May 28, 2010
This is the latest installment of our monthly feature called, "Ask the AD." If you have questions for Saluki Director of Athletics Mario Moccia, feel free to submit them by e-mail.
Will the new video scoreboards in the football stadium and arena become a source of advertising revenue for the athletic department?
"The content that will be available with the new video boards (fixed signage, promotional features like "this replay brought to you by..." and "Kiss Cams" as well as scrolled message, etc.) will be the property of Saluki Sports Properties to sell and generate revenue. Our deal with this multi-media rights company guarantees us a fixed amount of income each year, and when a specific dollar figure is reached (called the hurdle) then we split the profits 50/50. It is our hope that the addition of these new inventory items will be very attractive to our sponsors and generate a significant amount of revenue.
What factors do you consider when deciding whether or not to replace a coach?
At the end of the season, I do a thorough review of each program, with assistance from several of our sport supervisors. There is a mandatory University review for all employees, but for our coaches, we expand upon that generic template, because coaching requires a specific skill set. Here are some examples of questions we ask about each program:
-What are the student-athletes reporting in their exit interviews about conditions within the program?
-How are the student-athletes performing in the classroom?
-How are the student-athletes performing in the community?
Of course, we also look at measurable factors, such as wins and losses, attendance and revenue generation, length of existing contract, assistant coach's performance, recruiting success and the general management of the program. There are other considerations as well, but these are the main focus items in a year-end review.
What are the rules going to be related to selling and the possession of alcoholic beverages at SIU sporting events?
This is an ongoing question, and I am involved in meetings next week on this very topic. With our new Chancellor, Dr. Rita Cheng, coming on board June 1, I will be discussing this with her as well, as I know she will want to weigh in on the topic. I am hopeful to have an answer to your question by the end of June.
When ordering new golf shoes from the FootJoy website, I noticed that they allow you to have college logos imprinted on the side of their shoes, but SIU is not among the choices. I did see that Wichita State is an option. What would it take to make SIU available?
Our licensing program is administered through the Collegiate Licensing Company, which works with our on-campus licensing director to make available a wide variety of Saluki merchandise for our students, alumni and fans. Licensees at the national level choose the schools they feel are most marketable and potentially profitable when selecting which logos to manufacture. I'll ask our licensing director and CLC to look into this specific product and why we are not among the options.
What is the rationale for playing the opening game at the arena on a Tuesday morning?
First, let me state that nothing is set in stone. Some of the reasons why we are considering this unique event are:
-We would receive five figures in revenue from scheduling this game
-We would have the opportunity to be on ESPN with its market reach of more than 100 million homes across the country (the vast majority of MVC games are on ESPNU or Fox Sports Midwest with a significantly smaller viewership)
-The game would allow us to unveil the renovated area as well as showcase the institution to a national television audience
-It would be a unique opportunity to play at an unconventional time and would have the potential to be one of those memorable moments fans would discuss for a long time after the event.
There are some issues we would have to work around, such as fans having to work and our students needing to attend class, but we would make sure to put out a huge promotional effort to get as many fans into the arena as possible for the event. I know the leadership of the campus is excited about this opportunity to showcase the athletic program and the University on national TV. We will wait and see if this game comes to fruition.