With the dwindling attention and fan attendance for the traditional spring game, schools should do away with their traditional spring game and replace it with a spring exhibition with regional football programs. Traditionalists probably would ask why?! We can not mess with tradition! Change is too much. Honestly, there are plenty of alternatives to playing a boring intrasquad scrimmage. In fact, after asking Liberty head coach, Hugh Freeze, about his original thought on spring exhibition games, he later sent a reply back to us this evening:
Spring scrimmages would be a great idea. Many major league sports, college basketball and baseball play exhibitions games that can tell you a lot about your team going into the season, where they need to improve or if they are going to be any good at all. These spring exhibitions would do well and unite a fan base together to pack a stadium for a great cause!
For instance, the University of Arkansas approved the baseball team to play instate schools that are in the UofA system of schools for the first time ever. In the fall, Arkansas played the Little Rock Trojans for an exhibition an won. When the regular season came along, the Trojans came through with a 17-7 monumental victory over the Razorbacks. If Arkansas decided to play an instate or regionally foe, charge $10 a ticket and have 45,000 fans show up that would generate plenty of revenue. The spring exhibition could still bring in the food food trucks, former Razorbacks, a pep rally and other things to make HogFest a big deal again. Just look at the numbers schools reported this season. Whether inflated or not, 10,000 fans is a pretty good number coming off a 2-10 season.
After all, I feel like Hugh Freeze was onto something with the idea of giving the proceeds to charity, orphanages and foster care. Freeze is a coach that cares about those in the community. During his time at Ole Miss, the programs mission statement stated, “The mission of Ole Miss’ Rebel Ready Program is to challenge the student-athletes to be lifelong learners while pursuing continuous improvement academically, relationally, socially, personally, and professionally during and beyond their careers as student-athletes.”
Arkansas Special Olympics, The Call-Foster Care organization, Relay For Life or any great charity in the state would welcome the extra funds throughout the year.
Thank you, Coach Freeze, for reaching out to us. You have a heart of a servant and we admire that!