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October 12, 2018

UNIVERSITY OF NOTRE DAME
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UNIVERSITY OF NOTRE DAME

Given the upcoming slate the Irish have, the team is a trendy pick to eventually make the College Football Playoff if they win out — a real possibility given there are no ranked teams remaining on the slate. Despite that fact that Notre Dame will be sitting at home on the final week of the season when conference title games are everybody’s focus, the school’s leadership is not fretting too much about getting left out in the cold even if they prove to be one of the best teams in the end. “I have enormous confidence in the selection committee and the process,” athletic director Jack Swarbrick told CBS Sports. “What the prior years have demonstrated is they’re focused on the cardinal rule: Identify the four best teams.” Interestingly, a lot of debate over the potential inclusion of the Irish has centered on the fact that the team, as a football independent, will not play a conference title game for a 13th data point on the season. While that is an opportunity to lose a game against a good team, it’s also a chance they can add to their resume and the possibility of strengthening the schedule even further is something that Swarbrick is open to provided NCAA rules change in the near future. “We’d be happy to play a 13th game,” he said. “There’s only one [other] school (BYU) that’s told they can’t play a 13th game. We would love to do it.” -Bryan Fischer, NBC Sports, Read More

PURDUE UNIVERSITY
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PURDUE UNIVERSITY

Purdue University made a major announcement concerning the master plan for the entire campus. It is a general outline over the next several decades to overhaul the soon-to-be 150-year-old Purdue campus. Athletics was also included in the master plan. The long-discussed renovation of the south end zone appears to be part of this plan. It is listed as a “Potenital New Building”, but with the performance facility now finished it is a likely priority for the football program. This is probably going to be a nine-figure addition, and it very likely includes further upgrades to the stadium itself. By comparison, the construction of the current pavilion and expanded concourses was $70 million in 2001-02. The Mackey Arena renovation was just under $100 million. Under this plan it looks as if Mackey Arena, Belin Court for volleyball, and Ross-Ade Stadium would be the home of Purdue’s big four sports closer to campus as well as the main athletic offices. Everything else (except swimming and diving, which is at the Boilermaker Aquatic Center) would be concentrated out at the northwest site at McCormick Road and Cherry Lane. -Travis Miller, Hammer and Rails, Read More

DUKE UNIVERSITY
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DUKE UNIVERSITY

Duke University Vice President and Director of Athletics Kevin White announced on Friday the promotion of three athletic department members, Nina King, Jon Jackson and Art Chase. King advances into the role of Senior Deputy Director of Athletics/Administration, Jackson elevates into the Deputy Director of Athletics/Men’s Basketball, Blue Devil Network and Digital Media role after directing the department’s External Affairs unit for the past five years and Chase earns promotion to Senior Associate Director of Athletics/External Affairs following a one-year stint as an associate director. Read More.

UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA
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UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA

The University of Minnesota Board of Regents today approved a three-year contract extension for Director of Athletics Mark Coyle. This amendment to Coyle’s employment agreement keeps him under contract as the leader of Gopher Athletics until June 2024. Coyle was officially introduced as the Gophers’ Athletics Director on May 11, 2016. Since that time, Gopher student-athletes have won 11 Big Ten team titles, to go along with four individual national champions. Those same student-athletes have also ranked among the nation’s best when it comes to academic achievement. The current department-wide GPA of 3.24 is tied for the best in the department’s history, coming off a spring semester when every Gopher program posted a team GPA of 3.0 or better. Minnesota’s current graduation success rate of 92 percent is the highest it has ever been and the best among all Big Ten public schools. Read More.

NCAA
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NCAA

The first two weeks of the three-week college basketball corruption trial have all but confirmed what many long suspected: top college basketball recruits have been paid thousands of dollars in secret transactions. These payments, some of which were made to recruits’ family members, were structured as inducements to attend particular colleges sponsored by Adidas. The three defendants in the trial—Adidas director of global marketing James Gatto, Adidas consultant basketball organizer Merl Code and client recruiter (a.k.a. runner) Christian Dawkins—are all accused of masterminding various conspiracies to funnel payments to recruits or their families. The fate of these three men will be determined by 12 jurors who have been watching federal prosecutors from the Southern District of New York and defense attorneys debate the merits of the case before the presiding judge, U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan, in Manhattan’s Daniel Patrick Moynihan Courthouse. – Michael Mccann, SI. Read More.

