We're All in the Game!
Thomas J. Hynes, Jr.
Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs
“Even as our alumni carry with them daily the learning they directly experienced in classroom and other academic settings, athletic events can still offer a sense of place after graduation. Connecting the stadium with the name ‘Alumni’ binds the connection to place in a very visible and important way.”
Stadium Development Committee
UWG Foundation Trustee
“There has long been a 'Spirit of West Georgia' — a feeling of loyalty born of heartwarming memories that honor West Georgia’s heritage and traditions. This spirit of West Georgia has permeated the first 100 years of the institution’s history, but that 'spirit' needs a home.
‘Alumni Stadium’ can become that long awaited home and naming it for the graduates of the university can become a focus for alumni enthusiasm and school spirit. Graduates from all eras — the A&M years, the junior college days, the decades as a senior college, and the most recent years as a university — can build this tribute to the institution that helped shape their lives.”
Class of 1971
Homecoming Queen, Cheerleader
Phi Mu Sorority
“In the early '80s, Bobby Pate came along and took the new fledgling football team all the way to a national championship and that was really exciting. A lot of us alumni went back on campus, except it wasn’t really on campus because we had to play our football games at Grisham Stadium and that was a big disappointment. It’s good that West Georgia has continued with football and it’s wonderful that they’ve continued with the thought of having a West Georgia stadium.
I think there are two things alums can do and should do - and one is to get the word out. And the second thing is to get out your checkbook and write a check. This is the university that gave us such wonderful memories - regardless of what decade you were there. It was a wonderful school – still is – and it deserves its own stadium. We don’t have to make a huge sacrifice all at one time, contributions can be spread out over five years and that’s wonderful – that’s doable. As alums, we have got to get in there and get this stadium built. And I think West Georgia deserves that.”
Dr. Leland Gustafson
Professor of Economics
“A stadium will give football a bigger presence at West Georgia and that contributes to a more complete university atmosphere. In this part of the country, a strong football tradition attracts students to your campus and it is important for UWG to continue to build that football tradition. We continue to build our academic quality and the combination provides a university experience that is attractive to young people. Building one area does not detract from the other area – attracting a better and growing student base allows you to increase and improve all programming. Athletics can open the door for alumni support and then many are interested in contributing to academic programs as well.
A gift at West Georgia makes a dramatic difference to our campus. Whether it is for academics, athletics, or facilities, every contribution builds the experience and the tradition that is West Georgia.”
Student Government Association
“Here at the university, we take pride in our small classrooms where we know everybody and we know our professors on a personal level. A stadium at the University of West Georgia would be a great thing for the students because it would build school spirit and school morale. A few students told me that going to the local high school and watching the football team just wasn’t enough for them. A stadium would bring that personal environment together as a whole where we would have the student body come together as one voice and one Wolf Pack.”
UWG Head Football Coach 1980-84
National NCAA Division III
Coach of the Year 1982
“Athletics is an opportunity for students to participate and compete, and that’s what they’re going to have to do when they get out in the real world — it’s an extension of the education system. Of course, athletics is not only football but all sports, and advances in women’s athletics at West Georgia have brought them into the total picture.
A football program is a lot more than just the football team – it encompasses the cheerleaders, the band, it’s a great source of pride for alumni and students – it’s a rallying point for the university. Having your own stadium helps so much in recruiting. These days, high schools have such great facilities and it can’t be a step down to go from high school to college as far as physical facilities are concerned.
A stadium on campus allows you to park close, tailgate, pay a fair price and walk in and see kids play just as hard as they do anywhere. In football, we’re fond of saying that nobody can beat us in our own back yard, this is our turf and we protect it. A stadium gives students and student athletes a home.”
Founder and Board Chair, Ra-Lin & Associates
“There are many quality things that have been done over the years that changed the economic climate in Carrollton and I think a stadium may be the single largest thing I’ve been in touch with that’s going to do the same thing. I wish I had all the data that would convert what a $10 million stadium would mean to this community, not only the Carrollton community but east Alabama and west Georgia. I heard a statistic that for every student who enrolls at West Georgia, there is an economic annual impact of $30,000 per student – that’s a lot of money. When these students are here spending $30,000 for all the things they do, that’s an important economic boom. I think that adds an important quality of life to the student population.
Other schools I have visited that introduced football in the last 20 years, they have just prospered because of a stadium. The service industry changes all together, the retail industry changes all together – it’s not just the moms and dads and the alums who come on football weekends, it begins a year long pilgrimage. I would hesitate to put a number on the economics of the stadium but I can assure you of one thing, the whole area is going to prosper when the stadium is built.
The other thing that it lends itself to is going to Division I. Once the stadium is built and we get to Division I, I can’t imagine the total economic impact but it’s going to be huge. A stadium is much more than just a place to play football.”