This forum is pure hardball. Bring the heat in this discussion of Flames baseball.
By SumItUp
#552485 I went to the South Carolina / Arkansas super regional in Fayetteville tonight. There were over 34K people for the 3-game series. What a great baseball atmosphere. All season, the crowds have been solid. Baum Stadium is often ranked as one of the best stadiums in the country. The facilities are nice, but it is the crowds that create the excitement. The culture enhances the recruiting which increases the results on the field.

What will it take for Liberty to build solid consistent home crowds for the program? Baseball attendance cannot be built solely on the students. Attendance will always be better with strong consistent winning programs. I'm curious what can be done outside of student promotion. Great collegiate baseball fan bases are knowledgeable and appreciate the nuances of the game. How do we get to where we want to be?
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By Class of 20Something
#552486 It's nearly impossible to manufacture that. It has to be organic and grown over time. Liberty football and GCU basketball are the exception. It will take a combination of winning, good opponents, and fan experience to establish it. Once those are consistent, people will develop habits and come even when we aren't winning.
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By Jonathan Carone
#552489 Winning, quality opponents, and good weather. Those are the three things you need. Without all three, you will never have consistently crowds. Even if you win, unless you have good opponents and good weather, you still won’t have great crowds.
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By Class of 20Something
#552490
Jonathan Carone wrote:Winning, quality opponents, and good weather. Those are the three things you need. Without all three, you will never have consistently crowds. Even if you win, unless you have good opponents and good weather, you still won’t have great crowds.


Ohh you are so right. No one is sitting through three hours of rain for anything except a rival.
By flamehunter
#552491
Class of 20Something wrote:
Jonathan Carone wrote:Winning, quality opponents, and good weather. Those are the three things you need. Without all three, you will never have consistently crowds. Even if you win, unless you have good opponents and good weather, you still won’t have great crowds.


Ohh you are so right. No one is sitting through three hours of rain for anything except a rival.


So we need a retractable roof. Let's get on it. :rainy
By Chippy
#552492
Jonathan Carone wrote:Winning, quality opponents, and good weather. Those are the three things you need. Without all three, you will never have consistently crowds. Even if you win, unless you have good opponents and good weather, you still won’t have great crowds.

Exactly! The weather was horrendous this year - many games where it never reached 40 degrees, not so much rain as it is the cold. As a season ticket holder, I watched games on TV rather than sit through 3 hours in the cold on 2-3 different occasions. But winning and having a winning culture will bring them out.
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By flamesfilmguy
#552495 The weather was horrendous for the entire southeast. Trust me We had more rain delays this year with two of our games finishing well after midnight.
By ballcoach15
#552499 LU baseball stadium is the coldest place in Lynchburg based on the geography and terrain/elevation.


Most college teams that have great attendance, fill the stands with adults, not students.
By jinxy
#552500 I will agree with ballcoach. The stadium is very very cold. Its shady in the afternoon games and very breezy due to being elevated. Makes 50 degree days feel like its 35. Unfortunately most of the season is unpredicable weather until the last 2 to 3 weeks.

Also at some point we just need to win regularly. Lu needs to host a regional so the fan base can get caught up in how much fun they are. The interest is there. Just needs the teams to hold up their end. Look at the interest softball generated and think back to the clemson regional at how much excitement surrounded the program.
Last edited by jinxy on June 13th, 2018, 1:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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By Cider Jim
#552502 When most of Lynchburg thinks baseball, they think of the Hillcats. It's got to be hard for a college to compete with a long established minor league team in town.
By thepostman
#552509
Cider Jim wrote:When most of Lynchburg thinks baseball, they think of the Hillcats. It's got to be hard for a college to compete with a long established minor league team in town.


I bet a Thirsty Thursday promotion would get the locals out! :lol:
By ballcoach15
#552519 That could be debatable, LU softball won the 7th most games in the nation this past season, yet attendance was disappointing in my opinion. Granted next season may show an increase in attendance as a result of this season's success.
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By flameshaw
#552525
ballcoach15 wrote:That could be debatable, LU softball won the 7th most games in the nation this past season, yet attendance was disappointing in my opinion. Granted next season may show an increase in attendance as a result of this season's success.


Hopefully they will. There isn't a team in the nation that doesn't win, that has decent crowds. There are a lot of teams, without decent weather, that still have good crowds, because they win. It does take a culture of winning to draw crowds, especially in a small town like Lynchburg.
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By Jonathan Carone
#552526 Even with winning, if you don’t have the weather and the good opponents, you won’t get the attendance.

Coastal has won as much as you can win and they have better weather than we can dream of but still have attendance issues when they play bad teams.

Washington - who made it to Omaha this year - played a PAC 12 schedule and won 35 games and only averaged maybe 1000 people because the weather sucks.

St John’s, a program with 36 postseason appearances, averaged less than 1000 (and that’s generous) because they don’t play anyone and the weather is bad.

It’s truly a three legged stool.
By ballah09
#552531 Liberty needs to build a sports culture across the board period. Club hockey and lacrosse have more of a following then every Liberty sport minus football which is very sad.

Winning and a dedicated student fan club will help. I alway say this but Grand Canyon does it right. Student club with incentives. They sell out almost every sporting event.
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By cruzan_flame13
#552534
ballah09 wrote:Liberty needs to build a sports culture across the board period. Club hockey and lacrosse have more of a following then every Liberty sport minus football which is very sad.

Winning and a dedicated student fan club will help. I alway say this but Grand Canyon does it right. Student club with incentives. They sell out almost every sporting event.


