Why should Brock University have a football team? I think that the harder question to answer is: why shouldn’t Brock have a football team? Over the years Brock has become a very prestigious school not only in their academics but also in their athletics. This year in particular, we as students have witnessed some very impressive milestones that Brock athletics have reached. If a Brock team didn’t win a championship this year, you can almost guarantee that they at least competed in the playoffs. Those who didn’t win a championship but came close were Brock Baseball, Men and Women’s Lacrosse and Men’s and Women’s Basketball.
So why is this important and why is this relevant to a football team here at Brock? Well, Brock has some very skilled athletes and we as a school want to continue that momentum forthcoming, so why not build a football team that could add to that success? This brings me to my first argument, as to why we should have a football team.
Even though Brock doesn’t have a football field, there is certainly interest in creating one from the outside community. Going back to “the good ol’ days” and when Brock was merely but a tower, there was a spark of a football team when a group of players organized a team but were unable to join the Ontario University Athletics as the cost of purchasing uniforms, registration, equipment, etc. was all too high and it was too risky to enter, considering that Brock was unaware if the team was going to be successful or not.
Despite the failed attempts, many do want to see Brock create a football team and if the school had the funds then it could certainly have the possibility in the years to come. Even checking The Brock Press website, a poll was run asking the question: “Do you think Brock University should have a football team?” 53 per cent of the participants voted “yes” for a football team, even if it’s just by a small margin, Brock students want to see football at Brock. On February 9, a new Director of Athletics and Recreation, Neil Lumsden, was hired. For all the football lovers in the Brock community, this was a jump for joy as this potentially could be a hint in the right direction for a football team.
Formally Lumsden began his CFL career in 1975 when he started off as a running back for the Toronto Argonauts and then continued his career with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Edmonton Eskimos as a fullback until he ended his career in 1985. Lumsden won three Grey Cup championships before becoming the General Manager for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in 1996.
With a resume like that, it almost seemed unanimous that Brock was going to be getting a football team with a new Director of Athletics and Recreation like Lumsden. Despite being asked on the daily basis if he has plans on building a team, as of now, this looks doubtful.
But that doesn’t necessarily mean that Brock won’t get a team. Now that Brock has someone who knows something about the football industry, we can guarantee that if Brock were to create a team, it would be done so in the correct manner and with precision and expertise. Not to mention that Brock could potentially have an advantage with coaching staff as Lumsden himself would be an excellent coach and perhaps be able to acquire some recognizable assistant coaches.
Brock already is off to a solid start to building a football team as Brock has unveiled the opening of Alumni Field this past homecoming with a brand new turf field, which Brock needed desperately as teams had to play on uneven ground. This is a step in the right direction for Brock because although Alumni Field does not meet regulation size for a football team, it would ultimately save thousands of dollars for Brock to add onto the field to make it regulation size as opposed to building a whole new field which would cost much more than adding a few extra yards to the end zones and putting in yard lines.
One of the biggest concerns Brock has with building a football team is after all the money that is spent on registration, staff, recruitment, and equipment, will the team be successful and prove to be an asset for Brock athletics? The answer is simply “yes”. We look at the Men and Women’s basketball team for example. Despite having elite athletes, another form of Brock’s extreme success in basketball is due to the We Are Ready team. Brock Basketball can rely on the “We Are Ready” team to hype up the crowd and team. Often opposing teams have complained about the We Are Ready team as they found that they are too distracting and have affected the way they play. This is something that the football team could use as a kick-starter to generate success and hype about the football team. Surely, the We Are Ready team would make the Brock football team known and soon Brock would be in competition with teams like McMaster, Western and Guelph.
Whether it’s a year from now or ten years down the road, there is an abundance of reasons why Brock should create a football team. Certainly there are many risks that would have to be taken into consideration but if we as students learn anything in University, it’s that we need to take risks in order to be successful. Brock already has the potential for a great coaching staff and the majority of students want a football team so all that needs to be done is make Alumni Field regulation size and risk the costs of building a football team. So it begs the question: Do you want to be successful Brock University? Then take the risk and build a football team. #BrockFootball2019