AUGUSTANA UNIVERSITY
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AUGUSTANA UNIVERSITY

Augustana University’s president says the Sioux Falls school is looking into a move to NCAA Division I athletics. The Yankton Daily Press & Dakotan reports that university president Stephanie Herseth Sandlin says the possible move from Division II to Division I is part of a long-term planning process and won’t be an athletics-only decision. She says athletics can help Augustana expand opportunities and partnerships for the school and its students. – therepublic. Read More.

UNIVERSITY OF KANSAS
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UNIVERSITY OF KANSAS

For the past year, Kansas Athletics officials have said a multimillion-dollar deal to extend adidas’ contract to be KU’s official athletic apparel provider remains unsigned. However, the chief financial officer for the KU athletic department has disclosed to Kansas Athletics’ board of directors that KU already is receiving increased royalty payments from adidas based on the pending deal. “We had $1.5 million in extra adidas royalties based on the new pending agreement that we are working up a long form as we speak,” Pat Kaufman told the Kansas Athletics Inc. board last month as part of a report about the 2018 fiscal year, which ended June 30. A university spokesman declined to answer any questions about KU’s relationship with adidas. “It is not appropriate for the university to comment on these topics while legal proceedings are ongoing,” Joe Monaco, a spokesman in the Chancellor’s office said. In September 2017, KU and Adidas announced they had reached agreement on a deal that would keep the company as KU’s official apparel provider for more than a decade and would provide about $190 million in cash, product, and services to Kansas Athletics. -Chad Lawhorn, LJ World, Read More

PURDUE UNIVERSITY
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PURDUE UNIVERSITY

Purdue and men’s basketball coach Matt Painter have agreed on a two-year contract extension through the 2023-24 season. Athletic director Mike Bobinski said Friday that beginning July 2019, Painter’s contract will convert to a rolling five-year term with automatic one-year extensions that could extend the agreement beyond 2023-24. The school said Painter also will receive increased compensation, but did not offer details. Read More.

JOHN BROWN UNIVERSITY
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JOHN BROWN UNIVERSITY

John Brown University and Director of Athletics Robyn Daugherty announced on Friday (Oct. 12) morning the addition of men’s and women’s track and field as intercollegiate sports, slated to begin in 2019-20, which increases the number of athletic programs offered at the institution to eleven (11). he new programs will fall under the direction of current head men’s and women’s cross country coach, Scott Schochler. Read More.

COLLEGE ATHLETICS
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COLLEGE ATHLETICS

Texas Tech athletic director Kirby Hocutt expects a decision soon on continuing the series with Baylor at AT&T Stadium. The current four-year contract expires after this season. If the Big 12 schedule, which should be released in the next couple of weeks, keeps the game on Thanksgiving weekend, Hocutt said the game is likely to stay in Arlington. Otherwise, he expects it to revert to a home-and-home series. -Chuck Carlton, Dallas News, Read More

UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI
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UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI

Thursday afternoon, the University of Miami celebrated the Carol Soffer Indoor Practice Facility with a dedication ceremony that drew more than 400 community and university leaders, coaches and athletes, and, of course, lead donor Carol Soffer and her family. The project, which broke ground in May of 2017, has raised $36.3 million toward its newest goal of $40 million. The 90,000-square-foot facility has two fields, one 80 yards long and the other 40 yards, the smaller field underneath the mezzanine where Richt’s office will be. The football operations area, still under construction, will encompass nearly 30,000 square feet and be self-enclosed with new football offices, team meeting rooms, coaches’ offices, and new recruiting areas. Hurricanes senior associate athletic director Jesse Marks, who led the fundraising campaign, said Thursday that close to 100 former UM players had donated about $2.3 million to the project, including Richt and his wife Katharyn’s $1 million. Carol Soffer and her family, who donated $14 million as the lead gift. -Susan Miller Degnan, Miami Herald, Read More

UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH FLORIDA
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UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH FLORIDA

The University of South Florida is in a transitional period preparing for a new era of leadership and focusing on its athletics. The Bulls have been working to enhance its athletic programs with a major goal to open a new $40 million football center. The new $40 million, 160,000-square-foot facility will be located immediately north of the Lee Roy Selmon Athletics Center. It will expand the existing Morsani Football Practice Complex with an 83,000-square-foot indoor practice area with a 100-yard field. AD Michael Kelly said the university is targeting a 2020 opening of a new football center and so far has raised $11.5 million. It is open to naming rights deals. The center will also house a 12,563-square foot, state-of-the-art strength & conditioning center, a sports medicine, and rehabilitation facility and large locker room and meeting space. “The center will help us look more at what needs there are in the long term for the stadium,” Kelly said. There is not a viable financial plan yet and timeline for the proposed $200 million stadium that would hold 40,000 to 50,000 fans. -Veronica Brezina-Smith, Tampa Bay Business Journal, Read More