I agree and it's possible. I remember coming to LU in 2009 and spending time with the LUnatics. Nowadays students have more than I could've even imagine and they're so caught up with staying in all the time and at times using studying as an excuse (it's respectable but not a lot of students have much to do at times especially the first few weeks of each semester). Technology has helped ruined the college life and it's sad. I would hope winning will bring students out of their dorm and residents/alumni to get hyped about the sport culture. LU needs to enlightened the vision; at this moment it is a bit soft in my opinion. I believe it can be done but you need talents and entertainment to receive spectators. If it's mediocre, nothing will spark[no pun intended] even if you put an abundant of money in it (as we've seen for awhile).
By jinxy
#552536 Coastal just doesnt have much of a fanbase. If the whole fbs sun belt national championship in baseball doesnt bring them out nothing will. That was an incredible 2 to 3 years and they still didnt. I would lay down huge money that if roles were reversed and lu baseball won the national champsionship and got in the sunbelt a couple years ago that our attendance/culture would be way up now.

In general i agree though it is a 3 leg stool but i think winning and weather matter more. Opponent is a bonus.

It can be done though. Look at uva. They were a dumpster fire pre oconnor and their weather is the same. They do have the acc but they play nobody non conference which is half the total games yet they have developed an impressive culture at a school that put nothing into baseball 10 years ago.
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By flameshaw
#552546
jinxy wrote:Coastal just doesnt have much of a fanbase. If the whole fbs sun belt national championship in baseball doesnt bring them out nothing will. That was an incredible 2 to 3 years and they still didnt. I would lay down huge money that if roles were reversed and lu baseball won the national champsionship and got in the sunbelt a couple years ago that our attendance/culture would be way up now.

In general i agree though it is a 3 leg stool but i think winning and weather matter more. Opponent is a bonus.

It can be done though. Look at uva. They were a dumpster fire pre oconnor and their weather is the same. They do have the acc but they play nobody non conference which is half the total games yet they have developed an impressive culture at a school that put nothing into baseball 10 years ago.


On a scale from 1-10 my thoughts are that winning=10, weather=3 opponents=2. I agree, that with the results achieved by Coastal in the last few years, LU would have a much better fan following and interest level. Michigan and Oregon have horrible weather but have maintained solid followings because they have/had winning cultures. The SOCal schools have winning programs, great weather, but too much competition from other sources. Besides, baseball at any level below MLB is boring. (Coming from a guy who played baseball at a pretty high level). 8)
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By Cider Jim
#552552 Coastal has a hard time developing a fan base because they are 8 miles from Myrtle. If you had your choice of going to the beach or a Coastal game, what would you choose?
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By Jonathan Carone
#552555
Cider Jim wrote:Coastal has a hard time developing a fan base because they are 8 miles from Myrtle. If you had your choice of going to the beach or a Coastal game, what would you choose?


That will always be their biggest issue for football and baseball.
By oldflame
#552557 ballcoach actually makes a valid point. A local in the MB area has all the opportunity in the world to go to the beach. If they do it during a football game, it´s a reflection on how they feel about the football program, not the beach. I admittedly have a unique perspective, but personally I wouldn´t cross the street to go to the actual beach there.
By Flamepop
#552567 If you want to build excitement about a team you need rivals. Now that Coastal is gone who are our rivals, that team you love to beat? Remember all the red "Beat Coastal" t shirts, I can't recall one saying "Beat GWebb" or "Let's get Ashville". If you can't find someone you love to hate good luck getting students to love the program.
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By Cider Jim
#552571 Wasn't that a manufactured rivalry, created by JB who bought all those "Beat Coastal" T-shirts? We even had our Quiz Bowl team wearing those to travel to our BSC tournament in Conway.
Last edited by Cider Jim on June 14th, 2018, 4:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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By Class of 20Something
#552578
Cider Jim wrote:Wasn't that a manufactured rivalry, created by JB who bought all those "Beat Coastal" T-shirts? We even had our Quiz Bowl team wearing those to travel to our BSC tourament in Conway.


If it's stupid but it works, it isn't stupid.
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By flameshaw
#552581
oldflame wrote:ballcoach actually makes a valid point. A local in the MB area has all the opportunity in the world to go to the beach. If they do it during a football game, it´s a reflection on how they feel about the football program, not the beach. I admittedly have a unique perspective, but personally I wouldn´t cross the street to go to the actual beach there.


Agree 100%. To me the ONLY thing attractive about MB is the number of good golf courses. Of course, I am not a teenage kid either. 8)
By jinxy
#552744 Sounds like mtsu is making a second run at toman. I actually think he will do well there if he gets it.
By LUDad
#552846
Jonathan Carone wrote:
Cider Jim wrote:Coastal has a hard time developing a fan base because they are 8 miles from Myrtle. If you had your choice of going to the beach or a Coastal game, what would you choose?


That will always be their biggest issue for football and baseball.


On the other hand, that beach and the night life is a huge magnet that draws recruits. Same for UNCW and Wrightsville beach.
By ballcoach15
#552859 There's been a lot of talk on message board about a lack of roster for LU baseball at times. Well LU is not alone. I was in the Danville Braves Office (rookie league team) this morning, and they are still waiting for Atlanta Braves to send them a roster. Season opens tomorrow.
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By adam42381
#552861
ballcoach15 wrote:There's been a lot of talk on message board about a lack of roster for LU baseball at times. Well LU is not alone. I was in the Danville Braves Office (rookie league team) this morning, and they are still waiting for Atlanta Braves to send them a roster. Season opens tomorrow.

Looks like they’re going with the sandlot roster of 9 players.

http://m.milb.com/t429/roster