1. Those of you yelling to deport them all should at least understand that the law allows minors (if not from a bordering country) to argue for asylum. If you don't like the law, you can petition Congress to change it. But you can't blindly scream that they all need to be deported now, unless you want your government to just decide which laws to follow and which to ignore.

  2. 52,000 children in a country with a population of nearly 300 million is decimal dust or a nano-amount of people that can be easily absorbed. In addition, the flow of children from central American countries is decreasing. BL - the country can easily absorb these children while at the same time trying to discourage more children from coming. There is tension between economic concerns and the values of Judeo-Christian believers. But, I cannot see how the economic argument can stand up against the values of the believers, which most people in this country espouse (but perhaps don't practice). The Governor, who is an alleged religious man and a family man, seems to favor the economic argument; I do not see how his position is tenable under the circumstances. Yes, this is a complicated situation made worse by politics but....these are helpless children without parents and many want to simply "ship" them back to who knows where. Where are our Hoosier hearts? I thought the term Hoosier was synonymous with hospitable.

  3. Illegal aliens. Not undocumented workers (too young anyway). I note that this article never uses the word illegal and calls them immigrants. Being married to a naturalized citizen, these people are criminals and need to be deported as soon as humanly possible. The border needs to be closed NOW.

  4. Send them back NOW.

  5. deport now

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