Ian Answers Your Questions - Dec. 16

Dec. 17, 2004

Dear Ian,

I am a graduate student at the chemistry and biochemistry department here at Baylor. Since I came here, I have supported both the men's and women's basketball teams, as well as other sports. The last home game the Lady Bears hosted here at the Ferrell Center, I went with a bunch of friends, most of them graduate students too, and to my surprise when we scanned our Baylor ID the result was denied access. It is my understanding that as a student I have the right to get into the games for free, is that right or as a graduate student I can't "back the Bears"? Thanks for your answer.

Franklin Beckles
Waco, Texas

Editor's Note: A similar question was received from Francisco Gonzalez (Waco, Texas).


Thank you for your e-mail. I believe that Bill Chaves, Associate Athletic Director for Marketing and Sales, has been in touch with you already and recommended that you contact the cashier's office.

At present, only graduate and professional school students in select programs at Baylor are eligible for complimentary admission to athletic contests. The athletic department has recently submitted a proposal to allow all Baylor graduate and professional school students free access to games and we are hopeful that this will be approved by senior administration.

Bottom line: we want all Baylor students to support our teams and enjoy the benefits of a well-rounded college experience!



Are there any upcoming chats planned with you or some of our coaches? We really enjoy that feature and would like to see more of them during the course of the season.

McGregor, Texas


We will be hosting a year-end chat next Wednesday, Dec. 22, at 11:00 a.m. where I will be answering questions about Baylor Athletics. This will be a terrific way to wrap up the 2004 year and review and celebrate some of the great accomplishments that occurred. In addition, we can look ahead to what will be in store for 2005. Please join us then and remember that you can submit your questions in advance of the chat session.



There was some great high school football action at Floyd Casey Stadium over the weekend. The Southlake - Lufkin game was a classic. Does Baylor make any money from these games?

Waco, Texas


Thank you for the question.

This year, Baylor has hosted 14 high school football games at Floyd Casey Stadium. A primary reason for the record number of games has been the installation of the new synthetic surface which has allowed for multiple playoff games to be played on the same weekend.

We intend to be aggressive in continuing to seek high school games because it affords widespread benefits to Baylor and the greater Waco community. Local business leaders are excited about the tourism and economic impact of these events. It also brings prospective students and student-athletes to Baylor which is advantageous to our institutional and athletic department recruiting efforts.

Financially, we charge a modest rental fee that essentially covers our hard costs to operate the event and we make a modest amount of revenue from concessions. However, the real value of these types of events is in strengthening our relationship with the community and high schools.



Thanks for doing a great job with all of the programs at Baylor. Even though our Bears are not in the hunt this year for a BCS bowl game, I would like to know your take on the current BCS system. Being from the Big 12, do you favor automatic bids or do you think a playoff would be better?

Joshua Dinning
Waco, Texas


The BCS has been a topic of much conversation in recent weeks.

Personally, I favor a postseason model that would incorporate the four existing BCS bowl games into a national championship playoff system wherein the winners of these four bowls would advance to two semifinals the following week and then a national championship game a week later. I also favor reducing automatic qualification slots to the top five ranked conferences in a given year along with three at-large selections.

This model would include only the very best teams in the national playoff, provide for an undisputed national championship, expand opportunities for student-athletes, enhance exposure and revenue and not result in any significant missed class time for student-athletes.

Regrettably, this model does not seem to have the support of NCAA President Myles Brand or the NCAA Board of Directors who do not want the football season to extend into the second semester.


Will Aaron Bruce not be playing in the next game, because of his right ankle? If you see him please tell him that I am praying for him.

Leah Wolf
Waco, Texas


Thank you for the e-mail about Aaron Bruce and I am sure that he appreciates your prayers.

Aaron will probably play against SMU this week after suffering an ankle sprain in the last game. He has made a tremendous impact in the program this year and has already become a crowd favorite at the Ferrell Center.

We appreciate your strong support of Baylor Basketball!



Only a punter on the cover of the football media guide?? Only the best!!

Jack Batson
Roswell, N.M.


I was recently reflecting back on this Ask Ian question from last fall as well. A well-meaning fan wrote to express concern about Baylor's punter, Daniel Sepulveda, being among the student-athletes featured on the football media guide. I indicated that we will always celebrate excellence in Baylor Athletics. Whether it is an Olympic sprinter who wins a gold medal, national championship tennis program or Big 12-leading NCAA graduation rates, we will always publicize accomplishments that represent excellence.

Daniel Sepulveda is all about excellence. He was No. 2 in the Big 12 and third in the nation in punting average (No. 2 overall in net punting average, too) along with being a Dean's List student and captain on the football team. As we all know, Daniel was recently named winner of the 2004 Ray Guy Award as the nation's outstanding collegiate punter. In addition, he was named second team All-America as selected by the Walter Camp Foundation. We are very fortunate to have him at Baylor and look forward to his continued success on the football field and in the classroom.



This is a comment and not a question. I just want to thank Baylor players for the work that they do in the community to help different people. It is appreciated.

Waco, Texas

Thank you for the e-mail and kind words about Baylor student-athletes.

I want to take this opportunity to let Baylor fans know about some very special community service activities that are being coordinated by the Baylor athletic department and our Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. Our staff and student-athletes have been working hard on four different service projects that will make a difference in the lives of people in our community.

These service projects include the Food for Families program that distributes more than one million pounds of food to needy families across central Texas. Baylor student-athletes helped unload trucks, sort food, and lift packed boxes onto crates for delivery. Santa's Workshop is a toy drive conducted by Baylor and student-athletes distributed gifts to children and spent time interacting with them. The H-E-B Feast of Sharing program offers needy families and the homeless in our community hot meals and a Christmas celebration that includes face painting, and crafts. Baylor student-athletes spend time with the children and help them decorate Christmas cards, and then clear the tables when people finish eating. The Adopt an Angel program affords Baylor student-athletes the opportunity to purchase and present gifts to underprivileged children.

We have asked every Baylor student-athlete to participate in at least one of these community service activities during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays and are grateful for their commitment to do so and give back to the Waco community!


Final Thoughts

This was a special year for two of our outstanding head coaches. Both Clyde Hart and Matt Knoll were honored in their respective sports as National Coach of the Year. To our knowledge, this is a first for Baylor and a credit to these outstanding coaches and the success of their programs.

Have a safe and enjoyable holiday season and thanks for your continued support of Baylor Athletics. We'll see you at www.baylorbears.com for our on-line chat Dec. 22.


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