UNIVERSITY OF EVANSVILLE
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UNIVERSITY OF EVANSVILLE

University of Evansville Director of Athletics Mark Spencer has announced the signing of head softball coach Mat Mundell to a contract extension with the Purple Aces program. Mundell, whose staff was the 2016 Missouri Valley Conference Coaching Staff of the Year, took the helm of the Aces program in 2015.  –Read More

COLGATE UNIVERSITY
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COLGATE UNIVERSITY

The Colgate University men’s swimming & diving team has been suspended from all competition for the fall semester and its winter training trip for what the school is calling “conduct violations.” Specifically, the school says the team violated university policies related to “hazing and high-risk alcohol consumption.” All members of the men’s swimming & diving team will also undergo an education program on the topic of hazing and high-risk alcohol consumption. “We regret the need to make this decision but also want to communicate clearly and unequivocally that hazing and high-risk drinking have no place in Colgate’s Division I athletics program or at Colgate University,” said Colgate Vice President and Director of Athletics Dr. Nicki Moore. The investigation, carried out by the Department of Athletics and the Dean of the College Office, concluded that the team engaged in hazing activity that included “high-risk alcohol consumption.” -Braden Keith, Swim Swam, Read More

October 11, 2018

UCONN
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UCONN

Seeking mental health care can be a hard decision, especially for student-athletes in the spotlight on college campuses. The stereotypes and expectations can weigh heavily on players, putting them in a unique position few understand better than Clewiston Challenger, an assistant professor of counseling in the Neag School of Education and a former UConn football player. It can be hard for athletes to ask for help because of the stigmas that surround mental health, Challenger said. As the topic of mental health in college athletics has grown increasingly popular in recent years, Challenger said a key to continuing those strides and making athletes feel more comfortable discussing mental illness is to increase visibility and make sure everyone in the athletic department is equipped to help. Colleges across the country have begun taking steps to better care for student-athletes’ mental health as more and more athletes come forward with stories of the mental health issues they face. UConn is among the schools that have started prioritizing mental health among student-athletes. – Kelli Stacy, courant – Read More

UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA HUNTSVILLE
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UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA HUNTSVILLE

The University of Alabama in Huntsville Department of Athletics had its highest revenue production of all-time in the 2018 fiscal year, as announced by the department on Wednesday. Fundraising efforts topped the one-million-dollar mark for just the third time in UAH’s history as the department also surpassed the milestone in 2012 and 2016. “Our donors and supporters have once again stepped up to the plate and supported our outstanding Charger student-athletes at a historic level,” said UAH Director of Athletics Dr. E. J. Brophy. “For a non-football athletic department our size in the deep south to reach these levels is almost unheard of. This accomplishment would simply not have been possible without the fantastic work of our students, coaches, administrators, and advancement staff, but anytime you set records for revenue generation your loyal contributors are the ones who make it happen.” – Read More

WASHBURN UNIVERSITY
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WASHBURN UNIVERSITY

Washburn’s golf team now has a state-of-the-art indoor practice facility that university officials believe will give the Ichabods a competitive advantage over much of their NCAA Division II competition. WU and Topeka Country Club cut ribbon Thursday on a new $425,000 driving range at TCC. With multiple hitting bays, a practice green and swing-analysis technology, the facility will allow WU golfers to practice year-round. We are excited to partner with Washburn University in the opening of our state-of-the-art indoor practice facility,” Clay Meininger, president and chief operating officer of TCC, said in a university news release.  Funding for the facility came through private contributions from university donors and TCC members, said Bruce Steinbrock, WU assistant athletic director for development. “We are very excited about this facility and how it will help our golf program and benefit our student-athletes throughout the year,” added Washburn athletic director Loren Ferre. – Tim Bisel , cjonline – Read More

UNIVERSITY OF HOUSTON
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UNIVERSITY OF HOUSTON

The University of Houston seeks Athletic Ticket Sales Representative. Responsible for providing first-class quality customer service to all donors, season ticket holders, and fans of the University of Houston. Cultivate relationships and ensure customer satisfaction. – Apply Here

LOUISIANA
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LOUISIANA

Louisiana seeks Director of Athletic Communications. The Director of Athletics Communications oversees all public relations and media relations activities for the Louisiana Football and Baseball programs; including supervision of one full-time athletics communication staff member, student workers, and game day staff as it relates to football and baseball.  – Apply Here

