Zachary Smith

The supportive discussion surrounding the concept of the inception of a football program at Florida Southern is almost laughable and needs to be debunked.

There a number of logistical and demographic issues that make the creation of a football program almost nonsensical.

For starters, this college has no ability to construct or play at a facility on campus. FSC has nowhere close to any sort of land area big enough on campus for a football stadium. The institution cannot build it out, and the new athletic complex does not have anywhere close to ample seating.

However, with that being said, playing off campus can be done and isn’t foreign territory for FSC athletics. The baseball team already plays its games at Henley Field roughly 10 minutes from campus. The facility is well kept and does a job.

Right next door to Henley Field is Bryant Stadium, an 8,000-seater that has hosted men’s and women’s lacrosse games since both programs were introduced. The stadium would definitely suffice as a viable option for games to be played, but I feel as if there are also other issues that pose a threat to the inception of a football program.

Parking at Bryant Stadium, as well as transportation to and from Bryant Stadium, would be a logistical nightmare. Shuttles would have to be a necessity traveling to and from campus from dawn till dusk.

This would ensure all student traffic is kept at bay, but there is something to be said for walking across campus with friends to the game. Hopping in a shuttle to get to games is just a slight buzzkill.

The enrollment numbers at FSC also warrant problems. The enrollment at the college roughly eclipses the 2,500 mark, and that is far too low to genuinely warrant enough support for a program (from a student-perspective).

Assuming each and every student attends each game, excluding players and managers, the tally would still come nowhere close to making a significant dent in Bryant Stadium’s capacity, and it is more than common knowledge that will never, ever happen.

The fan engagement with athletic teams is not high at its current state. The average attendance at a men’s basketball game last season was 547 (students and nonstudent fans combined). Men’s basketball is arguably the marquee program on campus, and attendance averaging 547 at the marquee sporting event offers no indication that the fanbase is devoted enough.

Football would also undoubtedly become the marquee program if it were to be introduced, and it would without a doubt pull support (financial and fan) away from the other sports and create a far less exciting and engaging atmosphere at other FSC sporting events.

Put it to bed people; football is a no-go at FSC.


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