Dear Tiger Fan,
Last week, we held a press conference in which former LSU economics professor Dr. Loren Scott released the findings of his study, “It’s Not Just Entertainment: The Economic Impact of LSU Sports on Louisiana and The Baton Rouge Metro.” It was the third such study done by Dr. Scott – the first was released in May 1991 and the second in January 2002. Dr. Scott’s most recent study, as did the first two, clearly demonstrated that LSU Athletics – through its sporting events and construction projects - makes a tremendous impact upon our local and statewide economies.
There are two primary reasons I believe it was important for us to commission the study and publicize its results:
- LSU Athletics are a community investment – we generate hundreds of millions of dollars in new sales, take-home earnings and tax receipts for Louisiana citizens at the state and local level. At the same time, I feel it is critical that the community, represented by state and local officials, sustain a reciprocal relationship by partnering with LSU Athletics and supporting us, for example, in the areas of traffic and parking.
- The study illustrates how vital LSU fans are to our success, and in turn, to the health of our state and local economies. An estimated 1.5 million fans visit our campus each year to attend LSU athletic events, and it is our sincere responsibility, in cooperation with community officials, to create an experience for fans that enhances the pride and joy they feel when watching the Tigers compete.
If you haven’t already done so, I encourage you to read about Dr. Scott’s findings. The facts and figure are remarkable, and they confirm that the operation of LSU Athletics – a thriving, self-sustaining entity that receives no tax dollars – enriches our state and the lives of its people.
SEEKING THE SUPER SIX
Our gymnastics team, led by legendary coach D-D Breaux, has enjoyed a phenomenal season that will culminate this week at the NCAA Championships in Birmingham, Ala. The Tigers are the nation’s No. 1 team entering the NCAA meet and will compete in one of the national semifinals on Friday. The top three teams in each semifinal advance to Saturday’s “Super Six,” where they compete to determine the National Champion. Best wishes to Coach Breaux, her staff and her incredibly talented squad of young ladies that represent LSU at the highest level.
Congratulations to our men’s and women’s basketball programs for bringing a renewed sense of excitement to the Maravich Center. Coach Johnny Jones and the men’s squad posted LSU’s first 20-win season since 2009 and qualified for the postseason with a fearless, up-tempo style of play that will continue to raise the profile of the program and attract elite players. Coach Nikki Caldwell’s Lady Tigers – though decimated by injuries – courageously advanced to the NCAA Sweet 16 for the second straight year and demonstrated the value of perseverance in the face of adversity.
SPRING IN FULL SWING
Spring sports are in full swing at LSU – the seventh-ranked baseball team is in the thick of the SEC championship race and our softball squad has posted series victories in the past two weeks over No. 2 Tennessee and No. 13 Georgia. The postseason is approaching for our golf and tennis teams, and our newest sport, sand volleyball, has enjoyed an outstanding debut season. Track and field - our most decorated sport with 31 NCAA titles – continues to flourish on the national scene.
Finally, we’re less than five months away from the start of football season and the opening of the fantastic South End Zone expansion in Tiger Stadium. Those of you who joined us for the Spring Game on April 5 got a first-hand look at the project, which will raise Death Valley’s capacity to over 100,000! The expansion will enhance the aesthetics of Tiger Stadium and its standing as the nation’s most intimidating presence for opposing teams.
We hope you’ll visit our campus for events this spring, and we’ll look forward to seeing you in Tiger Stadium this fall! As always, we welcome your comments at firstname.lastname@example.org. Unfortunately we cannot answer every e-mail we receive, but please be assured they are all read.
Vice Chancellor and Director of Athletics