FAIRFIELD UNIVERSITY
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FAIRFIELD UNIVERSITY

Fairfield University seeks Assistant/Associate Director of Athletics for Compliance and Student Services. The Assistant/Associate Director of Athletics is responsible for overseeing the day-to-day administration and operation of a comprehensive compliance and rules education program for 20 varsity sports and approximately 450 student-athletes to ensure adherence to all NCAA, conference, and institutional rules and regulations. – Apply Here

GEORGE WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY
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GEORGE WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY

George Washington University seeks Associate Director of Development, Athletics Engagement & Annual Giving. DAR is responsible for directing and managing the university’s alumni and fundraising efforts and seeks to promote a culture of philanthropy throughout the university community, including alumni, students, parents, faculty, staff, corporations and foundations, patients and other friends. Our goal is to advance GWs mission of excellence in education, research, scholarship, and patient care. – Apply Here

UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA
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UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA

Virginia football coach Bronco Mendenhall was blunt with reporters on Monday when asked about the impact the Cavaliers’ athletic facilities have on recruiting. “The easy answer is yes, certainly our facilities have cost us,” he said. The Virginia athletic department will hold a meeting Friday night at Farmington Country Club to discuss fundraising efforts to build a new football operations center and a building for Olympic sports teams (soccer, lacrosse, field hockey, etc.). Select donors and UVa supporters have been invited, according to a member of the athletic department, who said Athletic Director Carla Williams will make another presentation to former UVa student-athletes on Saturday as part of the Virginia Athletic Foundation’s All-Sports Reunion Weekend. In June, UVa architect Alice Raucher presented her athletics master plan to the Board of Visitor’s Buildings and Grounds committee. In addition to the football operations center and Olympic sports building, it included additional practice fields, a new softball stadium, renovations to the McCue Center, a promenade for pedestrians and improvements to vehicular and pedestrian connectivity between Central and North Grounds. The project is estimated to cost between $12 and $14 million, and the first step is the demolition of University Hall. – RON COUNTS, dailyprogress –  Read More

UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA
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UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA

Much as he was a year ago, Arizona coach Sean Miller was bombarded at the start of his Pac-12 media day interview with questions about what’s come out of the federal investigation into college basketball. He deflected most of them by referring to his March 1 statement in which he said he has “never knowingly violated NCAA rules while serving as coach of this great program.” Miller went on to answer questions about being picked fourth (he said he was surprised the Wildcats were picked that high) as well as the challenges ahead. He also said Chase Jeter would “start at the five” (just in case that wasn’t clear), why he named Justin Coleman a captain and he addressed some other questions. – Bruce Pascoe, tucson – Read More

FRESNO STATE
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FRESNO STATE

The summer hiring of Terry Tumey as Fresno State’s new athletic director has been followed by a shake-up in the department’s top ranks. Steve Robertello, who served as the interim athletics director and was a finalist for the job that Tumey landed, was reassigned in August. He now is the special assistant to the vice president for student affairs and enrollment management, the university said Thursday. Paul Ladwig, an athletic department administrator since 2005, has been on paid leave since Sept. 6. A university spokeswoman said that his employment will end June 7, 2019. Ladwig served as the senior associate athletics director for external communication since 2011. He previously was the associate athletics director over external relations and broadcasting. An 18-year department veteran, John Kriebs, also went on paid leave on Sept. 6. His ending date with Fresno State is June 24, 2019, the university said. Kriebs most recently was the associate athletics director for internal operations. – Learn More

TROY UNIVERSITY
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TROY UNIVERSITY

Troy Athletics has partnered with Affinity Licensing to manage the athletic department’s trademark licensing program, Director of Athletics of Jeremy McClainannounced Thursday. Troy is one of the founding partners of Affinity’s new collegiate division becoming the fourth athletics department to connect with Affinity’s industry-leading technology and strategic revenue objectives. “We are excited to partner with Affinity Licensing as they will assist in elevating our branding, licensing and merchandising efforts to continue to better serve our passionate base,” McClain said. Affinity Licensing will act as the exclusive agency to manage the University’s consumer products licensing relationships with manufacturers and retailers.  The university will have access to innovative technology and processes that allow for better brand protection, as well as leverage Affinity’s retail and merchandising expertise to expand product categories, launch new products, and grow retail distribution.  – Read More

