Wednesday, January 15, 2003
Holmes Student Center Room #406, 1:00 p.m.
Present: Gip Seaver (chair), Nestor Osorio, Paul Bauer, Ron Short, Ray Dembinski, Cary Groth, Ken Olson, John Walton, Robert Wheeler, Brian Scholle, Marcia Dick, Ray Tourville, Joe True.
Guests: Sheila Berg, Athletics Business Manager; Beth Calder, Athletics Ticket Manager; Tekla Martin, Director of Athletics Development; Tim Stedman, Major Gifts Officer – Athletics.
I. Call to Order – Gip Seaver
Having one new Board member in attendance today, Gip asked the Board members to introduce themselves.
II. Approval of November 20, 2002 Meeting Minutes
Robert Wheeler made a motion to approve the November 20, 2002 meeting minutes. Paul Bauer seconded the motion.
Several corrections were submitted. Motion was carried unanimously and the minutes were approved.
III. Committee Reports
A. Huskie Club
Brian Scholle reported that last year at this time, the Huskie Club had
raised approximately $313,000. This year, they have received almost
gifts. That figure comes from the annual fund, gifts-in-kind, and the Premier Club.
Tekla Martin then reported on the women’s basketball team’s fundraising
efforts for their trip to Italy. To date, they have raised approximately
the $61,000 needed for the trip. Their annual golf outing will cover the remaining balance. The trip is scheduled for this May.
Cary then asked Tekla to report on the Atlanta alumni reception.
Tekla stated there are approximately 1,381 NIU alumni in Georgia, the majority
Atlanta/Marietta area. The men’s basketball game on February 11 versus Ohio University is being broadcast live on Fox Sports Net Chicago. Rob
Judson will be recording a cut away for the telecast which to be shown at the alumni gathering. Tekla said when research was done on the alumni and
donor base there, a large percentage are College of Business and College of Liberal Arts and Sciences alumni. Dean Kitterle from LA&S and Harry
Wright from the College of Business will go on this trip.
Cary then introduced Tim Stedman, the major gifts officer for Athletics.
Tim is working on two major priorities for Athletics: the FF&E
and equipment) for the Convocation Center offices and a very important capital project for a facility at the north end of the football stadium.
Tim then explained that the costs for FF&E were approximately $500,000
and, to date, Athletics has secured approximately $380,000 to meet this
Naming opportunities are available for the coaches’ offices, locker rooms, etc. and a gift for those opportunities is 100% tax-deductible. Once the entire
$500,000 is secured, attention can be directed to the Student-Athlete Development Center at Huskie Stadium. Initially Athletics has been looking at
various names but something needs to be identified which will be appealing to all donors. NIU has received an initial $50,000 gift from Jim Palmer, an
alumnus, to hire an architect to begin developing plans for the facility. Jim’s gift is “seed” money and was given with the knowledge that the building may
never materialize. HMK and Associates has been hired and is working with Dr. Eddie Williams on the project.
Tim went on to report that in the last few weeks, he and Cary have completed
the program statement for the building. This outlines a path for
to follow which will produce an effective and efficient building for Athletics. Of the 30,000 square feet which the building would comprise, approximately
9,000 square feet will be for a weight room which all sports can utilize. This is double the space of the existing weight room. A 6,000 square foot football
locker room and equipment room will be included, an athletic training facility (3,000-4,000), and coaches’ offices, and meeting room space.
Cary added that what is also very important is that this will open space
in the west side of the Stadium for current programs. For example,
gymnastics currently share workout space in the Stadium and soccer, softball and baseball share locker room space. This new facility will address those
Tim went on to say that over the next two months, he will be meeting individually
with a group of people who have the financial capability to move this
project forward. It is Tim’s hope to have at least $3 million secured before moving ahead with this building. Brian Scholle asked about the cost for the
building. Tim said the architect will bring that information back to us but it is his feeling that we’re looking at a cost of between $4 – 4.5 million. Brian then
asked if an indoor practice facility would be considered at the same time. Cary said Athletics needs to address one project at a time. She also added that
100% of the funding for this facility will be raised externally; there will be no fees used.
No report. Will be addressed under both Old and New Business.
C. Student Welfare
Ken Olson said the committee met in December with Kim Judson regarding
her research at the University of Illinois. She interviewed incoming
about how they anticipated their experiences would be at the university and then she interviewed them again approximately 18 months later to see if their
perceptions matched their actual experiences. Ken said Kim will be at the February Board meeting to talk about this research. Ken said the student
welfare committee provided some general ideas and thoughts about Kim’s plans which are to follow up with 12 or so athletes in summer or early fall
regarding their expectations. A qualitative analysis will be done of the data and it will be brought back to the Board. The committee is currently waiting for
Kim to do the follow-up interviews. Ken will work with Kim to see if she will be ready to meet us in February.
