Budgets, geography and more – Leadercourier-times.com

Colleges throughout the nation are developing contingency plans for the upcoming school year.

The extreme is cancelling all sports, which some schools have, including Division III Grinnell in Iowa.

Larger schools are asking for salary reductions for coaches of major sports. Others, including Iowa, are permitting salary contributions back.

Sports cuts are on the table at Boise State, which had reinstated baseball after 40 years, then cut it, along with women’s swimming and diving. Note the title IX balance.

Geography, real and perceived, will play a part. When Montana played UND in football, the game was replayed on TV. One person noted the border state battle, even though the schools are almost 916 miles apart. Now in the Summit, UND passes four schools on the way to University of Missouri – Kansas City – a total of 677 miles.

The Big Sky will reduce games to 16, from 20, in mens and womens basketball. It will allow for more basketball guarantee games, although the amounts are going down.

Northern Arizona, who will host USD on Sept. 12, is a good example of a school with geographic challenges. Their closest conference opponents are Southern Utah (300 miles), Weber State (590 miles) and Northern Colorado (736 miles).

Northern Colorado has a new football coach, who has attendance guarantees built into his contract – $10,000 for average home attendance of 3,000 in year 1, 3,500 in year 2 and 4,000 in years 3-5.

As noted in a previous column, SDSU with its new stadium is having attendance issues.

UNC has the best Division I game. They play at Colorado State, a mere 15 miles away. With the both Denver Broncos and University of Colorado nearby, you can see the attendance challenges.

Locally, will the DakotaDome renovations be done in time for the opening game? How many people will be able to attend the USD at Iowa State game – if it’s played? How will sellouts in Lincoln be measured?

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