MICHIGAN STATE UNIVERSITY
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MICHIGAN STATE UNIVERSITY

In late January, in the wake of the Larry Nassar sexual assault scandal at Michigan State that led to the resignation of university president Lou Anna K. Simon, ESPN published a report that said there was a history of the school and its athletic department of essentially covering up incidents of sexual assault in football and men’s basketball, its two biggest programs. The night the report was first published, on Jan. 26, football coach Mark Dantonio met with the media just minutes before the basketball team was set to play Wisconsin and emphatically defended his program. After the game, Izzo was less forceful, instead limiting his answers because of ongoing investigations. It was the beginning of weeks of being dogged by questions pertaining to the report, even getting chased to the locker room by an ESPN reporter at Maryland. Many Spartans fans wondered why Izzo didn’t respond as Dantonio did, giving a forceful denial that might have ended some of the questions. – Matt Charboneau, detroitnews – Read More

COLLEGE ATHLETICS
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COLLEGE ATHLETICS

College baseball has the worst coach-to-player ratio of any Division I sport, and finally there is a proposal in the legislative pipeline that would do something about it. But unless coaches mobilize in force to lobby their athletic directors in advance of the April Board of Directors vote, the proposal is doomed to fail. That’s the message American Baseball Coaches Association executive director Craig Keilitz is working hard to spread this fall. College baseball programs finally have a real chance to add a third full-time assistant coach to their staffs, and it is imperative that coaches capitalize upon this opportunity, for the good of coaches as well as players. Under the proposal submitted by the SEC and approved last week by the student-athlete experience committee, D-I teams will have the option to replace their volunteer assistant with a third full-time assistant coach, or turn that position into a graduate assistant job or a part-time job, whatever the school can afford.  – Aaron Fitt, d1baseball – Read More

NCAA
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NCAA

Former Adidas consultant T.J. Gassnola, a cooperating witness for the government in the college basketball corruption trial, gave specifics Thursday about the illicit money deals he made to multiple families of current and former college basketball players.  In significantly revealing testimony on the 26th floor of the Daniel Patrick Moynihan Courthouse, Gassnola testified he made two payments to the family of former NC State star Dennis Smith Jr., who is now with the Dallas Mavericks.  Gassnola also testified that he paid $15,000 to a family friend of Deandre Ayton that was to be given to Ayton’s mother. The money was given to Ayton’s family in an attempt to “establish a relationship” and get Ayton on board with Adidas, Gassnola said.  Gassnola testified that he paid $2,500 to current KU forward Silvio De Sousa’s guardian and that he became aware that a University of Maryland booster was providing $60,000 to De Sousa’s guardian, Fenny Falmagne. Gassnola was set on trying to pay $20,000 to Falmagne — then the FBI case went public and he couldn’t make the payment. – Matt Norlander, cbssports – Read More

NICHOLLS STATE UNIVERSITY
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NICHOLLS STATE UNIVERSITY

Nicholls State University Athletics and the Colonel Athletic Association have announced a partnership with Peak Sports MGMT to oversee multimedia rights and enhance Nicholls Athletics’ marketing brand.  “One of our primary tasks is to continue growing the resources available to our programs in order to better assist our coaches and support our student-athletes in our collective pursuit of success. Simply put, we want to help our programs do more with more,” said Nicholls Director of Athletics Matt Roan. Peak Sports MGMT will manage and sell all sponsorship inventory for Nicholls Athletics, including broadcasting rights, venue signage, program advertising, digital and web content, game sponsorships, special events, in addition to other opportunities. Peak Sports MGMT and Nicholls Athletics have announced Jake Dunnam as the new General Manager for Colonel Sports Properties.  – Read More

UNIVERSITY OF LOUISVILLE
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UNIVERSITY OF LOUISVILLE

As the Louisville football team has trudged to a 2-4 start this season, the results have shown with empty seats in Cardinal Stadium. While the announced attendance in the first four home games of the season has averaged 50,975 fans, the average number of tickets scanned has been 34,968, according to figures obtained by the Courier Journal via open-records request. There were 35,785 tickets scanned for Friday night’s game against Georgia Tech, down from 38,496 on Sept. 29 against Florida State and 42,976 on Sept. 15 against Western Kentucky. Louisville drew 22,615 fans in a driving rainstorm for the home opener against Indiana State. Fan presence has been a recurring problem at Louisville and across college football, where per-game attendance dropped by 3 percent nationwide last season, according to the NCAA. Louisville’s average this season of 34,968 is down from 37,775, the average tickets scanned through the first four home games of 2017. – Jake Lourim, courier-journal – Read More

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