Marquette Wire

GROVER: Saturday’s Slump

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I’m glad every day isn’t Saturday. When you have Saturdays like mine, you usually end up getting drawn on. I’m telling you guys, my shoes were off. Juveniles.

No, my real problem lies with a Saturday afternoon tradition, college football. Here’s the thing — I just can’t get into it. Sorry. Sure, I’ll watch a game with some friends, but I really don’t care what happens. I just root for injuries. Just kidding, that would be immoral. Kind of like watching NASCAR for the car crashes. Just kidding, no one watches NASCAR.

The problem, as I suspect some other people out there in Marquette academia might also share, is that I don’t have a favorite team. And why devote time to something you don’t have a vested interest in? Exactly.<

I didn’t always have this problem. Like any other young Wisconsinite, I grew up as a fan of the Wisconsin Badgers. Well, that all kinda changed once I started attending Marquette. Madison is basically our biggest rival. So how am I supposed to dislike their basketball team but like the football team?

I can hear people now saying, “Well, there’s no other option. You can still like the Badgers’ football team.” NO. I refuse. In fact, if I had to pick a favorite team, it would be whoever is playing the Badgers. Man, this column is getting a little too sadistic. Let’s move on before someone gets hurt.

Ever since freshman year, I’ve heard plenty of rumors surrounding Marquette football, a team that hasn’t existed since 1960 when it was folded for financial reasons. I wanted to find out what was true and what wasn’t. After speaking with Marquette Athletic Director Steve Cottingham, I was finally able to put some of these rumors to bed.

MYTH: Marquette is required to have a football team because of its standing in the Big East.

“No,” Cottingham said.

The team, which was shut down in the first place because of cash issues, is largely still defunct for the same reason.

“If you look at the cost of football, it’s a tremendously expensive sport,” Cottingham said. “Eighty-five scholarships, 100 or so guys on a team. With a stadium you’d need $200 million to get started.”

Since Marquette is private, it would need to generate all the money internally, which as anyone can tell you takes more than a smile. Not only that, furthering the already exorbitant cost would be the mandatory addition of another women’s team because of Title IX. Oh, and the fact that there’s no place to put a stadium anyway.

MYTH: Marquette has turned down major sponsorship dollars in an effort to build a football stadium.

“Not in my time, not to my knowledge,” Cottingham said, who after serving as interim director in Jan. 2007 was given the official position in Feb. 2008. “That isn’t to say it hasn’t happened. But someone offering $100,000 for funding a team would just be a drop in the bucket.”

The most popular theory I’ve heard is that MillerCoors pledged a bunch of money for a stadium, but Marquette turned it down. It’s largely unfounded, but I tried to get confirmation anyway. After repeated attempts to get in contact with them, Miller basically blew me off. Well, guess what, Miller? Two can play this game. I’m boycotting your products for two weeks. My head still hurts anyway. OK, one week. Damn your great taste.

So, there you have it. There’s no money and there’s no football coming to Marquette. Don’t hold your breath, because it’s not happening. Sigh.

Oh, well. Thank God for Sunday.

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