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B'Ball Ready for next year

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B'Ball Ready for next year

Owlsalreadyare starting to look at next season

By Ted Hutton
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
Posted March 4 2006


JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. ? Coach Matt Doherty was performing a delicate balancing act Friday morning, less than 12 hours after the Owls' season came to a disappointing end.

At a team breakfast, he wrote "winners" on a board as he told his players they could hold their heads high despite Thursday night's 54-44 first-round loss to Stetson in the Atlantic Sun Conference tournament.

Then Doherty got on his cell phone and talked to St. Andrew's star and FAU recruit Xavier Perkins, who was getting ready to play in the 3A state championship game in Lakeland later Friday.

Next was a call to Tavarus Harris, a point guard for Palm Beach Community College, who also has committed to FAU and was getting ready to play in the state junior college tournament.

"The kids we have coming in are good players from winning programs," said Doherty, but at the same time he was looking to the future, Doherty said it he wanted the current players to appreciate what they had accomplished.

FAU was 15-13 and 14-6 in the A-Sun, the school's best conference record ever, and just the third time since moving to Division I in 1993 that the Owls had a winning record.

Doherty admitted he had some sleepless nights in the summer, when he was trying to figure out what he had gotten himself into by taking the coaching job in April.

"I had no idea what I had or who we were playing," said Doherty, who was hoping to at least win 11 games, which would have been an improvement over the 10-17 record of the previous season.

Despite a late start, Doherty was able to sign three eventual starters – juniors DeAndre Rice, Brent Crews and Kevin Green, along with freshmen Carlos Monroe, an A-Sun All-Freshman team selection, and Paul Graham. The team will be built around them next season, when FAU moves into the Sun Belt Conference.

"It's a step up," Doherty said. "It's a bigger, stronger, more athletic conference, but that's something we're excited about."

Athletic Director Craig Angelos said he was happy how the first season went with Doherty as coach.

"He elevated our program considerably. Attendance increased by more than 100 percent and our ticket revenues tripled," Angelos said. "We're looking forward to getting better."

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B'Ball Ready for next year

I never seen Perkins play but a friend who played against him for St Pete Catholic, told me that he is the real deal. A big man who can handle the ball!

Matt is doing Ok on the local front!
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B'Ball Ready for next year

Let's see, now how does that work? Attendance double, but ticket revenue tripled. I can only assume that prices went up 50%. What does it cost to see an FAU basketball game? What did it cost?

The A-Sun tourney was $15 a session with free parking. I considered it a bargain.
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B'Ball Ready for next year


hoot4fau said

Let's see, now how does that work? Attendance double, but ticket revenue tripled. I can only assume that prices went up 50%. What does it cost to see an FAU basketball game? What did it cost?

The A-Sun tourney was $15 a session with free parking. I considered it a bargain.

I believe that the ticket prices were $10 for adults and $7 for kids. Doubling the attendance and tripling ticket revenue is possible when you consider students are free. So the number of paying customers may have tripled. For example if last year we had 500 people attending the games and 200 paying customers and this year we had 1000 people per game and 600 paying customers. The rest of the attendance could be made up of free students.
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B'Ball Ready for next year

Thanks, I either forgot or didn't know the students were free. When i attended, there was only womens basketball. I guess it was free then, too.

By the way they were pretty good. They had a cute little blonde point guard. I can't remember her name, but i had a class or two with her. 1986, maybe 87.
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B'Ball Ready for next year

Doherty turned the program around in the first year. He had a late start too. He recruited a few good players late in the year. I know the A-Sun isn't the toughest conference but the team had a losing season in that conference last year and no recruits were signed to replace the graduating seniors. For Doherty to find Monroe that late in the year was remarkable.

FAU - THE REAL SLEEPING GIANT
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B'Ball Ready for next year

not just monroe but paul graham, kevin green and deandre rice. Those guys were huge this year for the team. it's only gonna get better!
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B'Ball Ready for next year

Doherty has brought more energy to our B-ball program, I do believe that next year will be a tough year and could possible see us at around .500 for the season - we will be a young team, but i do think that the returning players should help provide some stability and leadership for the incoming players. Doherty is re-building a team which does take several years to accomplish.

The success Doherty had so far goes beyond the players, attendance, but the overall aspect of our program which should continue to grow, can we double our attendance next year - wouldn't that be nice.
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B'Ball Ready for next year

Doubling attendance next year would be great, but I think it's unrealistic. Going from 500 fans to 1,000 per game is one thing, but the jump from 1,000 to 2,000 is a huge step. If we can add another 500-700 to the average then it would be a big success. The step up in competition will help. Playing FIU at home should draw a bigger than normal crowd as well. Also, I don't know what the OOC schedule will look like, but I would guess we'll see a few northern schools make the trip down, so we'll get their alumni as well.

As in football, the students are the key to attendance. I think a better goal for the program for next year is not just to double attendance again, but to double the number of students at the games.
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B'Ball Ready for next year

Found out my dad actually saw part of the fau stetson game at a sports bar in jacksonville. It was the first time he had ever seen our team play and although we played terrible one thing he noticed was that we were very well coached, with the play calling and passing even though we couldnt seem to shoot. I think next year we will do fine. I just hope we win a couple OOC games against some florida teams ;D.
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