Back in March of this year, I responded to an (alleged) request by PackPride.com to submit some questions for Lee Fowler to answer. It was a heavily viewed entry and the “Top 10 questions for Lee Fowler” can be found by clicking here.
I figure that over time, new questions will arise and old ones will evolve that may be more timely &/or appropriate. Therefore, I am going to gradually add to the list of Questions for “Coach Fowler” when interesting issues arise.
As with most off-seasons, the last few weeks have provided Wolfpack fans a lot of opportunity to discuss future football and basketball schedules. Due to Temple’s royal screwing of the Pack for the 2005 season, football scheduling has taken on a particular relevance this year.
Recently, it has been announced that State has added App State, ECU, Cincinnati, and Pitt to a future schedule that WAS slated to include national powers like Notre Dame (we’ll see) and Tennessee. Well, as you saw on the blog yesterday, it has been announced that Notre Dame has now wiggled from their commitment to battle the Wolfpack program that embarrassed the Irish in the Gator Bowl a couple of years ago. In fact, over the last couple of years the following teams have exercised their option to terminate their series:
(I feel like I am forgetting one?)
It is customary for football contracts to include breakage/cancellation fees for schools to cancel a contract. After reading various articles through the years regarding contract cancellations I have come to the conclusion that the generally accepted contracted cancellation fee is something on the order of $200k to $250k.
Personally, I think that a quarter of a million is far too de minimis to actually create an impediment for schools to disrespect their contracts and cancel games that can severely impact their scheduled partner. Take a fictitious Big Ten or SEC school with a 100,000 seat stadium as an example. With ticket sales, concessions, parking, etc…an average home game may generate between $5 million and $7.5 million dollars for such a program. Why would a program like this NOT schedule a home and home with an opponent where they demand the opponent make the initial trip and then o cancel the return game in favor of a weaker home game? Is $250k really supposed to create a financial impediment for a potential $7 million gain?
I’m very curious about this general topic of scheduling and finances, so I will add the following to my list of questions for Lee Fowler:
(#11) Of the approximately $1 million to $1.5 million that NC State has been owed by schools terminating their football contracts with us, how much have we collected, thusfar? To what uses and purposes have these funds been dedicated? Since these inflows represent an unbudgeted windfall, have the funds been put aside in a special reserve fund or have they been absorbed into annual spending?