Cary pointed out that Kim interviewed all incoming freshmen and transfer student-athletes at our Student-Athlete Convention in August.
D. Gender Equity
Paul Bauer said the committee met early in December and the main focus
was on the Interests and Abilities survey that needs to be completed.
to Paul’s question as to whether this is a Title IX compliance issue, Cary said it is a follow-up with the Office for Civil Rights. A full-scale survey must be
completed every three years but a “mini” survey will be done every year. Paul went on to say that last year’s committee developed the survey but it was
not administered. Dee Abrahamson has provided the continuity and followed up on committee suggestions.
The committee will administer the survey to students during lunch times
in the residence halls and in the Blackhawk Cafeteria. It is the
that they should get a good response rate by administering the survey in this manner. That way, the response is immediate and we don’t have to wait for
them to come through campus mail. Paul solicited volunteers to be at the various residence halls and in the Blackhawk Cafeteria to distribute the surveys.
Students who fill out the surveys will get candy bars.
Paul circulated a sign-up sheet and will have Janaan send out an electronic version to get volunteers to fill the empty slots.
E. Faculty Athletics Representative
Ray Dembinski began his report by saying that a couple of things have occurred relative to the 40/60/80% rule.
NIU has been selected to submit data regarding academic progress for men’s
and women’s basketball athletes who received athletics financial aid.
schools were selected to submit information for football and still other schools were asked to provide information on track and field. The data will be used
to develop a system for analyzing the data collected. This may be more of a pilot effort.
Ray went on to say that discussion was held regarding increasing academic
requirements for core courses (currently14). That may have a negative
on a student who chooses to walk-on to a team and is unaware of the academic requirements. That seems to be the next level of discussion.
Another item of discussion was regarding penalties for schools that do
not reach some prescribed graduation rate. There seems to be a renewed
Cary then said Ray had asked Athletics at how increasing the GPA and the
40/60/80% rule would affect our student-athletes. Sandy Hafner-Arnold,
assistant director of our SASS office, has provided the information and a meeting will be scheduled with Dr. Anne Kaplan and the Provost’s office to
review it. There are approximately 20 – 22 student-athletes who would currently be impacted if the rule were in effect today. That means they would not
be able to continue their eligibility because they did not meet the new satisfactory progress requirements. Once the information is gathered in a useful
format, Cary will ask Sandy to come in and explain the information. Robert Wheeler said for student-athletes who are enrolled in teacher certification, this
is a significant issue. The impact could be that student-athletes might be directed to other academic programs in which they have no interest but just to stay
Paul Bauer asked what other schools are thinking about this. Ray
Dembinski said our BGS program also has a minimum GPA for admission (2.5).
are student-athletes with 2.0-2.49 GPAs who cannot get admitted to the program. Ray said he doesn’t know what kind of conditions other institutions
have set on their BGS. There may be some campus concern about the integrity of the BGS but as resources get tighter, we are going to disenfranchise
students in good standing.
Cary said some schools opposed the 40/60/80% but very few did so.
She also said that Myles Brand, the new president of the NCAA, places academics
and eligibility at the forefront, along with Title IX, equity, and the arms race.
Gip asked if high profile sports’ graduation rates were better, would there
have been the push to 40/60/80%? Ray feels that there are schools
good rates and students doing well academically but there are some institutions whose mission is to serve the students coming from deprived backgrounds.
They don’t necessarily see it as graduating them as much as broadening their horizons.
Gip said his feeling would be having the Board see the issue, begin to
hear about suggestions from a number of places which gives the opportunity
faculty and staff here to provide some suggestions. Ray Dembinski will keep everyone informed about this as it moves along.
IV. Old Business
A. FY02 Fourth Quarter Report
Ray Tourville made a motion to approve the FY02 fourth quarter report. Nestor Osorio seconded the motion.
Having no comments or discussion, the vote was taken and motion carried unanimously.
B. FY03 First Quarter Report
Ray Tourville made a motion to approve the FY03 first quarter report. Nestor Osorio seconded the motion.
Having no comments or discussion, the vote was taken and motion carried unanimously.
V. New Business
A. 2003 Football Ticket Prices
Ray Tourville made a motion to approve the 2003 football ticket prices. Ray Dembinski seconded the motion.
