Sunday, April 10, 2011

4,000 Cal State Northridge Students Call for Football

CSUN Football Helmet

By Jason Aula

Cal State Northridge is following in Long Beach State's footsteps in terms of bringing back football. Bring Back Matador Football has collected over 4,000 student signatures which is above the 10% requirement of the student body signatures to put the matter of bringing back Division 1AA football to a binding vote which, is projected to take place in May 2011. CSUN did away with football in 2001, but many students want to see football back in Northridge, 4,000 student signatures speak volume on demand for football in these hard economic times. All signatures were collected during the Spring 2011 semester and are currently being verified.
Bring Back Matador Football is lead by CSUN student Jeffrey Benson. CSULB and CSUF have also been quite influential in assisting CSUN, in fact both CSUN and CSUF are using the “CSULB Model” to get the proposal of bringing back football on the ballot.
At CSULB 2,200 signatures were needed to qualify for the university student government ballot. CSULB used the Georgia State Proposal to implement bringing football at the Division 1AA level Football would get $2.7 million in operating expense whereas Big West Rivals UC Davis and Cal Poly SLO that play D1AA football put in only $2.3 million. The March 2011 vote at CSULB failed, with 3,084 students voting 52% No and 48% The CSULB vote was very promising because the margin of defeat was so little and another petition is currently being circulated to get a new proposal to bring back football on the ballot during November 2011. The major reason for defeat was the lack of an on campus venue to play.
Bringing back football does involve an $86 per semester student activity fee phased in over 5 years; the highest annual increase would be $25. In addition to bringing back football Women’s Crew, Field Hockey, and Lacrosse would also become NCAA sports to offset Title XI issues. There is an on campus stadium site, but a team would most likely play at Pierce College. An on campus stadium could be built for $12-15 million according to estimates for a similar venue at CSULB.
Bring Back Matador Football in collaboration with CSUF and CSULB have been working relentlessly to bring back football democratically. CSUF has about 2,000 of 4,000 signatures to get on the ballot at that university, 1 of 3 universities will bring it back and it will be a domino effect at other universities were movements are starting like UC Riverside and UC Santa Barbra.

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