Cary said the status of the 2003 football schedule is that at the present
time, we have six home and six away games. We had the University
of Nevada –
Reno on the schedule but they pulled out because of the success of the 2002 season. It is extremely difficult for NIU to get a fourth non-conference game.
Cary would prefer not to play a 1-AA team except perhaps Eastern Illinois University. She would like to keep the schedule at 6 and 6 because of the
current attendance criteria. Robert Collins is working diligently on this issue. At present, the schedule is open on Labor Day weekend and NIU opens
September 6 against Maryland. The RPI for football is currently the best NIU has ever had. Robert is working with the MAC on the football schedule.
Both the Maryland and Iowa State games should be on television.
Cary then reported on the TV ratings from the 2002 football season.
The GMAC Bowl game (Marshall versus Louisville) rated a 2.28. It
most-watched football game on ESPN and the fourth highest rated event ever on ESPN. The two highest-rated games were two in which NIU played.
The exposure NIU received this season was just tremendous. Gip asked Cary about the football attendance of the MAC schools. Cary said that behind
Marshall and Toledo, NIU ranked third with an average of approximately 21,000. These are unaudited figures but it was probably around 20,000.
Football attendance is up and NIU brought in the most revenue in the history of this program.
Basketball ticket revenue is three times what it was, to date, for both
men’s and women’s basketball, at the close of last season. Cary expressed
appreciation at everyone’s efforts in this respect. Student attendance at basketball has not been good but Athletics is working on it.
Paul Bauer then asked if NIU does not get a sixth away football game, is
the alternative a seventh home game? Cary said the schedule will
be a 12-game
schedule. If another home game were added, it might be on Labor Day weekend but there are some options being discussed. Cary said once the schedule
is completed, it will be brought back for Board approval.
Having no further questions about ticket prices, the motion was carried unanimously.
B. Athletics Facilities
Cary distributed copies of the Facilities Planning Document which she and
Norm Jenkins worked on in 2002. At Gip’s request, she is presenting
information to the Board today.
Effective today, January 15, Evans Field House is officially closed.
There has been a bit of a challenge for some of the teams to secure practice
some are practicing from 11 p.m. to 1 a.m. This will change once the Field House project moves along. More indoor practice facilities are needed for all
of the indoor programs. Athletics does rent space from Campus Recreation and the DeKalb Park District. Though the student-athletes are fee-paying
students, Athletics still pays an hourly rental fee for Campus Recreation facilities.
There is a significant request on the table to a donor to upgrade McKinzie
Stadium (baseball) but it is on hold right now. It is important to
Athletics does not have a facilities fund. Coaches do lots of maintenance on the baseball and softball fields. If something special is needed, Athletics pays
Robert Wheeler asked about the response to the new football turf.
Cary said it has been very favorable. It has been ranked the #1 surface
Gip asked if there is a role the Board could take on or help with relative
to facilities. Cary said she would like to continue to work
with the Board
regarding Athletics’ facility needs.
C. Convocation Center Scheduling
Cary said it might be good for the Board to know how the priorities are
set for use of the convocation center. For example, Athletics has
bowl to host a state gymnastics meet but because the current constitution of the convocation center which says Athletics is 12th on the list, John Gordon
can bump this event from the bowl into Victor E. Court. If space needs must change, there should be a time limit placed on those changes; i.e., after six
weeks out, Athletics events cannot be shifted to other venues. It is such a great facility but the reality is that Athletics has lost a tremendous amount of
practice and competition space. Baseball, softball, golf, and volleyball have really been hurt. Once Evans Field House opens back up, Athletics wants to
make sure it has priority with that space. Ron Short said the Field House project should take about 18 months. Cary said John Sweeney has been great to
work with on finding practice time and space.
Gip said it might be good for the facilities committee to meet with Cary
and get a handle on all the issues and also what real needs there are.
Athletics does not want to appear to be complaining but teams have really been squeezed.
Gip said at the February meeting, he hopes to bring in a comparison of
how other MAC schools’ athletic boards are structured. The Athletic
not looked at its structure and function in a comparative way. The executive committee will review this matter initially and bring information back to the
Robert Wheeler made a motion to adjourn the meeting. Ray Tourville seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.
The next meeting of the Athletic
Board will be on Wednesday, February 19, 2003, at 1:00 p.m. in Holmes Student
Center #406. The executive committee will meet on Wednesday, February
5, 2003, at 1:00 p.m. in the Athletics administration conference room in
the convocation center.